5 Ways of Finding Songwriting Inspiration
Often, the trickiest part of songwriting can be becoming inspired enough to get started.
“I’d love to write a song… but, I have nothing to write about!”
“I can’t write a song today; I’m too happy!”
“Everything I play sounds the same, or has already been done!”
Do these thoughts sound familiar to you?
If so, read on for some tips on how to get out of your rut. These 5 tricks can help you to write away, right away!
1) Go for a Walk
Going for a walk can really help you to write something that’s rhythmic and musical. The natural rhythm of your footsteps provides a beat, that can work to get the lyrics or melodic ideas flowing. If, after 5-10 minutes of walking (preferably in a peaceful or semi-peaceful environment), you still don’t feel lyrical, take a look at everything around you. Inhale, what do you smell? What do these smells remind you of? Keep thinking, observing, walking. The lyrics will come, and possibly some melodic fragments, too.
2) Read a News Article or Short Story
If you can’t or would rather not step outside, access a news article or short story that will take you less than 20 minutes to read. How do you feel when you finish reading it? Has it sparked any new feelings or thoughts? Did anything stand out as particularly relevant, or moving? Scan over it again. Are there any stand-out sentences that you could ‘magpie’? Reading the words of others is one sure way of encouraging some of your own.
3) Imagine you’re Calling Somebody
You’ve dialed the number, but there’s no answer yet. It rings and rings. Who are you calling? Why might they not be picking up? What would you like to say to them? Often, messages to others – that we perhaps wouldn’t say in ‘real life’ – make the most poignant and effective lyrics. Ensure to remain honest and consider using specific character details to add to the authenticity of your lyrics.
Our senses are wonderful tools for inspiration. If you’re making music, it’s important to listen to what’s around you. What music is already occurring, in nature, the sound of the traffic or even in the sounds of electricity around you. What can you hear? Can you recreate that in a musical fashion?
5) Find an Unusual Tuning
If you’re a guitarist, tuning your guitar into an unusual / unfamiliar tuning can be a great way to get out of a creative block. Always in standard? That might be why you feel that everything you play has started sounding the same. Try twisting some of the strings to different notes: you don’t have to follow anybody else’s rules. Your creativity is always there, sometimes you just need to tap into it. We hope that these tips have inspired you to go out there and get creative, right now!
Is there anything that inspires you to write songs, that we haven’t mentioned here? Let us know in the comments below; we’d love to hear what gets you going!