THESE FORUMS NOW CLOSED (read only)

  • 25 May 2024, 08:34
  • Welcome, Guest
Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  
Pages: [1]   Go Down

Author Topic: Anyone else have a truly difficult time writing song lyrics?  (Read 4602 times)

Tehz

  • The German Chancellory building
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 451
  • and the driving snow that drives me home

During these past few months I've been making a good effort to finally piece together some things I've written on guitar into complete songs, and thus far I've been able to do so with relative ease. However, once I get past instrumentation, writing the words to go along has proven to be a challenge. Occasional writer's block aside, writing usually comes to me pretty easily in most formats, with songwriting appearing to be the lone exception; I really just find it difficult to write anything down without it seeming cliché or contrived to me. A lot of the time I feel like it's just me lacking faith in my own ability and just believing that what I wrote sounds like something any fourteen year-old with a music Myspace could come up with, but at the same time I can't be sure.

Every once in a while I think of something that I'm pretty happy with, but a lot of the time what ends up happening is I'll read it again at another point and change my mind. Sometimes I strike gold and an idea or two manages to make it past the embryonic stage, but that's a dishearteningly rare occasion. I know I'm still relatively new at this and it will probably take some time before better ideas start to flow, but it's still something of a downer when most of my writings end up getting tossed.

I'm not necessarily looking for advice, but I'd be happy to accept any. I'm sort of just searching for people in a similar boat; is it really that difficult to write good lyrics or am I just being a big baby about it?
Logged

The Duke

  • Cthulhu f'tagn
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 531
  • Flea was a classy kid.

I was the same way for a long time, and I'm certainly not completely past that stage yet.

I found that it helps a lot to get a friend you can test them out on, who will give you their honest opinion.  Try out every song you write on them, regardless of whether or not you think it's good.  

It's worked pretty well for me so far.
Logged
You know, they tell you, "Never hit a man with a closed fist," but it is, on occasion, hilarious.

Be My Head

  • Psychopath in a hockey mask
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 627

Have you tried writing the lyrics before you write the melody?
Logged

Tehz

  • The German Chancellory building
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 451
  • and the driving snow that drives me home

Sometimes if I feel the need to write my ideas down I will without a particular melody in mind. I'm pretty sure that's a mistake most of the time.
Logged

imapiratearg

  • Born in a Nalgene bottle
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 3,168
  • Oh thanks. They're not mine.
    • http://www.myspace.com/superpunkdout

I have a hard time writing lyrics a lot.  I try to come up with lyrics when writing the melody.
Logged

Ballard

  • Older than Moses
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,211
  • This is my happening and it freaks me out!

OP I am pretty much exactly where you are. Exactly.

And it upsets me because although I am a very decent guitarist and have been playing for a fairly long amount of time, I have never completed a song.
Logged
I'm like the boy who cried "you guys are faggots"

scarred

  • Older than Moses
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,440

I am horrible I repeat horrible at this whole "lyrics" kit n kaboodle that you speak of. Which is sad, because some of the melodies I've concocted would sound great under some vocals.
Logged
tumblr | wordpress | last.fm

Quote from: De_El
nick is a dick so you don't have to be!

Spluff

  • William Gibson's Babydaddy
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2,410
  • it is time to party

Take the AC/DC route and write about rockin' out

or maybe write about a classic novel (you should write a song about The Time Machine), that seems to be all the rage these days
Logged
[16:27] Ozy:  has joined the room
[16:27] Quietus: porn necklace!
[16:27] Quietus: Shove it up yer vag!
[16:27] Ozy: has left the room

Tom

  • Older than Moses
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,037
  • 8==D(_(_(

Yes Time Travel and Alchemy are where it's at.
Logged

Ballard

  • Older than Moses
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,211
  • This is my happening and it freaks me out!

I am horrible I repeat horrible at this whole "lyrics" kit n kaboodle that you speak of. Which is sad, because some of the melodies I've concocted would sound great under some vocals.

Yeah see this. I can play guitar and hum/da na na melodies along to my playing all day. But lyrics bloo bloo blah.
Logged
I'm like the boy who cried "you guys are faggots"

Thrillho

  • Global Moderator
  • Awakened
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 13,130
  • Tall. Beets.

I find that the better way to write lyrics is to write the whole thing front to back and THEN tweak it. At least then the core ideas are there. If you waste too much time farting about on a few of the first lines then you'll end up losing your inspiration.

As far as struggling to write lyrics, lately I've been finding it really hard because I'm too happy, basically. I mostly only miserable stuff, and so now that I'm in a happy relationship I'm just writing hardly anything.
Logged
In the end, the thing people will remember is kindness.

pinkpiche

  • The German Chancellory building
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 473

Would you really want it to be easy?
Logged
"Yeah, they're always biting my shit you know how that goes"

Johnny C

  • Mentat
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 9,483
  • i wanna be yr slide dog
    • I AM A WHORE FOR MY OWN MUSIC

I find that the better way to write lyrics is to write the whole thing front to back and THEN tweak it.

All writing is a process of revision. The hardest part is getting the whole thing written down, and when it comes out cliché you can always just change it.
Logged
[02:12] yuniorpocalypse: let's talk about girls
[02:12] Thug In Kitchen: nooo

Bastardous Bassist

  • William Gibson's Babydaddy
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2,302
  • brinkman propane smoker

or maybe write about a classic novel (you should write a song about The Time Machine), that seems to be all the rage these days

Again!?  Goddamnit, people.  It wasn't awesome when Maiden did it...  Oh, wait.  It totally was.  Continue doing this.

I don't write lyrics, but that's mainly because I don't listen to lyrics.  I am an instrumentalist through and through.  I don't think in terms of words.  I think in terms of chord progressions, voice leading and counterpoint (really basic counterpoint; it was the only theory class that I didn't do so well in).

However, I have seen lyrics get written before, and I agree that the way to do it is to write the whole thing, no matter how bad you think it is.  If it's truly terrible, then you can do it again and nothing it ever a total waste.  When forcing yourself to just write, sometimes an awesome phrase or even just a word occurs to you.  You can take four or five drafts and lift stuff from each of them, and you might end up with the awesomest song ever.

Also, when writing music, I always find that the hardest part is starting out, but once you get the entire thing down, you can write a beginning that fits the awesome rest of the piece you've written.  Who ever said that the beginning had to be the first thing you wrote?
Logged
Who?  Me?  Couldn't be.

The Duke

  • Cthulhu f'tagn
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 531
  • Flea was a classy kid.

When forcing yourself to just write, sometimes an awesome phrase or even just a word occurs to you. 
Also, when writing music, I always find that the hardest part is starting out, but once you get the entire thing down, you can write a beginning that fits the awesome rest of the piece you've written.  Who ever said that the beginning had to be the first thing you wrote?

Truth.  This is actually how I wrote my first song.
Logged
You know, they tell you, "Never hit a man with a closed fist," but it is, on occasion, hilarious.

Thrillho

  • Global Moderator
  • Awakened
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 13,130
  • Tall. Beets.

I find that the better way to write lyrics is to write the whole thing front to back and THEN tweak it.

All writing is a process of revision. The hardest part is getting the whole thing written down, and when it comes out cliché you can always just change it.

Precisely. Keeping your original thought to the end of the lyric and then altering the whole thing as you see fit rather than sweating so much over the opening line. I've been doing this a lot with the few songs I've been writing lately, and it works a lot better. Also makes for a much more lucid lyric when all's said and done.
Logged
In the end, the thing people will remember is kindness.
Pages: [1]   Go Up