Creative strategies for more versatile, productive, and innovative songwriting
This seminar ran in Auckland, Melbourne and Sydney in August 2010
This highly participatory seminar provides an intensive introduction to the discipline of 360º Songwriting. We’ll practice specific techniques for catching song seeds from the “full 360”— rhythmic, melodic, harmonic, and lyrical sources of inspiration—and learn to use transformations and structure to support overall integrity of emotion and meaning in our songs. We’ll pay particular attention to the almost-lost art of melody; explore ways to build compelling harmonies that tell their own story while complementing song theme and structure; and expand our musical palettes with modal resources to express a range of moods and themes.
In the music business these days the term "360" is mostly applied to new kinds of deals that record labels are offering artists, partnering for (some would say demanding) a share of publishing, tour revenue, merchandise, etc. In contrast, 360º Songwriting is a philosophy of creative work that specifically helps songwriters adapt and thrive in the face of their changing roles in today’s diverse—and increasingly global—music industry. In this new landscape, writers and artists with highly individual voices are finding significant audiences through new avenues such as digital distribution and promotion, or film and TV placements open to alternative sounds and styles. Rather than relying on limited (and limiting) formulas and prescriptions for hit songs, success in songwriting now requires both high levels of craft and versatility: to write within a stylistic idiom or out of the box; to draw on unique sources and influences rather than cater only to so-called “mainstream” formats; to be at ease collaborating with writers and artists who have varied processes and creative ways of working. To help develop these skills, the 360º Songwriting approach is founded on detailed attention to songwriting process, building on intuitive practices used by many master songwriters to spur their creativity.
With detailed examples, exercises, demonstrations and discussion, and facilitated peer critique of selected participants’ songs, this seminar is bound toprovide new insights and perspectives on your writing.