Songwriter U: On the Mystery and Majesty of Melody

Paul Simon, Leonard Cohen, Burt Bacharach, Dave Brubeck and Others on the Pursuit, Discovery, Usage and Power of Melody in Song “It is the melody which is the charm of music, and it is that which is most difficult to produce. The invention of a fine melody is a work of genius.” — Joseph Haydn      […]

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What Is A Song?

Songwriter-Educator Andrea Stolpe Explores the Definition of a Song In Modern Times The nature of the popular song has evolved profoundly through the decades as technology has evolved. What one generation considers a...

Luthier Ben Wilborn on Loving Your Instrument

Ben Wilborn of Wilborn Guitars in the northern Nevada city of Reno is an in-demand acoustic instrument builder with both practical and educational backgrounds in music. A builder for such artists as Gillian Welch, and onetime fiddler...

Jimi Hendrix Style: 5 Core Concepts

The playing style of guitar legend Jimi Hendrix has been analyzed a great deal and as such, there is a huge list of things you can do to replicate his distinctive guitar playing. However,...

Songwriter U: 10 Songwriting Tips For Guitar Players

The feeling of playing songs you wrote is a high many performers keep going back to. Agreed, songwriting is a very long process, probably harder than learning to play the guitar. But who said it was impossible? 

Songwriter U: Universal Truth in Song

From Woody Guthrie & Willie Dixon through Merle Haggard, Loretta Lynn, Bob Dylan & Paul Simon to Amy Winehouse, Meghan Trainor & Beyond, the Use of Truth in Song Resounds “It’s good to...

The Songwriters’ Manager: A Q&A with Lucas Keller of Milk & Honey

As a writer it’s about building a valuable catalog. It’s the collection of all the parts over the years... As long as you have credit on songs that are meaningful and that get cut and become hits, there's real money there.

Songwriter U: Rejection & Criticism As A Songwriter

"As long as you don't stop, you're unstoppable." Being a songwriter in the world is the best of jobs and the worst of jobs. It’s the best because we make...

Songwriter U: Charting Power Ballads on Guitar

We’ve charted quite a few Americana and country songs in this column, but here’s something a little different: a chart for a “power ballad.”

Songwriter U: Pop Chord Progressions Using The I-IV-V

A lot of the elements that make pop music successful relate to it being catchy and familiar. As a songwriter, there are many ways to engender this feeling in listeners, to do with song structure, instrumentation, lyrical...

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