RSS

Category Archives: Songwriting

Info nom nom nom? Write a song instead?

How do you balance the need or desire to learn with the need or desire to create?

I’ve been long interested in learning about the machinations of the American music industry, but being in Tokyo, getting my hands on trade publications like Billboard is a bit tricky – and a bit expensive.

So it was with great joy that I belatedly discovered Google Reader. Yes, my 67-year-old mother who vividly remembers WWII has a Kindle and a SmartPhone and I didn’t even know about Google Reader? Shut it.

Unfortunately when I discover something new I’m like a kid on a sugar high and I ended up adding something like 40 music industry blogs to my Reader. Meaning 130+ posts to read a DAY. FML. Fortunately my undergrad literary theory days taught me how to skim, but trying so hard to keep on top of new industry developments makes me wonder if I should just shut the door on the noise (or rather close my browser), unsubscribe, shut off my computer and get back to songwriting.

For those of you creative types who are also info junkies, if you work too much on your craft do you worry you’re missing the passing technology ship? And if you’re too addicted to reading about industry developments, do you feel like you’re not creating enough?

How do you balance the need or desire to learn with the need or desire to create?

Advertisements
 
Leave a comment

Posted by on December 11, 2010 in Music Business, Songwriting

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Happy 20th Anniversary to Me?

This month marks my 20th anniversary as a songwriter. There I was 20 years ago, 13 years old and sitting in Kathy Connon’s English class not paying attention as usual. Usually, my magical a.d.d. butterfly friends would transport me to a land filled with man-crushes covered in sequined Speedos and sparkly angel wings. But lo, this time, they took me to a far more enchanted and magical place – one where unicorns frolicked while shitting glitter and Pete Seeger songs played from a rinky-dink Fisher Price fake record player.

It was in this magical land that I penned my first song entitled “Daydream the World.” Looking back, it was one of the more earnest and creepy lyrics I’ve written.

Why earnest? Because at 13 I wasn’t faux-jaded yet. All I listened to was Erasure and The B-52’s. Happy gay music! Sure the jocks were cruel to me at that age but now that we’re friends on Facebook, it’s all water under the bridge. Or at least my therapist says so.

But why creepy? Lyrics included “Leave me now/I wanna be in a shell/Boxed up from/This real life of hell…” Boxed up? BOXED UP??

Sounds like I’m singing a folk song to a coffin. Egahds. But I digress…

As I thought about how to celebrate 20 years of folk-pop goodness, I was tempted to get myself a celebratory Cookie Puss Carvel cake. Then I realized FML I’m in Tokyo and the closest thing would be a Hello Kitty cake. Now THAT’S creepy.

Still, once I started thinking about cake and Cookie Puss, I had a flashback to a commercial like this one, forever etched into the Betamax in my mind…

As children of the 80s, with commercials like these, is it any wonder we’re all in therapy?

But yes, other than eating a cake that looks like an alien with a d*ck for a nose, how would you suggest I celebrate this 20 year milestone?

 
 

Tags: , , , , , ,

How Do You Organizing Your Creativity?

If you’re a scatterbrain in the Danny Katz tradition, your draft lyrics, poems, sketches, etc. end up all over the place – in truncated text messages, Word files, emails, post-it notes and even scattered across several lipstick covered alcohol-stained cocktail napkins (don’t judge).

As much as I enjoy the lyric writing process I find that I spend a good amount of time organizing and culling lyrics to try to make something seamless out of the jigsaw mess that is my mind.

Melodies fortunately gel quicker and more organically for me. But lyrics? Hello hot mess. And while at one point I had a nice little folder of finalized and draft lyrics on my desktop, it then crashed. Go figure.

So… how do you organize your creativity?

 
 

Tags: , , ,

The Music of Things

Today’s blog post title owes itself to the excellent debut CD by my music buddy John-Flor Sisante (www.myspace.com/johnflor).  You owe it to yourself to get “The Music of Things!”

Today I noticed myself humming a new melody over the sound of the late night subway workers doing track repairs.  Their repeated hammering provided the rhythmic background.

Thought it a bit odd that subway construction would lend itself to a melody.

What’s the most unusual place you’ve found yourself humming?

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on February 28, 2008 in Inspiration, Rhythm, Songwriting

 

Tags: , , , , ,