3 Tips for Writing the Perfect Song
As you can probably imagine, being a top recording studio in Las Vegas, we’ve worked on our fair share of incredible music. Whether it’s hip hop, rythm and blues, punk rock, or pop, when you’ve stumbled across the perfect song, you just kind of know it. It’s often said that a great song will always its way onto the paper and that the songwriter’s job is just to listen to what the song wants to be.
Here at The Omnitone, we think that there are a couple of things you can do to make sure that whether you’re inspired by the music or you’re working from scratch that you end up with a song that you’re proud of having written. There’s an old quotation that says that you’re never really done writing a particular song because it’s always changing and taking on new meaning. Our goal is to help you make sure that you love that song from the moment you put your pen to paper until the end of time. Here are a few of our favorite tips.
How to Write a Good Song
Let the Music Inform the Words (or Vise Versa)
One of the absolute best things you can do for your writing is to let the music and the words work hand in hand with one another to tell your story. What we mean by that is if you’ve written some music and you’re not sure what the words should be, let the music help. For example, if your music was written on a guitar and you notice that you have three strong downward strokes, consider writing three syllables worth of words there to emphasize the music you’ve already written.
On the other hands, if you’ve already written the words and you’re struggling to make music fit, think about how you’d like the words to come across. Listen to the natural rhythm of the words and let that dictate what you’re doing with the instrumentation. Don’t hesitate to emphasize particular lyrics that you want to stand out with unique instrumentation, using drums, keys, or even wind instruments to help you make punctuation. Your words and your music should go hand in hand to help with the vibe of the tune you’re working on. Of course you can also make an upbeat sounding song with sad lyrics or vice versa to play with this idea in a unique way. Speaking of which…
Consider the Mood
The tone of what you’re working on is the best way to communicate with your audience. We’ve all had moments where we’ve thought, “wow, it seems as if this song was written just for me!” Some of the best songs are the ones in which your audience can relate to you, so consider some of the recent experiences you’ve had in life and tailor your work in that direction. This is a great way to both document key moments in your life and to write a song that’s authentic and relatable.
Another thing to keep in mind is that you don’t have to follow traditional song structures. For example, if verse/chorus/verse/bridge/chorus isn’t doing the trick for you, mix it up to your heart’s content! Some of the coolest songs in the history of the planet are ones that are made up of nothing but different verses with no thought given to a chorus. Or you could experiment with a bit of ambiance, blending different sounds together to form an opening, then kick in with the music three minutes into your song. The key here is to remember that it’s all up to you. As long as you like what you’re writing and are passionate about doing it, other people are going to enjoy it too!
Try an Unfamiliar Instrument
Tom Waits is an incredibly talented musician who seems to break rules left and right in order to create a unique experience with each album he puts out. Although he was trained as a pianist and employed the piano as his primary instrument on his earliest albums, he began to grow tired of the piano, feeling that it led him to write music that wasn’t inspired. He had never had lessons on a guitar, so he picked one up and started writing on it, creating some truly unique music that he may never have made on a piano.
Or consider David Bazan (of Pedro the Lion, Headphones, and, more recently, Lo Tom) who has played guitar and drums for years. To mix things up for a tour, Bazan decided to pick up the bass guitar as it presented him with a new set of challenges. More recently, he’s been writing incredible music around drum beats and synthesizers, learning as he goes and creating some of the most unique and moving music of his entire career. Never say that an old dog can’t teach himself some new tricks!
The point here is that you too can pick up an instrument and go for it. The beautiful thing about music is that formal training isn’t a requirement. Look at the Ramones–they made punk rock anthems using nothing but three power chords and they changed the world doing it. You’re only limited by your creativity, so use your ear to pick out the sounds you’re looking for and trust us when we say that you’re setting yourself up for great success on the road ahead.
We Can Help!
Writing a great song is a big challenge, but luckily for you, our team is here to help. We even have an incredibly talented songwriter on staff who can help you to make the most of your song. Whether you come to us with a few ideas that you need help solidifying into a full song or you just need a bit of help with the finishing touches, we’re the team for the job.
A truly wonderful song can be an elusive thing, but you can rest assured that we’re here to help coax it out of you, ensuring that you end up with a finished product that you’re proud to call your own. At The Omnitone Recording Studio in Las Vegas, it’s our goal to treat our clients to a world class experience and you can count on us to provide you with nothing but the best from our music studio from songwriting to mixing to mastering and every step in between.
No matter what type of sound you’re going for or who your audience is, we can help. Contact us today to ask a few questions or book some time. We’re looking forward to working with you!