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Questions tagged [songwriting]

For questions about writing a song from end to start and the ideas and techniques behind it.

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2 votes
6 answers
851 views

Is adapting existing melodies a useful way to improve composition skill?

As the saying goes ‘immature talents borrow; mature ones steal’. When I write songs I normally start with chord changes and try to sing something over them, but this often results in uninteresting ...
Davy5003's user avatar
  • 101
0 votes
3 answers
117 views

Wouldn’t there be an advantage to songwriting beginning with just one vowel or syllable and are there examples of this historically?

Isn’t this sort of the idea behind Solfege? Not focusing on the assigned pitch aspect of it right now, but the use of syllables with no intent to form words. Also, I am aware that there has been ...
Emotion's user avatar
  • 337
1 vote
1 answer
19 views

Can step-away structural tones have Neighbor tones?

As far as I understand, Neighbor tones(Upper and Lower tones) can only occur between repetition of structural tones as in the picture below. but another picture suggests that between structure tones ...
Sean's user avatar
  • 793
0 votes
3 answers
116 views

Is it possible to write a song “pitch first” or “key first”?

I believe there are 3 possible main elements to a song (not minding dynamics, articulation etc): The Type of Sounds + their order & The Amount of Sounds (Vowels, Consonants & Syllables & ...
Emotion's user avatar
  • 337
-2 votes
4 answers
173 views

If you write a song by doing the lyrics first isn’t that technically starting with time (rhythm) rather than with pitch? Is the term for it phrasing?

If you write a song by doing the lyrics first isn’t that technically starting with time (rhythm) rather than with pitch, and would the term for that be musical phrasing? E.g, if you write out a 4 ...
Lecifer's user avatar
  • 954
0 votes
4 answers
150 views

Writing a Bridge for a Song

I am considering a bridge in a song I am writing in the key of C. Is it customary to change keys by going up a whole step or half step?
Timothy's user avatar
  • 35
13 votes
7 answers
1k views

Writing songs on piano that are meant for a guitar-led band

I am a keyboardist in a rock band. I run into a problem a lot when introducing new songs to the rest of the band members. It might be my lack of skill as a piano player, I don't know. It's been ...
Ryan's user avatar
  • 131
1 vote
0 answers
61 views

Program similar to getharmony.net [closed]

getharmony.net was a very interesting web page where you could get the notes of a song with guitar through a spectogram and make a tab to interpret it. Unfortunately it is down, but I would like to ...
Elermino's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
151 views

I like to sing lyrics as I come up with them. What is this called?

As I write lyrics, I just start singing & turn them into full verses/choruses. What is this called? melody? What is my next step into turning them into pop songs? Do i turn each syllable into ...
Mr. Lo's user avatar
  • 13
0 votes
3 answers
191 views

How to Identify Song Genres

I write a fair bit of music in my spare time but I don't really listen to any all too much, so I'm not very familiar with what falls under what genres. I've starting posting my work, but I dont really ...
Exandrius Grey's user avatar
1 vote
3 answers
3k views

Do I need 88 keys to produce film soundtracks?

This question is motivated by the following reality: The Brazillian real is a very depreciated currency compared with US dollar; 1 US dollar = 5 Reals. I want to compose orchestrated soundtracks and ...
M.N.Raia's user avatar
  • 273
0 votes
2 answers
121 views

Question on the formation of the Harmonic field in general

Given a key note, you can build up any sort of scale, for scales are just patterns of whole and half steps. The minor and major are examples. Now, if the scale is the set of notes, the harmonic field ...
M.N.Raia's user avatar
  • 273
1 vote
3 answers
291 views

Can my scale have two whole steps of distance?

I want to create scales. I would like to do that to create the most original music as possible. Now, as a beginner, I don't see why the scales that I studied are composed just by whole steps (W) and ...
M.N.Raia's user avatar
  • 273
-2 votes
1 answer
75 views

The nature of rhyme in _Surrender_? [closed]

Consider the priceless Surrender, written by Rick Neilsen, 1977. Mother told me, yes she told me In a sense, the me/me rhymes. I'd meet girls like you She also told me stay away You'll never know what ...
Fattie's user avatar
  • 145
2 votes
1 answer
130 views

The reading of a song: what a beginner in composition needs to pay attention when reading a song? [closed]

Firstly, I'm a beginner in composition and all of my songs were quite "intuitive". I'm at a stage where I really need to know music theory in order to produce better songs. I) Introduction ...
M.N.Raia's user avatar
  • 273
2 votes
2 answers
170 views

Doubt on scale shape creation and plagiarism

First of all, -Tone := T -Semi-Tone:= ST. Suppose you have the well know C major scale pattern: T T ST T T T ST Well, this is just one example of what we can do in music: ...
M.N.Raia's user avatar
  • 273
0 votes
1 answer
104 views

It is possible to get the drum progression only by listening?

I want to get the drum progression from this song on youtube at the minute 3:24, but I am unable to get the things very clearly, I can hear a Hi Tom on it, but no much more? It is possible to get the ...
RodParedes's user avatar
7 votes
4 answers
432 views

Comping over the Cmaj7 in "My Favorite Things"

I am wondering if someone can give advice on how to make comping over the Cmaj7 chord in bars 5 through 8 sound more interesting. In the first 4 bars I play E-7 to F#-7 to E-7/G back to F#-7 and that ...
Geoffrey Wall's user avatar
2 votes
4 answers
284 views

Songwriting and music theory questions

In a 4/4 instrumental for example: If I have to put stressed syllables on the strong beats of the instrumental, What happens to the other beats that might get stressed acedentally since it's ...
Luiyo's user avatar
  • 147
1 vote
1 answer
4k views

If The Beatles didn't know music theory, how did they construct whole songs flawlessly? [duplicate]

It is said that the 4 beatle never learned music theory, and is proven by many interviews from them. They are known for writing rock hits that had always hit the charts and the songs they had written ...
Doğu Mizan Inal's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
3k views

How do song credits work on Spotify?

I haven't been able to figure out whether this question is on-topic, hopefully it is. I have recently been wondering about how credits are given to the people who contributed to a song. To be more ...
Stratos supports the strike's user avatar
-2 votes
1 answer
674 views

Did Agnetha and Anni-Frid always sing in unison? [closed]

I was listening to some ABBA songs that I hadn't paid much attention to since my childhood, and it occurred to me that, even though they are known for being a multi-singer group, they never really ...
Shiny and New's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
89 views

two alternatives for one song in a bookpart

I am making a music book where each song is on its own page. The code for each song is: title = ... music = ... \bookpart { \header { title = \title } \score { \music \layout { } } ...
Kjara's user avatar
  • 758
0 votes
1 answer
162 views

What exactly is the concept of returning to the one?

In riff writing, Tom Morello mentions his style with Tim Commerford was returning to the one. Is this basically just using the tonic chord as a drone? What exactly is meant by that? I believe I can ...
Neil Meyer's user avatar
  • 14.9k
4 votes
8 answers
1k views

Any tips on writing the structure of a song for a band which does not read music?

I am starting to play some pre-written songs with a band. These are written by the vocalist and we are trying to make a demo out of them. We (as a band) are having a hard time trying to remember he ...
Shounak Chakraborty's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
141 views

Why is (vocal) melody usually written in quarter notes? [closed]

While writing melody, I was trying to stretch short verses into 16 bars by using too many whole and half notes, and now I think it was equal to having tempo at half speed. Most melody is written with ...
Pabble Goobs's user avatar
8 votes
2 answers
2k views

How "hard" to read is this rhythm? A rhythmic comparison

I've recently heard a rhythm that sounded like this It seems slightly tricky to play it perfectly, so I wonder if I could somehow improve this writing to make it more natural and "readable"....
sam wolfe's user avatar
  • 217
0 votes
1 answer
113 views

Help! How would you write this rhythm (audio linked below)? [closed]

The audio source can be found here. I'm interested in the section highlighted in blue. There is naturally some freedom in the artist's interpretation, but I would like to transcribe it in a relatively ...
sam wolfe's user avatar
  • 217
14 votes
9 answers
9k views

Does the starting note for a song have to be the starting note of its scale?

Does a scale always have to start off with the note it is named after? For example, the Dm scale is defgab♭cd`. If I wanted to sing a song in D minor, would I have to start with the note D? Or could ...
skyfox009's user avatar
  • 365
1 vote
2 answers
142 views

What is it about the 9th that gets used so much over minor triads by songwriters? [closed]

I have come across an uncanny amount of examples in song analysis where the 9th (or 2nd) is used over a minor triad in an important way. I don't just mean as a passing tone but as a, beginning notes, ...
user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
85 views

Can transposing my song help me understand what's wrong with it?

When writing, recording, or making music on the computer, I write what sounds good to me. I listen to it 1000 times in the process, so I'm afraid that I end up losing my ability to judge it. To ...
bitconfused's user avatar
7 votes
6 answers
2k views

What are the key ideas behind a good bassline?

Hello fellow musicians, I trying to figure out how to write a good bassline to a pop-ish song (no specific genre, but think Selfless by The Strokes and Lost in Time by The Living Tombstone). I have ...
Andrew the Programmer's user avatar
3 votes
5 answers
348 views

Songwriting and improvisation HowTos

Are there any actual rules of how to write music? I mean there're guides everywhere in the Internet like "so you have scale, shapes of scale, chord progression over scale - let's go, do whatever ...
randomhuman's user avatar
3 votes
3 answers
816 views

How to write long melodic licks on Guitar?

Please share your method/approach to write long melodic licks/runs/sequences/phrases on your instrument(preferably guitar). I can write short melodic short phrases like in Blues, for example, but ...
user9339131's user avatar
-1 votes
1 answer
65 views

In your opinion, what song structure does Glasvegas's "Geraldine" follow?

I would argue that the song "Geraldine" by Glasvegas (embedded below) follows an AABA structure, as there is variation in the second A repeat; however, a melody from the original repeats ...
louziebaby's user avatar
2 votes
4 answers
380 views

What is the significance of learning ''cadences" in music composition?

What is the significance in understanding this concept if I wanted to write music? If I understood cadences, then would that mean I would be able to structure my compositions?
Richard Pius L. Chua's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
219 views

Finding my song's registration with a Performing Rights Organization

So, many years ago, I entered a songwriting competition. As a prerequisite, I had to register my song with a PRO. I know I did it, but I don't remember which PRO --it was either ASCAP or BMI. I don't ...
Chris Sunami's user avatar
1 vote
6 answers
1k views

Is this chord progression really iii-V-I?

I've found a really cool chord progression that I've been playing on guitar that goes Bm-D-G-G. I'm trying to create a chorus to go with that chord progression, and I've settled that I'm playing in ...
Josh Marchand's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
402 views

Songwriting and Chord Progressions like Elton John

I know this might be a weird question, but bear with me. Recently I've been listening and analyzing Elton John's songs. I really loved the songwriting, chord progressions and chord voicing. In an ...
Arsan Ezzat's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
82 views

A vocalist musician beginner: hearing song structure

How to tell the parts of a song when I hear a beat? I mean if I find a beat that I love, how can I tell in which seconds the chorus, verses,bridge...? For example, what distinguishes the different ...
Yuval's user avatar
  • 11
1 vote
7 answers
1k views

What key does the chord progression E, D, C#, B, E, D, C#, G belong to?

I noticed while playing guitar recently that the chords E, D, C#, B, and then E, D, C#, G sound good together although to my knowledge those chords can’t be in the same key because of the E and the C#....
Kyle S.'s user avatar
  • 11
-1 votes
1 answer
97 views

Is there a name for this kind of a transition in songs?

In ALL ABOUT THAT BASE parody (Star Wars Parody - Meghan Trainor's All About That Bass), there's a certain transition / change near the linked time after "places" (the video has lyrics shown)...
user71457's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
111 views

How to practice hearing what other people hear and techniques to detect I'm diverging

I'm not hearing sound objectively. For example when I produce music, even after the final mixdown, I think my brain is actually adding things that aren't objectively there. Not entire instruments and ...
Andrew Cheong's user avatar
-1 votes
2 answers
129 views

Need help in writing Guitar Solos using story [closed]

I heard lot from online videos(Literally all) that the key thing to awesome solo is - Story. But I am kinda confused that how one implements this? Please share how you implement the "Story" ...
user9339131's user avatar
0 votes
3 answers
643 views

Will a song of F-major sound higher than C-major if they are following the same harmonic progression?

When trying to write songs in F-major, I realize that by using inversions I can achieve a range that is manageable for instruments and voices to play. Yet, I notice that more often than not, my ...
David LE's user avatar
  • 105
1 vote
2 answers
547 views

I can't hear the chords in this song, are there any or am I mistaking chords for melody? [closed]

I'm trying to train my hear to listen and separate out the chords, melody, bass, and drums in music I enjoy listening to, and practice my music by re-creating these styles. ...
Riley's user avatar
  • 13
6 votes
2 answers
639 views

How do I transpose an orchestral piece if it will push some of the instruments out of their range?

Chord inversions seem to be the obvious choice, but sometimes it changes the overall harmony or disturbs the voice leading. Am I stuck with that key of whatever the orchestral piece is originally ...
David LE's user avatar
  • 105
1 vote
2 answers
112 views

When playing piano and singing is it better to voice the chords out of the way of the vocal?

When I study lead sheet on the piano. The left hand plays the chord and the right hand plays the melody in the next octave up. Should this be the case when singing and playing too? So if I have a ...
user avatar
4 votes
0 answers
197 views

Operatic composition techniques

In this interview, one of my favorite composers (and my favorite male vocalist)--Rufus Wainwright--explains that he has "leaned on" opera for various tricks which he has applied to his pop, ...
286642's user avatar
  • 1,366
13 votes
6 answers
2k views

Lead guitar improvisation strategies for young intermediate guitarists

One of my 15 year old students is progressing quite nicely in her ability, including playing live and playing learned guitar parts including lead lines. She reads music and can play many classical and ...
user1255441's user avatar