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09 March 2015

Eclectic Verve Songwriting

Songwriting 101

Eclectic Verve is currently in the vocal recording phase of our second album. As we finalize our current album for release, I wanted to share a glimpse into the process of songwriting. I think it can be fascinating to people unfamiliar with the life of a singer/songwriter, but my intent with this post and the blogs we plan to publish over the next few months is to provide a little awareness in regard to the amount of effort that goes into creating music.[break][break]

Singer/Songwriter Song Inspiration

There are multiple ways that the inspiration for a new song is presented to a singer/songwriter. For me, I generally notice a pattern when I write songs with the intention of creating an album. Usually there is a large block of time where bits and pieces of songs, lyric ideas, and melodies come to me and I can’t get them out of my head until I sit down and record the song ideas. This is when I will go to my home recording studio and record rough song ideas on my computer. Just the act of playing or singing the parts that are in my head will help the song evolve. As the song begins to take shape, I add drum loops and then form a basic verse/chorus structure. Many times this initial burst will languish for a while at just a verse/chorus state (I have a lot of these song idea hopefuls!).[break][break]

Songwriting Fermentation

At some point in the songwriting process, I re-listen to these song ideas to attempt to progress the idea further or sometimes a new approach pops into my head, and the song will start to grow into its’ own. This usually happens when I start to get lyrics and a direction for the song.[break][break]

From Song Creation to Song Crafting

At some point in the song creation process, I begin to notice relationships between the lyrics or the feel of a collection of songs. Once this starts happening, a momentum starts to build and ideas start to come faster. Several ideas that were “stuck” suddenly get a purpose and the songs come to life. The next thing I know I have 6, 12, or 20 songs that are anywhere from 75-95% done.

At this stage, I begin the planning process for recording an album. When the body of work transitions from a collection of potential ideas to songs that are nearing completion, this marks the point when I leave the primarily creative stage and enter the “song crafting” stage of songwriting—where I craft the song ideas into a finished story.

A crucial component of song crafting is analyzing the lyrics to ensure the words reflect the theme of the song and that the lyrics are singable. This stage also involves editing the arrangement of the song parts (verse, chorus, etc.) as well as identifying the instruments I want to use in the composition of each song part.

…so that’s how the current EP began.

Eclectic Verve Music Making


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