Crazy Songwriting Tips That Lead to Great Songs in 2023 (2/2)

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Continuing from our first tips, join us in exploring how crazy yet effective techniques can transform songwriting in 2023. Discover how to infuse authenticity and creativity into your music, crafting unforgettable melodies that resonate with both you and your audience. Let’s dive into the world of epic tracks!

8. The layover method

Here’s an interesting approach of various crazy songwriting tips in 2023  to crafting more personal song lyrics called the “layover technique.”

Imagine you’re on a long trip abroad, and during a layover at an airport, you take a moment to write a postcard letter to someone dear to you.

What would you express after being away for so long?

You’re in control of the story—maybe you’re missing a loved one or feeling melancholic about your job keeping you apart from things you cherish.

Remember, the letter will fit on a small postcard, so you’ll need to be concise and focused—qualities that often characterize great lyrics.

9. Create a reward system

During Brian Wilson’s period of songwriting struggles and various challenges, he supposedly found motivation through a unique reward system: he received cheeseburgers for each song he managed to write.

While Brian’s approach might seem quite unconventional, the underlying idea is rather ingenious. Crafting songs is undeniably demanding.

If there’s a particular piece of equipment or a tempting new studio gadget catching your attention, set a challenge for yourself: commit to writing five songs before even considering purchasing it.

This strategy provides you with a tangible goal to strive for, going beyond the gratification of completing a song—which is indeed a rewarding achievement on its own.

10. Mozart’s effect

No, I’m not suggesting you mimic Mozart’s exact process. That would indeed be a shortcut, right?

Yet, there’s another rationale for embracing Mozart’s music. Research has demonstrated that listening to Mozart can significantly enhance your concentration.

It positively influences your ‘spatial-temporal reasoning,’ a fancy term for focus. Commencing your session with a dose of Mozart can elevate your brain activity.

This is ideal for generating high-quality songs. Experimenting with a couple of his phrases and melodies could also be beneficial… Just remember to infuse your personal touch!

11. Completely memorize a song

Can you imagine attempting to re-record “Bohemian Rhapsody” right now without revisiting it to jog your memory? It would likely sound quite different from the original! This is precisely why crafting an imperfect imitation can prove to be an ingenious creative strategy.

This approach certainly proved effective for Dave Longstreth of Dirty Projectors. The band’s remarkable 2007 album “Rise Above” is a complete cover of Black Flag’s renowned 1981 record “Damaged.” Interestingly, Longstreth hadn’t listened to the original tracks in several years, resulting in a remarkably inventive reinterpretation of the classic album.

12. Use advanced techniques

Extended techniques involve playing your instrument in unconventional ways, defying the norm.

This concept emerged in the 20th century as a means for composers to explore the boundaries of traditional instrumentation.

Perhaps the most renowned instance is John Cage’s infamous “prepared piano,” featuring forks inserted between strings and objects scattered within the mechanics.

However, extended techniques aren’t limited to formal academic music. Consider Dave Davies’ choice to slash his amplifier’s speaker cone in “You Really Got Me” as an example. This bold move yielded a gritty, distorted guitar sound that set the stage for an entire new musical era—exemplifying unrefined creativity!

Incorporate extended techniques into your songwriting for a fresh perspective.

13. Random rhyming pairs

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Creating rhyming lyrics is crucial for making moments in a song stick and for weaving ideas and imagery together seamlessly.

So, don’t shy away from using a rhyming dictionary if you hit a roadblock—it can be a helpful guide to steer your lyrics in the right direction.

A great way to ignite your creativity is by combining the results of a random word generator with suggestions from a rhyming dictionary.

For instance, you could generate four random words you like and then come up with a set of four rhyming words for each of them—resulting in a grid of 16 rhyming words.

Afterwards, identify pairs of rhyming words that ignite your imagination and start crafting verses using the words from your grid.

As you practice this exercise, you’ll gradually learn how to naturally incorporate rhymes into your own lyrical stories and narratives.

14. Make use of a tape machine

Discovering creativity through limitations in songwriting, like utilizing vintage four-track tape machines from TASCAM, can lead to unique musical expressions. These analog devices enable recording up to four tracks on tape. The approach involves outlining song structure, capturing chord progressions, harmonies, vocals, and lead lines. Alternatively, modern options like free songwriting apps such as Spire emulate the vintage tape machine process. By embracing these techniques, songwriting gains an authentic and distinct flavor.

15. Use ChatGPT

The ongoing debate surrounding AI’s role in music, often centered around platforms like LANDR, has been quite controversial.

In the current landscape, advanced language models like ChatGPT possess a wide range of capabilities, including lyric composition and song advice.

If you’re grappling with unfinished lyrics, why not input them into ChatGPT? By providing context, you can see what suggestions it conjures.

Additionally, if you’re seeking guidance on novel song structures or chord progressions, ChatGPT can provide personalized tips for your compositions.

And the best part? It’s completely free to use, especially if you opt for the ChatGPT 3.5 version.

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Songwriting isn’t always smooth sailing. Occasionally, you might need to take bold steps to ensure your songs come together seamlessly.

Besides our crazy songwriting tips in 2023, step beyond conventional boundaries and tap into your most valuable source for crafting songs: yourself.

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