Play An Instrument
My first piece of songwriting advice is pretty generic but it’s extremely important. I completely recommend that you have experience with an instrument which can play chords before you start songwriting.
The guitar and the piano are two of the most popular instruments to pick up and two relatively easy instruments to pick up, as well.
Once you have an instrument that can play chords, you can play these chords over top of potential melody ideas to see which fits best.
This leads me to my second piece of songwriting advice. Most people are familiar with the term “hook”.
It’s used to describe the most memorable part of a song and is typically represented by a line of memorable melody.
The important thing to remember when it comes to writing great hooks is that anything can potentially be a huge and memorable hook.
If you hum any line of notes right now, if they are backed with the right instrumentation and chord pattern and structure, that melody has the potential of being a huge hook.
When you approach songwriting and specifically writing hooks from this point of view, it becomes much easier as you don’t need to spend your time burning out trying to come up with that perfect hook where instead you can come up with an initial hook and then develop it under the right circumstances.
This is why it’s so essentially you are able to play the guitar or some other chorded instrument because this enables you to mess around with your line of melody and get the most out of it.
After you do that and you consider the other instrumentation such as the rhythm, drum part, and tempo, along with any other basis or solo parts from other instruments you might put around it you can have a very clear idea of what you can do with that particular hook.
Songwriting is a Muscle
This next piece of songwriting advice is to exercise your songwriting muscles whenever possible.
Songwriting is a skill which develops over time no matter what anyone else will tell you. This is not something you are born with and it’s not an innate talent which some people have but others do not.
When I first began songwriting I was simply trying to emulate my favorite artists and write songs within the same styles as they would.
This can be a great productive tool for starting out, but not one which I would recommend that you carry on with you and continue to do time and time again as you develop as a songwriter.
It’s In the Title
Finally, my last piece of songwriting advice is that whenever you are truly stuck and cannot come up with an initial song idea, work on coming up with a very unique title.
Ideally your title can be something which can suggest a back story with it, something along the lines of “This is Our End”.
This is a title which can be taken on number of different ways and undoubtedly can have some sort of back story which you can write around it both musically and lyrically.
This will be a great catalyst for bringing your song into the next step which is coming up with that line of melody to kick things off whether that’s in the chorus of the verse or whichever part it is, and that you can develop the rest of your song around that initial idea.
This is the basis of how songs are written most times, and it can all begin with a memorable title which can give you so much to work with.