Over 50 Songwriters Association of Canada members from across the country are meeting regularly in an exclusive Facebook Group to discuss new concepts and homework for the free Songwriting Class they signed up for at Coursera. The group is supportive and friendly, forging new ties, networking like crazy; realizing that they make up a fraction of the 63,000 folks taking this class worldwide!
Navigating the course and extracurricular activities has required time and dedication. Watching Pat Pattison’s instructional videos, taking notes and quizzes, writing and recording songs for weekly due dates, providing peer feedback, participating in Coursera forums and Meetups, and submitting personal blogs means everyone is super busy, and super motivated. Everyone now has a good understanding of why the S.A.C. calls this “Challenge 2013”!
Week Three builds on foundations presented in the first two weeks, and invites a deeper examination of the craft of songwriting in order to support a song’s meaning and intent. Meaning is reinforced by drawing attention to certain ideas. This is accomplished in a lyric by setting up sonic expectations… and then by either jolting those expectations or satisfying them.
Pat makes the point in one of his lectures that most songwriters understand how chord choices lend different emotional resonances, but perhaps not as many understand (until now!) that rhymes work in exactly the same way. It’s a subtle and sophisticated art, because it can be done with varying degrees of intensity. In addition to the length of lines and the number of lines in a lyric, we now must consider how rhyme schemes and rhyme types can work to enhance those elements, creating even more of a certain desired effect.
Different emotional resonances are achieved by choosing different rhyme types (perfect, family, additive, subtractive, assonance, and consonance), as well as different rhyme schemes (abab, aabb, abba, etc.), in order to create varying degrees of resolution. All of a song’s compositional elements work in tandem, and the skill with which a writer can manipulate them adds up to the Art of songwriting.
Challenged Ones! Please post the following for Week Three:
1. Your stable verse idea, and the rhyme scheme and/or rhyme types you chose to support it, OR your unstable chorus idea, and the rhyme scheme and/or rhyme types you chose to support it.
2. The URL to your Week 3 blog. (NOTE: please post the exact URL to the entry and not just the general URL to your blog)