All posts by Christine Bourne

What is Your Music Saying?

October 30th, 2018 by

music lyric songMany of us started out as players or instrumentalists before we began writing songs. Our instruments inspired full songs from a simple guitar riff, melodic motif, or piano lick. From those short but foundational pieces we were able to build a verse and chorus and bridge, all stemming from a single seed.

Use both intuition and tools

Sometimes it’s intuition that tells us where to move to when we write the chorus section after a verse. Sometimes it’s a mixture of intuition and tools, knowing that a rise in pitch and shorter rhythms can create more energy for the chorus section, or that longer notes can contrast beautifully from the short notes we just left and reignite the listener’s attention. Wherever we move to, we can often feel a sense of consistency within the song – as if the ideas are linked rhythmically and melodically and harmonically to each other by some common thread. Many times that thread is a mixture of those elements, whether it be a pattern of pitches or rhythms, or harmonic progressions. It’s the repetition of these patterns that give our song a consistent identity, rather than a feeling of randomly assigned notes. (more…)

Songwriting Tools to Outline Song Ideas

August 9th, 2018 by

Songwriting Tools to Outline Song IdeasWriting a song from start to finish can be a daunting task without tools and strategies. I’d like to share with you one tool for to outline song ideas stemming from an understanding of the structure of our songs. Let’s explore various methods to outline song ideas using different songwriting tools.

Song Structure

When I say song structure, I’m talking about the form.

This is perhaps the most common and widely used structure there is, highly effective in getting right to the main point without much dallying around. (more…)

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  • Songwriter Tip:

    If you or your band is at the stage of sending demos out to labels, producers, et al, you don’t need protection, but this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t have it. At the very least, always use the ‘poor man’s copyright’ method. Use government registration if you can afford it, as it is still the best. Even though the risk is incredibly minimal, perhaps one of the person’s you’re sending your package out to has changed jobs and has been replaced by someone who is new in the business and is not quite honest. There is also the incredibly small, yet existing, chance that your CD will get mixed up with someone else’s and that they’ll get signed on the strength of your songs and think nothing of making them their own. As I said, although the risk is extremely low, it’s still worth spending a bit on protecting your work.