It's well worth the read for someone interested in reviewing another's creative process... May the Muse stay with you...
In a loosely organized, highly engaging style, Snider shimmies through matters of song structure, rhyme, diction, revision, repetition, audience response, titles and more. Taking readers from the first germination of an idea, through to test-driving a song on stage or sidewalk, he provides valuable tips for writing words to be sung. Combining his favourite tricks of the trade, nods to influential songwriters, and joking around common pitfalls in rhyme and rhythm, Snider shows how intuitive and how challenging songwriting can be. Along the way, readers get a glimpse of the life and work of one of Canada's folk music legends.
The second half of the book provides the lyrics for, and the stories behind, ten songs, including audience favourites like Tonight, Darn Folksinger and Sittin in the Kitchen. The beginnings come in the form of witticisms, unlikely pairings, propositions and slow ruminations. Some of these songs take their cue from overheard conversations, others from chance encounters and wrong numbers. Snider recounts verses that seemed to write themselves, others that were honed over weeks and months, and one he remembers having to coax out a syllable at a time.
Delighting in his own foibles and the odd streak of luck, Snider reveals the draft stages of some of his finest lyrics, and the patience and trickery involved in teasing memorable songs out of those first couple of chords. With each song we are introduced to the friends and strangers who have sparked his creativity, and a personal philosophy built on a love of entertaining and an avid pursuit of happy accidents.
Friday, April 04, 2008
Bob Snider - On Songwriting (Book Review)
This is the folk musician's two-part look inside songwriting. He gives us a glimpse of the songwriter's inner workings, creative process, techniques and some of the hiding places of good ideas.