If you want to join a band, or hop on the road as a solo act, you will first
need to learn how to write songs. It may seem hard to write songs; there are so many notes, so many chords,
how will you know which to put where? How will you even know when your song ends?
Luckily, we can help give you some tips on how to teach yourself basic guitar songwriting skills.
First off, the most important thing you need to do, and the thing that will teach you the most, is to study
bands. Listen to songs, and with a note pad in hand, jot down the things that catch your attention.
How is the song structure built? Is it a basic verse, chorus, verse, chorus, bridge, chorus structure? Or is it
something more advanced, such as a chorus, double verse, chorus, bridge, verse, double chorus, outro structure?
Learning to identify basic patterns within music by studying songs will teach you how to approach your first songs.
It will also show you what works, and what doesn’t.
Have you ever heard a song that you thought should have ended after the second chorus? Chances are other
listeners had that same thought. It is your job to study why the song should have ended --whether it came to the
full circle and reached the resolution, or become monotonous afterwards-- and avoid these things within your own
If you want to write a guitar solo within your song, you must learn a simple rule; a solo is built around a
song, not the other way around. You don’t want to write your entire song just so that you can put the cool solo
you’ve been tinkering with in the center.
This is the ultimate key to bad song writing. Why? The entire time you are writing, you will be focused on the
solo, not the song itself. Guitar solos come after music. They are the cherry on the sundae, not the ice cream of
which it is built.
When you write, keep in mind your audience.
You may write music for yourself, but remember; there are a thousand other people just like you who could
benefit from your writing. This means that when you write that epic, ten minute song, you want to keep yourself in
your mind. That may sound pretty zany, but it is truth.
Songs should never be written selfishly. If you want to write a song about a girl you broke up with, make it a
sad song, not an angry song; more people including yourself, will benefit from the emotion, and will find a deeper
connection with sadness than anger.
Finally, practice. Start off simple, and build some basic songs. Then set back and think about what you have
written, and see what worked, and what didn’t. Remember, just like any band, you are a musician, and you must
scrutinize your own work with the same scope you use for other artists.
Only you will truly know what works and what doesn’t. Be honest with yourself, and soon enough you will be on
your way to becoming a great song writer. For a more indepth resource on teaching yourself guitar songwriting, you
might want to check out David Jasmine’s Songwriting Science.
Songwriting Science unravels the secrets behind successful songwriting and how to market your