Close

MusicWorld’s Best Songwriting and Recording Tips of 2020

Posted in News on December 22, 2020

There are many paths to take when writing songs, but only some of them will give you your best shot at success, especially during these challenging times. Here are the top 10 tips articles published in BMI’s MusicWorld during 2020. Read on for ways to make 2021 the year your songs jump out of the pile!

Not a subscriber to MusicWorld? Sign up now!

5 Tips for Making Your Lyrics Stand Out

by Jason Blume
At my songwriting workshops I stress the importance of including lyric and melodic elements in our songs that will compel listeners and decision-makers to choose our material over the tough competition. Let’s look at some ways to write lyrics that command attention. 1. Find a Fresh Angle… Read more

photo

Tips for Co-Writing Songs When You Can’t Be in the Same Room

by Jason Blume
While I am writing this article, the world is battling COVID-19 and social distancing is curtailing the in-person collaborations that are so often the way songs are written. For those who are unable to write and record songs during face-to-face sessions there are alternatives… Read more

photo



The 5 Skills You Need to Be a Successful Music Publisher

by Jason Blume
Early on in my songwriting journey my goal was to have my songs represented by a music publisher—someone with the connections to get my masterpieces to the top artists of the day. I attended industry functions, networked, and took workshops where publishers screened songs, and… I received rejections from every publisher who listened to my work. When I got tired of having industry pros fail to recognize my brilliance, I signed with the only publisher who truly cared about my songs—the only publisher who believed I was sitting on a treasure trove of #1 hits: me... Read more

photo



What Makes a Song a Worldwide Phenomenon?

by Jason Blume
Warning: Listening to the songs referenced in this article is likely to result in an inability to get them out of your brain.

It is an incredible accomplishment for a song to reach the top of one of the Billboard charts. Occasionally, songs connect with listeners sufficiently to retain the #1 position for several weeks. But in rare instances, a song goes beyond being a “hit” and becomes a bona fide international sensation. For writers and publishers, contributing to one of these songs can be tantamount to hitting the proverbial song lottery. Let’s take a look at some songs that fit into this rarefied category of “super-hits” and explore some of the factors that propelled them to become not just hits, but global phenomena… Read more

photo



Using Chords and Modulations as Musical Hooks in Your Songs

by Jason Blume
The chords we choose to accompany our melodies not only contribute to the flavor of our songs, they can provide some of those magical musical moments that make our songs hooky, exceptional, and unforgettable. To keep our listeners’ attention we need to include hooks, elements that are catchy and memorable, not only in our choruses, but in every section of our songs—the intro, the verse, the pre-chorus, the chorus, post-chorus, and bridge. It is not uncommon for hit songs to include multiple hooks within each section. In this article we’ll explore the extent to which unexpected and unpredictable chords and key changes can be implemented to keep audiences “hooked” in… Read more

photo



Percussion Primer – Tips for Adding Hooky Rhythms to Your Music Tracks

by Dave Simons
It’s not always easy to get enthusiastic about a new demo if you always start your rhythm track the same old way. Take percussion for example: sure, it’s easy to lay down a functional backbeat and be done with it, but why not spend a little more time and imagination crafting parts that might actually stick with the listener? Here we cover some of the less-obvious (though no less important) functions of percussion in your demo, from using tambourine, shakers and related instruments more effectively, to experimenting with homemade rhythm sounds, and more… Read more

photo



Tips for Livestreaming Your Music from Home

by Jason Blume
As songwriters and recording artists, we are moved to share our emotions—our love, hope, joy, pain, and fear—through songs. This is how we express ourselves, entertain our fans, and allow our listeners to feel the comfort of knowing that others share their feelings. Despite artists’ tours and major music events such as SXSW, the Country Music Association Music Festival, BMI’s Key West Songwriters’ Festival, the Kerrville Folk Festival, and Coachella being postponed or canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, performers are still sharing their music… Read more

photo



How to Make a Socially Distanced Music Performance Video

by Dave Simons
It’s become a ubiquitous image during these trying times: a screenful of sequestered musicians arranged in a Zoom-styled array of boxes, playing “together” in what appears to be a totally synchronized performance. While some may be better than others, these video happenings have been a source of sustenance for fans deprived of the live concert experience. And for musicians forced into hiatus, the ability to create an online ensemble has helped bands maintain momentum while keeping fingers and vocal cords limber during this prolonged period of isolation… Read more

photo



How Songwriting Makes You A Better Innovator

by Cliff Goldmacher
After over 30 years of writing songs, I’ve come to the realization that while songwriting, in and of itself, is a wonderful thing, the benefits extend far beyond the boundaries of music. Among the many areas that learning to write songs can develop are a set of seven skills uniquely designed to make you a better innovator. In my work with business teams, we cover all seven skills in the course of writing and performing a song and, without a doubt, my favorite part of the workshop is demonstrating to people not conditioned to seeing themselves as creative that they absolutely are! I’ll begin with a brief description of each skill and then enumerate the way that a specific component of the songwriting process will enhance that particular skill. Innovation Skill #1—Lateral Thinking… Read more

photo



Vinyl 101: How to Make a Traditional Two-Sided Vinyl 45 Single

by Dave Simons
Given that we can all upload and distribute our music to any number of digital platforms quickly and cheaply, why even bother with a physical record anymore? Though it may seem antiquated, there are still plenty of music fans who want a tangible product (other than a cold compact disc, that is). Which may help explain why vinyl continues to stick around, long after it was supposedly doomed to extinction. For one thing, a vinyl platter offers ample space to create eye-catching cover and sleeve graphics, as well as readable recording notes/personnel data. And in addition to classic black, artists can choose from a variety of vinyl colors, adding to the record’s visual appeal. There’s also the unique sonic character of a 7” single which, traditionally, tends to be “hotter” or more dynamic sounding compared to its long-playing counterparts… Read more

photo


Looking for more stories on how to write, record and pitch your songs? Click here!

SOURCENews TAGS Career Advice