Digital Marketing

Songwriting Tips: A Common Problem Songwriters Face

Here is a common problem that one of my subscribers recently expressed to me…

“I am 16 years old and the main problem is that I know what I want to write, but when I write it I think it sounds silly” He’s 16 now, but I’m pretty sure this problem transcends all ages.

The truth is that almost everything I *write* also think sounds silly…at least at first. We all have to understand that in most cases you will never write a ‘great song’ the first time. It doesn’t happen that way.

I always jokingly tell aspiring songwriters that “you’re not in the business of writing songs, but rather… you’re in the business of publishing songs.”

By that I mean that you are not necessarily ‘writing songs’, but rather ‘creating songs’. That’s why they call it a trade, and that’s how you should be thinking. It’s about constantly editing and rearranging your song until you think it’s suitable for other listeners to hear. When you have a song, don’t let it stop there. Trust me, it’s not finished.

There may be exceptions to the rule, but above all, you’ll still have work to do.

Listen to the verse… could you use a change of tune? Does it fit well with the chorus or the pre-chorus? Does the song make sense lyrically? Get out of the song for a moment… would you want to hear the song if you were a stranger listening? Does the song bore you? What could you do to change that?

Now, you don’t have to go crazy here. Don’t fixate on every little bump and crack, it will just drive you crazy. Take what you think you could do with the rework first, then DO IT. Change it… and make it better.

Criticizing your own song is probably one of the hardest things to do in songwriting, but it CAN be done relatively easily. It means that you really have to stand on the sidelines of your song and look at it a little objectively.

Hearing the song from other people’s ears can do wonders for your songwriting.

After you’ve done that, it’s time to let the cat out of the bag… BUT only for a limited audience.

What do I want to say with that?..

…I mean, now you should play your song to a fellow musician, singer or songwriter. All three if you can. If it’s someone you respect, all the better. Here’s the ticket: there’s no better way to drastically improve your songwriting than when you actually start hearing your song through the ears of another songwriter/musician, who you respect. That’s the best.

In fact, I’ll say it one more time so you can engrave this sentence in your mind…

There is no better way to dramatically improve your songwriting than when you actually start hearing your song through the ears of another songwriter/musician, who you respect. If you don’t have a songwriter or musician friend that you admire or respect, then find one. Honestly. Make friends with one. Develop some sort of relationship with one. Find one. It will be the biggest move you’ve ever made in songwriting.

Eventually, you won’t have to keep asking them for feedback because soon you’ll be able to listen to your song. ‘through his ears’. This is why the paragraph above is so crucial to the success of your composition.

I am convinced that if you follow the advice in this article, your composition will reach its highest level. Not only that, but you will achieve a higher level of songwriting in a shorter space of time.

Finally, remember that you will get better as you write more and more. By definition, if you do something more often, it will get better. So keep it up and for God’s sake ENJOY.

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