Some advice on writing an intro for a song

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« on: May 18, 2018, 07:20:00 PM »
Hi All,
   I just about getting to grips with composing verse and chorus of a song. I am now at the stage where I would like to have a dabble at writing an intro. Has anybody got any tips on how best to proceed please?



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« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2018, 07:18:21 AM »
Hi Jonel

There are a couple of good techniques to get you started. Grab the chords to your verse or your chorus and play them before verse 1. Add an instrumental melody if it sounds appropriate. This could be a new melody or just the vocal melody for the verse or chorus played on an instrument. 8 or so bars is probably enough - your intro is there to set up the song, not to delay it. Don't give the listener a chance to get bored, especially if you're writing pop.

Hope that helps

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« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2018, 11:00:18 AM »
Hi Jonel!

What Tone said, and I'd like to add, just plain old listening. Pick your favourite, idk, 20-50 songs, and just listen to them, what do they do? How do they start their songs and why?!! Use what's out there is my best suggestion.

Make a new playlist on Spotify, save your preferable number of favourite songs and just have a go and listen to intros.

Hope it helps!



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« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2018, 11:46:29 AM »
Great advice given so far

The first question to ask for me is does your song NEED an intro at all - how would it sound just getting straight to it and start with the 1st verse, not all songs need an intro

I personally like a very SHORT intro (don't fall in to the trap of crafting a long intro)

For me an intro should "set up" the song, which IMHO experience can be distilled into 2 main approaches:

1 - Ballads and "softer" songs
A gentle intro that eases the listener in to the song - a short pause, breath, between the intro and the first verse is usually really effective and then the 1st verse picks up where the intro left off

2 - Rock and "harder" songs
The intro crashes in at around 80-90% power (saving 100% for the choruses at the end of the song) to create a dramatic impact and the power really drops down to a softer first verse to create a wonderful dynamic - e.g. Have loud powerful guitars for the intro, which then drop to palm muted vamping chords

These 2 approaches will definitely set you off on the right track whilst you explore variations and other approaches
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« Reply #4 on: November 20, 2018, 05:28:35 AM »
I'm looking for advice like this.


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« Reply #5 on: November 22, 2018, 09:29:43 PM »
Steal ideas from other bands :D The Beatles used to just play the last few bars of the chorus or outro as the intro....


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« Reply #6 on: November 22, 2018, 10:20:30 PM »
Yes, steal and put your own stamp on it. It will never sound like the original. Maybe George Harrison thought that though....


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« Reply #7 on: December 10, 2018, 12:36:52 PM »
Some great advice here, I'd take care not to start off with the drums that's you'll use all the way through, drip feed the listener hooks, do bare all at once, leave something for them to walk away with.

It's like watching Strictly, would you remember the first pair or the last?...If the first had something memorable you would...

Maybe consider something completely different, danger it up, the chances are that loads will hate it, but there is always the chance that someone will love you for it, look at @Jambrains stuff, or @crystalsuzy, or @Tommy Blixt - some real pioneers of sound.

I agree with @Boydie - long intros (and outros) lose my focus, but that's just a personal thing.


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« Reply #8 on: December 11, 2018, 12:09:45 AM »
Hello Jonel,

The best advice that I can give, is to trust your own instinct. A request for advice like this really puzzles me.  Yes, you can copy what other artists do. You can ask for advice but musiic really is for me , all about following your instinct.  It's about doing what is personally fulfilling and expressing your own creative desires.  I know that we all listen to music and absorb influences which inevitably shape what we do but for me, it's not about asking for advice on what to do next. It's all about expression. Trust your instincts and write something that's makes you personally think, "wow, I am on the right track." I could give advice on how to write a song text book style but this is the truth about songwriting from my perspective. Write music that is personally fulfilling.  Go for it fella.  What have you got to ,lose?  Surely music isn't all about learning tried an tested techniques. Surely not?


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