On Songwriting | Musings On How To Write a Song

Write It Down

Write It Down

Have you ever had an idea that was so cool you couldn’t possibly forget it… and then you did?

The next platinum Grammy winner. A phrase so profound, so powerful, so unforgettable… until it wasn’t. A melody that played over and over in your head, but was never expressed or recorded before it slipped the grasp of memory. A precious jewel gone missing.

Ideas are capricious and fleeting gifts unless they are somehow captured. They come to us on quiet wings, and are apt to slip just as quietly away if not attended to promptly and with intention.

Admit it: at least once, you have laid awake in the dark, too comfortable to move, and sensed a gift from the muse on the periphery of your thoughts. “Sweet. I’ll write it down when I get up in the morning.”

Wrong answer.

The time to write it down is always in the moment, at the intersection where inspiration meets preparation. Pen and paper on the nightstand or in your pocket, alert as a baited trap, at the ready.

For me, songwriting is much more purposeful than serendipitous, not in a formulaic sense, but as an intention to observe. A desire to be open, to see, to receive.

Intention… to observe the nuances of life (I’m pretty good at this, but not so hot at observing the obvious or where I left my keys). The intention to create original music, to purposefully develop an idea into something that can communicate and have meaning to others… this is what gives birth to my own songs.

Write it down.

That’s where the whole magilla begins.

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  1. James Lee Stanley On Songwriting | On Songwriting - […] that ever true. My experience exactly. I wrote a post on this topic called Write It Down, and try…

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