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Old 11-08-2012, 07:41 PM
jseth jseth is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Oregon... "Heart of the Valley"...
Posts: 8,112
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Songwriting is such a personal endeavor... I've been writing songs since I was around 13 years old, so... 48 years now (jeez, that seems like such a LONG TIME!)...

Sometimes songs just "show up"; I've had a number of them that have appeared, full blown, when I first woke up in the morning... just wrote them down as fast as I could write! Other songs just want to take their time, or be a bit coy, like they'll show me a little bit, but then just freeze or run away and hide...

I have pieces that have been "in progress" for a good number of years, whether lyric ideas, melody or a set of changes/groove that speaks to me... I figure that they'll eventually be ready to be written, so long as I remember them... but I don't believe in "forcing" a song, either. Certainly, I can do that. I can just write a song and finish it, work out a rhyme that fits, whether it's what I want the song to be, or what the SONG wants to be... something gets lost when I do it that way...

I've read too many interviews and books about songwriting to ascribe to any theory that says there's only one way to do it... or two ways or whatever...

When it comes down to it, you just write them, anyway that you can, any way that works for you, that produces a result that you're pleased with...

One thing I would suggest to any writer: DON'T THROW ANY SONG AWAY!!! I used to do that, all the time... I'd finish a piece (or get close) and think that it wasn't up to my own standards... so I'd toss it, or just walk away from it. Be gentle with yourself instead of being your own strongest critic...

By the way, I have found that it is FAR EASIER to write a song FOR someone else, than for me... even the suggestion of 'write a song about_____" is a whole lot simpler than staring a blank piece of paper and dong the "okay, what do I want to write about? What do I want to say?"...

As much as I love a whole lot of Neil Young's music, I wouldn't suggest following ANYONE'S advice to the extent of eschewing your own "way"...

Although the "don't think about it" comment is a darn good one!

play on...................................>

John Seth Sherman
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"There was no love, in the backwards glance...
there were no long drawn out good-byes.
There was some pain and some anger,
just beneath the surface,
but her words never matched the look in her eyes.
there was no love..."

(Untitled)
(J.S.Sherman
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