How To Help In SongwritingPosted by Mike Schumacher
As someone who has spent a significant amount of time teaching others how to write their own songs, I have learned a lot about songwriters. What qualities make up a good songwriter?
I will talk more in-depth about these qualities later on in this post, but for now just know that most people are not trained as writers. This is why it can be difficult to identify the quality of writing in someone else’s work.
Most musicians don’t spend much time thinking about what makes them a successful musician so they may not recognize their strengths when they look at them.
Luckily, we can learn something from everyone! If you want to become a better writer, there are many, many artists out there whose work you can study and learn from. You can even create your own style or take influence from their stories and ways of expressing themselves.
Just because something was done well before doesn’t mean it isn’t worth studying for yourself.
Read up on music theory
A basic understanding of music theory can help you as a songwriter. Theory is the study of how music works, which notes make up a melody, what chords are and how they work, and how lyrics fit into the music.
Theory can also help you understand why some songs seem to match or clash with other songs. For example, if one song uses a particular chord very long, it may sound weird next to another song that uses a different chord for a longer period of time.
There are many resources available online and in books that teach theory. You do not have to be professionally trained to apply this knowledge to writing your own songs! Many people who write their own songs use theory to hone their craft.
General theories like tonality, modes and diatonic scales can all aid in developing your musical instincts and creativity.
Even if you are already quite good at writing lyrics or melodies, practicing your composition skills is important!
As we discussed before, songwriters spend an average of eight hours per day listening to music, which means that it’s totally normal for them to hear a few notes or fragments many times over.
In fact, it’s almost unavoidable. When you go out to listen to music, you will probably pick up some bits and pieces along the way.
If you want to become a better writer, then you have to get into the habit of incorporating these small pieces into what you write.
You can do this by creating a journal in your own voice where you discuss ideas and things you plan to add to your songs. This also gives you time to think about how to describe those ideas so they sound professional and coherent.
And don’t worry about being too poetic – even very basic concepts can be interesting when put together correctly. For example, why not try describing someone’s hands using the word “fingers”?
Your subconscious will take care of the rest.
Find your creative voice
As we know, songwriters come from all different musical backgrounds and styles. Some are trained in music theory, while others learn by creating their own songs. What is important is that you enjoy what you do!
Whatever style of writing you choose to pursue, there will be lots of opportunities for you to show off your skills and get feedback from people. You can even create your own material if you feel confident enough in your talent!
As with anything else, practicing how to help songwriting takes time.
Record yourself singing
Recording your own voice is one of the most straightforward ways to help improve your song writing. You can do this with just your phone using an app or software that has recording features, or you can use a more professional device like Google/Apple Studio or Logical Producers’ VoicePro (which are paid products but offer lots of tools).
By listening to your songs and replacing poor lyrics with their true meaning, or adding new ones, you will learn how to write your own lyrics and improve your ability to create your own music!
Your style and tone as a singer will also help determine what kind of songs you want to write. For example, if you overuse slang and idioms in your lyrics, then these may not be easy to translate into other genres.
If you are already able to sing, then great! But even if you cannot yet, there are many resources available to you. Many high schools and universities have a teaching studio where students can come and practice their vocals, or you can take some private lessons. There are plenty of free online courses too.
Edit the recording
Even if you are not a singer, there are many ways to help with the songwriting process. You can take inspiration from other songs for your own writing, or you can use music as a tool to strengthen your writer’s skills.
There are several resources available to access professional quality songs at no cost. Many universities have technology that allows students to upload their work and get feedback on it, which is very helpful in developing talent.
Some of these sites also offer free accounts where you can listen to limited amounts of music, but you do not need to purchase anything to give great insights into how effective certain lyrics are.
Learn to use software programs
There are many great songwriters in the world today that would not be where they are if they did not learn how to use music making software applications.
Music making software is an extremely powerful tool for anyone who wants to write their own songs!
There are several types of apps out there that can help you compose, record, edit, and produce your songs. Some focus more on writing lyrics while others may have you starting with a melody first before adding the rest.
Some allow you to create or access sounds and instruments so that all of the components of a song are covered. Others facilitate creating rhythms and patterns that make up a verse, pre-chorus, and chorus section of a song.
Whatever style of songwriting you want to pursue, there’s a app that will help get you started! And don’t worry, we’ve got some super helpful tips here for you to read about each one.
Connect with other writers and artists
As we know, songwriters are typically very creative individuals who enjoy writing songs. Some of these songwriters may not be as famous as others, but that does not mean they can’t write a great song!
Many successful songwriters work in groups of two or more where one writer collaborates with another on different parts of the song. This helps both writers to contribute their own unique style while also having someone to bounce ideas off of.
Grouping up with other writers is a great way to meet new people, gain inspiration, learn new techniques, and have fun doing so. Plus, you could even form a duo and collaborate on music together!
There are many group forums out there where like-minded musicians come together to share their experiences and give each other helpful tips. You do not need to be professional musician or singer to participate.
Anybody from anywhere in the world is welcome here. Many sites offer free tools and features to users which is great because you never know when you will run into an interesting tip or trick for your craft.
Take a class
Learning how to write songs is not limited to having music in your life and listening to lots of music. There are many ways to learn song writing skills, from taking formal classes at university or community college, to attending concerts, recording yourself singing along to songs you like, and then experimenting with lyrics and melodies by yourself.
There are many great resources available free online and through apps and software. You can also take some lessons via YouTube or other social media platforms. By practicing consistently, you’ll find that your song writing will improve quickly.
Practice making songs using paper and pen first, before moving onto more sophisticated tools. Many people use voice-to-text applications such as Google Voice to create the lyrics for their songs. This has the potential to be very helpful in creating authentic sounding vocals.
And don’t forget about collaborations! Getting help with the melody or rhythm can go a long way in improving your own song writing. People are willing to share their ideas and knowledge, which can only benefit you.
The Jam Addict team is a revolving door of writers who care about music, its effects on culture, and giving aspiring artists tools and knowledge to be inspired and keep on creating.
If you have any questions or concerns or just want to drop us a line, don’t hesitate to contact us! We always appreciate the feedback.