#1
Ok, so im pretty new to song writing. I've always written songs but recently decided to add lyrics (no duh)
If I have lyrical influences by Bands like :
Jack's Mannequin
Paramore
John Mayer
Anathema
Billy Talent
Sentenced
Weezer

How can I use what i love listening to to inspire my own creative ideas??
I mean those bands have amazingly great lyrics, from the Deepness of Anathema to the simplicity of Weezer. I want diversity in my songs which is why i picked those bands.
Please Help me in ANY way possible, thanks =]
#2
Writing lyrics is one of my favorite parts of the songwriting process. It evolves a lot like guitar playing does; you start out by imitating what you like and over time you develop your own style based on what you like and what you're good at.

Try to listen to as much and as diverse music and songwriters as you can. You might find writers outside of your favorite genres that can really inspire you. That can lead to originality; like a punk band influenced by blues music, etc. etc.

To be honest (and I don't mean this as a put-down at all) but with the exception of John Mayer none of those you listed are very good songwriters. They're all ok but nothing special. Do some research and you'll find some incredible lyricists... some that are well-known and some that are relatively obscure.

If you're into punk - check out Bad Religion - Greg Graffin and Brett Gurewitz
If its rock - check out Porcupine Tree (Steven Wilson) Radiohead (Thom Yorke) Tool (Maynard James Keenan) Pink Floyd (Waters, Gilmour, Barrett)
Folk - Dylan or someone newer like Ray LaMontagne
Metal - Jacob Bannon from Converge is an amazing writer and very underrated.

Keep an open mind and you'll be able to express yourself and utilize your influences but not imitate them.
#3
Quote by Chris_117
Ok, so im pretty new to song writing. I've always written songs but recently decided to add lyrics (no duh)
If I have lyrical influences by Bands like :
Jack's Mannequin
Paramore
John Mayer
Anathema
Billy Talent
Sentenced
Weezer

How can I use what i love listening to to inspire my own creative ideas??
I mean those bands have amazingly great lyrics, from the Deepness of Anathema to the simplicity of Weezer. I want diversity in my songs which is why i picked those bands.
Please Help me in ANY way possible, thanks =]


If you like Mayer, you should go watch the lecture he gave recently at Berklee College of Music in Boston, all of the videos are on Youtube he covers basically everthing that has to do with making music.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hDrdXj6pdD4
Last edited by ak10 at Dec 17, 2009,
#4
Thanks a lot Abacus11 Ill definitely check out some of those writers.
What you any of you guy's recommend I do if im great at writing sogns over guitar, but i have trouble putting lyrics to them?
should i write lyrics first then the guitar part?
or guitar then lyrics like im doing now?
or how should I go about this?
#5
First off, before you even try to put the words to music, practice writing lyrics without music.

The way those guys write such good lyrics is simply through practice. The more you do it, the better you get. So just start writing and accept that for a while, you are going to suck until you get enough practice.
Today I feel electric grey
I hope tomorrow, neon black
#6
Quote by Chris_117
Ok, so im pretty new to song writing. I've always written songs but recently decided to add lyrics (no duh)
If I have lyrical influences by Bands like :
Jack's Mannequin
Paramore
John Mayer
Anathema
Billy Talent
Sentenced
Weezer

How can I use what i love listening to to inspire my own creative ideas??
I mean those bands have amazingly great lyrics, from the Deepness of Anathema to the simplicity of Weezer. I want diversity in my songs which is why i picked those bands.
Please Help me in ANY way possible, thanks =]


My advice for beginners is much more prescriptive than most of the "do whatever works for ya man" comments that fill this forum, so take it with a grain of salt if you want. The main thing beginning writers don't realize is how much the form of their writing dictates the meaning of its content. How you write something (at the lyric level, not even thinking of melody or music--though obviously that affects everything as well) naturally affects the meaning of what you write about.

So you're asking a deceptively complicated question when you want to know how to get your ideas into lyrical words. The best way to start understanding the way form and content interact is to spend a few months writing entirely in ballad stanzas. Give that a google and get a good feel for what a ballad stanza is. They provide the natural rhythms for 4/4 popular music like the most of the songs written by the groups above.

On top of that I'd start with alternating rhyme in those stanzas. Writing a few dozen songs in that format, no matter how terrible, will help you develop an ear for rhythm; a sense of diction that has better rhythm than natural speech but doesn't feel forced like most beginner's works do; a good idea of how things like sentence length are affected by line length; and a fair few other helpful things to know.

As you continue to write in this form, you'll naturally drift further and further away from the standard rhythms of the form and the hard rhymes that you might start out with. Moving in this gradual drift is much better for you than just starting out with "free verse" because you understand the specific effects produced by the ballad form in the first place and then can create your own "free verse" with the goal of reproducing those effects without using the form.

Once you've spent a considerable amount of time with ballad stanzas, move on to another form. You'll learn neat new tricks every time you get to intimately know a poetic formula.

As for how to start turning your thoughts into words: do you really think in full sentences all the time? No, people think in terms of images, sounds, smells, etc. Begin by filling your work up with these things rather than exposition. Once you get good at creating a picture in the first place, you can get better and explaining through lyric the significance of those images, or how those images form a story,etc.