A More Developed Re-draft (The Springsteen Approach)

Here’s the finished full demo of Son (Version 2) like I said before this song was originally developed from a previous idea which I had shelved and forgotten about.

Initially I had “finished” the song taken one look at it and realized I didn’t like it, put it aside and that was the end of it or so I thought. Then I ended up watching a documentary about Bruce Springsteen and his band recording and writing their album come to think of it I’m not quite sure how watching it would help I initially watched a short interview with Springsteen in which he shows of his large notebook of songs and this sort of convinced me it would be worth watching (ABC 2014).

I knew from then that Springsteen wrote a lot, which is something I admired considering I can still barely just piece together songs while singing over them. After I watched that interview I found another article somewhere that had a small picture of his journal and mentioned that when the documentary was released it came with a copy of his song writing journal (Berkun, 2011). Owing to time and economic factors I wasn’t able to get my hands on a copy to look through myself but I did watch the Documentary, there was a lot of talk about how Springsteen writes his songs.

One section that stood out to me in particular was when one of the engineers mentioned that “Bruce was a tremendous re-writer” apparently he would have different versions of songs, some with different endings some with totally different verses. Springsteen goes on himself to say that “If something wasn’t complete I just pulled out the parts I liked” this gave me a bit of inspiration to look back at my previous work as well which in the end I think turned out favourably. Certainly better than my initial draft of the song anyway after the advice of just taking out which part I liked and scrapping the rest.

Springsteen offered me another valuable insight however other than the benefits of constantly writing and re-drafting ideas. There’s a point in the documentary where he looks back on the beginnings of his career and mentions that when you first start writing you base everything off of your creative instinct not your creative intelligence. This is something I’ve obviously tried to get around by reading Webb’s book on song writing, Zollo’s book of interviews and Addonizio’s book on poetry and creativity. While these books have taught me the basics and given me enough courage to actually get started it still helps to know that the only way forward is by applying those techniques even if it does lead to less than brilliant work, hopefully that will come with time though.

Here is a link to the full version of Son…

Once again, excuse the less than brilliant singing.


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