Songwriting For Beginners: Your first song.By Jeff Oxenford • Category: How To Write Songs, Songwriting Articles
(This is an article in the series “Songwriting For Beginners”. You can find more beginning articles here.)
I’ve heard so many people say, “I’ve always wanted to write a song, but never have.”
To this I say, “everyone is a songwriter, it’s just the degree of artistry that sets songwriters apart.” At age six, my daughter recorded her first CD of songs for Mother’s Day. There was little form to her words or tunes, but Grandma thought it topped the charts.
The key to songwriting is to write wherever you are. Don’t expect to write a hit each time. Just write! Don’t worry about sharing it with anyone else, just think “at least I’m doing it.” It’s amazing how self-conscious we become when we share our songs with other people.
To get started with songwriting, first ask yourself if you are better with words or music? Play to your strengths. For me it’s guitar, so I play around on my guitar until a melody emerges. When I’m comfortable with the music, I try to find words that match the music. However, I have written songs with no guitar in an airplane, driving down the road keeping a beat on the dashboard, or in bed upon waking.
Here’s an easy way to start …
If you’re a guitarist
- Try different strumming patterns with a C and G chord or any two chords you’re comfortable with.
- Then add some nonsense words or look around the room and just say what you see.
- Celebrate, you’ve got your first song!!!!
If you don’t play an instrument
- Tap out a beat on your leg.
- Make up some words as you tap out that beat.
- Celebrate, you’ve got your first song!!!!!
Like any thing, the more your practice and learn about the art, the better your songs will get. My first songs had two chords. Later I had three chord songs, then four … Any time I feel that I’m not progressing, I look for inspiration, (i.e. take a class, play music with friends, get a book or listen to another musician).
Republished with permission by Jeff’s Songwriting