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Songwriting FAQ



Frequently Asked Questions about songwriting.

This FAQ about songwriting was compiled and written by Greg Skinner gds@best.com.

-0. Introduction (rec.music.makers.songwriting)
Welcome to rec.music.makers.songwriting! This document is intended ...
-1. What is the purpose of this newsgroup? (rec.music.makers.songwriting)
rec.music.makers.songwriting exists for the purpose of discussing ...
-2. What topics are usually covered here? (rec.music.makers.songwriting)
We have touched on many topics relevant and related to songwriting....
-3. I'm new to songwriting. What do I do?
There are several ways of answering this question, depending on ...
-4. I'd like to write songs, but I don't play an instrument/don't sing. What can I do?
Again, you can just dive right in and try it for a while. Many ...
-5. What methods do people use to write songs?
It varies between individuals. Some people set aside a ...
-6. What's a good instrument to use for songwriting?
There are several schools of thought on this issue. Some people ...
-7. Should I start with lyrics or melody first?
This also varies between individuals. Some lyrics suggest a melody,...
-8. What are the different types of lyric forms?
There are several types of lyric forms, and variations on those types....
-9. How do I set a melody to chords, and vice versa?
This question actually deserves a detailed explanation such as ...
-10. What do I do about writer's block? (Songwriting)
This is a topic that deserves its own FAQ. Actually, you may be ...
-11. Should I join a songwriter's organization?
There are several benefits to participation in songwriter'...
-12. What can I do if there is no songwriter's organization in my area?
You can start one yourself! It's a great way to meet ...
-13. I've got several songs written. I want to start a band. How do I do that?
There are several ways to go about this. Some of the methods ...
-14. I've got several songs written. I want to send them to a publisher. What should I do?
A few words about publishers: They are often inundated with material....
-15. How do I copyright my material? (Songwriting)
You should check with the Copyright Office of the country you live ...
-16. I have heard of something called the "poor man's" copyright. What is it, and can I use it? (Songwriting)
The poor man's copyright method does not involve registering one'...
-17. Should I register my material with a copyright office before sending it to a publisher, posting it to the net, etc? (Songwriting)
If you are at all concerned about protecting your material and ...
-18. For making demos, should I invest my money in a home recording system, or should I use a recording studio? (Songwriting)
This generally depends on your budget and your inclinations....
-19. How do I get a record deal?
This is a difficult question to answer. You could write a FAQ on ...
-20. How do I get a publishing deal? (Songwriting)
This is also a difficult question to answer for the same reasons ...
-21. How do I get a staff writing deal? (Songwriting)
Some publishers offer writers staff writing deals. In this case, ...
-22. What are royalties? How do they work? (Songwriting)
Royalties are money that is paid for the sale or use of music....
-23. Do I need to join ASCAP, BMI, SESAC, or a similar organization in order to collect royalties?
You need to join one of these organizations to collect royalties ...
-24. Should I self-publish? (Songwriting)
This is a difficult question as well....
-25. Should I join a musician's union? (Songwriting)
It depends on your goals and personal situation. Some music ...
-26. Why do I keep getting rejections, despite the fact that many people think my music is good?
Another difficult question. In general, try not to take it ...
-27. I get conflicting messages from music business people. They tell me I need to be different, but on the radio I keep hearing the same old things. What's the story here?
Record companies and artists tend to be somewhat conservative when ...
-28. How do I get my music played on the radio?
Generally speaking, to get your music played on the radio, the ...
-29. Do I need to move to a place like LA or Nashville to get recognition? (Songwriting)
Again, this depends on your goals, financial situation, etc....
-30. Where can I find lyrics on the Internet?
There are several archive sites for lyrics on the Internet. ...
-31. Where can I find music on the Internet?
There are lots of places to find music on the Internet. As I ...
-32. Are there places on the Internet where I can make my music available so others can listen to it?
Yes. If you have access to an Internet site with WWW service, you ...
-33. What other songwriting-related newsgroups are there?
Many of the newsgroups in the rec.music and alt.music ...
-34. What references exist for music theory, songwriting, the music business, etc?
There are many sources of information on these topics. Here are a ...









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