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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
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...Let’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.
Graphic Design Tip: How to Brainstorm an Effective Logo
Before I started going to art school, my parents (as a lot of parents do) really overestimated my own abilities. During my high school years, they launched their own non-profit organization for breast cancer advocacy, where the entire group was essentially run out of a room of our house. My father was in charge of building the website and making sure that it ran smoothly. My mother was the spokesperson, often attending various conventions and symposiums to address those in the medical field about breast cancer and HER2+, a more aggressive expression. Launching the group was running quite smoothly until my parents approached me with a favor. They wanted me to design their logo. Andddd it didn't go so well. They gave up and found a professional. Fast forward to my life after art school, and I'm looking back at my high school years wishing I could have helped teenage me come up with a great logo design. While creating a logo is not as easy as it looks, it really is perhaps one of my favorite design challenges. There is a lot to consider when you're making a logo, and I've decided that it might be helpful to make a simplified list for all of you Vingle designers so that you can go out into the branding world and create beautiful things! 1. Keep it simple. As fun as it is to be given the opportunity to really utilize your creative side, it really isn't the appropriate time to start busting out all of those fancy and elaborate tricks you might have learned doing other projects. Creating a visually 'busy' logo is just not effective marketing. 2. Keep in mind that you're creating a symbol to represent a company. It can be pretty direct symbolism, ie: the apple logo for Apple or the red cross for American Red Cross, or it can be more abstract, similar to the Nike swoosh. Another popular logo option is to reduce down to a strictly typographic design. Disney or Kellogg's is a good example of effective typographic logos. Get creative, but keep it simple. My favorite example of balance between creativity and minimalism is the FedEx logo. Have you ever noticed there's an arrow between the E and the X? 3. Do your research. Before thumbnailing your own logo ideas, think of all of the logos you've seen that really caught your attention. Even try drawing them out freehand. Look up interviews with the advertising designers behind some of the world's most famous logos. I would recommend "To Inform and Delight", a documentary about Milton Glaser, the artist who designed the I♥NY logo. 4. When you're finally ready, begin making a list of all the descriptive words you associate with the company and how you want your audience to feel when looking at your logo, like 'friendly' or 'sophisticated'. Then think about your nouns. When you think about your company, what images come to mind? If you were creating a logo for Tropicana Orange Juice, for example, maybe the first thing you think of is a tree or an orange or a glass. Try to think of as many nouns as possible, as these will definitely help you when you start putting pencil to paper. 4. USE YOUR SKETCHBOOK. I can't stress the importance of this. I feel like a lot of artists go straight to their laptops and begin working on Photoshop or Illustrator over working on actual thumbnails first. Technology can really stifle the creative process that is so important in the early stages of design. Draw at least 100 thumbnails in your sketchbook. It will really help you push your own boundaries and give you a number of ideas to choose from. 5. When considering which thumbnail you want to use, think about the different ways your logo will be translated for pamphlets, packages, and other promotional materials. Does your logo translate well to color AND black and white? How does it look on a dark background versus a light background? How does the logo look with text and without text? Is it as visually effective when you adjust the scale? Manipulate your logo over and over, and if it is still recognizable, you probably have yourself a really iconic logo! I hope this can help some of you designers and marketers, especially those of you who might be in the middle of branding or rebranding a company. The logo is always the first start! Happy designing!