Songwriting Exchange: The Art of Collaboration

The Art of Collaboration: Let's create a super duo!

How to Respond

Work with a partner from Musical Exchange to write a song or musical ideas around the theme of Summer. Post your song in the comments below to receive feedback from Deidre, Mike, and your fellow songwriters.

Tips

  • If you don't know each other well, introduce yourselves and discuss some songs that are your favorites and why.
  • If you already have a musical idea written, feel free to use that as a starting point.
  • Each partner should work together to provide some lyrics around the theme, as well as come up with a melody and chords.
  • Come to the table with a spirit of willingness. Collaborations can create songs greater than you could have come up with on your own, but only if you are open to ideas from your partner.

Examples

"We Can Work it Out" by John Lennon and Paul McCartney

"Tiny Dancer" by Elton John and Bernie Taupin

"Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head" by Burt Bacharach and Hal David

 Click here for more Songwriting Exchange activities.

Views: 246

Comment

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Comment by Ken Bragg on June 11, 2014 at 12:35am

Deidre, we started with going in a less conventional direction. We knew we didn't want to write another summertime pop song (the first that comes to mind for me is "Good Time" by Owl City. Which is a fun song. But that wasn't our goal.)

We sort of brainstormed, and then I came up with the verses based on the idea of a person being volatile like weather in the summer. I was at a loss for the chorus, but I had an idea for the melody. I recorded it and emailed it to Connor, who explored some different (read: better) ideas and did a quick demo of what we had and sent a chord sheet. I recorded vocals and guitar, sent those to him, and he recorded his parts and mixed everything.
Basically, it was a lot of sending things back and forth. haha. I think the fact that we were unified on our approach, and neither too attached to our ideas helped make the process a lot easier than it could have been.
And I hope I can be as good as Natalie one day. Thanks! ;)

Comment by Deidre Rodman Struck on June 10, 2014 at 8:12pm
Aly and Hannah-lovely song! I could totally hear harmonies on the "Blue skies.." Maybe you can record it together someday :)
Comment by Deidre Rodman Struck on June 10, 2014 at 8:09pm
Great work Connor and Kendra! Would love to hear more about your process-can you expound a little more?
Also, Ken your voice reminds me of Natalie Merchant here :)
Comment by Ken Bragg on June 9, 2014 at 12:39am

Thanks Hannah! Connor was the mastermind behind all of that. I would love to take this one into the studio at some point. :)

Comment by Hannah Larson on June 5, 2014 at 10:18pm

@Connor Mahoney and @Ken Bragg!  I love this arrangement!  It reminds me a little of the band She and Him.  I like when the shaker comes in and the music picks up in the middle.  Catchy, catchy!  I can totally see harmonies coming in when your voice doubles.  

Comment by Connor Mahoney on June 4, 2014 at 2:05pm

Here's what Kendra and I came up with: Summer Trouble. This was definitely my favorite project of the Songwriter's Exchange and I want to thank Kendra (who posted the lyrics below) for being such a great partner. Thanks Kendra!

Comment by Ken Bragg on June 4, 2014 at 9:13am

Connor Mahoney and I worked together on this and it was a blast! (And also really challenging.) We knew from the get-go that we wanted to do a little bit different take on the idea of summer, and what we came up with was as follows. Connor wrote the choruses, which I tweaked, and I wrote the verses, which he tweaked. Connor is definitely the one who made it sound good on the recording (which he'll be posting later.)

Here are the lyrics:

Verse 1

             

She was everything bright and warm

With a heart like a thunderstorm

In a moment she'd tear you down

Then the sun would come right back around

When he met her he couldn’t know

How this season was gonna go

It wouldn’t be long till he found out

She could smile and she could scream and shout

Chorus


‘Cause she was like Summer

And he couldn’t tame her

When he wanted sunshine

She brought the rain

Oh yeah ‘cause she was wild

Like Summer’s child

Trouble lined with sugar and lace

 

Verse 2

   She was crazy wrapped up in grace
   Like a kiss and a slap to the face
   Predictably unpredictable
   Kept him coming back for more

 

Chorus 2

‘Cause she was like Summer

And he couldn’t tame her

When he wanted sunshine

She brought the rain

Oh yeah ‘cause she was wild

Like Summer’s child

Trouble with the sweetest taste

 

 

 

Comment by Hannah Larson on June 4, 2014 at 8:28am
@Aly, it was great working with you. Maybe someday we can actually record it in the same place!

Lyrics:
(Aly) Hey, it's a cloud free day
I'm not gonna waste away inside
Hey, we're gonna be okay
If we leave it all behind

All we have and all we need is

Blue skies, blue
Blue skies with you

(Hannah)
Hey, it's a cloud free day
I'm not gonna waste today inside
Hey, we can run away
And leave it all behind

All we have and all we need is

Blue skies, blue
Blue skies with you

Leave all the Grey

(Aly and Hannah)
Blue skies, blue
Blue skies, blue
Blue with you.
Comment by Aly Nichole on June 4, 2014 at 3:09am

https://soundcloud.com/aly_nicole/blue-skies-1 This was my collaboration with Hannah Larson. It's not perfect because we cannot get together personally, but we worked very hard. Thanks Hannah I had a blast working with you!

Comment by Sneh Ratna Choudhary on June 1, 2014 at 9:57am
hey anyone wanna collaborate?

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