The Writing Process

I saw an interview with music legend Brian Wilson a few years ago. The interviewer asked him if he started with a melody. He said, "No." "A lyric?" "No." "How do you do it?" "I just sit down at the piano and play a few chords until something clicks," he said. I sat there stunned as that's more or less how I write music. I get a feeling or even a buzzing in my head and know I have something to write. Often, it's in the middle of the night when the house is quiet. I will sit at the synthesizer, Fender Stratocaster or Martin D-12-28 (for some unknown reason those guitars work best in the creative process) and wait for something to pop into my head or noodle around until something sounds good. When I write with Tony Sheppard, we jam back and forth until a progression sounds good. I record the sequence immediately, as the creation is fragile and will dissolve unless documented. Lyrics are a different process. I get inspired by something I see, read, hear, or experience. Lyrics are about what's important at any particular moment. I guess I could use a little more lightness, and have always enjoyed writing with a partner. I'll write some ideas down and then go over them, usually cutting out words, the mantra less is more comes to mind. I admit I use a rhyming dictionary (hey if Sting does it so can I) and I like words that sort of rhyme. Usually, the music comes first, but not always. Eventually, a melody emerges and it's a joy when it does. 


Dr Dreamwalker

Leave a comment

    Add comment