Sep 14

Tip From A Song Writer - "Keep Rewriting Until There Is No Doubt"

Category: Recording Techniques Written by Imran Mandani
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"Songwriting can develop in one of two ways: either you develop an instrumental based on the tune in your mind and write lyrics to that, or you can write lyrics that you can develop a melody for later on."

Most of the time however, it will be a combination of both. Either way, the first thing to figure out is the mood, theme, and tempo of your song. What do you want to convey and does any of it come from personal experience? The important thing to remember is to go with what moves you or stirs up your emotions.

If you have writer’s block, it could be healthy to have your producer develop a melody from the start, to bring about certain feelings you have trouble expressing. Or, if you have too many lyrics that need to be condensed, you could compose the song’s instrumental around it so you can see where to condense your lyrics.

Often times, you’ll find that you need to rewrite your lyrics during the production phase, as your bridge, chorus, pre-chorus, or verses maybe too long. Or, you may not have a bridge, so you can create one from the extra lyrics in your verse. Other times, you maybe have very simple lyrics, so you may want to have lots of space in the song for just the melody. I think it’s important to come up with your hook first too, so you can see how to build the rest of the lyrics around it.

With lyrics, you also have to decide if you want to be abstract or to the point. Do you want to spoon feed the meaning of your lyrics to your audience, or, do you want them to interpret a few things on your own? It’s also good to get a second opinion, especially from your producer. I came up with the vocal melody and lyrics to my new song “In another Dimension” but during production, Justin and I found the lyrics to be too wordy and cliché. After composing the instrumentation with Justin, I found out I had to go home and rewrite the lyrics to the formulaic song arrangement. I also had to make it more abstract, so I could allow the listener to feel through the lyrics and let my melody do some of the talking.

When I came back in for another session, we realized the chorus was too complex, so I had to simplify to make it easier to remember and more catchy. Eventually you find that your ideas flow more freely as your melody develops and as you continue to write. Sometimes, you come up with too much for song, but it may not fit the time length, so you could always save the extra poetry for another song.

Like Pablo Picasso says, “Inspiration exists, but it has to find us working” and that’s true in songwriting: keep rewriting till there’s no doubt in your mind that what you have is on point with the whole song’s composition and arrangement and beat. You’ll know it when you can suddenly feel it in your singing vibe. Good luck.

- Imran Mandani

Imran is a Hip Hop, EDM, and Pop songwriter from Chicago IL

Discover more about Imran Mandani and his music here.


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