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trying to write a new song, but you have writer's block? here are a few ideas to get some momentum going. Add your own to keep the list useful for others

1) BIAB users can always start with a style demo and modify it to achieve a new sound

2) take an existing song's chords and...
a.) use the melody generator to find a new melody for those chords.
b.) reverse the order of the chords
c.) substitute the relative minor for major chords, and vice versa
d.) sometimes just moving a familiar chord pattern to a new style presents new ideas

3) use an online anagram engine to generate words containing the letters of the keys A-G, then use those words to define the chords in your song

4) take an existing melody and use BIABs ability to generate new chords that fit the melody. Once you have the chords, ditch the old melody and create a new one.

5) start with a drum track, and let it mesmerize you. Add subsequent tracks as the stream of consciousness allows. Record your various accompaniments to different tracks and don't think too much about it until you have some stuff to listen to. Then start revising intelligently on the best of the ideas.

6) listen to music you don't normally seek out... different styles and even different cultures. When something sparks an idea, immediately go and record at least one tyrack of your idea. You can expand on it later. The important thing is to capture the idea


7) join a songwriters forum, or read the comments PGMusic's user showcase to see what others were thinking as they wrote their songs

8) go to places like SONGRAMP where you can hear a thousand ideas in a day. SOMETHING there will either inspire you, or challenge you to do a better job than they did.

9) add your own ideas to this thread

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Some good ideas here Pat.

I'd like to see some similar ideas put forth as lyric joggers. Anyone?

Terry


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Great post Pat.

Terry here are some lyric idea joggers for you with a few examples of well known songs.

Days of the week - Tuesday Afternoon
Months - December 1963
Time - Midnight At The Oasis, Five O'clock World
Seasons - Summertime
Names - Bobby McGee, Carrie Anne
Places - Kokomo, Dixie, Down On Main Street, Up On The Roof, Under The Boardwalk
All modes of transportation - Little Red Corvette, Born To Be Wild
Things you wear - Coat of Many Colors, Bell Bottom Blues
Things you see - Looking Out My Back Door
Things you do - Driving My Life Away, Sailing, Guitar Man
Things you want to do - Fly LIke An Eagle, Dance The Night Away
Physical things - Kiss me, Walking After Midnight
Friendship - Me And Julio Down By The Schoolyard, You've Got A Friend
Falling in love - I've Just Seen A Face, Lost In Your Eyes
In Love - More Today Than Yesterday, Forever And For Always
Staying in love - Stuck With You, Let's Stay Together
Lovers spats - Need You Now, I Want You Back
Cheating - Your Cheating Heart, Why Don't You Stay
Breaking up - Breaking Up Is Hard To Do
Getting over it - Hurts So Bad
Over it - You Give Love A Bad Name
Metaphorical life advice - The Gambler, I Hope You Dance
Patriotic - Proud To Be An American
Mother - Mama Tried
Father - Papa Was A Rolling Stone
Kids - I Loved Her First, Cat's In The Cradle
Tell A Story - Ode To Billy Joe, I Shot The Sheriff, Mack The Knife
Holidays - Funny Valentine

I'm going to stop now....tired of typing. But really anything in life that you see, hear, smell, do, think, taste, feel or imagine can be in a lyric if you make it interesting and it strikes an emotional chord - Fried Green Tomatoes, Watermelon Wine.

And you can always have fun and dream something up like starting off with - Jeremiah was a bullfrog....LOL!

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Josie..
EXCELLENT post! Exactly what I was hoping for, only much better than I expected!

I would add that the same thing is true of lyrics as is true of standup comedy... people enjoy topics with which they identify. Standup comics find success with stories that make the audience think "yeahhh... me too!"

stories that have a common human element of pleasure, fear, hope, faith, passion, excitement etc are all good.

Likewise, recurring themes like holidays, weddings, funerals, seasonal changes, mood changes... ANYTHING that recurs will make your lyrics applicable again every time the cycle recurs.

For example, every halloween you still hear MONSTER MASH even though its a corny little song that wore out long ago... but once a year, every year, it works!

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Thanks for the ideas, Josie and Pat. Very helpful for me; I struggle most with lyrics.

Terry


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Dunno if this will help anyone else, but here's a trick I use most of the time when looking for lyric ideas.

A great majority of my songs were written from the starting point of the song title. I have a huge folder of blank A4 sheets of paper with just a song title across the top of the page that I go back to constantly.

Sometimes I may write a song as soon as I get the title. Other times it maybe months or years later.

An example of a few in there at the moment are: Then I Get Home, You Can Be Lonely Anywhere, Only Everyday, The Face You Wear Today, And Then She Cried and many many more.

The title will usually tell me whether the song will be happy, sad, or whatever so I have a start.

A lot of my titles are found by listening to things people say.

I remember my ex explaining that she did something a certain way on her old pc as it saved her "using up my memory" Using Up My Memory is now a song.


I recall watching Robert Wagner talking on tv about Natalie Wood and saying something like "We had good times, we had bad times....we had the moment" We Had The Moment is now a song!

I remember saying to my ex I wanted to write a song about my Grandfather and all the things he taught me. She said "well there's your title" She was right. All The Things He Taught Me is now a song.

One Christmas time, two friends were talking about Santa and one asked "So how old were you when you stopped believing?" How Old Were You is now a song.

And I have many other completed songs like: But I Don't Want To, Wouldn't You Know It,
She Won't Be There, Little Did I Know, Just For A While that all came from comments or phrases from others.

I find that having a title often means I write the chorus first as it gives me a head start knowing how many syllables I have to sing. The up side to this is that along with a folder full of song titles, I also have a folder full of choruses waiting for me to write the rest of the song!!

Not sure that this will help anyone else but it's out there anyway. Looking forward to hearing other peoples tips and tricks.

Good day to one and all

Martin


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I like your approach Martin. It makes sense. Thanks for posting.

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Accumulating titles ... that's a great tip Martin, thanks.

Terry


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Guys, you want lyric inspiration? Let me give you the phone number and email address of the girl here in Ohio who inspired 8 of my last 12 songs.

Of course you have to be willing to go through a TON of pain and be dumped for no apparent reason, but it'll make you write songs!!

I'm The One For You
What If It Was Love
Do It All Again
The One That Got Away
Snowball's chance In Hell
Still, Somehow...
Tine For You To Decide
Happy Ever After After You
That Woman
Lie To Myself
Our Own Brand Of Magic

All came from that heart bursting experience.....

And she is still available!!! (Imagine that....)


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1. How much did you make in 2023?
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Your information in invaluable. Maybe the link below might help.

Anyway about 7 years ago sorta got into a poetry feud (very friendly) and
start writing bits of poetry.

This site is almost irreplaceable.
http://www.rhymezone.com/

Can really add to your work and also Ideas.

Question for you folks ?
Do you write music, then write lyrics ?
Or do you write lyrics then music ?

I own a PSR-3000 with many thousands of style in my pc.
Found out by simply sitting down and playing chords.
Different ordered chords I would "hear" a melody.
No "Both of us are OK"

Once to this point would enhance the melody and proceed from there.


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"Do you write music, then write lyrics
Or do you write lyrics then music ?"

In my case I write both simultaneously.

As soon as I think of a line - my latest starts "I've no cause to doubt the things you say" - I'm already singing it over a selection of different chords until I stumble over a melody I like, then go on from there.

I then write those chords over the line:

G........Am..............................C
"Ive no cause to doubt the things you say

And head on to the next line humming away and trying chords and lyric lines and hopefully stumbling on something like this:
.........Dm....................................C
"I've no reason to assume that you won't stay"

This then has already given me my rhyme scheme - it's an AABB - so now I'm rolling!

In the vast majority of cases, the melody of the first two lines follows, or closely follows, the first two. So once I have a two line melody I pretty much have the melody for all the verses.

Sometimes I will write nonsense lyric lines if I get ahead of myself melodically, as this helps me remember the melody!! I can then go back later and re write!

Hey - it worked for Mr.McCartney!

In this particular song I had no title as a starting point so waited till I got to the chorus to see where it would take me.

For me, that can sometimes be the tricky part. But, as you may recall, I have a folder full of choruses
So sometimes, if I can't lead into a chorus I'll dig the folder out and see if I have one that can be manhandled to fit. Sometimes yes, sometimes no.

In this case, I wrote a new chorus that worked fine.

It's now called "My World Is Yours" and I finished it yesterday. next step, record it!

As you said Seeker, just playing around with chords and in my case, just singing what comes into my head sometimes, will have you "hearing" a melody.

Maybe the four of us could form a band!!

Hope this helps someone.

Good day to one and all.

Martin


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It's tunes I frequently have problems thinking up new ideas for tunes. I often get requests to compose a tune. I'll have a go at the melody generator. Never thought on that

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It strikes me that Martin has found a pretty good balance between inspiration and method.

It's always good to have a stock of musical ideas so that when a lyric comes along you can choose the most appropriate one to develop. And vice versa.

mglinert #137248 12/14/11 09:50 AM
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Eddie is that number 8675309 ? Maybe BR 549 ? Maybe we can swap old girlfriends numbers and see what crashes first ! I have numerous train wrecks that turned into songs ! lol

Tommyc #137249 03/20/13 10:53 AM
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Great ideas here. I suspect Sundance is an authoress and an expert in unleashing creativity, who writes under another name!

If she is that person, then I apologise for repeating her idea here, which is: get your ideas together, don't force them into a structure or rhyme scheme (yet!) and simply use those ideas as the basis of a letter to someone. The letter will vary, depending on who you imagine you're writing it to, but the product will be (should be) a coherent expression of what you really want to write that song about.


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from this site http://www.pgmusic.com/forums/newreply.p...part=1&vc=1

she's my everything went wrong


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Great stuff guys!

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Lots of good suggestions and I'll throw out a couple comments.

I've been writing/recording for some time yet still find writing songs and fleshing out lyrics to my personal satisfaction is no easy task.
As others have stated, some of my ideas come to finish product in a couple of weeks and others a couple of months...or longer.

I took a song writing class(geology/music major '73-'76) and he taught that if one is having difficulty with lyrics just write it out as a story form first without rhyming concerns initially.
Then, after writing out the bullets of the subject one can edit to a lyrical rhyming song format.
On the music/instrumentation side it's always a good idea to learn some basic music theory as another tool in the songwriting process.

I have written music first on some songs and had lyrical ideas first on others.
My stuff reflects some of my life experiences and various subjects that occur to me.
Sometimes based on just one word that comes to my pea brain.

IMO....to better ourselves at song writing one just has to keep writing, be willing to cull words/verses when necessary and not think that everything we write is a masterpiece on the first version.

I'm less than fond of most contemporary music so I have no illusions that any of my efforts would fit in the 'mass appeal' genre.
I have no promotional agenda as I think of writing/recording as my creative therapy.

Carry on....a creative day to all. (my apologies for this novelette)

Last edited by chulaivet1966; 03/23/13 10:46 AM.
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