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"How I Write Songs. Chapter 173"

This may sound strange to some, 
but it's the way I work. 

I try to avoid all formulas, 
like: 
where the title should be, 
where the bridge should be, 
should it be a story song or a singalong, 
what is the right tempo for 24 hour programming, 
what words or chords are most used in hits, 
what subject makes most hits, 
iis a long or short title best, 
and so on. 

To me that's like working crossword puzzles. 
It's all left brain. 
The right brain is where the creativity happens. 

I can't design a song like a piece of machinery, 
by blueprint. 

I even had to toss out all rhyming dictionaries. 
They are limiting to me. 
Some of the best rhymes are imperfect, 
and those aren't in the books. 

With a rhyming dictionary 
I started to write from the rhyme words, 
instead of writing from ideas. 
To me it was another connect the dots game. 
The old left brain started trying to “devise” a song 
by connecting the rhymes. 
I never got anything but mediocre songs from it. 

The left, logical side of the brain 
will take over at every opportunity. 

Basically, 
I think of the song as already written. 
All I have to do is get through to it 
and write it down. 

The song mood I have in mind gets it started, 
and then each line writes the one after it. 

I'm not giving advice, 
just sharing, 
in case it might be of help to somebody. 

Jack Blanchard 

Copyright © 2003, Feb. 9, 2005 Jack Blanchard. All rights reserved. Reprinted by permission.

 

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