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5 Tips Used by Music Legends to Achieve Your Dream of Becoming A Memorable Songwriter

I love composing music, but often I get a songwriter's block. I've discovered five tools used by Tom Waits and Bob Dylan that help me master chords, and what better time than during a pandemic to get to it!

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1- Play multiple radio stations at once. Tom Waits does it!

Try this method when you’re alone at home or if you’re in a soundproof room because it’s guaranteed to drive your roommates crazy. I’ve tried it, and it works.

It’s known as Music Chance and Tom Waits has shared this secret in many interviews and if you pay attention to the musical overlaps, you’ll learn to identify patterns, just like Tom.

2. Not getting anywhere? Go for a walk. Like a Rolling Stone.

Dylan said during an interview, “Those focus walks usually happen after a few hours of work, and they’ve become a really powerful way for me to clear my head. I listen to ambient music, look at the world around me and just think. I think about problems I’m trying to figure out, both intellectually and in my own life. I try to resolve my own feelings about the changes in the world. Sometimes, I just let my mind wander.”

If it works for Bob Dylan, it could work for you.

3. Hooktheory -write chords and melody like a pro

image provided by Hooktheory.com

If you’re stuck on a chord, the muse has left you. Walk away from it all and go for a walk. The list of brilliant minds who were obsessive walkers is long. Bob Dylan is known for taking long walks to help with the creative process.

Like many of you, I’ve taken advantage of being at home during the Covid19 pandemic to learn new skills and improve on existing ones. And music ranks high in the activities I most favor. If you can read music even just a little, Hooktheory offers interactive software and learning materials to help you create chord progressions and melodies. And it’s fun to use! y like Hookpad musical sketch.The melody sketchpad comes with built-in music theory, melody guides. It uses AI and suggests intelligent chords to help you in the creation process. The Hooktheory Book Series is interactive, and you’ll be able to see your progression as you learn. Also, the edu-startup has a very active community that contributes to Theorytab, its database of songs. Theorytab is made up of music enthusiasts who have joined Hooktheory to build and maintain the world’s largest database of popular song analyses. The Theorytab database now has over 20,000 analyses of songs spanning all genres of music from Beyonce to Bon Jovi to The Beatles. It’s really amazing.

You should contribute to it too.

4. Take an Oath of Silence. No texting either.

Photo by Sound On from Pexels / Via pexels.com

Spend a day or even just a few hours in silence. Do not text, chat or engage in any form of communication with others and instead solely focus on the sounds surrounding you. Observe, absorb, and meditate. Your brain will thank you for it.

It’s even backed by science. A 2013 study published in the journal Brain, Structure and Function used differed types of noise and silence and monitored the effect the sound and silence had on the brains of the mice and. It concluded that silence regenerates brain cells. Off you go creating mindboggling chords.

5. Can’t Think of New Rhyms? A Rhyming Dictionary or Thesaurus to the Rescue.

rhymezone / Via rhymezone.com

If just can’t find a rhyme for your latest song, there’s no shame in breaking out the rhyming dictionary to help you out with the songwriter’s block.

One of the tools that I’ve come to appreciate is RhymeZone.

With it, you can search for near rhymes, phrases, synonyms. It is a pretty basic tool. You just enter the term you’re trying to rhyme and based on your needs, it will make suggestions. Also, it’s free.

I hope these tips will help you as they have helped me with the creative process. Just be patient with yourself, and don’t give up. Remember that practice makes good.

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