10 Questions About How, Why, and When You Write Music
No two snowflakes are alike. And no two songwriters go about shaping their tunes in the same manner. There’s no “right” way to do it. There’s no clear path to success. And the muse can be awfully fickle, wildly generous one day, coy the next. Sometimes she’s downright neglectful.
Because of this, it often helps to hear how other people do things. Getting a glimpse into another person’s creative mind can help clarify something in your own, can open up new possibilities, inspire you, irritate you, get you unstuck, or maybe even motivate you simply because you disagree with what they have to say.
CD Baby wants to hear from you. And we want to compile some of the most insightful responses into a free PDF songwriting guide. If we use your answers, we will credit you, include your artist name, and link to your music.
So, let’s inspire and irritate each other! In the comments section below, please answer the following questions (or any that seem appealing to talk about). Please, be sure to leave your name, artist name, and URL.
1. What does your songwriting process look like? What are a few of the more common ways in which you compose a song?
2. Think of your favorite songs. What do they do to or for you? What is it about the song (technically, emotionally, thematically) that moves you?
3. What are your common frustrations with songwriting? What are the ways in which you get stuck?
4. How do you overcome the frustration? How do you get un-stuck?
5. Do you envision an audience or outside listener when you write? If so, how would you describe that audience? What effect does this have on the writing process?
6. Do you collaborate or enlist outside opinions during the writing process? What effect does that have on the writing process?
7. Songwriters are known for loving most of their “babies” equally. This is why artistic coaches have the mantra “Kill Your Babies!” How can you tell when one of your own song is really good? How can you tell when one is bad or misbehaving?
8. What do you get out of being a songwriter? Do you imagine you’ll write songs forever?
9. What roles do “inspiration” and “perspiration” play in your writing process?
10. Imagine the greatest song you’ve haven’t written yet. Describe it.
(now go write it!)
– Chris R. at CD Baby