Pay It Forward: Writing With Emotions
Hey everyone, it has been a while since I have blogged here. Lately I have been busy working on a covers project called the 90 covers in 90 days project. I am 14 days in and you can check out more of it on Youtube here. In addition I have been working on raising funds for Erika's Lighthouse you can find out more at this link .
A few weeks ago I was at a friend's housewarming party and someone came up to me and told me that he enjoyed how my lyrics were sad, but not so sad that they came off as selfish , but sad enough that someone can relate. I asked him to explain what that meant and he said that most of the time he recognizes that emo musicians tend to come off as douchey, boring and not very genuine about their lyrics.
To my surprise this kind of shocked me, although I consider some elements of my music as "emo" I was kind of honored to be not considered "douchey and boring."
He continued to speak about his critiques of music in general and said as a songwriter a lot of times he feels that when he writes he is being selfish and can not express his emotions without feeling like he is talking about immature feelings that he has already been able to cope with and simply get over with. I told him he should not feel shame about who he is or what he has to sing about involving his personal struggles.
No matter where you come from, whether it be a life of happiness or a life of pain no artist should find shame in who they are. Musicians ideally should be able to tell their story with emotions in such a way that it relates to all people regardless of genre. Having this ability is what seperates good songs, from "douchey and boring songs."
We should always be sure that we are honest and that we come off as genuine regardless of what the story may be. Referring to Kevin Devine's " I Don't Care About Your Band" I believe that we should " be a voice for change who lives and sings the things we sing on stage." Too often musicians are seeking a sound that is not relative to the livelihood they live. It's almost like you hear and feel that many bands are trying to be "the incrowd" or trying to act and advocate a belief system they know nothing about. This can be seen in all sorts of genres of music ( example hip hop artists who rap about the hood, but know nothing about living in an urban community or social justice warriors who have lived a life of privilege). Instead of putting on a trendy facade that is not honest about who you are for the sake of being heard, write about the life that you live and spread those words instead of a life that is not true to yourself.
Songwriting is not just simply yelling and screaming at people in a basement, but instead it's a craft that should be treated as an art of expressing and sharing. I aim to share the words I sing no matter where I am as an effort to help people through the pain they are going through.
Regardless of what emotion you wish to convey be it positive or negative, don't feel shameful about your lyrics and don't write in boring cliche's but instead write with a genuine heard that beats for the unknown hero. Find your story and do your best to perfect it in a way that is honest, genuine and true.
Until next time friends,