On more than a few occasions, I’ve been disheartened by the number of completed songs in my arsenal or perhaps overly critical of my work. Then again, I think we all start out that way. But I think the way out is simple. Practice.
The great thing about songwriting is that there is no proper technique. What works for you, may not work for someone else. But you never know what you could create if you step outside your comfort zone. That’s why it’s important to keep an open mind about the ways in which you go about songwriting.
So music before lyrics? Lyrics before melody? It’s been debated among songwriters a million times on hundreds of different forums, but really that’s all about personal preference and what you yourself value in a song.
In my experience I tend to come up with a riff or progression on my guitar, and as I think or experiment with lyrics, I find a melody that works. However I can definitely see arguments about why this isn’t ideal. After all, I believe the melody is what can really hook you into a song in the first place.
Since my last post I’ve continued exploring therecordingrevolution.com and I came across a video about using vocal melodies to creates boundaries to use in your lyric writing process. I found it really interesting and I’m going to give it a try!
So how do you tackle songwriting?
What is it you value when listening to songs and how do you work that into your technique?