Good Article from BMI


I believe in the importance of sharing material especially when its good material.  This article is good and made simple.  Better yet its really for all music lovers…. and writers.   -dbone

How to Instantly Hook Your Listeners Into Your Song in 3 Steps Listeners Into Your Song in 3 Steps

Written by Written by Cliff Goldmacher Cliff Goldmacher

In an era of significantly shorter In an era of significantly shorter attention spans and increasingly attention spans and increasingly distracted listeners, we, as songwriters, distracted listeners, we, as songwriters, have an even greater responsibility to have an even greater responsibility to grab our audience as quickly as grab our audience as quickly as possible. The first place to do this is the possible. The first place to do this is the song’s intro. The following tips will help song’s intro. The following tips will help hook your listeners into your song right hook your listeners into your song right away. away.

1. Keep your intro short and to the point 1. Keep your intro short and to the point I was backstage at a music conference I was backstage at a music conference a few years ago listening to two a few years ago listening to two panelists chatting before going on panelists chatting before going on stage. One of the panelists was a stage. One of the panelists was a seasoned conference veteran and the seasoned conference veteran and the other was relatively new to the process. other was relatively new to the process. The new panelist, who had never done a The new panelist, who had never done a critiquing session before, asked the critiquing session before, asked the other panelist what he should do. The other panelist what he should do. The more experienced panelist said, “If you more experienced panelist said, “If you can’t think of anything to say, tell them can’t think of anything to say, tell them to cut their intros in half.” to cut their intros in half.”

In other words, one of the most common In other words, one of the most common mistakes is to make your song’s intro mistakes is to make your song’s intro longer than it needs to be. As writers, it’s longer than it needs to be. As writers, it’s our job to make every note count, and our job to make every note count, and the best way to do this is to use only as the best way to do this is to use only as much runway as is essential to set the much runway as is essential to set the right mood and get your listener’s ear right mood and get your listener’s ear tuned into the key, so they’ll be tuned into the key, so they’ll be interested and ready for the verse. interested and ready for the verse.

2. Find a good riff 2. Find a good riff Think of the intro to Eric Clapton’s Think of the intro to Eric Clapton’s “Layla.” You can immediately recognize “Layla.” You can immediately recognize the song from the first notes of the the song from the first notes of the opening riff. This is the perfect way to opening riff. This is the perfect way to not only grab your listener’s attention, not only grab your listener’s attention, but also make your song memorable so but also make your song memorable so that it can be recognized almost that it can be recognized almost instantly when it begins to play. instantly when it begins to play. Creating a memorable intro lick is as Creating a memorable intro lick is as difficult as writing a great melody or a difficult as writing a great melody or a meaningful lyric. A few ways to help you meaningful lyric. A few ways to help you along is to start the song with a great along is to start the song with a great groove or feel and to use your chorus groove or feel and to use your chorus melody for direction. The trick here, melody for direction. The trick here, though, is to make sure that while the though, is to make sure that while the riff is catchy, it’s not too repetitive. One riff is catchy, it’s not too repetitive. One way to avoid this is by modifying the riff way to avoid this is by modifying the riff by a note or two when it comes back by a note or two when it comes back around so that it’s recognizable while around so that it’s recognizable while not overdoing it. Another way to avoid not overdoing it. Another way to avoid repetition is to leave the riff out of the repetition is to leave the riff out of the body of your verses and choruses and body of your verses and choruses and save it for the turnarounds. save it for the turnarounds.

It’s also important to note that intro riffs It’s also important to note that intro riffs sit in that murky area between sit in that murky area between songwriting and production, where songwriting and production, where they’re not melody and lyric but they are they’re not melody and lyric but they are an integral part of your song’s identity. an integral part of your song’s identity. That being said, it’s well worth your That being said, it’s well worth your while to keep them in mind when while to keep them in mind when demoing your songs and using session demoing your songs and using session players who are experienced with players who are experienced with getting the sound you want, both in feel getting the sound you want, both in feel and effects. and effects.

3. Use dynamics 3. Use dynamics The hallmark of a polished and The hallmark of a polished and professional song demo is not only the professional song demo is not only the great recording quality and great recording quality and performances of the musicians and performances of the musicians and vocalist, but the dynamics. The way a vocalist, but the dynamics. The way a song expands and contracts with song expands and contracts with volume and intensity does wonders volume and intensity does wonders when it comes to getting – and keeping -when it comes to getting – and keeping -a listener’s attention. Often, coming out a listener’s attention. Often, coming out of the gate with a big, splashy intro is a of the gate with a big, splashy intro is a great way to catch your listener’s ear, great way to catch your listener’s ear, but it’s also the subsequent dip of but it’s also the subsequent dip of volume into the verse that serves to volume into the verse that serves to highlight just how dramatic/memorable highlight just how dramatic/memorable the intro actually is. Carefully consider the intro actually is. Carefully consider which instrument(s) you’re going to use which instrument(s) you’re going to use to convey your intro. to convey your intro. Depending on the Depending on the song, it can be effective to have multiple song, it can be effective to have multiple lead instruments or even just one. The lead instruments or even just one. The best way to find out is to experiment best way to find out is to experiment with instruments on separate tracks that with instruments on separate tracks that you can pull in and take out. you can pull in and take out.

When it comes to your song’s intro, you When it comes to your song’s intro, you only have a precious few seconds to only have a precious few seconds to make an immediate and lasting make an immediate and lasting impression on your listeners. This is impression on your listeners. This is important both for pitching your song to important both for pitching your song to music industry decision makers and for music industry decision makers and for playing it for anyone who you may be playing it for anyone who you may be bouncing your ideas off of before bouncing your ideas off of before pitching, so that they get the whole pitching, so that they get the whole picture. Keep your intros meaningful picture. Keep your intros meaningful and you’ll have gone a long way toward and you’ll have gone a long way toward achieving your goal of making your achieving your goal of making your song memorable. song memorable.

Good luck! Good luck!

Bio Bio Cliff Goldmacher is a songwriter, Cliff Goldmacher is a songwriter, producer, session musician, engineer, producer, session musician, engineer, author and owner of recording studios author and owner of recording studios in Nashville, TN and Sonoma, CA. Cliff’s in Nashville, TN and Sonoma, CA. Cliff’s site, site, http://http://www.EducatedSongwriter.com http://www.EducatedSongwriter.com , is full of , is full of resources for the aspiring songwriter resources for the aspiring songwriter including monthly online webinars. Go including monthly online webinars. Go to to http://www.educatedsongwriter.com/http://www.educatedsongwriter.com/webinar/webinar/for the latest schedule. for the latest schedule.

Cliff’s company, Cliff’s company, http://http://www.nashvillestudiolive.com http://www.nashvillestudiolive.com , provides , provides songwriters outside of Nashville with songwriters outside of Nashville with virtual access to Nashville’s best virtual access to Nashville’s best session musicians and singers for their session musicians and singers for their songwriting demos. songwriting demos.

You can download a FREE sample of You can download a FREE sample of Cliff’s eBook “The Songwriter’s Guide To Cliff’s eBook “The Songwriter’s Guide To Recording Professional Demos” by Recording Professional Demos” by going to going to http://http://www.EducatedSongwriter.com/ebook http://www.EducatedSongwriter.com/ebook . .

Facebook: Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/www.facebook.com/EducatedSongwriter EducatedSongwriter Twitter: Twitter: @edusongwriter

Advertisements

About D-Bone

singer songwriter for 20+ years, over 25 recorded albums, and performed over 1000+ shows from 1993 till still. New album coming out soon, and updates regularly. I'm 39 and a starving but happy "living my dream" musician/artist.
This entry was posted in music, sacrifice and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s