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Melody in Songwriting: Tools and Techniques for Writing Hit Songs (Berklee Guide) - by Jack Perricone
Product Description

   Melody is a subject too often neglected in the teaching of music. This unique resource gives melody that attention it deserves, and proves that melody writing is a skill that can be learned. Through proven tool and techniques, you will learn to write interesting melodies, how melodic rhythm influences rhyme, what makes harmony progress, and the many dynamic relationships between melody and harmony. 

   This clear and comprehensive approach to songwriting unlocks the secrets of popular songs, revealing what really makes them work. Examples of great songs by such notable songwriters as Lennon and McCartney, Diane Warren, Robert Palmer, and more, provide a close-up illustration of the songwriting techniques employed by these masters of the industry. 

   This is the book used in Songwriting classes at Berklee College of Music. The exercises provided make it a wonderful self-teaching manual and a great addition to any general theory course of any level. Use the tools presented in this book to help fine-tune your craft and start writing hits! By frankp93 "frankp93" This terrific book examines what might be called a "theory of melody" as applied to songwriting, although many of the principles Perricone demonstrates come straight out of classical composition and could be applied to melody in many contexts other than popular song. 

   The author wisely divides the work into two large areas he calls "Melody: Its Components" and "Melody-Harmony Relationships". Separating the horizontal and vertical aspects of melody is an effective learning tool, though such a line would likely never be drawn in the intuitive act of composing. The Components part of the book deals with the behavior of tones and the contruction of melody: the influence of rhythm on phrases, devices to develop and contrast motives and the expansion of this basic material into larger sections is covered. 

   The second part of the book introduces the harmonic element, placing the melodic invention of the first part into its traditional context. Unless you're planning to write Gregorian chant or solo voice Appalachian ballads, your melodies interact with, and are to a certain extent a function of, the underlying harmony. Tension tones, and the influence of target and bass tones are explored. 

   Gradually the integration of harmony and melody unfolds and a set of tools are demonstrated for creating both chord progressions and corresponding melody. Indeed, much of this material is as applicable to jazz improvisation and composition as it is to songwriting. 

   The author assumes you're familiar with musical notation and the harmony illustrations are keyboard-oriented, so if you're a guitarist you'll have to adapt the chord symbols to your own voicings. The harmonic vocabulary covers a broad range of musical styles and should be familiar to rock/pop musicians as well as those interested in jazz/show tunes.

   There are a number of references to well-known songs, but in contrast to Jimmy Kochulis' books, Perricone relies somewhat less on examples and possibly more on the individual's own initiative. He assumes you've got the listening background and experience and have confidence beyond the phase of literal imitation (a phase that's nothing to be ashamed of and has been the starting point for most composers throughout history). There's a tremendous amount of useful material here for those willing to work at it. 

   This is not a "write a hit song in 21 days"-type of book. It's a serious composition text that will reward serious study.



Songwriting Courses


BERKLEE | Songwriting Major
Songwriting Major: Careers in Songwriting    •  Songwriting Courses    •  Songwriting Department    •  Songwriting Faculty    Summer Programs

Songwriting Courses Online
The first songwriting community on the Internet where all the tools you need to succeed are available online at a price you can afford.  Learning alongside professional songwriters, making co-writing connections and pitching your'll find it all here at  |  Online songwriting courses  |  Coaching & evaluation services  |  Spin & Pitch: Your industry connection  |  Free monthly power tips  | Faculty  |  Online Self-Paced Courses:  |  Convenience  |  Quality  |  Audio Clips  |  Interactive  |  Instructor Feedback  |

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Songwriting -
Welcome to Songwriting at Suite101. I hope this site is a place where songwriters and song lovers on all experience levels can feel both comfortable and stimulated, both informed and interactive. The emphasis, of course, is on songwriting per se, but that subject can encompass a lot!  " |   An Evening with Jimmy Webb - Part Three  |  Part 01  |  Part 02  |  The Reel Scoop: Placing Music In TV and Film  |  The Songwriters' Hall of Fame Awards - Part 1  -  Part 2  |  Legal-Ease: Approaching A Lawyer  |  Un-Block My Song: How To Cope With Writer's Block  |  What Makes A Song Stand Out?  |  How To Convert Your Songs Into MP3 Files  |  Tips On Songwriting Collaboration  |  Interview With Producer Arif Mardin -- Part 1  -  Part 2  |  Beyond MP3: The Truth About Songwriting  |  What Songwriters Need To Know About Publishing Income -- Part 1  - Part 2  |  MP3 Dilemma: Should Music Be Free?  |  Life's A Pitch: What Do A&R Guys Look For?  |  How Does MP3 Work & Will It Work For You?  |

Bonjorno Pro Musica
Songwriting Courses  |  {02-05-05   site under construction)  |

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Boston Songwriters Workshop
Boston Songwriters Workshop is a professional organization of songwriters and composers helping each other develop in the art, craft, and business of songwriting and composition. Boston Songwriters Workshop is open to songwriters and composers in all styles of music including, but not limited to: rock, pop, country, r&b, adult contemporary, folk, alternative, jazz, new age, world beat, classical, hip hop, and film/video/commercial  |  Songwriter Links  |

An Online Course in Songwriting by Rein Menke
Welcome to my FREE Online Course in Songwriting in which I'll teach you some tricks on writing songs and lyrics. This course is for beginners as well as experienced writers, because I think anyone can learn something from anyone, and so also from me! But who are you!?!?! I can almost hear you thinking it... Well, I'm a Dutch guitarist/songwriter and I've been playing in several bands for about 15 years now. In that time, I started writing my own stuff almost immediately, realizing that there were too many people already playing copy-cat! If you want to know more about me, please check out my history-page. "  |
Songwriters: Write Better Songs!  |  "Hello, we're Pete & Pat Luboff (Luboff means "love" in Russian) and we love songwriters! We want to encourage you to continue to write songs, to improve your ability to express yourself, to pursue songwriting as a career if that is your choice, and to just plain have fun while playing in the creative flow. "  |  88 Songwriting Wrongs and How to Right Them  |  12 Steps to Building Better Songs  |  Songwriting Workshops  |  Music Business & Songwriting Consultation &  Instruction  |  "Here are some sites of interest to songwriters"  |  And some songwriting resources  |  IMPORTANT

SongLyricist\  provides  -  Up-to-date information about the art and business of song and lyric writing  -  Tips, articles & advice to help song lyricists connect with the music industry. -  Opportunities to get feedback on your songs from music-industry pros  -   Hundreds of useful links for lyricists, songwriters, musicians, publishers & recording artists  -  Networking and song marketing opportunities  -  Free Lyricist Listings to help you meet songwriting collaborators, musicians & industry contacts  -  Educational resources to help you learn about the art, craft & business of lyric writing and songwriting

Trio Productions
"Welcome to We are a full service music publishing company, and hope that you will enjoy browsing our site.  At Trio Productions, Inc. we believe songs change the world.  A song that raises your spirits and gets you in touch with your emotions is a cherished piece of art. Though these feelings are intangible, a song is a very tangible thing with a life of it’s own, something to carry in your heart and soul.  Trio is about helping songwriters who want to contribute; we contribute by helping you find an outlet for your work."  |   [Publishing] [Songplugging Services] [Book Club] [About Us] [Links] [Events]

MusicianNews  |  How to write a song  |  "Many people ask me the question: how do you write a song or start writing a song? Do you start with an instrument, the chords, the lyrics?  This article should give you some ideas on how to start writing songs and give you some starting points the next time you feel the inspiration flowing through you. "  |

Songwriting Links at

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Songwriting Instruction USA

Berklee Shares
downloadable lessons  |  songwriting & arranging  |  16 lessons |

The Complete Jingle Course
By La-Dair Guzman  |

Go2Audio Directory  |  Music - Songwriting  |

Songwriters Resource Network
Songwriters Resource Network presents excellent articles on the art & business of songwriting. Learn to market your songs!  |  The annual Great American Song Contest. Top music-industry judges. Prizes, Awards & Pro Critiques.  Highly recommended.  | Use SRN's free Songwriter Billboards to meet other songwriters, musicians, lyricists, recording artists, publishers & producers.  | Books and publications to help you advance your music career and learn more about the art and business of songwriting.  |  Lyricists & Song Poets unite!  Information, contact tips and opportunities for the talented folks who write song lyrics  |  Songwriters Resource Network's fun page! Test your Musical IQ on legendary songwriters and songwriting!  |  Songwriters Resource Network presents lots of great Links for songwriters, musicians, lyricists, publishers & producers.  |

Oxford Songwriters Workshop

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Professional Microphone Techniques
David Mills-Huber  |  This book, by the author of industry bestseller "Modern Recording Techniques", focuses on microphone usage for dozens of different instruments as well as vocals, amplifiers, Leslie cabinets and much more! Accompanied by an audio CD that allows you to hear the different effects of microphone placement techniques in real time for a full understanding of how to get the best recordings from any type of microphone!

Essential ingredients of a top 10 pop song!  | Suite 101  -  © Yogesh Bakshi

Robin Frederick  |  Songwriting Workshops & Courses 

Lincoln singer spent four days picking and learning at Song School

"Journal Star reporter Jeff Korbelik shadowed Lincoln singer-songwriter Andy Miller for two days at The Song School in Lyons, Colo."   -   Lincoln Journal Star


Tunesmith: Inside the Art of Songwriting (Hardcover) - by Jimmy Webb
From Publishers Weekly

   The only artist to receive Grammy Awards for music, lyrics and orchestration, Webb has written many of the most memorable songs performed by the Fifth Dimension ("Up, Up and Away"), Donna Summer ("MacArthur Park") and Amy Grant ("If These Walls Could Speak"), among others. 

   Here he seeks to impart the tools of the trade to songwriters "who may be attempting the delicate transition from amateur to professional." Covering technical matters from basic chord theory and rhyme schemes to the protocol of pitching songs, Webb draws on a trove of personal anecdotes from a career spanning more than two decades. In addition to salient comments on today's music scene, Webb cites numerous examples from the past and includes sections on writing for the stage and film. 

   Of greatest value, perhaps, are the exercises suggested for developing song ideas, which will help anyone stumbling through a period of writer's block. While Webb's fans will revel in the behind-the-scenes details of his career and a candid view of his artistic process, others may wish that the asides, finger pointing (at arrogant co-writers) and Webb's own pet peeves (e.g., no-talent spouses who insist on songwriting credits on their partner's records) had been left out. 

   And Webb's nuts-and-bolts approach somehow undercuts every songwriter's need for that spark of absolute inspiration. For those interested in the latter, Songwriters on Songwriting: The Expanded Version (Da Capo, 1997), a collection of interviews between editor Paul Zollo and a variety of songwriters, including Webb, is the ticket.


Songwriting   @


Songwriting - What Is It Really?

How You Can Improve Your Songwriting Skill

5 Songwriting Tips

Careers in Songwriting

Join A Songwriting Forum - It's A Good Idea!

How to Become a Songwriter - 2

Show Off Your Musical Talent by Entering a Songwriting Contest

Songwriting Contest Observations

Songwriting Tips - A Common Problem That Songwriters Face

Songwriting Zen - Songwriting Is Life Itself

Songwriting Zen - Songwriting Is Like Aural Photography

Songwriting Tip - Start A Journal Today

3 Simple But Powerful Songwriting Tips

Songwriting Tip - Collaborating With Other Songwriters

Make Money with Your Music - the Top 5 Ways

How To Overcome The Lyric Writing Hurdles That Are Keeping You Behind

To Find Yourself In Your Song Writing

Lyrics And Songwriting Ideas

Songwriting - The Art of Writing a Good Song

Do Musicians Make Better Songwriters?

Managing Your Time, when Music isn't Your "Day Job"

Use Drumloops and Samples for Making Up Great Songs

Song Lyrics - Creating Possible Song Titles

Guitar Online Schools


The Songwriting Habits

Audience's Perception Of Songs

How To Write A Song

Seven Basic Songwriting Errors

SONGWRITING - Inspiration or Perspiration?

Staying True To Your Music – And Pursuing Success

Write The Next Chart Topper - Start With Blues Piano

How to Develop a Good Ear

Develop Better Ears and Become a Stronger Musician

Why Hit Songs Aren't Hit or Miss

How to Get A Songwriting Record Deal

Write Songs the Music Industry Wants to Hear!

Song Lyrics

Songwriting Tip - Conquering Writers Block

Online Music Courses

The Role of CD Mastering Engineers

Jealous Again - Jealousy Among Musicians

So, You Want To Collaborate? The Key to Success For Songwriters

Soundtrack Lyrics

Beautiful Dreamer, Stephen Foster, America's First Folk Song Writer

Hooks to Hits: The Key to Writing Songs That Sell

Killing Her Softly With Their Song

Song Writing: To Find Yourself In The Music You Compose

So You Wrote Some Lyrics-2

Visualization Techniques for the Pianist

Sound Technology Schools Teach Art of Acoustics

Dividing Your Practice Time

Creative And Feeling Alone? What To Do When Your Friends Don't Support Your Creative Life

The Life and Legacy of John Denver

Rock & Roll Feature: Dylan Bringing the Controversy All Back Home

Songwriting Ideas

10 Ways for Unknown Musicians to Get the Word Out

Why Play Cover Songs


How to Write Lyrics For a Song

Songwriter Confessions #1

Writing Hit Songs

Guitar - Beyond The Chord Chart

Going Seamless: Dissolving the Brain Divide

Why Artist Development Makes A Difference

Turning a Band Into Songwriters - 10 Songs In One Hour

5 Songwriting Tips For The Lazy

To Record or Not To Record - At Home, That Is

Tapping Into Your Musical Side - Writing Song Lyrics

How To Get Signed To A Label - Top 10 Ways

Copyright Basics for Songwriters

Why You Must Stay On Course

The Gig Is Up - Getting Those Gigs

Every Song Tells A Story...But Does It Need To Be An Abstract Novel?

What Bruce Springsteen Taught Me About Writing

People are Turning to Meaningful Songs for Emotional and Spiritual Relief:

Improvisation in Music: Is that What Your Soul is Saying or are You Just Regurgitating?

JOHN LENNON - The Man and His Times

Tips on Songwriting

100 Tips to Market Your Music - Part 2

How To Break A #1 Hit Song On

How to Become a Successful Independent Artist or Songwriter

Music for Ear Training - Author: Michael Horvit
Product Description

   MUSIC FOR EAR TRAINING and its accompanying workbook and CD-ROM will help you improve your listening/ear-training skills as you notate the music in the workbook while listening to the CD. The dual-format CD-ROM provides an easy-to-use interface for listening with varied General MIDI instrumental sounds. The repertoire for dictation includes exercises on basic rudiments (intervals, chords, and scales), melodies, four-part harmonic settings, and varied textures from musical literature. 

About the Author 

   Michael Horvit is Professor of Composition and Theory at the Moores School of Music, University of Houston. His works range from solo instrumental and vocal pieces to large symphonic and choral compositions and operas, all widely performed in the United States, Europe, Japan, and Israel. He has published with C.F. Peters, MorningStar, Recital Publications, Shawnee Press, E.C. Schirmer, Southern, and Transcontinental, and has CDs with the Albany label. Horvit's awards include the Martha Baird Rockefeller Award as well as the National Endowment for the Arts.


Chords / Harmony  @

Learn Guitar Chords - 7 Secrets the Pro's Use by Ant Brown  -  If you're like many guitarists out there who want to learn guitar chords but are having some trouble, then this article is for you. I'll cover some key aspects that are often overlooked by tutors and "learn the guitar" products; I guarantee you'll be able to learn guitar chords much easier after reading this article.

Music Chords: How To Become a "Chord Detective" And See Into The Music! by Duane Shinn  -  There's a logic behind every note written in music, & you can learn to understand that logic, and therefore understand music. If you can read music to some degree but don't "see through" the written music-don't understand what you are seeing-it is now very possible that you can put on your "chord glasses" that good "chord detectives" wear to see through all that mass of black printed notes on a white page of sheet music to quickly understand what chords are being used and the "family logic" behind it all.

Piano Lesson-II-V-I Progressions In C Major by Peter Edvinsson  -  Let me give you some easy progressions that will help you in your improvisational piano playing!

How To Construct 48 Chords In 5 Minutes by Alex Nguyen  -  Constructing chords on the piano is not rocket science. It’s easy. Once you know the formula, throw away your chord chart.

Chord Style Piano – Is It For Everyone? by Alex Nguyen  -  Chord style approach to learning to play piano can be fun and provide instant gratification, but is it for everyone? Read this article to find out more.



Piano Power  @  MusicDish Industry e-Journal


Piano Power: Key Signatures and the Circle of Fifths

Piano Power: Diatonic Scales Part 3  |  2  |  1

Piano Power: Diatonic Scales (Part 1)

Piano Power: Diatonic Scales (Part 2 )

Piano Power: Intervals (Part 1)

Piano Power: Intervals (Part 2)

Piano Power: Intervals (Part 3) and Triads (Part 1)

Piano Power: Triads (Part 2)

Piano Power: Harmonic Minor Scales

Piano Power: Melodic Minor Scales

Piano Power: Major Scale Chord Functions (Part 1)

Piano Power: Authentic Cadences in Minor Keys

Piano Power: Plagal Cadences in Minor Keys

Piano Power: Deceptive Cadences

Piano Power: The Plagal or IV-I Cadence

Piano Power: Major Scale Chord Functions (Part 2)

Piano Power: The Authentic or V-I Cadence (Part 1)  |  2

Piano Power: Reprinted Cadences and a Free Finale Notepad Download

Piano Power: Open Position and Voicing of Chords

The Piano is a Percussion Instrument

Dressing Up the Garden Variety G Chord

Piano Power: Theories Contradicted

Hearing and Writing Music - Author: Ron Gorow
Review By Bernard Brandt

   "Hearing and Writing Music", by Ron Gorow, is a superb book. It makes a simple and elegant presentation of the internal process by which we hear sounds and music, how we recognize intervals, chords, melody, harmony, counterpoint, and the timbre of instrumentation/ orchestration, how we can develop the skills of listening, auditory memory and imagination, and how to use these skills to hear and to write down music of any sort. 

   The hallmark of an expert is the ability to explain the basics of his field as simply as possible. By that standard, Mr. Gorow has proven his expertise in this book. I note that the other reviews, both for Amazon and in musical journals, tend to limit the importance of "Hearing and Writing Music" to ear training. I believe that Mr. Gorow's book is valuable for much more than ear training. I have studied it, and as a result of that study, I believe that my auditory memory and imagination and my abilities in score reading have improved enormously. 

   Further, I have been able to use the skills in this book to transcribe melodies, harmonies and counterpoint almost effortlessly, both those that I have heard, and those which existed only in my imagination. This book has opened many doors for me. I believe that it can do so for many others. 

   On a personal note, for the last 30 years, I have been able to hear and compose music in my imagination. Unfortunately, I have been almost exclusively self-taught, and I despaired of ever being able to write down what I heard. Mr. Gorow's book, and my use of it, has changed all that. I have just completed the first movement of a symphonic tone poem, and I intend on continuing to compose for the rest of my life. 

   I have studied many books on music theory, and have listened to and studied many pieces of music. If I may make an analogy, my studies had formed the equivalent of a crystalline solution. "Hearing and Writing Music" was the equivalent of a seed crystal, which put everything into order, and transformed me from a listener to a composer. 

   I cannot recommend it highly enough for those who wish to become songwriters, arrangers, or composers, or those who wish to improve their skills.


Songwriting Books:  01


6 Steps to Songwriting Success  -  Jason Blume

The Songwriter's Workshop  -  Jimmy Kachulis

The Everything Songwriting Book: All You Need to Create and Market Hit Songs  -  C. J. Watson

How to Make Money Scoring Soundtracks and Jingles  -  Jeffrey P. Fisher

Hearing and Writing Music: Professional Training for Today's Musician  -  Ron Gorow

The Complete Singer-Songwriter: A Troubadour's Guide to Writing, Performing, Recording and Business  -  Jeffrey Pepper Rodgers

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Music Theory   -   Michael Miller

American Women Songwriters  -  Virginia L. Grattan

How to Write Songs on Guitar: A Guitar-Playing and Songwriting Course  -  Rikky Rooksby

The Austin Songwriting Method (Audio Cassette)  -  Carl P. Austin

Composing Music  -  William Russo

Ear Training: Volume I Scale Forms through Six Basic Tetrachords  -  Elvo S. D'Amante

Fretboard Logic SE: The Reasoning Behind the Guitar's Unique Tuning + Chords Scales and Arpeggios Complete   -  Bill Edwards

Tears for Water: Songbook of Poems and Lyrics  -  Alicia Keyes

All About Chords : A Comprehensive Approach to Understanding Contemporary Chordal Structures and Progressions  -  Elvo D'Amante

Harmony & Theory: A Comprehensive Source for All Musicians (Essential Concepts (Musicians Institute)  -  Keith Wyatt

Melody in Songwriting  -  Jack Perricone

A Hard Day's Write: The Stories Behind Every Beatles Song  -  Steve Turner

The Songwriting Sourcebook  -  Rikky Rooksby

Inside Classic Rock Tracks  -  Rikky Rooksby

Songwriting Books:  02



...  ...



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    Book List:  Songwriting Business  -  Creating Songs



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