As musicians, we all have to memorize music, lyrics, chords, dynamics and more. That alone can be daunting and definitely requires some effort. It’s easier to memorize a song you really like or perhaps one you’ve written yourself. I find the best way to start memorizing a song you didn’t write is to listen to it as much as possible. Put it on your portable player and listen both actively and passively.
One of the big questions we get over and over is whether writing commercial music requires you to sell your soul, abandon creativity, and forsake all that is good in this world. The answer is an emphatic “NO.” Any time this debate arises, there are those that say “Well, Jackson Browne did it his own way. He was poetic AND commercial” or “Bob Dylan didn’t sell out, he wrote whatever he wanted.”
Top Nashville and Los Angeles music industry pros and music supervisors will connect songwriters, publishers and producers during three-day festival that offers valuable workshops, performances, networking opportunities, and much more.
When I first started to pursue a career in music, I set out on a path to try to become the best at everything. Then I realized that day that I needed to figure out what I was best at and to try to become one of THE best at THAT.
A song containing a few as one or two chords can be just as well-crafted as a far more intricate composition. Of course, the world is full of guitarists who play a D-to-G strum pattern ad infinitum, rhyme “fire” with “desire” and declare that they’ve written a song. You goal as a songwriter is to not be that person.
While Don McLean was recording “American Pie,” the eight-minute-plus song that brought him stardom in late 1971, his label, Media Arts Records, went under. Understandably, the situation put a damper on any great expectations McLean had for the song. “I wasn’t thinking of releasing or editing it,” he says today. “My expectations were that I would be looking for a record company.”