When using metaphors in your songs, make sure your imagery is consistent. Pro songwriter, Cliff Goldmacher, in his weekly online video series, suggests that buiding a song's story around a central metaphor is a great device but it's important to keep the details consistent or it can be confusing to your listeners and result in an unfocused lyric.
- If you're using a metaphor,…stay consistent with your imagery.…By way of definition, a metaphor is a thing…that is representative or symbolic of something else.…So, building a song's story around a central metaphor…is really a great way to create a miniature world populated…with imagery and details that convey your song's message.…The risk, however, is that if you stray from this metaphor,…you can make your lyric less focused…and even a bit confusing.…
For example, if your song's metaphor is a church,…then imagery and details about beaches or kittens…will feel a little out of place.…In our song example, the song Take Me to Church,…the imagery is incredibly focused and relevant.…For example, some of words used in that song lyric are…funeral, worship, heaven,…Sunday, amen, shrine,…sins, good God, pagan, sacrifice.…I think you get my point.…
Listen to the songs Cliff references in the course by subscribing to his Spotify playlist, Cliff's Weekly Songwriting Tips.
- Writing lyrics that are easy to sing
- Putting the message in the chorus
- Being productive at home
- Putting the hook at the end of the chorus
- Keeping rhyme schemes consistent
- Using repetition in melodies
- Making rough recordings
- Reading poetry for inspiration
- Writing at a regular time
- Taking a writing assignment
- Cutting down a song's length
Skill Level Beginner
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