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Want To Write A Song? Here's How!
Musicians are strange creatures, cursed with melodies spinning around in their heads constantly. It's hard to recognize what words are brilliant lyrics, or just fleeting thoughts. The mind of a musician is a jumbled mess, with little bits and pieces of melodies and broken love songs constantly dragging behind them. My newest effort premieres at the end of this post! So stay tuned if you want to learn how to write music, and where these tips can get you. This card was inspired by @buddyesd and our conversations about music and songwriting over the past few days. 1. The first step is to know your music! Videos: Some of my favorites. I've been a musician my whole life. I started singing in my terrible two's and ended up getting a guitar at age 11 and starting my first rock band at 12. My life has always centered on what band I was obsessed with at the time. It all started with Green Day... Then the Ramones... Then My Chemical Romance... Thirty Seconds To Mars... The Sex Pistols... The Libertines... Neil Young, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Pete Doherty and on and on. And so on and so fourth. The point I'm trying to make here, is that you have to go through a lot of music to gain the inspiration and the fortitude to start making your own. Influences are a huge part of songwriting. They help you form what kind of identity you want as an artist. 2. Know that the perfect song won't come overnight. Your development takes time! (Video 1: One of the first songs I ever wrote (2009) "The Way You Talk" / tried and true pop-punk) (Video 2: A later rock song, 2014 "Tourist" a little more sophisticated, deeper lyrics, more passion, messy garage-rock feel) I didn't wake up and just know how to play the guitar and write songs, it took time. I sat in my room for hours on end, plucking away, humming, writing down and recording things and ultimately a lot of the stuff I wrote early on was complete shit. It just now, feels like I'm writing really meaningful stuff. So, just give yourself some time, and know that every musician goes through an evolution at every level. I started out writing simple, three chord punk songs in the vein of Green Day, my favorite band. That slowly evolved into more anthemic and stadium-like tunes when I started getting into bands like The Rolling Stones, U2 and so fourth... Now I've evolved into this heart-wrenching raw, indie influenced folk-y sound that is directly linked to my love for Pete Doherty's solo album Grace / Wastelands, a collection of melancholy tracks dedicated to love and confusion. My new song, Counselor (heard here), is a haunting acoustic ballad influenced by more singer / songwriter acts since I'm solo right now. So things have to evolve with the times. 3. Do some research. You have to know where you came from in order to know where you can go. This being said, every musician's routine is different. I just like to pick up my guitar, start strumming a few chords and a melody or lyric will come, and I'll go from there. Some people sit at a keyboard and bang out a melody, Others just jam and find a chord progression they like, to start with and build a melody on top of it. If you're not that experienced, you have to do some research. Look up the greats: Lennon and McCartney, Richards and Jagger. The classics are a great way to look at song structure. Then, look up your favorite artist's songwriting routines and experiment with them, mix and match styles until you feel like you can get somewhere. Like the lead singer of Green Day, Billie Joe Armstrong writes his melodies first, lyrics later. Both come at once for me, melody and lyric, almost always. So it just depends on how your brain works, and you won't know until you try. 4. JUST GO FOR IT!!! Music isn't perfect and most of the time it isn't beautiful or polished. So if you want to start creating your own, just start doing it. Hum melodies, listen to your favorite artists, pick up an instrument and do it! If you have the passion and you want to learn, anything is possible. I'm here to help too, if you have any questions or thoughts. Do not be afraid, because you could write the next number one single in your bedroom...you never know ;)! My newest song, written and recorded on August 12th, 2015 is up on Sound Cloud now, here's the link if you're interested. See! Songwriting isn't hard! ;) "Lying To The Wind" By: Tess Stevens
Music When The Lights Go Out: Songs To Help You Sleep
There is nothing worse than laying in your bed trying to fall asleep. Your eyes are darting around under the lids. The lights are dim, and yet, your brain won't shut off. The impulses are still firing and yet your body is exhausted. You want nothing more than to drift off to dreamland. Music is a huge deal as far as psychology goes. It can help with productivity, working out and even sleep. When you're having trouble drifting into subconscious bliss turn on these tunes and put your mind at ease. Before you know it, you'll be dreaming with the best of them. Instead of water sounds try... House of Cards by Radiohead Radiohead is a great band to listen to when you want to chill out entirely. Their music is cinematic and atmospheric, which is great for catching Z's. Radiohead's music fills the room, and will create a sonic coccoon for your slumber. Totally cool right? House of Cards is a slow building song with almost a lullaby effect. Thom Yorke's haunting vocal soothes as the song ebbs and flows like waves. It's totally better than contrived water sounds. Check out the OK Computer album too. It's full of grade A sleepy time tracks. Instead of rain and thunder sounds try... I Am The Rain by Peter Doherty This song always calms me down. It is melancholy at its height. It's a dreamy acoustic track that even has rain sounds in some of the background. It has a lot of elements that remind you of that chilly spring rain that comes when everything is falling down. It honestly is beautiful, and yes I have a bias towards this artist but still..you can't deny the power of a brilliant acoustic ballad as far as sleep goes. If you want more, check out his solo album Grace / Wastelands it's largely acoustic and very mellow. Great songwriting too. I've fallen asleep to this album many times. Instead of white noise try... Stay Covered by Thirty Seconds to Mars This may be a more edgy and deliberate version of Rihanna's smash hit, but it really gets the job done as far as sleep goes. Jared Leto's voice is a lot more gritty and steady than Rihanna's and the subtle backing provides a really smooth soundscape. If you let yourself concentrate on the driving beat and subtle lyrics of this song you'll fall asleep in no time. I highly recommend Thirty Seconds To Mars' album Love Lust Faith and Dreams, there are a lot of atmospheric tracks that build just like the first song on this list. I think it's good to have music that fills the room, it creates a safer space and enables your mind to shut off faster. Instead of animal sounds try... Number One Party Anthem by Arctic Monkeys This song's title couldn't be further from it's musical content. This song is a slow burner, like a candle being blown out at two A.M. It simmers as it goes on. This song is a rarity in the Monkeys' catalog. And it stands out as one of their best. Alex Turner's dreamy vocals fit perfectly with the acoustic vibe and are a sure fire way to help you get some rest. Try out their album A.M. which features a lot of slick tracks with even vocal quality and driving beats. This sort of regulation will help with sleep. What are your favorite sleepytime tracks? I'd love to hear from @nicolejb @allischaaff @terricariley @InPlainSight and @buddyesd and any other music lovers out there!
5 Songs You Need to Listen to While Making Out
Alright, you're almost there. You're in your weird apartment. They need to use the bathroom. And somewhere deep inside of you; you have this overwhelming feeling that you guys are going to make out. And you are, trust me, you are. But wait, you can't just make out to nothing. The sound of lips smacking against each other in a drunken haze is almost as bad as the sound of someone open-mouth chewing. And with that in mind, you open the MacBook Pro and stare at YouTube or Spotify or Grooveshark or whatever you use to listen to music without actually buying it (because fuck that, right? Musicians don't need money, I do. This is America, goddamn it). But you freeze. And your potential make out partner leaves. Geez, you wonder, if only I had a list of songs to get me started in the proper fashion, I wouldn't have lost this wonderful opportunity! Well, wonder no longer. Here are five songs you should definitely make out to that will also impress them 'cause they're total hip-hipster dance jams. LCD Soundsystem -- All I Want LCD Soundsystem's All I Want is the perfect ease into the making out session. The tempo is just upbeat enough for you to awkwardly shoe-gaze-dance towards your partner and smile (they'll find this endearing) and put your arms around them. Look at that, you two are too close, you're Trident breath close. There you go, now it's happening. The band is also just famous enough without being too famous, if you know what I mean, so your street cred will stay in the high 50s low 60s (this is a good thing). Slow Club -- Beginners Oh, Slow Club, what would I do without you? I mean, a lot probably, but you've gotten me through so many make out sessions I can't believe it. I mean, this particular song and video. There's something about Daniel Radcliffe not acting as Harry Whatever that's so intriguing to people that just looking at his face, then your face, then his face, then your face, will eventually result you and your partner's face sucking each other dry. That's what I like to call the Radcliffe Effect (trademark pending). Chvrches -- The Mother We Share I think I've heard this song on the radio once, so while that would normally be a bad thing, in this case it isn't. The band is just fringe enough that whoever you're making out with, will be like "nice choice" but, like, super ironically. I mean, they'd really enjoy the song the same way you're really enjoying the song but they'd never admit it. And you never admit it either! Say YouTube autoplay did it or something. Just keep your eye on the prize -- by that I mean: don't drool, that's gross. Phantogram -- Don't Move Don't Move's tempo is so perfect for making out, I don't know what to say about it other than that. The little electronic bloops and bleeps in the background almost make it feel like you're in some kind of weird space ship heading towards a weird love planet (or something). If your respective hands aren't at each other's respective hips, then you're doing something wrong or you're kissing a literal robot. I don't know what to tell you, this song really sets up some mouth to mouth communication. Disclosure -- Latch Latch is one of those songs that'll get anyone ready to kiss anyone else. I don't care if you think that's lame 'cause the song is pretty old, or weird, or silly. But kisses are kisses and Sam Smith singing along to this song is something that makes kissing seem like something so much more than just awkwardly touching your face skin to someone else's face skin (I don't really know any euphemisms for making out, sorry). There's something about this song that'll let you dance slow to that bop-bop-bop that sets the rhythm or you can slow up during all those boop-boop-boop parts. And the "slow up" is the move for this song. But then that chorus kicks in, right? And all of a sudden you're in some weird early 2000s indie movie about party goers in New York City and this is the part where you're making out in some rave warehouse. There you go, you did it stud. A couple of hip-hipster make out songs. Now, if you find yourself in a position where something more than making out is about to happen, well, I guess that's another list of songs for another day.
Playlist of the Week
I just thought I would share my play list of the week. It is a combination of kpop and American Rock...indie music. Some music picks are for mature audiences...so view at your own risk. This is not a Challenge...I know people are super busy with school. But comment below some songs on your Playlist or you can make a card if you wish. If you pick to make a card please tag me. I would like to see what music you enjoy. @poojas @kpopandkimchi @VixenViVi @JazzyPie @shannonl5 @NSSagasshi @ErinGregory @SharayahTodd @dreemer13 @touchmybuttoppa @SarahHawkins @KpopGaby @BlueBear07 @PrettieeEmm @KaceyDodge @glostick @LaurnAntoine @StephanieDuong Incubus Song...Adolescents I LOVE INCUBUS. I FEEL IN LOVE WITH THEM IN HIGH SCHOOL. If you need an introduction to American rock you should check them out. They are a mixture of rock and they have some lighter rock songs. It's cool listening to their old music to their most current music. I love seeing how they evolved. Besides Brandon Boyd the leader singer is super sexy. His voice was the first voice take me have music babies...lol GD & T.O.P Song....Zutter I love these two and they are known for being the double combo. The lyrics are smooth, sexy, and creative. Plus I love the beat. You can't go wrong with these two amigos. Jay Park Song...Sextrip I love this song...but now it for the grown and sexy. The lyrics are for mature audiences....but if you know JP he is not one to be shy. He's very much bold and sexy. This is a nice slow jam and it's in all English. Korn Sings....A.D.I.D.A.S and Freak on a Leash I discovered Korn when I came upon Incubus. This is a hardcore band. Hard rock mixed with in your face lyrics. A.D.I.D.A.S is a mature song with explicit lyrics. The video is explicit too so if you want to see the official video for that song you can search for it yourself. EXO Songs...Playboy...Hurt...Answer EXO OMG!! I love their new album! Actually, all the songs are on my Playlist from this new album Exodus. Playboy and Hurt have very catchy sexy lyrics. They perform it well. Hurt has a sick bass. I love bass. Answer is so sweet. I would love this as my wedding song. I mean who wouldn't melt if their EXO bias said "You gonna get my love" to them. 30 Seconds to Mars Song...Mission This is another rock song. I love the lyrics and the beat. These guys are talented. Jared Leto is the lead singer and he has a powerful voice...plus he'd super cute. Their look has changed over the past years, but they continue to be awesome. Seungri Song...Letโ€™s Talk About Love Now, this video has English translation along with the song. Anyhow... people under rate King Seungri. He's super sexy and talented. This song is so cool. Taeyang and GD are featured on here and HD crack me up with his slick cussing in here...but who cares lol. This song has a nice beat. Seungri did his thang! Desung....Look at me and T.O.P...Doom Dada D-Lite sometimes is under rated too. But he has an awesome voice and is super cute. I love listening to him and watching him perform. T.O.P is an awesome rapper and his Doom Dada proves that. You can't ignore this man. Taeyang Song...Love you to Death This sing has great moving lyrics and the bear is awesome. I was told CL does the female part. Youngbae has an awesome voice that makes you melt all inside. Sorry for the long card amigos, but I hope you enjoyed it. You can tell I have a diverse taste in music lol.