Well that’s the three tracks finished, initially I had hoped to analyse some songs I liked in order to decipher their lyrics a little. I drafted one essay about one but when it came down to it, it was difficult to relate the writings to the project so the three songs will have to stand on their own along with the artwork on the sound cloud page that I designed.
As much as I’m not 100% happy with all the songs I understand some writers feel the same, I know Springsteen wasn’t always happy with his work and when Weezer recorded Pinkerton Cuomo hated it and still does, so perhaps it’s normal to be not be in love with everything you write.
I think the most important thing to take away from this experience is that I know have a rough process, which I know can at least generate material for me however questionable the quality may be. Another is just to stop being so afraid to write, I think I was always afraid to write because it seemed like a dark art something which should just naturally pour out without editing or thought. After reading about Springsteen’s alternate versions and the revisions he goes through it helped me realise that most people start off bad you can eventually get better with dedication and practice. Another interview that helped me overcome the fear was an interview conducted with Paul Banks the songwriter from Interpol, in the interview a comment is given to Banks (Opipari, 2011) “Some poets and novelists have told me that writer’s block is a failure of courage that it comes because the writer is too afraid to write something bad.” This makes a lot of sense to me and while writers block is usually only reserved for writers actually writing I realise now that all I was doing was looking at other writers who had years of experience then looking at my work and being disappointed.
After all this though my song writing process seems to come down to
- I’ll get a melody, whether it’s through writing something down lyrically and adapting it or just playing on a guitar
- Once the melody is done, I look for chords that fit under it well while trying not to go overboard and focus on the guitar part too much
- I’ll work out the best way to piece the original melody and this together going by feel usually for if it should be a bit more sparse or full.
- Usually at this point I’ll try to come up with a chorus melody and from there go through a similar process as I did when constructing the verse
- Once I’ve got a set of verses and choruses constructed in the above ways I usually try to write a bridge in order to break the song up a bit. I don’t necessarily come up with bridges the same way as I mentioned above though I normally try to come up with the chords and then the lyrics almost in a stream of consciousness style in order to differentiate them from the rest of the song.
- Once this is done I’ll usually set a song aside for a few days or longer if possible, then come back to it and see what I need to fix
- After that it’s onto a preliminary demo of the track on my phone usually just myself singing along while playing guitar, I do this because it saves loading up a pro tools session and creating all the tracks. I think it helps me to get the track down as quick as possible.
- After this again I try to set it aside then come back a few days later and do a full demo of the track if possible, due to lack of a drum kit however I usually end up creating a drumbeat on a simple drum machine plug-in. Eventually I would like to do complete demos with a full drum track as well.
Here is a link to a playlist containing the final demos of all three tracks