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Topic: Song Lyrics

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  1. #1
    Senior Member fastlane's Avatar
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    Song Lyrics

    I replied to Sean Hannifin that song lyrics should stand on their own.

    Writing song lyrics is a schizoid exercise because you sort of write from the heart but you are also trying to entertain the listener and are constantly playing with the intent of your words. I guess you also do this with music to a certain degree but it's very different. There is a manipulative cleverness about it that sort of bothers me. I guess that is why they call it a craft and not an art.

    Here are the first lyrics I've written in twenty years. The music was a short musical number sung by a heart broken young woman that I posted a while back. I hope these words say something without musical back up.


    Where Went All The Love

    Where, where went all the love
    the love that broke my heart
    and left me crying
    When, when will I find love
    love to fill my heart
    and I'm smiling
    Oh, I know that I must be strong
    But please, please love come again
    I feel so all alone
    Love, love will sing again
    sing a lovely song

    Phil

  2. #2

    Re: Song Lyrics

    Quote Originally Posted by Prince of Music
    ...and the lyrics MUST fit those forms.

    ...lyrics NEED to rhyme.
    I reject these ideas outright.

    This probably also explains why I reject 99% of what's on the radio these days.
    - Jamie Kowalski

    All Hands Music - Kowalski on the web
    The Ear Is Always Correct - Writings on composition

  3. #3
    Senior Member fastlane's Avatar
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    Re: Song Lyrics

    Prince Of Music,

    Yes, your correct about song lyric structure for marketable tunes.

    But I think the lyrics could work in this instance because the tune would be a short bridge between scenes in a musical where the story line would support the ideas. The listener wouldn't as much remember this interlude as just experience it. They wouldn't work as a commercial song or as developing songs for a musical.

    There are successful songs that buck the hook/rhyme structure but they are few and far between. Paul Simon's America had no rhyme and it is one of his best songs but it also had a strong story line with a lot of imagery.

    I think it all comes down to writing around a good hook. I can remember listening to so many songs that I hadn't a clue what they were about but I liked the music and the hook stuck in my head.

    I've read books on it, had my lyrics analyzed by songwriters but sometimes it's best to leave the real lyric writing to a lyricist. I think this might be my best option.

    Phil

  4. #4
    Senior Member fastlane's Avatar
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    Re: Song Lyrics

    Prince of Music

    I use to drive to a Seattle based songwriter's support group where we would critique and get tip sheets for artists doing album projects.

    I learned it's a tough business and best to leave your artistic idealism's at the door when entering the world of songwriting. I had one with pretty sad lyrics and the host held up the sheet of paper and looked me in the eyes as he ripped it in half.

    I met some people there that were writing commercial jingles and they were really hard core. One was a heavy set blonde that was also in the Sea Galley TV ads. One hopeful songwriter of the group referred to her as that fat bi..h.
    It was a very different atmosphere than on this forum. Dog eat dog.

    In theater I guess you need to keep up a certain pace or you'll loose the audience. It sort of like how Liberace cut out parts of classical pieces that he felt were dragging too much. Artistically not cool but his success with audiences was enhanced.

    Phil

  5. #5

    Re: Song Lyrics

    Rule of thumb for Tin Pan Alley:

    "Write a tune they can sing in the shower and on their way to work."

    Just a thought.

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