Written by Amanda Easton Amanda Easton
Category: RPM Blogs RPM Blogs
Published: 15 February 2018 15 February 2018
Look at me even using the word 'process' when it comes to songwriting. For so often writing songs has been such a random mix of inspiration and frustration for me. Because of the tight deadlines in this challenge (and for me, the world's slowest songwriter, these deadlines are scary) I have really had to think about my 'process'.
In the past I'd get a few ideas down and then get a bit stuck, after which I'd either start on a new idea or give up for another day. I don't have that luxury now - although I do have a few songs on the boil at one time in case one hits a wall.
I'd love to hear what your processes are, if you have them?
So now I do have one and it goes like this: I think of a theme I'd like to write about and pour out the lyrical ideas on the page - sometimes I try some rough rhyming lines if they come naturally, sometimes not. I'll do some Googling of the idea to get more inspiration, especially Google Images, trying to include as many senses as I can.
I'll play around on the keyboard until I have some chords I like. Then I'll open my DAW (I use Mixcraft, which I love). I'll find or make a drum loop to use as a guide. Then I'll play a bassline over that. After that I'll find a sound on the keyboard and play pads and maybe some lines. Once I have something I'm vaguely happy with, I'll sing in some melody ideas, mostly nonsensical, but looking at my rough lyrics as I go.
At this point I might get a cup of tea or switch to another song because I need space in order to hear those ideas with fresh ears.
I'll go back to the song and cut and paste any good melody ideas into a new track.
Then comes the most laborious part for me. Assuming I have a melody line for the whole song now, I'll marry up the lyrics and write some new ones and try to make it all fit. Phew, I'm tired just reading about that - and then of course I have to record the thing, add harmonies, do a rough mix etc.
Anyway, I'm recording Song number 5 now - I just needed a little break again so I can listen to the vocal takes with fresh ears.
I'll head back to the grindstone now and hopefully I'll have Number 5, 'You Crossed my Mind' up in an hour or so. I'd love you to listen to any of my songs and leave your comments?