Monday, 16 May 2011

The 4 Stages Of A Songwriter

I'm going to take a few posts to explain my system for writing songs. I'm going to be quite forthright about what I think works and also hasn't worked for me. If something works for you, great! Feel free to leave me a comment disagreeing. But “works for you” is the operative phrase. 

Is your system (or lack of it) really helping you to write more (and better) songs or hindering you?

I've observed four stages we can go through as songwriters learning the craft.


You try to write a song. You plug away until you finish it or (more often than not) you lose heart and give up. You subscribe to the ‘if it’s great I’ll remember it’ school of thought. But eventually you forget a couple of great ideas and you’re having so many ideas anyway the new ones are pushing the old ones out. Congratulations. You've outgrown stage one.


You begin to wise up. The weakest ink is stronger than the strongest memory right? So now you are the proud, but bemused owner of numerous scraps of paper, envelope backs, notebooks, unlabelled mp3 files & dictaphone cassettes. Your voice mail is filled with embryonic melodies you’ve sung to yourself. You don’t know where anything is and you’re constantly surprised by the random and incomprehensible snippets you find. But at least you found some killer lines for your latest song. It's just a shame that you found ‘em two weeks after you'd finished it.


You’re smarter. You have a system. It’s a file. It’s a program. It’s an App. It’s a beautiful and overpriced notebook that makes you feel smarter and more artistic just because you own it.

It’s something to pour all you ideas into. The problem is that once ideas go in they never come out.

Welcome to my world

Tomorrow I'll start a short series about Stage Four – GTD Songwriting

Download all my 2011 songs for free!!!
Other free songs by Matt Blick


  1. Ah, I sure can use that. Between working, cleaning the house, and keeping up to speed with current affairs not much time is left for music. I make todo lists, prioritize, and focus, but still not many things get done.

  2. Thanks Rob - I hope I can help!


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