Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Rudi, a message to you

I started reading a fascinating book about songwriting at the weekend. That is, I started it at the weekend, it's not about songwriting at the weekend. That's for part timers.

I decided that I should try to learn more about song structure and composition mostly because of the songs we have written in Mimosa, which are all team efforts. Don't get me wrong, I'm not about to release an album of material with me playing all the instruments and singing. There's nothing worse in my book than a drummer who thinks he's a total allrounder. The only example of a drummer who has done this and come up with music I like is Dave Grohl, but I think I am right in saying that he played guitar before learning the drums. (Theena, you'll know)

No, I'm not going to preach to anyone about the correct way to write a song because of 2 things. The first is the fact that I have only read the first few chapters of the book. The second is that, from the little I have read, I have discovered that there is no magic formula for writing music.

That's the magic formula. All these successful songwriters say that they just go with their instincts and do what comes naturally. Interesting eh?

And also, here's another thing. Keith Richards, Tori Amos and many others see themselves as some kind of "receivers" for songs. They don't think that they actually write them, just that they interpret the messages and signals they receive. Many of the popular and highly successful writers think that the songs are all written and all they do is "pluck" them out of the air.

And I have also learned that some people actually pay attention to the lyrics of a song more than the rhythm.

Fancy that?

4 comments:

Theena said...

Dave learnt drums first after hearing John Bonham. He then learnt guitar as well.

Interesting fact:

Kurt Cobain once woke to the sounds of someone playing guitar and singing in the room next to his. Upon further investigation, he discovered that it is Dave. The song that he heard that night was a song named Marigold - one of Nirvana's lesser known numbers.

So yeah, Dave can play both. Personally, I'd love to see him behind a drum kit rather than a guitar.

"And I have also learned that some people actually pay attention to the lyrics of a song more than the rhythm."

I used to, but not any more. I've found that most vocals annoy me and I'd rather have a band making some extremly adventorous instrumental rather than the standard verse-chorus-verse songs.

Rhythmic Diaspora said...

Thanks Theena - I just knew you'd be the man!

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