My sister Lisa recently suggested I join her songwriting club. The group is given a prompt and then meets once a month to perform their new songs for each other (followed by polite applause and short critiques). Even though I get nervous performing in public, I decided to give it a whirl.
What’s the worst that can happen, I asked myself. I’ll be on Zoom, and if I can tell by their faces that my song really sucks, I’ll just mute myself and blame it on my computer!
This month’s prompt is Home. That’s a pretty broad topic. Maybe a little too broad, I thought. And for an entire day or two, I wracked my brain trying to come up with a clever idea. I even made this list of phrases using the word “home,” hoping it would lead me somewhere:
But that list just led me in circles. In desperation, I sat down at my piano keyboard. Now, mind you, my piano skills are somewhere between beginner and advanced beginner. But sometimes my fingers accidentally land on notes that lead me to a song idea. This time, it worked.
I played a couple of simple chords, and – lo and behold – some words popped into my head. I hate to admit it, though: they were pretty dumb words. The words were:
“Since my baby left me.”
Yeah, I know, that’s been done before (in the song “Heartbreak Hotel”). But what good is a good song lyric if you can’t steal it, I asked myself.
Just so I wouldn’t be sued by the estate of Thomas Durden, who wrote Heartbreak Hotel, I decided to give my song a more positive twist. Somehow, I’d turn heartbreak into happiness.
Writing a song about heartbreak turned on its head was difficult. The struggle was real, as these pictures will demonstrate:
In the end, I DID manage to come up with something positive, and, I think, positively funny. Here’s what I’ve got so far for my new song, “Home Alone”:
So now you know a few of my songwriting secrets, and also what happened “since my baby left me.”
P.S. The song above is a work of FICTION. My baby didn’t leave me, and I don’t like being home alone!
This is post #3 in this year’s #NaBloPoMo challenge, a.k.a. #NanoPoblano. To follow my blog, just click below where it says “Follow loristory.”