How To Write A Song Anyone Can Relate To

April 6, 2017
Joe Blow From Idaho When it comes to songwriting, they say “write from the heart” and “write what you know” – and I agree, you should! However, if you can write along these lines and have the everyday American guy or girl feel like they can relate to your song, you may have also just written yourself a big hit!

How To Write A Song Anyone Can Relate To - The SongTuner

Stop thinking about just your experience as a songwriter and instead focus on the human experience as a whole. If you can understand those struggles and emotions and put them to words and music, then you can write a song anyone can relate to.

What does your waitress want to listen to?

Sherrill Blackman once told me: “I won’t pitch a song about being a songwriter, being a musician, or trying to make it in the music business. These topics are things that aspiring songwriters, musicians, and singers can relate to, but not truckers, waitresses, construction workers or even the desk jockeys.”  In today’s market, if a song like this does make it on the radio, oftentimes the artist himself is usually the songwriter. “Chasin’ that Neon Rainbow” by Alan Jackson is a perfect example.

So if you are an artist writing for yourself and don’t plan on pitching your songs to anyone else, go ahead and write about what it’s like to be a struggling singer-songwriter trying to make it big! However, if you are hoping to pitch your songs to a ton of artists hoping to get a cut on his next CD or even better, played on today’s radio, then ask yourself: “What does that waitress care about?” A song about fighting to make it in the music business, or a song about working through the 9-to-5 grind at your blue collar job and living for the weekend?

Where do I get inspiration?

If you are having trouble thinking about a place to start, talk with your friends from outside the music industry about some of the challenges they face every day at their job. You can also just tune into the radio and you are sure to hear songs about working for the weekend or relationships that went south.

Bridging the Gap Between their Heart and Your Music

I’ll close on this: Just because something has deeply affected you doesn’t mean everyone will get it when you put pen to paper and write your song lyrics. If your overall idea  is something the average person can’t grasp, it isn’t going to sell. Play your songs for ‘earth people’ those non-industry folks we’re trying to sell our music to. See if they feel a connection to what you’re trying to say. That is how you bridge the gap between their hearts and your music. It’s great when you can make people other than your immediate family smile or cry.

Keep this in mind when you’re writing your next song, and always be asking yourself – “Will Joe Blow want to sing along with what I’m writing?”

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