Songwriting - BEGINNER | Jessica Mosher | Skillshare

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

16 Lessons (53m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Class Project/Goal

    • 3. Get the Words First

    • 4. Lyrics Overall

    • 5. Choosing Content/So What?

    • 6. Song Structure

    • 7. Verse

    • 8. (Pre Chorus)

    • 9. Chorus

    • 10. Bridge

    • 11. Root Motion/Groundwork (piano)

    • 12. Starting Melody (piano)

    • 13. Root Motion/Groundwork (Guitar)

    • 14. Starting Melody (Guitar)

    • 15. Developing Melody

    • 16. What We Can Do Now

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About This Class

Here, I can teach you how to put your thoughts/feelings into lyric and sounds! I'm a writer for a recording studio and recording artist that studied songwriting at Berklee College of Music. I've been teaching for over 7 years and have had my students place tunes in major networks and simply become confident in their own original material. You don't need to be a singer! You don't need to be a musician! 

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Jessica Mosher

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1. Introduction: Hello. My name is Jessica Drake Mosher, and I'm a songwriter. I write songs for ad agencies, commercials, and I do some staff writing for other recording artists as well as myself, and I've been doing it for a really long time. I've had some proper training at Berklee College of Music, and like I said, I've actually been doing this on my own since I was 13. So a long time the point of my class here is to show you how to get your thoughts, emotions or philosophies out of your head, or sounds out of your head and into a medium that someone else could enjoy. Or you can listen back and enjoy or read back the things you need to know where this everything that I'm going to say here is completely beneficial for someone who doesn't know how toe play, anything more saying or has never done this very beneficial for someone who's already doing this and has a band. Maybe write some songs and just wants to get a little bit better. Or another pro, someone who just wants to see someone else's creative process. So it's for everyone across the board. Um, I'll break it down into more beginner stuff in certain areas and then, you know, other intermediate to pro levels along the way. You don't have to know how to do anything right now. You don't have to sing, You know, you can come in here and thinking you're just, like, so not musically talented, But I just know too many people that want to do something like this, but, um, you know, they think it's a little bit too hard or just too different from what they're used to. But trust me, it's really not that hard. So that's that's what this will be. This will be an experience where you learn how to express yourself musically and become a songwriter. Um, like I said, my name is Jessica Drake Mosher. You can find me on anywhere. Really. A website is Jessica drake music dot com and then confined on my links from there. Um, but that's me. And this is what I'm gonna dio. And I promise you it will be fun, and it will be not as hard as you think it is. Um, so stick around and help I see you soon. All right. Bye. 2. Class Project/Goal: soas faras a class project go and anything that you're going to submit onto the upload section of the class. I would say that those would be pieces of things that we talk about in here. It doesn't have to be a completed project, although that's the goal. That's the end goal. But you know, we're gonna break it down into lyric writing into melody, writing into different beats and stuff like that. So those mediums could be for lyrics, whether they're pdf's or Screenshots or whatever, jape doesn't matter. You could do that. You could upload just lyrics. That way you could have blowed audio via a voice memo on the phone. It doesn't have to be complicated. It doesn't have to be logic pro. Uh, GarageBand is a lot more user friendly, Um, but any of those mediums will work toe upload as a class project based on all the different things we're gonna talk about. Go check out the lessons, and then when you feel like you get to ah to a certain area were like, Okay, I I feel like I've understood this facet of what we're talking about in this lesson. Go ahead and posted you guys just upload when you feel comfortable with what you've done, and that's what I would consider our class project. 3. Get the Words First: So before you're gonna write any lyrics whatsoever, you got to know what you're gonna end up writing about. And usually personally, I do the lyrics after I've written the music, because then I can feel how the music makes me feel. And then I will write based on the feeling that I get from that. But there's been plenty of jobs and times where I have to write about a specific brand or product or whatever it is, So you've got to start with the lyrics first. The biggest mistake I see when people want to start writing lyrics is they want to already start writing in making it rhyme as they go and making it be those four lines, like data data, do that a done and done a day Donna gonna do that? A dead a dead today and they're trying to fit this puzzle already like first thing. That's what most people think they have to do to write the lyrics. But listen, that's the wrong way to go about it, because you're already going to start boxing yourself into once again those cliche sayings and you're not going to be able to say the things that you really want to say in the end. So what I say is right about what you're thinking, what you're feeling. And you just kind of do it like a diary entry, Where you just like, you know, I feel like lately this is what happens. And it it's going to start off sounding pretty lame. You know, whatever. You're gonna get into it and then you're going to start, you know, thinking more descriptively like feels like I'm just suffocating with the amount of, you know, things. That air coming out me every day and you'll start to notice when you're writing and writing and writing, and then you read back over it, you'll see a few lines that you're like, Hey, let me underline that or highlight that, like that could be a part of this Lear a part of the lyrics. So it's kind of like saying a rough draft that everyone thought they were too cool to do, and they want to skip the rough draft and then go straight a thing. But trust me, I won't ever right like that. All right? At least a page of just well, how I'm feeling what I'm trying to say, And then I go through and I say that that line right there says a lot about what I'm feeling. It's not just like filler and Burbage, and so do that. First, go ahead and write about that whole topic, everything. It makes you feel like, um And then after you do that, we can start implementing all these other tips that I'm talking about here to make it extra special and to eliminate the cliches and mediocrity. So do that. First, don't try to limit yourself already in the beginning, OK? 4. Lyrics Overall: Okay, so lyrics, okay, we're gonna do lyrics were talking about how to express what you're thinking, What you're feeling your ideas in your words. So a lot of these tips that I've learned I've learned from doing my own thing, but I've got to admit, I had a lot of help in the lyric department when I went to Berklee College of Music. So I will recommend one book right off the bat is Pat Patterson's writing better lyrics. You couldn't find that on Amazon. I highly recommend that cause a lot of things that I will talk about lyric wise are very much in depth in that book. Um, but I I'll take what I feel like our really good good tips and easy things free for anyone Teoh to use to make their lyrics go from mediocre two brilliant or from non existent to existent. So that's what this whole section will be about. I'm gonna break it down into short videos explaining all these different tips and tricks for your lyrics. Okay, so I'll see you in those, but by 5. Choosing Content/So What?: Okay, so lyric tip number one is so what It is definitely something that I learned from Berkeley . Pat Patterson's class once again. So what means What can you possibly say? That has not been said before? And the answer to that is really nothing. Really. Everyone has written about everything you could think of, whether that's love, songs, cheating, breakup or someone dying or longing for something. So the cell, what that we're talking about is what is your unique perspective in your own unique point versus the generic versions of your main theme of this song? What's gonna make this different then? Something we've already heard before? So in terms of lyrics, things that help with that are specifics Britain into the verses, um, using it better words and instead of cliche phrases like Stay with me, Can't you see? But But LA all those things that are repeated so many times really lose their value. They don't really penetrate the imagination or the heart anymore because we hear them Brazilians and zillions of times. So you're gonna have to figure out a different way to say something that's been said a 1,000,000 times. Here's an example. There is a lyric that is said a 1,000,000 times were sung a 1,000,000 times. She's bringing me down, okay, he's bringing me down. It's bringing me down. Whatever is bringing me down. Ben Folds has a lyric in Brick, where he says, she's a brick and I'm drowning slowly now if you think about that, he just made an analogy. Just made a different way to say that someone else is bringing him down, because obviously that's like saying he's tied to the brick that's getting sunk into the bottom of a lake or whatever, and he's going down with it. So when we think about saying, instead of, you know, I'm going down or think of something else that goes down something else that sinks or use the word sink a different word instead of going down. Think of the different objects or different things in life that that are doing the same typically the same verb that you're trying to use in that instance. So that right there will already cut out a lot of cliche things for you and up just pretty much start eliminating mediocrity in in terms of your lyrics. So and think about that you're saying it differently, you can do better than that. That's why I'm here. You could do better than the can't you see his day with me is type of things because everybody has her own story and that's the point. And that's what people want to hear. And that's what will stick with them over time instead of listening to the lyrics going in one way and out the other. Because I've heard that I've heard that. So that's what I want you to think about when we approach all these other different tips. Okay, so that's number one the So what? 6. Song Structure: song structure. Why is song structure important? It's kind of like a road map. First of all, it's gonna help. You know what you need to do at what spots? It's going to help you to not make the forever rookie mistake of making sections too long, which makes your listener end up tuning out, and they really don't want to hear the rest of it. Could you haven't moved on in enough time to the next section. So basically, I'm talking about regular mainstream type, you know, regular song songs, what we consider songs, not theme songs that would be in the beginning of a show or soundtrack theme or even a commercial bit. I'm talking about like a song that you would sing to him, a radio or something like that that has a specific structure. And I would say, 95% of the time it goes something like this. Okay, so your basic road map first song is going to be you're going to start off with the verse. Okay, Sometimes I'll start with the chorus, but we'll talk about that in a second. You're going to start with a verse, all right, and that's usually gonna be 4 to 8 lines, depending on how long you space it out, how long you draw up the word. Usually, when you hear cycles of four, you're about to go on to something else. So if you hear, like four lines or eight lines, which can make a lot of sense when we get into root motion but fours and eights. Once you go through that, be aware that you might need to go ahead and pop on to the next section. Next section, after you're gonna do a verse, is going to be now. This is done 50% of the time. You can have a pre course, or you can go straight to the course. What's a pre course? The pre course is kind of like that buildup bridge not to be confused with the bridge, but it's a build between the verse. And then the course, which is the big was AM. The big was out. It's usually about half a long as the verses, Um, so that's once again that's another optional piece that I'll explain to you how to do that as we go. I'm just explaining the road map right now, so you get verse, then you get optional pre course, and then you got to come to the chorus. There has to be that tension throughout those 1st 2 and then the big release, which is the chorus. That's your main theme. That's the main thing you want to say. That's the main hook, Whatever you want to call it, the main melody, The thing that super catchy whatever, Um, that's your point is gonna be the course. The courses. Usually it could be exactly the same length as the verse, but it just asked him in all talk about this later. Sound different in the verse, you have to break up the monotony so you have the chorus, which is four rate lines. So what you gonna do then is repeat what you just did verse pre chorus course again, and you don't have to have that pre course a second time. You can even cut down the second verse and 1/2. A lot of people do that to keep the songs moving. If they feel like a second verse being as long as the 1st 1 just doesn't move it along enough, and it feels a little tired people cut that second verse in half into four lines or two lines. However they did based on what they did before. So you just did this. You just did. Verse recourse chorus verse, pre chorus chorus. Now you have the bridge. Now the bridge is something that is like the vacation in the song. It's either like a breakdown or a guitar solo, an instrumental thing, the part that sounds different. Sometimes it's when the rapper comes in. Sometimes it's when you just have a totally different sound going on. There doesn't have to be lyrics there. There doesn't really to be anything there. And to be honest, it's just a break up. You have to have this breakup space before you can hit him with that last course, and that's the last part of the map there. So you're gonna hit him with that last course on the very end. Okay, and there's different versions to this road map. This is pretty much basically what everything's gonna have. What every song pretty much follows the same exact route verse, pre chorus, chorus bursts, pre gorse, chorus, bridge chorus, maybe a course again, and and Bam, we're out of there. Once again, pre courses are optional. You can change the length of these things, but that's like basic. Okay, that's a song structure. That's how you know what's going on. And you can't just right 20 lines that reverse and you're like Now I've said what I need to say. Well, if you have taken 20 lines to say, we need to say you need to split that into different sections because the reason why you want to do that is because you want to keep a listener's attention, even though what you are saying is very important to you. And it means something to you if it means a lot to you, you want someone else to understand that and for someone else toe listen all the way through. And if, if you don't give them that, break up the tension and release the tension release, um, you'll start to lose your listeners, and it won't be a very easy thing for him to follow along with you on it. It'll make them have to concentrate even harder because we're used to hearing tension, release tension released, so keep that in mind. It's a very big deal for you to know song structure as you go into writing these types of pieces. So I hope this was helpful. Um, and I'll go into more detail. I'll leave some documents below, of different patterns and different sort of road maps and song structures that are typically everywhere. But that's the main one that I just showed you there, so that's that. 7. Verse: What is a verse that's gonna be one of the first things that someone that doesn't write a song might think they know or don't know. But Averse is, um, it's a section that repeats, uh, can repeat anywhere from 2 to 3 times within one traditionally laid out song. No, I'll say 70% of the time we start with the verse. But other times for attention grabbing value. U you can put a chorus first, and that goes along with arrangements. That's not really something you have to think about. I want to start up with the chorus union. Think about that down the road. But basically, for the most part, people do think in terms of let's write a verse first and averse kind of when you think of the purpose of it. That's the tension part of your son, and we're going to get to the release when we get to the chorus. Okay, see your building apart. That's preparing the listener for the chorus because that's what they're here for. Their here for your chorus spillovers. Can I have Lyrically, it can be. It can be anything you wanted to be. It can be pretty specific. Um, I would. My personal, you know, preferences is to stay away from generic and cliche lyrics, which I have a whole nother section on how to do that. Um, but you can really tell the story in the verse. It's a lot easier to do in that section because you can set the tension and then say What? You really you know your main theme in the chorus. That's usually how that works in terms of lyrics, Um, and so when we talk about melody, the versus usually once again you're setting up tension for release in the course. So when we talk about what the choruses, that's the big release. The melody is 80% of the time, 85% of time will be set higher than your verse. The I think I can think of one song off the top. My head work goes lower and that's you're so vain by Carly Simon. But for the most part, everything you hear the verse melody will be somewhere in this range, and then we're gonna pop it on up to the chorus, and that's where everyone's things along. And they're all having a good time or really sad time. A lot of times versus congee used to create dual purpose with what you're saying in the chorus. Um, like, if it's a story, you can start with one section of the story and then say your main theme. And then there's a second section of the story actually happens a ton and country songs when they go in chronological order. When I was a boy, bubble a bubble blah happened and I learned this and I learned this in the course. And then the second verse happens when they're an adult. And I learned this and I learned this. And then at the last bridge bit, they're getting sentimental about how Oh, no, I'm looking back in my life and realizing this is coming full circle. And now I'm going to say this in this in this, and it just makes it that much more. Ha ha ho. So, Jane Yes, it's really not that hard, but that is one of the ways that you can use your verses at two dual purpose. Your main theme in the chorus versus where you can really show off your linguistic skills and your writing skills. I mean, because you have. Ah, in my experience that you have more room to work with syllables and you can use better analogies and similes, metaphors, whatever you want to talk about in versus. So, um, all the more motivation to use all the other lyrical tools that I talk about in the other sections of this class. So that kind of wraps up universes. I hope it didn't leave anything out, but that's pretty much what it is. 8. (Pre Chorus): I guess the hardest section to explain would be the pre chorus Onley, because it's only present half the time. And when you start after you hear me talk about this and you start listening other songs you'll be able to tell which songs have pre courses. Um, it's like you had the verse going for a bit, you know, your 4 to 8 lines and then you get to a part words like. But it just didn't go bam into, like, straight on course. It's kind of like it shifts just a tiny bit. The melody shifts, the mood shifts a little bit, the tension will rise, is a little bit more, and I'll explain you how to do that as Ugo. But this is what the section is and what the purpose is, Um, and it's usually like I said, it can be as long as that first verse, but usually it's not longer. It's either that same length or half the time, or even 1/4 of the time to hook you into that chorus. So that's what that is now, lyrically, what that is that sets up the chorus. It could be a question. It could be a cliffhanger. It could be, really. I mean, you could put anything in there, but there's no rules for what that lyrically has to stand for. In terms of pre course, it is just another tool you can use to make the chorus shine. Another way that pre courses can really help you is if you have a verse that sounds a little too similar to your chorus. Which first of all, is I mean, it's not an ideal thing to happen. You definitely want the contrast between your verses and courses. But if you just really like the way it is, But you're just like I still need a lift, I still need something like to break that up, you know? Then you would use the pre course, and you would go somewhere a little bit different and then come back in to really make make the chorus pop again, even if it is the same thing as the verse. So, um, yeah, because if you just had the verse and the chorus to be the same thing, and you just no one would know what section you're in and after a while, you just like I don't know what's going on now when this song was gonna and I don't even know what they're saying anymore, because it's like, What is this? Um, but that's the function of a pre course. Uh, yeah, I think that's pretty much it for that. And once again, you can use it in the first time and then not the second time before you hit the the second course. Another place you can put a pre chorus is after the bridge and right before the 3rd 1 you can make it like a thing where the pre course has to come before that course every time, even if it's at the end. You know, no rules, Just like I said. That's the way it usually goes on. And that's what that's what those are. That's what they're there for. 9. Chorus: What's the chorus? The chorus is the thing that everyone definitely remembers. People can remember your verses. Definitely. That should be catchy too. But, um, your choruses, like the main act of of the plates, like the main thing at everyone's here to here to listen to and hear. See? So you have set up. It's like you gonna think of your choruses like your golden child or like this star of your show were the reason you write your verse and then sometimes a pre chorus is to really make that one section shine when you're running a song. If you can make the verse sound sound different from the chorus different melody, different rhythmic structures and then you go back to a verse in the course. And if you just use that simple song structure that I listed, you're gonna have a really easy peasy. Very nice thing for someone to be able to listen to all the way through. All you have to dio is make the contrast between the verse and the chorus. That's it. I mean, there's really no secret to it, just simply that it has to be different than your verse. Now, sometimes There are songs that have the exact same melody and the verse that they do in the course, but they're pretty few. And when they do that, they're adding a lot more instrumentation under the course to give it really the meat of the song with that bulky feeling and then stripping it away once again, Contrast is still the key of how that makes that work. So it's just It just so happens that 90% of the time to make the contrast, we just raise that melody a little bit. We just go and reach a little bit higher notes for the for the course than we do from the version. Your chorus. When you talk about the lyrics you can be, you can get away with being a little bit more generic once again. I hate cliches, but it can be more relatable and more like anthemic for people to sing along to one of the biggest tips with making a successful chorus in terms of lyric wise is that the very first line that you say and the very last line that you say in the course, which is once again going to made it before to eight lines. Um, just as long as they're even pretty much get away with anything. And if it's a sad song, you could get away with an uneven number. But we'll talk about that later. Um, they call it these spotlight moat spotlighted lines. The first thing you say in the chorus is very a very memorable spot on, then the last spot, the last line in the chorus, is probably, in my opinion, the most memorable spot for what you're going to say. So if you have two lines that you're arriving and you like, I like this 1st 1 better than what you're saying in the 2nd 1 And they have the same rhyme scheme like they're like day. Hey, but I really like the day one. I'll put the day one on the very end of the course because if that's the coolest thing I'm saying in the course, I wanted to be spotlighted as that last line or all spotlighted as the very first line for the most part. Either way, you have to really consider what you're putting in both of those spots because they're very like, hard to hide in terms of bad lyric. I don't know. You could just hired him in the middle easier. That's just how it is. But that's just the tip of advice for you when you write in courses and that is what a choruses. 10. Bridge: Okay. How do you make a bridge? How do you make a bridge? Well, this is probably the easiest section, Uh, personally, that's how it's always worked out for me. I usually will just focus on the verses in the choruses. First course, verse, chorus. Um, and then you're just like bombing for this bridge. I could go any way I want. I mean, I could just se leg. Hey, Justin, why don't you just play like a guitar solo for 16 bars and one you like? Why don't we write this different thing? That sounds like this, and it's like a drum beater. Whatever, um, for eight bars, 16 bars. That's usually usually about the link that you can dio some super fast pop songs or whatever. Uh, radio edit versions will cut it down. You know, really small, like four bars or two bars were not at all, but you, really. But having that little break in there between the courses once again will really make that last course really pop for you, and that's what you definitely want. That's the whole reason you write the other sections. So your bridge lyrically, I guess, what you can do is Think about what you've been saying in both of the verses in the chorus , and you can either expand upon what you're singing, which is, you know, reasonable. Or you can totally twist what you've been saying. Um, you know, you could be writing a song about how you've been staying strong throughout this definite in the bridge. You can just have a complete meltdown and then you can come back and just be like, Yeah, but I'm still being stronger, Like, you know, it doesn't have to lyrically be anything that, like, um, sets up a story in any specific way. You can do whatever you want. There's really there's no rules over any of these sections, really. But, um, that is one section that I believe has the least amount of, like rules to make other things pop Justus Long as once again, the number one rule with making your song is catchy as possible is the contrast between sections and making sure they're not too long that each section isn't too long. So just make it something different. Just you could have just a baseline and drums, and you'd be surprised with the just the simplicity of nothing for four bars and then adds one little thing for the next four bars. And then, bam, you're back in the course. You're like, Oh my God, that was just so genius that you just really didn't have to think about it. So don't be afraid of bridges. Don't feel like you have to write a whole new song because it's not at all. You just make it sound different for the next four or eight bars or whatever, that's a bridge. 11. Root Motion/Groundwork (piano): disclaimer. Don't mind the dog if you hear em. Bargain is Daddy's home. So, anyways, first thing you're going to say is, uh you know, when you get to the music part of writing your song you like Well, what key? I write my song in. First of all, don't even ask yourself that question. That's completely irrelevant. Right now, You don't have to care about what Kier songs. And it doesn't matter when you very first start doing this. So if you are a beginner and you're like Well, okay, how do I get the music going? There's gonna be a couple mediums for you to try, okay? And in this video to show you v a piano via keyboard. Listen, you don't have to know how to play piano. You know anything about anything? I'm gonna show you how to do it. Um, so basically either get a toy keyboard or an app on the iPad. It's really that simple. I'm gonna turn the camera around and kind of show you and explain to you how you can start off with some, like music to lay the groundwork to put your words on top of. So here we go. Okay, so check this out. Every piano, every keyboards gonna look the same. No matter which one you're using, there's always gonna be a set of two black keys and instead of three black keys. So anyway, you've got these two black keys right here. I want you to come down to this one. This is see? Okay. Everyone's like, Oh, the key of C. That sounds like a great key to write a song in C D E F G ABC. It starts over then once again, it's not vital that you know what you're playing, but I'll show you what it looks like if you're going to use a piano to figure out how to do your song. So check this out. Ignorance is such a good thing for songwriters. It start out because I honestly think that is the way you're gonna get the most unique material without becoming affected by learning way too much. Um, about the instrument. So pick any note. Just like a card game picking note any No. We're gonna pick C for the sole purpose of It's very easy to write in the QC. You don't have to hit any black notes for to sound good, you can just hit all the white keys and you know you're not gonna mess up. So it's a great Q start with Sounds like this. OK, that's a scene. Oh, uh, that's basic repetition. If you do that for eight bars and then you throw in a drum and you already have a whole groundwork for you to just go ahead and put words over it, it's a simple is that you really can only use one note and you can make a song out of that another repetition tool, which is where you repeat one and then move another one. So it'll kind of be like this We owe you. That is a typical Coldplay move. I mean, and everyone does that. It's just a repetition, and you're moving and you like It's got something to it. But you've got that repetition, and it's really easy to lay melody over something like that. So another thing that you can do is this. So you're in C, right? So I want you to do a fun, a middle and a pinky that's called try. Add three triangles. Try Trio three. Tran, Right? That's a first cord you can use. You can just hit down that sustain pedal. You have a whole first line right there that you can sing. So I mean, just in example, on. And then you want to move at that point, which I'll talk about later. So you're like, All right, I've got the foundation. Where do I move? Root motion. That is the big thing you need to think about. Here is the root motion. Alright, we started on See? Okay, don't worry about the melody. I'm saying and just worry about the roots way you need to move after 48 repeats, which we've gone eight. So it's time to move. Good thing to do is count up for one to this is to this is three and this is before music. Okay, so we said we're gonna hit this one next and do the same melody. Check this out and it's that simple. You just could go from the one to the foreign back. You can go one for 51 All these combinations. That's what you get to pick. So the fact that you don't know the keys and you can even mix in some black keys if you want todo. Okay, so you're just moving a root root motion. So check that out. I'm heading it like, four times or eight times. And that's a song. That's that's all you have to do to write a song. You don't even have to know the cords. I mean, that can come as you like. As you get further long. You can fill that out. But if you just care about the route motion and repetition, you can lay your melody over top of any that. So that is the basic groundwork for when you're working with a keyboard type situation, just that repetition and then your route motion. Two major things. That's gonna be the same rules for any other instruments you could possibly use for this. I just showed you what it physically looks like on a keyboard setting. 12. Starting Melody (piano): next. What I'm gonna show you. If you're using a keyboard setting to do your songs, I'm gonna show you how to add the melody. Once you've laid the groundwork, once you've decided which notes you want to repeat or which notes you want to do in what order What your route motion is. This is how you're going, Teoh and the melody on top in the things and your lyrics that things you're trying to say. OK, so I'm gonna change the view back and show you how I do that. I showed you how to do the basic groundwork when you're using a keyboard. Um, now what you gonna do is add Melanie on top of what you just did. OK, so say you picked up something pretty simple like, it's just we gotto see and then enough, like don't worry about what they are. Just were about what they look like. I went from a 11234 and four typical motion. Typical move. Okay, we happen to be in the key of C because it's the easiest way to get this started. Okay, which is this guy right here. Which means we don't need any black keys to make it sound good The first the first time. Okay, so when you write a melody, you want the melody to do a few things you wanted to repeat, have have some element of repetition in it and then have some sort of deviance in a specific section when you're writing a melody and say I have this right here. All right, I've got this. No going. I can match that with my voice. And I can match that with a word that I'm saying, Like, I don't know, I could be saying I look to put the stars okay thing, whatever. You can match that. Um, but what I like to dio is to do Remember when I showed you this little trio thing to make this cord this thes air called the chord tones Don't worry about it. It's not big deal. But I just particularly like to start my melodies on three twos. The fours, sixes, um, sometimes sevens. But I usually don't start in on the ones on Lee because it's not as interesting. And it's not as gripping and enticing as it is to start with the four or two to create that tension that we've been talking about this whole time. We want this tension to build in the verse. OK? Which means there's not gonna be any attention building if you're just singing on this one . Uh, is pretty stagnant if you were to start here. All right, I'm gonna sing this. No. While I played this, Okay. Oh, you could resolve it some way. Okay, that's attention. I'm talking about it. Oh, could be a simple is that you don't even have to get fancy like I did. Ally did was sing this. I just did the two and then the one so you could do the same thing with a four through this . Okay? And that was with your route motions that we had picked out before. That's really that's all you gotta do that it's is easy as pie. So that is how I would recommend starting and melody on top of the ground work that you have built with your piano. Um, now, the next thing that is really, really important with milk. Now that's just starting the melody. I'll talk more about developing the melody as we g o. But when you're, um, keep this in mind when you start this Mellie, When we think in terms of four lines, this is like a super amazing tip, by the way, like this will be instantly good to listen to is if you come up with one thing that kind of it's like a sentence or a phrase like you can tell that when I sing Did a dad out at that, that was like a sentence. That kind of just finished what I just said, I could repeat that again, Dad, Uh, done at that, uh, and you know that you just heard that. So my tip here is to do that twice and do something different the third time, Then come back to the exact same thing that that I know that it's like, Oh, that's how you do it. That's really how easy does you pick like a certain musical phrase? Do it twice. Do you go somewhere different? Will hire little lower in the 3rd 1 and then come back and nail it again on that 4th 1 And you have an instant instant melody that people can sing back and find what you know catching. So think about that when you're making your melody as well. Um all right. Good luck 13. Root Motion/Groundwork (Guitar): All right. So this little segment is going to be how you lay the groundwork or lay all of the stuff down for your song if you're gonna use a guitar. Okay. First thing, obviously. You need to dio. And like I said, you don't have to know how to play it. Um, but if you have a tuner, well, you should try to tune it. Okay, um, if you don't know how to tune your guitar, I'm sure that there's millions of videos on YouTube on how to tune your guitar. You could buy a simple tuner that these this is a little more fancy, but you can get a tuner pretty cheap just to make sure that when you play it again the next time, it will sound the same. So someone's make sure your guitar is relatively in tune. Um, okay, so I just have an acoustic here. It's easier to write with if I want to do like, a upbeat song will use an electric and plug it into an amp. To just be inspired by the sound t go somewhere different with it. But with an acoustic, uh, this is what you would do if you don't know how to play guitar, but you have one because there's actually a lot of people that have a guitar, but they don't really know how to play it. And if you just want to write the songs and not have to go through all the e f g with the show, I've been this skill that goes like this. You don't need to do all that when you're just writing the song. This is all this all goes back to route motion. Like I told you the same thing with the piano. I showed you what it looks like to find the roots and go with that here and do the same thing with guitar. Just take the top string the fattest top string. Now check this out. I'm just drumming the top one. That's an e. Okay, that's what that sounds like. So check it out to make that sound different, like you would change keys on a piano. You can place your index finger on the see. These spaces are called frets, so I have Brett one for two or three for four and five. OK, that don't even worry about what the notes are anything like that. If I do it five right there. E gotta press down real hard on that five on just that big, fat string. So if I could do this is the same thing as the pan. 12312343 This can easily be groundwork, reverse or course or whatever. So you have that going Start with an open E, you can say Oh, well, you know what, a three sounds good after that. Like, doesn't matter. You don't have to have any skill to do that. And you don't even have to do the e, which is open with no hand. You can start on five. You can start on any. Doesn't matter. Any of these make sense, and you get to decide which sequence you like The best. Um, a really typical thing you could do is 357 e. I mean, you could do something like that, or even to the eight. Doesn't matter. It doesn't matter what you pick, but as long as you keep him in sections of fours and eights strums, you'll easily have groundwork to work with when you're talking about using a guitar too, right? The base for the song 14. Starting Melody (Guitar): So now you're gonna add the melody to your base, Not based, but the groundwork of your song you've picked out, like safer is is you. You picked out he picked out an open E. You like the way that sounds on. Then you pick this five right here, and you're like, Oh, I just really don't know What else sounds good with that. But I just like those two together. It that's fine. Whatever. So the melody, you can also refer to my other, um, the one where I did piano melody to cause it's gonna be the same exact thing you can start with matching. Basically, deviate from that which is a e okay, Or you could do that, Do bring me so I could serve on the five, which is so on, and and we'll get more into, like how you're going to do the melodies. But this is how you start your melody over your ground word you pick which you know you want to start on and you just kind of hang out on it and move just a little bit. I mean, it's really not hard, and you don't overthink it. That's the biggest thing just you want to say, Okay, I'm gonna sing that Do, uh, let's say we want to do an encore tongue, which is a six. Uh uh. It's that simple is all about repetition and just kind of hang out where you were. And you'll know what sounds good in what doesn't after a while. And if you have your voice memo, app or going on your phone, you can say, OK, I like that for a second and you learn that, and then you can sing that one, and that would be your like, repetitive motif for the Mellie on top of guitar. But that's really how simple it is to create a song with your guitar. I mean, you just have to press down wherever you think. It sounds good. You can use the other strings if you want to. I would recommend just stick into this one on the top to make it easier for you to remember . If you don't really play guitar after this, we'll talk about how to develop the melodies no matter what instrument you're on. But those are the basics for guitar 15. Developing Melody: Let's do Let's talk about Melody. Overall, Melody, I've shown you how to kind of get it started based on whichever instrument you're gonna dio . Um, and you could do the same thing with voice. You could do your route motions with your voice and record that and then sing on top of that with whether that's with your voice memos or, uh, someone else singing it anyway, So developing an actual melody. So when you start when you have your little starter line that you said Okay, well, I just want to match the one because that's really easy for me right now. Obviously, you can hear that I went up, I matched it on and I just decided, While we need to, you can keep it on the same note the entire time. I mean, e good, but, um, developing a little further makes a little bit more interesting. Makes it able Teoh be listened to for longer and for people to not tap out. Um, so when you make your first thing on you just say I just want to go up a little bit and and I just did. 34123412341234 Here, so did force. It's a force, which would be, you know, 16 hits or whatever whatever, however you want to call it. And then when you find your first line, you just repeat the exact same thing again when you move your route. So I said something like 1/3 1 Let's let's make the 3rd 1 a little different because when we think in fours, like I said, the thing that makes things the most catches is if you have a repeat, repeat different and repeat. So no, you come back and it's like, Oh, that's a whole completed thing that right there you couldn't repeat that twice or do it only once. And that's a verse right there, Melody wise, when you go into a different section of the song, even if you're not changing things, which I do recommend you change the roots a little bit when you switch sections. Even if you don't, the melody is gonna be different. Uh, most of the time, like I would say 95% of time. So if I was doing it on, this is my first. I'm setting up a tent is here kind of hanging out. And this is my third line is really good friend back Hi part will be chorus something different and you can vary it on the rhythm. I kept the rhythm kind of the same. The dead that you can keep you can You can change it to be long words like So then you, you know, meld the two parts together. Yet you verse section when you get your completely different core section Even if the roots are still the same, it can work that way. I've done that before, and it's fine. Um, so that's like you're starting to get, like, a rials shaped to what you're doing here. Same thing I was doing on this guitar is the same thing that you'll see on the piano. Just picking to root notes. You could pick forward notes. Doesn't really matter. Um, but just kind of stick to these little kind of tips and rules and you'll get you'll get to a place where you're like, Wow, that sounds like a song. Not just like a meandering, you know, thing that just is too long or isn't really making sonic sense. So that should help, um, you develop the melody, the variation repetition in certain spots, another good time. Another good tip is you can repeat three times and then have the 4th 1 be different. Um, it's it's all about a pattern. Keep that mind when you're doing your melodies. It's more important to have a variety, um, between sections and the patterns. That's what makes the melody work. 16. What We Can Do Now: So at this point at the end of the beginner songwriting class where you don't know, like, anything After all these sections that I've uploaded, you should definitely be able to be okay with just messing around on an instrument to find a place to start. You should be okay with entering into a melody and kind of just getting used to that and then once again, keep voice memos open so you can kind of listen back to say, OK, I like that and I'm gonna repeat that. And that will be my basic melody. You should be able to write lyrics that are a little bit beyond just sitting down and you know, Dr Seuss in it or whatever. You should definitely be able to do an entire song at this point where you're doing a verse , you know how to do a malady. Repetitious Melody The chorus, which is a different melody, some type of variation. Go back to the verse, do the chorus again, and then the bridge is the whole new section that you get to make up. You can think of it like a different verse or whatever you want to think about, right there the bridge, and then you can come back to that same course and you have written down these stanzas and the Holy Rick section showed you how to do all that. So if whatever stager on, whether you've just done a verse or you just in a course or you just have lyrics or if you're just, like, not into doing any instruments and just want to the voice that is fine. Plenty of people can write songs and just sing the melody and like imagine what would be underneath it. There's a 1,000,000 ways to do the same thing wherever you're at. Definitely share that here and send me any questions. But if you feel like you're grasping these type of things and you know it's working for you , then you know, feel free to move on to the intermediate, a class that I will be setting up after this. And you know, you might. You might have clicked on these and have been already ahead of this, but I wanted to start from the very, very like not knowing anything. So definitely share what you have. Not everyone's a professional. Not everyone has been doing this. Their entire lives. Just do your best and enjoy this. This is just another way for you to express your philosophy, your ideas, your thoughts, your feelings through sound. So I really hope that this beginner class was helpful to you. And, um, you know, if you want to do more like I said, go to the intermediate and then I'll be doing expert in pro levels as well. So I hope I got you off your feet. Thanks for sticking around for these classes. And I am. I see you in the future. Good luck on all your songwriting endeavors. And I'll see you soon. Thanks.