I've decided to write this article because I haven't seen a single article on UG that has really given you what you need to write a song. This is a quick and easy guide that can probably help anyone with writing a song, so if any of you reading this are unsatisfied with this, you can give your comments at the end of this page.
Alright, first up, is the type of stanzas or verses in a song:
Intro: This section starts off the song; it's usually an abbreviated instrumental version of the chorus, or the verse. It prepares us for the whole song. It usually comprises of 4 or 8 chords.
Verse: This is where you get to tell the story of your song, and it's where the song really starts moving, and it's probably where you get to express yourself the most in the song. The melody and chords of the verses throughout the song are usually the same, but the lyrics do differ. Most verses consists of four to six lines.
Pre-Chorus: This section prepares us for the chorus, giving a sort of rousing feeling. It's not compulsory to have this in a song, but it gives that extra oomph to it (unless your verse already has it). This part usually consists of no more than 8 bars.
Chorus: This is the main part of your song, and usually has the title of the song in it. It's also the catchiest part, like for example; it's usually the part where everyone in the audience sings along to. And most people will probably identify your song by its chorus. It can have the same chords as the verse, but the melody usually differs, and is more outstanding.
Bridge: This part is the climax of the song if you want to include it (otherwise the chorus is usually the climax of the song). In most pop songs, it comes after the second verse. Throughout the whole song, you have to follow the chords and melody of a certain key, but in this section, you can use chords from a different key, which will give something new and fresh for the ear as long as it sounds right. Most bridges in pop ballads have lyrics, and most bridges in rock songs are instrumental, and are usually where that really cool guitar solo comes in.
Coda: Or sometimes called the outro, is the ending of your song. It can be the same or similar to your intro. In a way, it's like the grand finale of your song.
The most basic song structure would be:
You don't have to follow this strictly. In fact, you can mess around with the arrangements and add verses, as long as the intro is at the beginning, the outro at the ending, and the pre-chorus is always before the chorus.
I believe I can fly I believe I can touch the sky I think about it every night and day Spread my wings and fly away
I believe I can soar I see me running through that open door I believe I can fly I believe I can fly I believe I can fly
Rhyming makes your song more catchy. For example, the chorus of "I Believe I Can Fly" written and performed by R. Kelly, a song everyone knows the lyrics to (partially because of the rhyming). This form of rhyming is called AABB, where the last two words of every two lines rhyme. There are a lot of different types of rhyming you can try like ABAB, AABA, ABAA, ABCA, ABCB. Each alphebet (A, B and C) represent different sounds. But still, rhyming isn't compulsory, an example of a song without rhyming is "Can't Help Falling In Love" written by Luigi Creatore, Hugo Peretti and George David Weiss, performed by Elvis Presley.
There are two kinds of rhyming:
Perfect Rhyme: This is when two or more syllables have the same vowel, and the same consonant sounds at the end. But start with different consonant sounds. The spelling is the same except for the first consonant in the word. (eg. Place/Race, Try/Fry, Stupid/Cupid)
Near Rhyme: This is an approximation of rhyme. The syllables don't have to have the exact rhyme and don't need to have the same spelling, but only have to sound similar. (eg. sooth/prove, young/song, go/road)
Note: Words that sound exactly the same are not rhymes (night/knight, right/wright), and you can't use the exact same words as rhymes either.
Obviously, every song needs a topic that inspires you. So here are just about all the topics I can think of that can be used in songwriting.
There are probably a lot more topics out there, and these are only the most common ones. And you gotta explore everything around you for the inspiration you need to write a song.
Well that's it! If I've missed out stuff, please tell me in the comment section and I might do a sequel to this article to satisfy you...