Hello! This is Marta Innocenti, welcome to BLANK PAGE – SONGWRITING.
Let's talk about how to... “Write the lyrics of your song”.
1 - Point number ONE : first of all you need to decide the main TOPIC.
What will your song be about? Love? friendship? family? politics? having a dream? Choose any subject you’re interested in and let’s get started!
2 - Point number TWO : decide the main IDEA regarding the topic you chose.
If the subject is Love, which particular aspect of Love are you going to describe in your song ? It could be : the joy for a new love? how love changes people? Or the end of a love story. Well, the main idea is the core of your song, so define it clearly in your mind and focus on that.
Attention: you’re gonna need a title, connected to this main idea. So, start thinking about what the title could be while working on the following points. And let's go on!
3 - Point number THREE : choose the KEY WORDS
Write down some key words, strictly connected to the main idea, its environment, its development. Write as many words as you can, even though they don’t make any sense to you now, they will surely feed your creativity.
Notice how many words connected to the main idea you can hear in “Thriller” by Michael Jackson : midnight, dark, scream, killer, horror, night creatures, demons…
Try and find catchy key words. For instance, Paul McCartney and Steve Wonder...they talk about “Ebony and Ivory”, concerning black and white keys of a piano in order to convey the message of tolerance between black and white people. Striking, isn’t it ?
Another catchy key word is Umbrella, in the famous song by Rihanna. The main idea is -you can count on me- and that’s how it is conveyed: “you can stand under my umbrella”.
4 - Point number FOUR : choose the POINT OF VIEW
If you want the listener to be really involved, use the first and second person, I and You: “it’s MY life, and it’s now or never, I ain’t gonna live forever…” Bon Jovi - “I’m a creep…” Radiohead - “I will try to fix you…” Coldplay
If you prefer the listener to be an observer of someone else’s reality, you can use the third person: “Ricky was a young boy, he had a heart of stone, lived 9 to 5 and he worked his fingers to the bone” - “18&life” Skid Row.
You can also mention the names of the characters of your song :
“Michelle, ma belle…” Beatles - “Gina dreams of running away, when she cries in the night Tommy whispers baby it's ok...” “Living on a prayer” by Bon Jovi. - “Roxanne, you don’t have to put on the red light...” Police
In order to make the audience recognize into a common message, or feel part of a group, you’d better use WE : “We are the champions, we are the champions…” Queen - “We are the world, we are the children, we are the ones …” USA for Africa
5 - point number FIVE : select words connected to the five SENSES and to ACTIONS
Find adjectives, nouns, verbs, adverbs connected to sight, hearing, touch, smell and taste or to actions. The audience must feel what you’re saying and actually see it as if it was a movie.
For instance: “BLEEDING LOVE” by Leona Lewis. The pain she feels is described as a physical wound : “I keep bleeding, keep keep bleeding love, you cut me open”.
Notice this verse of “YOU GOT A FRIEND” by James Taylor. Every word recalls an image you can see or something you can hear or feel : “If the sky above you should turn dark and full of clouds and that old north wind should begin to blow”
6 - point number SIX : pay attention to the SOUND of the words.
You have to adjust everything you’ve been writing so far according to the melody, searching for the best solutions about rhyming too. Make your song catchy by usin