Here I sit at the end of the second day of my 10-song producing marathon.
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It’s (mostly) still good to listen to after working on for most of the past 48 hours.. although it is getting a little monotonous to my ears, probably a sign that I should hurry up and finish it.
If you’ll recall, I was having some difficulties coming up with lyrics, especially for the two verses. With the instrumental tracks and Verse-Chorus-Bridge structure already established and recorded, it was just on me to come up with words to fit the mood.
Getting the first verse of lyrics started was HARD and confusing. I don’t think I wrote a single word until about halfway through the day, and that was only a line or two. By evening I had one 4-bar chunk, and before it was too late I was “done” with 80% of the lyrics.
Challenges and Lessons of Lyric-Writing
So, the first verse was tough to start. The second verse was much easier and faster; however, I’m worried it came a little TOO quickly and easily, because I’m not sure I feel the quality.
On the other hand, if I’m behind honest, I have some pretty big misgivings about all the lyrics in general. Still, I think the right answer is to press forward. I can always rework my favorite ideas from this song in the future.
Did I learn a lesson from all this verse-writing?
Maybe, yes. I certainly need to experiment with my Lyric-Writing methods. Should I wait to create Vocal Melodies until I have some ideas for lyrics? Because I feel like part of my problem today was having a vocal melody I wanted to use, but NOT having any idea for lyrics at that same time.
On the other hand, it was nice having some idea what vocal sound I was shooting for, since it motivated me to “fill in the blanks” and add the words so I could hear how the finished song might sound!
Maybe the key is a balance - because I think the most progress happened when I “let myself free” a little bit from the vocal melody I had created. Then I was able to write lyrics that kinda fit the original melody, but also had a lot more flexibility to fit the words and accents.
Ok, I think I like that idea. If I do have a vocal melody idea (which is easy for me), it’s OK to use it as a “template” - but next time, be more willing to change from the original melody idea, so that I can have more freedom to write lyrics (which is challenging for me).
Authenticity Was A Lyrical Challenge
Continuing my theme of total honesty, I’ll share the fact that I’m not happy with the “authenticity level” of my lyrics for this song - not all the way through, anyway.
This is tough to quantify. I was coming from an honest place as I wrote the words, and working with some specific personal memories most of the time. But, in the midst of trying to express and rhyme and sing, it gets a little tough to retain that original authenticity and feeling… to bring it out and make every line of the lyrics fit that feeling, and then to have all of that material fit the overall song emotions together.
This is clear in the way some of the lines almost make me cringe while other lines give me goosebumps. In other words, the quality of my lyrics, and their authenticity, are inconsistent right now through lack of practice and experience.
How I Look at Disappointing Song Lyrics
To tell the blatant truth, I feel that my lyrics and vocals mostly made the song worse than it originally was.
But that’s OK. I am completely alright with that feeling. This is all a learning experience that I’m pursuing for personal enjoyment and fulfillment.
The lack of quality I perceive in my vocals just tells me that I really need to learn and practice a lot more about writing and singing lyrics, especially in Verses and Bridges.
It’s also like a backhanded compliment to myself - it means I do like the instrumental parts and overall ‘feel’ of the song… otherwise the weak vocals would not be a disappointment!
So, although I definitely do NOT feel like I succeeded at writing great lyrics to this song, I’m still glad I’m almost finished. If I really want to come back to this song when I’m a better songwriter and lyricist, I’m certain I could rework the basic material into something better.
Next Steps For Producing This Song?
So, although the progress today wasn’t as exciting as it was yesterday, I can still definitively say that I’ve moved forward again on my song-writing marathon.
Here are the next steps as I see them:
- Decide what to do with the Bridge (add more lyrics, or go with an instrumental?)
- Lots of track polishing, sound design, micro-edits, and re-recording of various tracks.
- Detail work on the transitions between sections.
- Mixing and Mastering.
Side Note: I’ve been unable to keep to the “no practicing or music until the 10 songs are done.” When I needed a break from everything, I just wanted to practice a little bit of piano. And, it seemed ridiculous not to allow myself that option. So, I’m adapting the rule to say “no starting a second song until the current song is finished,” which is much closer to what I originally intended.
Tomorrow’s a new day, and it seems everything’s on track to finish this first song in a week or less without rushing. Thanks for reading and let me know your thoughts… - RG
Read More! Click here to find out what happened the next day…
Listen to the song: Click here to hear the original song “Lost in the Wind”. Don’t forget to leave a comment on the track!