Tuesday, March 1, 2016

 After a long absence I am back posting songwriting thoughts in my Tunesmith Tales blog.  Hope you enjoy and I hope something helps you in your songwriting journey!! :)



What is the power of one word?

 Does it really make that much difference in the final result of a finished song? 

I have always been a "tweaker" when it comes to writing a song. I use a major tweak...a minor tweak...a macro tweak...a micro tweak...a nano tweak and finally the "God particle tweak" which is the smallest tweak known to man LOLOL :)  In the end, I try not to waste even one word in a song lyric. When I'm writing a song, I want every line to relate to the title and emotion of the song. Every work needs to say "EXACTLY" what you want it to mean. Here is an example:

I wrote a song "Bluestone Mountain" recorded beautifully by Don Rigsby on his "Empty Old Mailbox" project, The Kruger Brothers have a great recording of the song on their "Carolina Scrapbook Vol 2" project...among others.  The song is about a young son that gets lost in a West Virginia cave. Here is a line from the song:

"The caves of West Virginia run forever...like a maze of black ribbon through the ground".

There is one recording of the song where the band changed one word...how important is that word?  You decide...

"The caves of West Virginia run forever...like a trail of black ribbon through the ground"

"Maze" was replaced in the recording by "trail". This one word dramatically changes the sentiment and meaning of the entire song. You get lost in a "maze" not so much on a "trail". 

That being said, I feel it is absolutely critical that every word NEEDS to be there...if it doesn't take it out or change it. If you are looking to write "great" songs EVERY word is important. Every "and", "but", "if" etc...take out EVERY word that you don't need!  One of the benefits is that it lets the song "breathe" more.  It gives more space that will let the listener digest the lyric. 

So, when you are finalizing your lyric...one of the final checks should be that every word is "needed", no word is "wasted" and that EVERY word means EXACTLY what you intended it to mean and not just in there to make a "rhyme". Writing to a rhyme is an entire complete topic :)  

Thanks for reading and remember...write more and whine less :)

Write on!


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