The 30 min Songwriting Podcast where you can sharpen your songwriting skills - and have a laugh or two.
"I love being a guest on Song Talk Radio! To have intelligent conversations about songwriting with actual songwriters is a beautiful thing. Sometimes the terrific hosts let me free-form what I want to talk about, and other times they’ll pick a songwriting subject, but either way, it’s fun, informative, and invigorating." - Blair Packham, frontman, The Jitters, Song Studio Founder
"I had such a fun time as a guest on The Song Talk Radio Podcast! Not only were they fun guys to ‘hang’ out with, but they asked questions that no other interviewers ever have and really delved deep in the meat and bones of my songs and songwriting in general. I’d go back in a heartbeat.” - Jesse Parent, songwriter
It is not a singer/songwriter showcase or an interview show, but a way for songwriters to talk about the technical aspects of writing songs. The show talks about every genre you can think of: pop, rock, folk, jazz, punk, electronica, dance, and Rap. We have special theme shows where we talk about Bridges, Chord substitutions and the odd Movie show. Think of it like one of those talking head sports shows – ‘cept with less yelling.
Our Listeners’ Songs – what you are writing
This week SongTalk featured a few songs from our listeners. And it was loads of fun.
We chose three of our listeners’ songs to take a closer listen to.
Stuart Cook – near Manchester, England penned a delightful song inspired by the view from a hill near his home. Earthbound, his song has a traditional feel with a beautiful vocal melody. Download the lyrics for Earthbound.
Matt Oshin – a singer/songwriter/surfer influenced by the Florida coastal sounds has created a very honest and moving song about life without a father. Download the lyrics to Come Back.
Scott Westerman – a postman in South Yorkshire England, presented us with a wonderfully produced tune that deals with the difficulty of starting over after a heartbreak. Download the lyrics to Out of the Cold.
These compositions led to many good discussions like:
* when to stick to familiar structures and when to break the rules
* how to bring focus to lyrics without losing universal appeal
* writing for yourself versus writing for an audience
* how to get started on a song and when to finish
* Neel’s post on why you should record quietly
* Phil’s post on Creating Lyric Sheets that Don’t Suck
How about that Eddie Van Halen, and more
This week we were saddened by the passing away of guitar icon Eddie Van Halen. We talked about his amazing talent and some more stuff.
We talked about:
* Mandolin Orange cover version of Bob Dylan’s Boots of Spanish Leather, and songs with two different points of view (thanks to Jeff from Michigan for the email)
* Did Eddie Van Halen invent the two-handed tapping technique for electric guitar? Check out this interview to find out.
* Rick Beato’s episode on Van Halen’s 1984 hit song Jump
* Recording projects during COVID
We don’t need no stinkin’ coherent lyrics – with Neel Modi
Neel plays a track off his latest EP with special guest Lexie Jay from local TO Duo, Featurette.
Ace Symmetry is Neel Modi’s experimental EP of progressive electro-pop. Odd time signatures and nonsensical lyrics are combined with inventive beats, cool synth sounds, and catchy keyboard solos to create a unique and fun sonic experience. The EP is designed to be listened to in order and with gapless playback.
We talked about:
* Non-standard time signatures
* Nonsense lyrics
* A great YouTube channel: Rick Beato
* Do lyrics need to make narrative sense?
* Neel’s last appearance on the show to talk about this project
Creating a Concept Album with Gilbert Neal
This week Song Talk Radio welcomed Gilbert Neal to our studio.
A master song craftsman, Gilbert Neal – on his latest release Mistakes of Memory shows the depth and diversity of his influences: Leonard Cohen, Pink Floyd, ELO, Stevie Wonder, Steely Dan, Stephen Sondheim. Relying on his mastery of musical theatre and zeal for classic prog, Neal has crafted a narrative of longing and disconnection, a timeless pop curio that recalls nothing so much as the adventurousness of ‘70s rock. Yet in his mastery of rock, funk, folk, blues, jazz, and even musical theatre, he embodies the modern pop artist: an intrepid tourist of styles.
We talked with Neal about:
* the inspiration and concept behind Mistakes of Memory
* how working as a solo artist has freed him creatively
* the way songs work together to form a larger whole
* the process he uses to create a concept album
* using key modulations in his songs
ttps://wampus.com/gilbert-neal/ at Wampus, the record company he records for.
Apple Music: https://music.apple.com/us/artist/gilbert-neal/210647615
Writing modern R&B with Rosh Grove
Rosh Grove is a R&B singer and songwriter from Toronto, ON, Canada. As an artist, Grove is a dreamer, believer and driven to be an achiever of success in the music industry. His music tells his story of perseverance and overcoming adversity regardless of circumstances. Grove is driven by passion for the art, and telling stories of heartbreak and personal struggles through insightful lyricism and pop influenced production. Grove is different from most r&b and hip-hop artists. He aims to create music that is relatable, incorporating melodic sounds with a message. From working as an independent artist to collaborating with Toronto-based artists and producers, including KYNGS and Bryan “BC” Cockett, Rosh wants to craft his sound to represent the city he’s from and to help keep Toronto’s music scene on the map.
We talked about:
* What is means to make “modern” music
* What’s the “Toronto” sound?
* Writing songs from titles
* The differences between R&B and Hip-Hop and Rap
* Introducing nuance into relationship/love songs
Download the lyrics to Gotta Leh Go and follow along.
How to improvise in a band with Michael Johnson and Little Rambunctious
Actor, playwright, filmmaker, and musician, Michael Louis Johnson shares his experiences with his improvisation bands Rambunctious and Little Rambunctious, 13-member and 5-member brass bands, respectively.
We talked about:
* Michael’s approach to improvising a lyric for a song title suggested by an audience member
* How to create lyrics based on who’s in the audience
* The value of a band that only exists “in the moment”
* How to get the audience dancing