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August 23, 2016

The One Secret You Need to Make Every Songwriting Session a Win

Have you ever set aside some time to write, but then NOTHING happened? You turned off the cell phone, shut down the laptop, got out the guitar or went to the keys, but were absolutely dry inside? Zip? Nada? Nothing?

You probably know the feeling… you stare at the page for an hour with NOTHING…You type some words on the screen and then ERASE THEM, like 12 times…You sit and play the same THREE CHORDS over and over on the guitar or keys and you get so BORED you just give up and go get a big bowl of ice cream?

Then you’re left sitting there judging yourself and being all Les Mis because you’re not getting anything done, feeling like a loser and [...]

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June 2, 2016

Bring Your Lyrics to Life with Imminent Imagery (It’s About Showing Not Telling!)

The definition of the word imagery is “visually descriptive or figurative language.” The only thing I would add to this definition is that it is often missing from the songs we’re trying to write. Using great imagery is one of the most challenging aspects of our songwriting and I come back to it over and over with the writers I coach.Master songwriting teacher, Pat Pattison, talks about writing towards “territories of meaning,” as he refers to the often vague references the writer assumes his or her listeners will understand. Failing to give clear, specific, irrefutable images of what the writer is saying is like telling a story with no details. “She went somewhere and did something [...]

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May 31, 2016

Making Time to Write (Even When Time’s the LAST Thing You Have!)

Picture this. Somewhere near the summit of a snow-capped mountain in Colorado, say, Pike’s Peak, I’m bundled up in front of a roaring fire, sipping cocoa from my favorite oversized mug, and so consumed with creativity I forget to wipe the wisp of whipped cream from my upper lip.

Powerful songs, lyrics, and melodies like I’ve never written or even heard before are surging through me as if I am plugged into a 220-volt socket and loving it. The flow seems endless. Before I realize it, I’ve written nonstop for days and filled up reams of paper with songs better than Tomlin, better than Crowder, better than Morgan Reuben or Mia Fieldes, or anyone else for that matter. I’m in that [...]

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May 26, 2016

Writing Great Melodies (Even If You’ve Never Tried!)

Do I have to be a musician to write great songs? Is it possible to become a successful Christian songwriter without learning to play piano or guitar? Is it possible for me to learn the secrets to writing great melodies, even though I’m primarily a lyricist? What if I am a musician, but struggle with writing great melodies?If you find yourself asking any of these questions, read on.

While we’re all gifted and skilled in unique ways and at differing levels, it IS possible to grow in your knowledge, understanding, and execution of writing great melodies for your own lyrics or when working with others. Here are three key things you can start with today to learn how to get [...]

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