Week #2: July 10-16, 2016
Challenge #2: Lyrics and Storytelling
By: Bryan Potvin
1. Write a song that tells a story
It can be in any genre. This is a very lyrically driven song that heavily relies on a story arc and timeline with characters, conflict and resolution.
I’d like to cite the following tunes as examples for the “Story Songs” challenge:
“Cats In The Cradle” – Harry Chapin
“Taxi” – Harry Chapin
“Operator” – Jim Croce
“She Ain’t Pretty” – The Northern Pikes
“She Didn’t Have Time” – Terri Clark
“Ain’t Life A Brook” – Ferron
“Downbound Train” – Bruce Springsteen
“The Gentleman Soldier” – The Pogues
“I Will Take Care Of You” – Amy Sky
This challenge is aimed at writing a great ’story song’. The music should not be a simple accompaniment to the story, like background music. It should be a song with memorable melody, chord structure and rhythm that speaks to the ideas within the story. This is a story driven tune so sitting down and writing lyrics first might not be a bad idea. Or at least get a concept or outline down lyrically, perhaps a chorus or lyric refrain, something which will hopefully give you clues to finding the feel for the rest of the song. A good story arc has characters we care about, conflict and resolution. And you’ve usually got somewhere between two and a half to four minutes to do it in.
Hopefully your story drives your song, not only lyrically but musically as well!
In order to successfully complete the first challenge you are required to:
1) Write and record a song following the description of the week #2 Challenge
2) Write a blog post about your experience and post this on your own blog
3) Upload your song to SoundCloud or any other MP3 hosting site
4) Post the link to your blog post and the link to your song as a comment on this blog post by 11:59pm EST on Saturday July 16, 2016. (Click on “Leave A Reply” at the bottom of the Challenge post for that week, please put your full name and your email address in the appropriate fields). *
*Please note that the weekly Challenge will always be posted on our blog the Monday following, so if you complete your song before that, please hold on to your submissions until we notify you of the blog post.
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