Trouble writing a whole song!

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DannyBoy

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« on: October 17, 2011, 01:12:29 AM »
Hi, I wouldn't say I'm a complete noob, I know basic musical theory, modes and such but I'm having a real crappy time writing a whole song!

My problem is kinda hard to explain but I'll try my best I hope you understand!

So I'll write an awesome verse but it sounds like it should be a chorus... and then I'll try and write a verse but it doesn't seem to go with the chorus I've just written. It also happens vice-versa. I'm just having trouble making my music flow and sound like a complete song but somehow people manage to do so using only 4 chords! Its frustrating me because I love music and I won't ever give it up but this is getting me really down... I know I'm in key and alot of my music comes out pretty good but the songs lack flow and impact...

If this makes any sense to anyone any help would be greatly appreciated!

Thankyou!
Danny.

DannyBoy

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« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2011, 01:16:22 AM »
Oh also I'd like to add that I mainly write metal so there isn't really space for full chords with fancy extensions because as you know they turn to mud when played with alot of gain :P

Mr.Chainsaw

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« Reply #2 on: October 17, 2011, 12:14:48 PM »
Hmm, is it lyrics you struggle with, or the music? Or even both?

I think we've all been where you are, mate. That frustrating feeling that you can't make progress, that maybe you're not really THAT good at this. I know I have, and not just with song writing.

My advice to you bud would be to look at things differently. Instead of thinking "I haven't managed to write a good song", say "wow, I've written a great verse I'm proud of!". Write that verse down somewhere. Record it if you can. If you like it, then its precious and worth holding onto. Who knows? Maybe you'll come back to it in the future and have an epiphany, and chorus, melody, solo, everything will just 'click'.

And if it never does? You've still done something YOU are proud of.

When I first started seriously writing again I got so frustrated and full of self pity that I wasn't amazing at it straight away. Took me a while to realise writing is like being good at sport. You do a lot of seemingly pointless training for one short game.

Stick at it dude, it'll come in time. And the forum will be here to help you :)

Peter

P.s. be careful using terms like noob. Some of the forumites are old hands and won't know the lingo *cough*Kafla*cough*
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Except talking.

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N_Snelling

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« Reply #3 on: October 19, 2011, 08:32:08 PM »
hey i myself have written to metal is it possible to see these lyrics you got email them to me and i'll see if i can help you finish something who knows

mihkay

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« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2011, 10:44:34 AM »
Hi, I wouldn't say I'm a complete noob, I know basic musical theory, modes and such but I'm having a real crappy time writing a whole song!

So I'll write an awesome verse but it sounds like it should be a chorus... and then I'll try and write a verse but it doesn't seem to go with the chorus I've just written. It also happens vice-versa. I'm just having trouble making my music flow and sound like a complete song but somehow people manage to do so using only 4 chords! Its frustrating me because I love music and I won't ever give it up but this is getting me really down... I know I'm in key and alot of my music comes out pretty good but the songs lack flow and impact...


Ten years ago this could have been a post from me.  ;) I kept coming up with a collection of bits which I could not turn into songs. A good friend saw me getting frustrated and gave me some great advice. A couple of tricks I learned which helped me move forward. (Thank you Drac)

1. If you've written a great chorus / verse or any part, don't try and make the part to go with it ever better!
He was right. It is not only frustrating, it can kill your enthusiasm for the original part. Try putting something simpler with it and give the idea space to be expressed. You'll soon recognise how to make small changes to build up a whole coherent piece and occasionally it will give your mind the space and freedom to come up with just what is required.
2. Try playing the part in a different style.
Country instead of Metal, folk instead of Indie or any variation. Doing this gave me different timings and melodic / harmonic possibilities. If you find something interesting then develop it back into the original style. Or in a few cases the different style turned out to be a better song.

Now in addition to this I've practised and developed my skills and there is really no substitute for practice which takes time. Also you may have to go many times around a loop with a song which also takes time. I've penned a couple of tunes in half an hour but most of them take days or even weeks to get right.

In conclusion, if you're getting frustrated you're killing your creativity so find a couple of tricks to get around it.

Hope this helps.
I have no authority or standing here, only opinions. :-)

domstone86

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« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2011, 01:55:42 PM »
I have a more psychological way of getting over this, having Bipolar type 2 it can be very difficult for me to be able to focus on certain parts of the song. One day I'm feeling melody and no matter how hard I try, I won't be able to do rhythm. Sometimes I can do both, and sometimes neither.

When writing a song, we can always do what we're comfortable with to pretend to get over any block. Lay down chords in a standard structure, you've done it loads of times before ;) However, when it comes to adding anything original, sometimes it's then when we get stumped.

Sometimes, you're just not going to be able to do it, reality. However in acknowledging what you ARE capable of doing, even if it's something as simple as mixing a track and not putting anything else, you can get some good genuine workflow going. Look after yourself, drink coffee, don't be tired, and usually it's possible to really get into whatever task your doing, then hop onto something else and new before you know it. That's my technique anyway, I'm sure it's different to everyone!

chrislong170273

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« Reply #6 on: October 23, 2011, 08:40:59 AM »
Sorry if this is repeating other posts (haven't read through them yet)

Remember that what you call averse, can become the chorus, in the song u are writing or in another song. Never try to pin thing down too early

Regarding thing 'flowing', there should be some kind of thematic link between each section. This could be melodic, rhythmic, a hook, or whatever. But by taking a bit of the chorus and developing it in to a new idea for the verse ensures you have thematic continuity.

Chris
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