Martin Byrne Music

Traditional Irish and Folk Singer Song Writer Martin Byrne

Songwriting Tip No. 2 – Martin Byrne


Martin Byrne music

When you are writing any kind of folk or ballad song, where you are recounting past events, it is of the utmost importance that you get your facts right. This can range from something as simple as dates names places or the order of events. With today’s technology only a click away, it has never been easier to gather information. If you are writing about something that you are not fully familiar with, then great care must be taken not to alter any of the facts.

Assuming then that we have all the facts before us, the next challenge is to place everything in the correct order. These may seem like silly unnecessary  pieces of advice, but can you imagine the horror of committing your story to paper and then to recording, only to be later told that some of your facts are untrue—so do your homework and save yourself any embarrassing  moments.

And so to song or story that is a part of your great imagination, you could be forgiven for thinking that the rules do not apply, but they do. Even inside your head there has to be a running order an a believable story line  if you are to convince the audience  that you were there when it all happened and now you are recounting the drama , blow for blow.

So, now that you have all the facts and a great storyline you are well on your way to writing a great song. Well there is still a bit of work to be done yet, but once you have the ingredients, we can start baking.

A song is a bit like a motion picture, but in the song you only have somewhere between three and four minutes to tell the story. So all we need is a great opening sequence to set up the story—a high octane mid section,–a breath taking finish.

It really is that simple—baking can take as long or as short as is required to deliver the final masterpiece.

To summarise—get the facts—get the running order—put them in place –and good luck.


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