As songwriters, we know the value of communication. We write our songs to communicate some specific truth or emotion. If our songs don’t communicate, our songs don’t resonate.
But did you know that songwriters have to communicate well in some other areas if we hope to get cuts and make it in the music biz?____________________
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You must communicate well with your cowriters.
If you sit down to cowrite with another songwriter, communication is key. If you bring in an idea, you want to share your vision of the song with your cowriter in a way that is clear and compelling. Otherwise, you may end up kinda writing two songs at once – you’re trying to write the song in your head, and your cowriter is trying to write the song he thinks is in your head. That’s frustrating and unproductive. You’ll either have to “reset” to get on the same page and start over (wasted time), or your song will be a muddy mess (wasted idea).
You must communicate well with your musicians.
If you want to go into the studio with any hope of coming out with a killer demo or record, you have to be able to communicate well with the musicians. What’s the vibe of the song? Are there changes from the work tape you want them to make? What if you hear a cool guitar rhythm thing in your head in the middle of the session – can you explain it to the guitar player? At the very least, can you sit down with the band leader and explain things to him so he can “translate” it for his guys?
I’ll be honest. I’m not good at speaking musician. So I make sure my cowriter can, and I make sure he or she is in the studio with me. So that’s one way to get around this hurdle- finding a cowriter who can communicate with musicians.
You must communicate well with your demo singer.
If you or your cowriter don’t sing your demo (and it might be a big mistake to sing your own demo- read more about that HERE), you’ll need a demo singer. Demo singers won’t turn bad songs into great songs, but they can sure help great songs sound great.
But if the vocal doesn’t turn out well, it can make a great song sound “blah.” Do you micromanage your singer from the very first pass so he or she locks up and never just “feels it?” Or do you give them zero feedback because you don’t really know what you want- or you’re scared of sounding stupid? (I feel your pain, brother.)
Not knowing how to communicate with your demo singer is costly – in a few ways. First of all, it’ll take longer to get the vocal the way you want it. That means you’ll pay more for studio time. But sometimes the vocal never quite gets right, and it’ll hurt the quality of your demo. A “blah” demo can waste $700 to $900. I don’t know about you, but I don’t have that kind of money to flush down the toilet.
So, what’s the solution?
Knowledge, really. If you know how to communicate with your demo singer, you and the singer can both be more comfortable, confident, and productive in the studio. And your demo will sound a lot better. I want you to have that knowledge, so I’m hooking you up with one of the top demo singers on Music Row for an exclusive private online event.
On Tuesday, February 28, I’m hosting a live, online videoconference with top Nashville demo singer, Matt Dame. If you want to ask your questions and learn from one of the top singers in the game… if you want to learn how to get the best performance possible from a demo singer (or how not to screw up a demo vocal) this is your chance! CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT MORE ABOUT THIS GREAT OPPORTUNITY. Oh, and there are only a few spots available (so we can keep things personal and “face to face,”) so don’t wait- check it out now!
God Bless and Enjoy the Journey,
Brent Baxter is a hit songwriter with cuts by Alan Jackson, Randy Travis, Lady Antebellum, Joe Nichols, Gord Bamford, Ruthie Collins, Ray Stevens, and more. He’s written a top 5 hit in the US and a #1 in Canada… so far.