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Songwriting Workshop

Part Two: Inspiration

Try out several different approaches to brainstorming and generating song ideas as you look for inspiration within your life and environment.

Your First Assignment

  1. Do your own practice brainstorm session for the “worst love song ever” using the free-write and observation brainstorm methods that Bridget used. This is meant to be a funny way of practicing the brainstorm tools before you use them for your original song.
    • Identify the concept of your “worst love song ever.”
    • Write a title for it.
  2. Answer the following questions about your “worst love song ever” brainstorm:
    • How did focusing on a made-up prompt impact how you think about ideas for new songs?
    • Which exercise gave you the most ideas?
    • Which exercise was easy? Which one was difficult? Why?
    • What kind of connections did you make with things from your thoughts and things you discovered in the world around you?

Your Second Assignment

  1. Meditate for one minute to clear your mind for brainstorming.
  2. Go through the brainstorm exercises (observation and free-write) to choose the concept for your song.
  3. Define your four seeds and create the bubble chart.
  4. Answer the following basic knowledge questions about your song concept:
    • What do you know about this specific idea?
    • How does it make you feel?
    • What does it make you think of?
  5. Answer the five senses questions connected to each of your four seeds. Let the brainstorm take you on the ride—follow the goosebump feeling you might get when you know you are onto something.
    • When you think of this idea …
      • What do you see?
      • What do you feel?
      • What do you taste?
      • What do you hear?
      • What can you smell?
  6. Take a short break.
  7. Return to your brainstorming and identify the heart of your brainstorm sessions.
  8. Write a title for your original song.

Explore Other Parts of the Songwriting Workshop

Bridget plays piano.

Songwriting Workshop | Part One: History, Power, and the Purpose of Music

Discover the different origins and purposes of songwriting, and see how words, melody, and music can affect yourself and your community.

Bridget outlines the themes of her song on a whiteboard.

Songwriting Workshop | Part Three: The Chorus

Find the heart of your song and its most powerful moment as you learn how to write a chorus that effectively expresses what you want to share.

Bridget outlines rhyme patterns in her song on a whiteboard.

Songwriting Workshop | Part Four: Writing the Verses

Experiment with different lyrical styles and poetic approaches to telling your story as you dig in to writing the verses for your original song.

Bridget sings and plays guitar.

Songwriting Workshop | Part Five: The Bridge and Completing Your Song

Learn about the purpose of a bridge and figure out if your song needs one before finishing up and reflecting on your journey.

Video Credits

Director of Photography–John Miller.

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