SONGWRITING: 6 Tips for Guitar Songwriting

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This Video: May 10th, 2013 | Search Videos by Title/Date.

THIS VIDEOS LESSON PLAN Will Be Posted: May 12, 2013

Andrew Wasson of Creative Guitar Studio answers a viewers question…

Q: I’m in a serious guitar & songwriting rut. I know the basic scales and I have a decent sense of rhythm. But, every time I go to compose a new riff for a song I feel that what I’m playing sounds really boring and lifeless. I feel like I’m really getting sick of hearing my guitar composing sound the same day after day. Any tips that you’d have to help me out with my guitar-based songwriting would be wickedly appreciated!
James — Raleigh, NC. USA

A: There are many musicians who – after moving through the process of learning their; scales, chords, harmonies and playing techniques — and who then move onto first transcribing and ultimately composing their own musical pieces — will often go through a period of feeling stuck! There’s no need to be discouraged, after I discuss a number of obvious points associated to this topic, I’m quite positive that you’ll have a bunch of new directions to take with your songwriting. These ideas should help to break you out of any rut that you perhaps feel that you’re in right now! In the video I zoom in on the guitar neck and run through six songwriting concepts players can begin including in their development (or perhaps we might call it the, “re-development,”) of your current song writing skill-set.

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That is a beautiful harmony at the start.?


Andrew you are.. the man. Inspiring and dedicated. Best YouTube guitar teacher.


If You need some help just "click"


Thanx for pointing out what I've been doing right in songwriting as well as things I need to work on. I finally realized that when I use those phrasing devices in riffs, solos and lead lines, they jump out and make an otherwise mediocre line boogie.


One of my favourite songs has a guitar intro that I originally wrote for horns, and the guitar solo is pretty much the bass guitar part from a different part of the song. The different way of phrasing these parts makes them stand out from my usual directionless, pentatonic noodlings.
Try some exotic scales or synthetic modes, so that your fingers aren't going where instinct takes them. Likewise, using an open tuning will make your brain have to work in a different way than usual.


The problem is instinct takes over. Al these scales and patterns we've learned to mechanically do without thinking become obstructive, so you need to "break your programming", so to speak.
John Lennon started writing on the piano because he found himself continually going back to the same instinctive concepts when trying to compose on the guitar.
Joe Satriani advocates sticking to just one string, so that it's just notes going up or down, and there's no reliance on box shapes or positions.


Really helpful lessons. Thankyou.


Explained very well! Thank You for the insight of it all!


Well presented; thank you for posting.