What's the hardest part of songwriting for YOU?

HaWE

Tele-Holic
Joined
Oct 3, 2015
Posts
606
Location
Germany, somewhere from the countryside
First and hardest part for me is getting a general idea of a tune / chord progression or some idea for lyrics. Sometimes a certain idea is just easy developing because of an incident that happened or something I watched ( people, nature etc.).
Also another hard part for me is not to sound like someone else or a song that has already been out.
The singing part is quite easy , because ( even if it might not always sound good :) ) it is my own voice.
But after playing and recording guitar/bass/drum parts I often think it sounds similar to
songs I already know.So somehow I am a victim of my own musical influences , but I try to ignore them.
 

Charlie Bernstein

Doctor of Teleocity
Joined
Apr 26, 2003
Posts
11,526
Location
Augusta, Maine
I started writing songs when I started playing guitar. I had a hard time learning other peoples songs, I’d pick the wrong chords, couldn’t sing and play, tried to do literal interpretations. I’ve written about 1000 songs or parts thereof, 50 or so that can be in my set. I’ve developed a quirky style that breaks some rules and makes the songs stand out a bit.

My problem is not pushing my music out there. I made a good record and then let it whither. Kind of a lack of ambition.

I’ve got a gig next month with a band I put together and we’ll play my originals. Some songs I wrote over 40 years ago. Most have never seen the light of day. They’re good tunes and I’ll use them to get a show at the Hillside Music Festival here in town. My band has good musicians and I’m really gonna push this act. My goal is to get a song recorded by an artist that sells.
Yup. People seem to like listening to me, but I don't invent enough opportunities to be heard.

Glad you posted that. I do have plenty of good folks to help, so I'm going to redouble my efforts.

Thanks!
 

Charlie Bernstein

Doctor of Teleocity
Joined
Apr 26, 2003
Posts
11,526
Location
Augusta, Maine
First and hardest part for me is getting a general idea of a tune / chord progression or some idea for lyrics. Sometimes a certain idea is just easy developing because of an incident that happened or something I watched ( people, nature etc.).
Also another hard part for me is not to sound like someone else or a song that has already been out.
The singing part is quite easy , because ( even if it might not always sound good :) ) it is my own voice.
But after playing and recording guitar/bass/drum parts I often think it sounds similar to
songs I already know.So somehow I am a victim of my own musical influences , but I try to ignore them.
Be a shameless copycat. It's like the old saying: Amateurs borrow, pros steal.
 

chulaivet1966

Friend of Leo's
Joined
Nov 17, 2011
Posts
2,296
Location
The Heartland.....Kansas
I just want it to sound good even if very few hear it. At least I did my bestest and I can have some dignity left when I walk away from the recording studio! Lol.
It never seems to end my friend!
Ha....I hear you on that.

As I've stated previously, my song isn't done until it's recorded.
Additionally, my personal caveat: I have to be sure that I'm pleased enough with the outcome that I would not be embarrassed to present it to my peers and/or pedestrian listeners.
Pleasing myself, in this context, is no easy task. :)

Hope all is well....
 

HaWE

Tele-Holic
Joined
Oct 3, 2015
Posts
606
Location
Germany, somewhere from the countryside
Be a shameless copycat. It's like the old saying: Amateurs borrow, pros steal.
Sometimes for me it is hard NOT to sound like Neil Young when playing an acoustic steel string guitar and a harmonica .... (I do not mean my voice, just this combination of instruments :) )
Perhaps I should change to a kind of free jazz and create my own sub genre :)
 

acousticnitemare

Tele-Meister
Joined
Oct 25, 2022
Posts
151
Location
hiplanes
3) I am stymied in overcoming these obstacles by the crushing feeling that nobody cares whether I sing my songs or not, not even me half the time.
The upside is, you can't know that answer until you put it out there where someone else can listen to it; sneak it in, then give the songwriting credit to a stage name you make up.
I think part of the problem is that we think that what we write has to be as good as the best stuff others have written, that we like most to listen to- or it's "no good".
 

Jakeboy

Tele-Afflicted
Joined
Jul 26, 2008
Posts
1,767
Location
Sedalia, MO
Lyrics, riffs, chord progressions, etc come easy to me. The hard part is the vocal melody. I am not a great vocalist so the melody is difficult to find sometimes.
 

Flip G

Tele-Holic
Joined
Dec 4, 2010
Posts
862
Age
55
Location
Kitchener ON
The hardest part for me is trying to recapture the enthusiasm I had when I was 12 years old, alone in my bedroom with a transistor radio tuned to an FM radio station, and no one had crapped upon my inspired ideas yet. :(
 

4pickupguy

Doctor of Teleocity
Joined
May 12, 2013
Posts
13,278
Location
Fort Worth, Texas
I'll go first: Learning them! (I had to take high school Spanish I three times because I couldn't remember the vocabulary. Times tables? Forget it — literally.)

I've always envied those Brill Building types who could just write 'em up and toss 'em out there for someone else to record and perform. These days it's all up to us.

I'm celebrating because I just sang a ten-year-old song all the way through without forgetting any of it for the first time.

It's a long one, so I've been avoiding it forever. But my wife likes it, so I finally sat down last week to learn it, and after a few dozen practice sessions, I finally got through the whole thing (slowly!) without a stumble or a pause.

It'll be a few days of errors before I get it right again, but after that it'll happen more and more often, until I can get it right more often than not. By then I'll be putting some feeling in it, too, and it'll be pub-gig-ready.

So how about you? What do you struggle with? (If you don't struggle with anything, don't answer. It'll just depress the rest of us.)
Follow through. The hardest part is the last 5% of the process. Finishing them can be very difficult.
 




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