Berklee Online presents

The Music Modernization Act and 4 Steps Songwriters Can Take Now to Prepare for It

Ask not what the Music Modernization Act can do for you. Ask what you can do to get ready for the Music Modernization Act.

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Four Critical Listening Tips for Songwriters

One of the most important techniques you can learn as a songwriter is how to listen critically. We start by breaking the different components of a song into four large moving parts: Melody, Chords, Lyric, and Groove.

PODCAST EPISODE 031: Songwriter Bonnie Hayes on Sexism, Drugs, and Rock ‘n’ Roll

Bonnie Hayes talks songwriting for Bonnie Raitt (and winning a Grammy for it), touring with Bob Seger, playing keys for Billy Idol, and being blown away by the Sex Pistols in 1978, and how all of that led to her coming to teach at Berklee College of Music and Berklee Online.

8 Tools to Richer Chord Progressions (Part Two)

To find songwriting remedies for our chord progression difficulties, we often need to start by defining the problems. Here are four ways songwriters describe feeling ‘stuck’ when it comes to writing better chord progressions.

8 Tools to Richer Chord Progressions (Part One)

Chords are a driving element of many songs. When we’ve got four elements of songwriting to manipulate (melody, chords, lyrics, and groove), it’s natural to credit them or blame them for a successful song. But how do we songwriters find and use great chords?

20 Tips to Write 20 Songs in 20 Days (Part Four)

Continue the process of writing each day, limiting your time to just 30 to 40 minutes. This limitation helps create a no-excuse mentality, and I personally find it comforting to know that I don’t have to invest several hours of my day in order to do my part in allowing ideas to flow.

PODCAST EPISODE 030: Songwriter Chip Taylor Discusses ‘Wild Thing,’ Hendrix, ‘Angel of the Morning,’ Shaggy, and More

Chip Taylor wrote “Wild Thing.” He really doesn’t need to write any more songs. But that doesn’t mean he’s showing any signs of stopping. He’s got a new album out, and is eager to discuss everything leading up to this moment on this edition of the Music Is My Life podcast.

20 Tips to Write 20 Songs in 20 Days (Part Three)

We songwriters borrow from those who came before us. We take a groove we like, we’re inspired by a sample, we think in terms of a particular vocal quality or use a chord progression from another song and write something new over it. We keep one foot planted in what we know already works, so the rest of us can let loose over top.

20 Tips to Write 20 Songs in 20 Days (Part Two)

This is the second of four articles, published every Monday this month, suggesting 20 songwriting activities to help push outside the writing process that may be familiar to you.

20 Tips to Write 20 Songs in 20 Days (Part One)

Over the course of four articles, published every Monday this month, I’m going to suggest 20 songwriting activities to help push outside the writing process that may be familiar to you.