Writing Music Part 1 – Starting Out

“How do I start writing a full song, where do I begin?” is a question that has almost as many answers as the amount of music that’s out in the world today. 

Writing is a creative process and there are too many ways to count to put into words, but what are ways in which we can get a track started? For the next few music related blogs, we’re going to go through things that artists should look at to go from putting pen to paper, through to finishing a track in its entirety. 

Use What You Have

Cellphone, guitar, keyboard, etc… there are numerous ways, and it doesn’t have to be hard. There are apps aplenty which already allow you to start producing a demo song on your phone, which can be later created into a fully produced song.

What’s great is that the process of starting a song  doesn’t mean you have to have a fully finished product to take into the studio.  A solid idea of a melody, chords or simply some written lines can form a starting point for your track.

Don’t be afraid to look at songs from other artists as references, they can often be a really good starting point for you to be able to form a fully fledged idea as to what you want to write or say.

There’s A Reason There Are So Many Love Songs

Emotion is one of the biggest aspects which music touches on, and using those situations which are emotionally charged is a great way to inspire your own art. All kinds of artists do this, with musicians, actors and mixed media artists being some of the most common people using their emotional outpouring to create the best performances or art.

Creating an emotional toolbox includes perhaps digging into what you may not really want to touch on, but when one considers the best songs that have been written, there are very few which don’t touch on serious or emotive themes. This is because using emotion connects to audiences and allows them to feel things as well, a force which we as artists can use to assist in getting our music where it needs to go.

You have to allow yourself as an artist to tap into those places or at least those themes that sometimes are harder to bring up, but those are often the ones which end up creating the best, most authentic lyrics.

Know What You Want, But Allow Yourself To Be Creative

Being your own critic is sometimes a good thing, but remember that perfectionism is often stifling when we are trying to just start writing. It’s not necessary to have a fully fledged track with all of its arrangement already done. Many if not most of the projects we get at the studio are nowhere near complete, and they still have to be fleshed out and finished properly.

Being sure of  what you want is perfectly fine as well though, so don’t think that having a good idea of where you want the track to go is a bad thing either.

Essentially, it doesn’t matter how much of a track you decide you need before you want to record a full song. 

Find a good middle ground that allows you space to be creative during the process of recording your track.

Knowing When To Rest 

We all have those moments when we listen to what we’ve done and we love it, but we come back the next day and suddenly we think it’s terrible. This is totally normal, and it’s usually because we’ve forced ourselves to work on something for too long and decided what sounds good without giving our minds and ears a chance to rest.

Pushing yourself is good, but allow your ears and your mind to rest. Creativity is a limited resource and oftentimes we need to recharge. Go for a walk, or pop a series on for a half hour and allow your mind and ears just a brief respite as well as recharging the batteries. Trust us, it really helps.

Chords, Lyrics Or Ideas -Which Is Better?

The truth is there’s no rule and not one of these is really above the next. You can start with any of these and still get a track, so you have to figure out which one works best for you.

Some people like to look at songs that are out in the world and let those inspire them, some prefer to start writing and then find a song that sounds similar to give them the feel they want, some prefer to write lyrics to a existing backtrack and some only have a melody in their head . Creativity has no real boundaries so ultimately it’s completely up to you as a creative to find your own writing process.

At the end of the day, your creativity and spark are your own, your process, your ideas, your thoughts are no one else’s but yours, so finding the best way to start putting the pen to paper is ultimately all up to you. 

In an upcoming blog we’ll look at what Cosher Recording Studios does with the creation that you bring us, and how that gets mixed up with all the ingredients and thrown into the creative oven which will help make your finished song. 

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