Start with something you know and develop the idea into something new.
Take a set of lyrics to a song you know very well and sing it without listening to the record. Do not play an instrument while you sing, you need to be free to adapt. You may find that you start singing a different tune to the original. Grab some music paper and an instrument and write down the tune, or record it.
Leave the tune for a while, a week , ten days, what does it matter. Now you need to break the association with the original lyrics, forget them.
When you return to your tune create a new set of lyrics.
What you have done is use a song to write a song. It is a technique used by the professionals so take a tip from them.
The Types of Songs
Identify the different types of song to help with your own songwriting.
Start by learning about the different types of songs. Here are a few to begin with. Use the comment section below to add song that fit the category featured in this post.
The List Song
The list song is a list of items. Things you like, places you have been to, the sort of day that it isn’t it or things to blame.
My Favourite Things is a list of items, “brown paper packages, tied up with string, sleigh bells and door bells”. It was recorded by Julie Andrews and appeared in the film Sound Of Music.
I’ve Been Everywhere is a list of American place names. E.G Reno, Chicago, Fargo, Minnesota . It was recorded by Johnny Cash. It was written by Australian country singer Geoff Mack in 1959, using Australian place names. The song easily lends itself to be adapted to many different countries.
I Just Called To Say I Love You is a list of days that the current day isn’t, no New Year’s Day. It was written and recorded by Stevie Wonder.
Some songs are a hybrid in that they include a list but there are other parts to the song. Blame It On The Boogie has a short list of things to blame it on, sunlight, moonlight , good times. The song was recorded by The Jackson 5.