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By Steve Glenn is a writer and educato in the city of Minneapolis Minnesota.

Criteria for becoming a great songwriter

Do you want to become a great songwriter? You have plenty of ideas to write about, but you don't know how or where to start. Well, grab a ticket and stand in line. You are among thousands of potentially great songwriters, but you, like them, will never be heard or recorded if you don't start.

Becoming a songwriter doesn't require a degree or license in music. Great songs come from the heart and soul of a person as he or she attempts to move the souls of others, with strong and memorable melodies, evocative lyrics and effective structure.

Songwriters produce songs for many purposes, including for themselves, for film and TV dramas, for commercials, for sports, and for other artists. Some songs become great hits, bringing the songwriter instant popularity.

Things you'll need to do

Although you don't need a college degree to become a songwriter, you do need to have certain qualities that will make your song crafting dream come true.

Obtain knowledge

Before you can write a strong, powerful song, you must have knowledge of song craft. Such knowledge includes knowing the technology of creating a song.

The basic structure of a song consists of an evocative title which creates curiosity and stirs emotion. For example, a title such as "Fire to the Rain," a song by the great artist Adele, creates curiosity. We wonder what these word images mean.

Knowing the title of a song helps us to flesh out the lyrics, melody and emotion that we desire to display in the song.

We also need to understand the elements of a song. What are the parts of a song? Consider the following structure.


Most modern songs follow the above pattern.

  • The verse comes first. It repeats itself with different lyrics.
  • The chorus comes second. It expresses the heart of the song and repeats with the same lyrics.
  • The bridge is different from both the verse and chorus. Its lyrics, melody, and chord progression are different and provide a break from the repetition of the verse and chorus.

Once you understand basic song structure, you will know what to do with the raw song material you produce.

Handling uncertainty by collaborating with others

If you are still unsure of how to put lyrics, melodies and structure to your songs, you can gain this knowledge from various resources, including other musicians.

Go to a local music store that provides basic music lessons. You can learn about chords and how to play them on a piano or guitar. Knowing how to connect musical chords with music will help enhance your ability to put together a powerful song.

You can also visit a local university or college with a music department. Talk to the music teacher or advanced students who can help you put the melody to the song you have created.

Don't forget about local bars which sometimes feature local musicians. You might want to get some tips from local musicians regarding songwriting. Many will be glad to help you or lead you to significant resources.

Embrace creativity

Songwriters are very creative. They are always thinking about new ideas for songs. They experiment with different song titles, adding lyrics and melodies and manipulating different structures until a new song is born.

Avid songwriters look for ideas in everything. Whether they are reading, watching TV, working on a job or lying on a beach, people who love to write songs never exhaust their creativity.

Embrace commitment

Songwriters are committed. Laziness and procrastination aren't a problem. Their passion for discovering new song ideas is so strong that they are always in the songwriting state of mind. They allow nothing to interfere with their productivity.

Becoming a songwriter is a rewarding career. But like any other endeavor, you must practice, practice, and practice again. Don't let discouragement stop you. There will be ups and downs, but dedication and belief that you can become a great songwriter can make your dream a reality.

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