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Thread: How did you develop as a songwriter ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by TalismanRich View Post
    On the other hand, some of us have the ability to string together the most insipid, uninspiring, cliche ridden verses ever seen. I wish I knew how to do otherwise.
    Would you ever accept the Lennon, Williams, etc had something special about them? A understanding of the everyday chess games we fight with the crazy world. Then found a way to communicate it across all walks of life.

    Perhaps if your life is hard enough , you mutate , and find ways to survive. These instincts become ideas, and if his tools were instruments. They would be fashioned to produce them. Make a message powerful enough. Change the world. Win the game.


    When I write with a 10 year old vocabulary I sound like a 5th grader.

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    I love this topic!!!

    I started as a drummer, and quickly realized that the neighbors did not approve of my chosen instrument (in particular late at night). So I got a cheap acoustic guitar and started to learn chords - and I soon started to write lyrics - with my first "song" being written when I was about 15 (that was 1967). Naturally, the first many songs were crap (I thought they were great), but I kept at it. I wrote maybe 1 "decent" song out of every 20. Some fellow musicians showed limited appreciation for the few decent songs (I did not put much stock in the opinions of friends/family - but if a fellow musician liked what I did, it gave me some confidence - fortunately back in 1967/1968 you did not have to be a "great" song writer - everyone dug music)

    By my early 20's my writing had improved (1 decent song for every 10 I wrote) and one was published. That is when I decided I was a "songwriter" and really started to read everything I could about songwriting. The extra effort resulted in better songs (better structure, better story lines, better melodic/harmonic content, etc.) and in turn another song was published.

    I am now in my 60's and have had a few songs published and placed in a few movies (and a few indy artists that still have not generated any income) and writen a couple of jingles for local businesses. I receive annual checks from BMI (not enough to pay the mortgage or by a Jag - but enough to buy a guitar or mic here and there). I've written and documented about 250 songs (and probably forgotten twice that amount) and now about 50% of what I write is "decent" (only because I recognize the crap and move on to something better). I teach a songwriting class at a local community center (which really forces me to effectively communicate the craft of writing and challenges me to write better than my students)

    There are many very talented writers, all fighting to get published and if a writer has a desire to go that route, they really must be willing to put in the time and effort. For me the key was to really try to learn the "craft", learn how to write catchy melodies, try to make every lyric count, learn how to tell when I had a crap song (and cut my losses before wasting too much time) and really dedicating a significant amount of time to writing (I try to writer something everyday).

    I still write some crap, but at least I can not tell that it's crap.

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