I just started learning to play the guitar. I am going to buy an acoustic guitar. How hard is it to write your own song? What do songs consist of (chords)
Songs don't necessarily have to have a certain song structure or anything, just play what sounds good.

So ridiculously easy to answer your question.
Quote by Zinnie
god placed the fossils in earth to confuse the humans into thinking that earth is older than it actually is, therefore, making men try and think outside the box....

just kidding, there is no god

only 12 notes man.. its not just about your chords and melody its all been done before what sets you apart is your rhythm and how you put it all together... dont rush!
song writing isnt something you cant sit down and say youre just going to write a song, you can try but the best stuff will just come from the flow of playing... play what sounds good and just think what you can do that hasnt been done, thats where writing becomes exciting because its a mission to create something that hasnt been done in the history of the 12 notes we use... good luck and just have fun with it, it all comes with time... and if you keep with it youll surprise yourself...

one tip is to stick to your scales though: Cmaj is obviously the easiest so from there you get your C, Dm, Em, F, G, Am, and Bdim... any of those chords work together because they each use 3 of the same 7 notes within the Cmajor scale...

hope this helps
Most people develop a formula of some sort, but it takes years of ceaseless practice. Turns out there are no shortcuts for artistic greatness yet.
Chords, riffs, melodies, rhythms, effects, anything that sounds good.

Try and imagine what a good melody or piece of music might sound like, then try and work it out on guitar. Or you could just try improvising something, but I prefer the former by far.

EDIT: And ignore whoever said stick to your scales. Don't stick to scales. Be aware of them, learn them, and notice if you're going out of the scale so if it sounds bad you'll know why, but don't treat scales like rules.

For chord progressions, I like to have at least one chord in which the root note isn't in the scale, it makes things interesting. As for riffs and melodies, I think it's better to think in intervals. If you don't know, intervals are just the distance between two notes, and each interval has a distinct sound. You can use every note on the neck in one song and have it sound good if you use them well.

Or I guess you could just pick up the guitar, experiment and remember what sounds good. It's worked for some people. There's no rules as to what will sound good, just listen to what you're playing, judge it honestly and change anything you don't like.
Last edited by whalepudding at Oct 7, 2009,
songwriting comes with practise. I've written a dozen of songs, and my first tries weren't nearly as good as my attemps to now. In fact, my first song was really cliché and ... stupid and so forth ...

everything can be a song. It can even be only a simple melody, a few notes, even only one instrument, or only voice, as long as it'll touch you
I started writing songs about a month ago. I got slightly bored of learning other peoples songs, and I wanted to write about stuff happening around me, so I went out and bought an acoustic and started writing.

The way I did it, was to write a basic chord progression. I started on the chorus, and generally, I want that part to be one of the most powerful parts of the song, then used the chorus chord progression to build a verse progression.

From there you have a basic song, you can can create a nice simple intro, bridge etc.

I then recorded it to adobe audition through my laptop, and saved it to my mp3 player, and whenever I got time, would listen to it.

When I write the words to a song, I try to think of a theme to write about and base it around that. Again, I start from the chorus and work onto the verses.

Once I've got the basic chord progression and lyrics down, ill consider adding electric guitar parts to it, maybe a solo etc and mix it all up in audition.

Just dont rush it. Take as much time as you need.

When I write my chord progressions I always start on the acoustic. I can do it in 3 different ways:

1) Play a range of different chords and see what sounds right
2) Decide on a sound I want to go for (happy, sad, dark, exotic etc) and work out the chords I could use from a particular mode and base it around the mode
3) This one sounds a bit silly, but it works, and it works amazingly for writing solos when you have no knowledge of scales / improv. Get a voice recorder (can pick them up pretty cheap), think of either a progression or solo in your head, then hum it out while recording yourself.

I wouldnt suggest listening to someone for inspiration, you may end up copying alot from the without realising.
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