Using Your Creativity to Come Up with Ideas for Songs

What’s most important is starting with a good idea and knowing what you want to say, which is where your creativity kicks in to get you started the right way.k.

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A technique I use to come up with songs is to think about how I might comment on my experiences, the experiences others have shared with me, or what I have read or heard about the latest news. Then, I write down my thoughts or use visualization to see how these ideas might be turned into a song.

One way to think about turning these ideas into songs is to write your reactions as if you are writing in a daily journal. In this way, you can put down your thoughts quickly, as you think of them, perhaps writing them as bullet points. Then, as you look at these ideas, you can consider what might be the most central unifying idea and make that the chorus. Next, think of how the other supporting ideas or examples of the theme might be turned into verses. Finally, think of the bridge as a final comment linking the supporting ideas or examples to the chorus.

Another way to think about turning these ideas into songs is to first visualize how you feel about what happened to you or someone else or the daily news. When you visualize, get very relaxed and see the experience or news play out on your mental screen. Then, see yourself reacting to what you see on the screen, as if you are participating in a play and you are the lead character.

Finally, once you have these ideas, you can turn them into a song, apply the basic ideas of songcraft. The lines in the verse, chorus, or bridge should have one or two rhymes. It’s easiest with one rhyme, if you use 4 lines, with the rhymes at the end of line 2 and 4. Alternatively, you can use two rhymes, if you have a rhyme for lines 1 and 2 and another rhyme for lines 3 and 4. There are other songwriting and rhyming conventions, but this is a good way to start. Should you have trouble rhyming, try changing the wording for the first line in the rhyme, so you come up with another rhyme with that.

Another consideration in creating your song is to keep the length of the line based on the number of beats (the hard end to two or three syllables) in each line to 4 to 6 beats and match the length of the line from verse to verse, since the same music will be used for each verse, though it should differ for the bridge and chorus. Again, there are variations based on how a singer/composer will create the music. But this is a good way to start creating the lyrics.

What’s most important is starting with a good idea and knowing what you want to say, which is where your creativity kicks in to get you started the right way.

To illustrate, here’s a song I came up with in thinking about the Covid-19 virus and what to do about it, which got short-listed for a film. While I wrote this song about a year ago, it is still very timely. It’s called Covid-19 Blues.

VERSE These days of isolation

Make me feel so alone.

I wish that I could go out,

I want to leave my home.

VERSE But I’m supposed to stay put,

Can’t see family or friends,

And they can’t visit me.

Lord, will it ever end?

CHORUS I’ve got the COVID-19 blues.

Lord, it’s gone on for so long.

Are we being punished?

What have we done wrong?

VERSE Is it because we’ve chosen

To ignore the climate change?

Is it ’cause so many folks

Are full of anger and hate?

VERSE Is it a wake-up call from God

Because of all our sins?

How can we make amends?

Turn our losses into wins?

CHORUS I’ve got the COVID-19 blues, Lord,

It’s gone on for so long.

Are we being punished?

What have we done wrong?

VERSE Lord, what can we do

To help the planet heal?

How can we bring the boat of life

Back to an even keel?

BRIDGE Perhaps we should see the virus,

As a call to fix our ways,

So we can make big changes,

To start a brand new day.

CHORUS So then no more COVID-19 blues,

Lord, it’s gone on for too long.

We need a new beginning.

A way to right what’s wrong.

You can hear the Covid-19 Blues along with a link where you can listen to a recording at https://youtu.be/y_SITAZrlek on Changemakers Publishing or at https://youtu.be/JDLbCRFmQ_o on Changemakers Music. You can also find other songs on either YouTube channel which can lead you think of other questions for discussion or support. There are songs about love, everyday life, society today, and inspirational feel-good songs.

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The author is an internationally published author and film producer, Gini Graham Scott, PhD, who has published over 200 books, 50 for traditional publishers and 150 for her own company Changemakers Publishing, specializing in books on self-help, popular business, and social issues. She writes frequently about personal growth, success, social trends, and everyday life. Besides What Type of Dog Are You?, her recent books include: The New American Middle Ages and Turning Your Books or Scripts into Films. She has written and executive produced 14 feature films and documentaries, featured on the www.changemakersproductionsfilms.com website. She also writes books and scripts for clients. Her website for writing is at www.changemakerspublishingandwriting.com.

For more information or to set up an interview, contact: my assistant at:

Karen Andrews

Executive Assistant to Gini Graham Scott

Changemakers Publishing and Writing

Lafayette, CA 94549 . (925) 385–0608

changemakers@pacbell.net

www.changemakerspublishingandwriting.com

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