If you’re looking for songwriting tips and techniques, well done.
They can be just what the doctor ordered when it comes to writing music.
The fact is, songwriting can be hard, very hard. Your understanding of music may be next to none but there are still things that seem even more elusive than the understanding of musical theory. Things like dealing with writer's block, staying creative, discovering songwriting exercises, word painting and all the stuff in-between.
Thankfully here at The Songwriting Desk, we know that understanding the grey matter in-between all the theory is just as important as the theory itself.
We all need words of advice when it comes to writing music. Seeking songwriting tips is always going to be beneficial for your process.
You can maneuver through or songwriting tips section as you please, though for now, here are 7 tips that really work.
Whether you are stuck or not, you should give these a bash and see what your beautiful saucy mind comes up with.
This is genuinely rule number one when it comes to bettering your songwriting. You have to write a lot of songs.
Practice makes perfect does it not?
The truth is you will probably write a dozen bad songs to every two great ones you create.
By doing something constantly and often, your brain begins to think in a certain way, in this case, it will begin to think in songwriting.
There are invaluable lessons that come through writing your own music. Big learning curves occur that teach you what works and what doesn’t work. So you may as well lean into that, learning fast and hard as you go.
You also then will have a body of work to sift through, presenting to the world only the ones you feel are good enough. Writing a lot is essential.
Another golden rule of songwriting is trusting yourself and your own ear.
The beauty of writing music simply is that its completely your own, and at the end of the day all the decision making is left up to you. This may sound daunting, but take that core idea and embrace it.
Write music that you love.
There is no point in writing a song that someone else will like if you don’t like it yourself. It all starts with your opinion of the song.
That passion will shine through. After that don’t be offended if it’s not someone else’s cup of tea. As long as it's your cup of tea.
If you are in the writing process and don’t like a certain chord or lyric, you must tinker with it until you do. Never put a single sound into your song that you don’t like.
Songwriting is a form of self-expression. So express yourself.
This leads nicely onto our next tip…
Oscar Wilde said it best. ’Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.'
This couldn’t be more true when it comes to songwriting. We know its tempting to try and recreate the sound of your favorite musician. Although it's hard, you have to force yourself to resist the urge.
We guarantee you will not be able to recreate what they produce and run the risk of sounding like the artist’s slightly duller ugly cousin.
This is not to say you can’t borrow inspiration from your favourite artists, because you absolutely can. Just make sure you are not mimicking them.
The result will most likely be disappointing for you more than anyone when it doesn’t end up sounding honest and real.
It’s important to find your style and explore your OWN musical journey rather than trailing two steps behind your favourite artists. Your time is much better spent being yourself.
Although it may be difficult to walk around hearing melodies in the wind, there is still inspiration to be found all around us if you are listening.
Be open to being inspired by the world around you. Keep a note pad with you and anytime you see or hear something in your day to day life that sparks an idea for anything musically related and write it down. It doesn’t matter what it is, just write it down.
This is a great way to especially begin writing meaningful lyrics.
This applies to all parts of your life whether that's reading, listening to music or even watching films.
Your songs will begin to take on new meaning once you start drawing inspiration and ideas from the world around you rather than only when you sit down to write.
Having an understanding of how music works is a great way to improve your songwriting. Knowledge is power. Especially with music.
It’s a good idea to recognize the weaker parts of your songwriting and improve on those first. Maybe you struggle with writing melodies or writing lyrics.
When inspiration just isn’t there, brushing up on the more mechanical side of music can help you get over whatever hurdle you are facing.
Not necessarily exercise as in go for a run (Which is good too).
We mean, do some songwriting exercises to strengthen your musical muscles.
There are many many exercises you can do that will improve your songwriting and will get your creative juices flowing.
They can’t harm your process in any way and will help develop a healthy well-rounded songwriting approach.
Whilst it’s great to have a system in place when writing to maintain workflow, it can also be helpful to switch up the way in which you write music.
Try writing on a different instrument than normal. Or starting with the lyrics first before the chords for example.
If you are writing within a Digital Audio Work station is always a good idea to know the in’s and out's of the program as well as knowing what songwriting tools are out there.
Don’t be afraid to get weird.
You never know what you will come up with. Push yourself to try new ways of writing especially if you are experiencing writer's block and feeling uninspired.
There are countless songwriting tips and techniques that can be learnt. Having a firm grasp on the basics is a great way to start though. Maneuver through The Songwriting desk tips and techniques to find what you are looking for (or even something you didn’t think you needed help with).