I recently had the opportunity to attend a webinar with veteran songwriter Danny Myrick who is known for the hard rockin' up-tempo hits he's penned for superstar artists Jason Aldean, Tim McGraw, and Craig Morgan. The event was put on by SongTownUSA, a new songwriting community out of Nashville, curated by some of the best in the business. This webinar was part of their “9 Spot Coffee Shop” series. I have nothing to but positive things to say about this organization and highly encourage anyone interested to check them out HERE for themselves! Our host for the event was one of SongTownUSA’s own, Marty Dodson. Marty is no stranger to music industry success himself. He has penned hits for Billy Currington, Charlie Worsham, Carrie Underwood, Kenny Chesney, and Rascal Flatts to name a few. These two got to talking and shared a wealth of knowledge in between Myrick playing a few of his hits. So want to know the right way to write a hit up-tempo song? Well the secret is… there is no single right way! I know this phrase is used all too often when referring to songwriting and it can be frustrating to hear; however, the reason it is so often repeated is because it’s true! There is no single right way to write a song. So does this mean anything goes? No! No right way does not mean there isn’t a wrong way! There are industry standards, there are tips and tricks, there are bad habits to avoid. These were all discussed in the webinar; but what you didn't hear was "this is the only way." Often we find ourselves searching for the correct way to write a song. We focus in on someone else's success and try to mimic that. In doing so, we sometimes loose sight on the many different approaches available to us. Instead of trying to focus on the "right" way to write, we should be focused on the many ways to learn. In doing so, our songwriting will improve, and thus your chances for success. We should be learning from the professionals, learning from our peers, learning from their success, and learning from their failures. We should attempt to avoid some of those same pitfalls but if you don't, use it as a learning experience and try a different approach. Learn everything you can from professionals and peers that have come before you. Use the many techniques available to you to craft your song. If one technique doesn’t work for you, move to the next technique. Don’t get caught up in looking for the one "right way." Professionals like Myrick and Dodson will tell you that their successes are due to many factors. Factors that may or may not necessarily work for you. Lyrics first, melodies first, 80 BPM, 120 BPM, songs about trucks, songs about pain… it all has its place in the world of songwriting. So what’s the secret to success… it’s to stop looking for a singular secret to success! And for all of those wondering what approached and techniques worked for Danny Myrick, I hear you can purchase a ticket to watch the replay of the webcast HERE. Follow the link to get your ticket and SongTownUSA will email you a link to watch the webcast in full. Enjoy and happy learning!
Chris Smith is a founder of Songwriter Solutions and a singer-songwriter out of Winston-Salem, NC. He fancies himself a student of songwriting and believes we all have something to learn from one another. He's a soldier, a musician, a singer, a songwriter, a blogger, a son, a brother, a husband, and a soon to be father! He prefers the mountains over the beach, dogs over cats, and spinach over brussel sprouts. To connect with Chris, like him on FACEBOOK, follow him on TWITTER, and subscribe to him on YOUTUBE! He can be reached via our Contact Us page.