Sunday, August 30, 2009

Songwriting - Coloring your song

At Song School, I had the opportunity to work with Maggie Simpson in taking one of my songs to the next level. Maggie uses a process from acting to "color" a song.

There were a few steps, but one that I remember most is singing a song three ways, with sadness, anger, and then joy. I was singing to Maggie and she mirrored back each emotion . What I wrote as a happy, fun song took on a new dimension as I explored the dimensions of sadness and anger. I realized that the joy rose from these other dimensions and they now had a part in the song. I understood more of what the song was about and added it to my performance.

Another student sang a very sorrowful song. When she sang it with anger and joy the song expanded to a whole new level. The transformation in the song and performance was plain for everyone to see.

This is an amazing process for exploring behind the original emotion that we have when songwriting. It adds new depth and helped me as a songwriter better understand my own muse.

One tip, don't do this right before getting on stage. I was so wrapped up in the joy of the song that I forgot the ending. Luckily the band pulled me out...

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At 7:23 PM, Blogger FruitLoop said...

Now that's really really interesting. Thanks, Jeff.

At 4:53 PM, Blogger Retta said...

Interesting concept! Thanks for the idea. I just found your blog while searching for other singer song writers. I look forward to reading you more often.
Feel free to check out my blog at


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