Tips by Helene Goldnadel on How to Improve Your Songwriting

Songwriting can be lucrative, but it can also provide a great creative outlet. Songwriting does not have to be difficult; just let the words flow from you. If you have something that you want to get out, then songwriting is a great venue. The good news is that you don’t even have to play an instrument to be able to write a song.

If you hear the words, write them down and you can always find someone to write the music for you. So if you want to venture into songwriting, here are some tips by Helene Goldnadel (A Songwriter and Musician) to get you started.

Practice writing everyday

Songwriting is just like any other skill. You must practice it every day if you want to be good at it. Study the lyrics to some of your favorite songs. See how the words are used and note the rhythm of the words and melody. See where they lines rhyme and pay special attention to bridges and choruses. Studying is as important to your craft as actually writing is. Study a variety of music to see how the words play out over the melody.

You should also write every day. You don’t have to necessarily write songs, but you should write some poetry and even prose. You can also take this time to study words. A good exercise for writing songs is to think of something that you like or like to do. Write it down and write first the emotions that it makes you feel, then characteristics. Create as many categories as you can and add on. You are learning to make connections and put words to those connections. What color is happiness? What smell does anger have? Bring another dimension to words and play around so that you grow accustomed to them and train your brain to move beyond “roses are red.”

Sources of songwriting ideas

You can get your sources of songwriting from anywhere. It is a good idea to keep a small notebook and pen with you at all times. When you have an idea, jot it down. This can serve you later as a source of songwriting ideas. You can also just brainstorm. Write down a bunch of things and try to connect them or make something of them. Freewriting is also a great way to come up with songs. Just start writing, whatever comes to your head.

Your own life can give you some great song ideas. Think of your relationships, things that happen to you. Use your life as inspiration. Talk to your friends and pay attention to the things that they are going through, how they feel and what they think. This is a great way to get a subject for a song.


Improvisation means that you act and react to your surroundings. Be aware of the world around you. Watch the news, walk down the street. Your world is full of inspiration if you open your eyes, mind and heart. A good song comes from all three of these and it is vital that you adopt them as well. When you think of writing about a particular emotion, become that emotion. If you want to write a relationship issue, become the person or people embroiled in the relationship. Inspiration is wherever you choose to look.

Try a different approach or instrument to what you normally use
If you seem to hit a wall or some methods just don’t seem to work, don’t be afraid of shaking things up a bit. There are no hard, fast rules to songwriting. Just let the words take you over and let your soul sing. That is where your inspiration will come from. Don’t be shy about taking a different approach. If you play the guitar, try playing the piano instead. If you write about sadness, try writing about happiness. This not only helps with your inspiration, it also expands you range and versatility.

Dare to be different

Music is a very individual, very personal experience and is enjoyed by different people in different ways. Be different, be daring. Where do you think the scream bands started? Obviously, at some point, someone thought it would be cool to scream the lyrics. It was daring. It was different. But now it is a mainstay in our musical culture. Don’t be afraid to think outside of the box and do something different. In fact, daring to be different can actually set you apart from others. You are already unique, but when you are truly yourself and are different, try a different approach or take your music in a different direction, you are truly expressing yourself and that is what songwriting is all about.

Helene Goldnadel is an American producer born in France. She is a recording artist, a song writer, and a musician.
Helene is a master at empowerment. She enjoys working with children who are at times fidgety or shy. Yet, she sometimes has to turn down kids who are unable to follow directions, and too shy to be able to function within the outstanding environment Helene Goldnadel’s Institute is created with outstanding instructors who work in film, television, commercial and print. And the children trained at the premiere institution, fare extremely powerfully in the film, and TV commercial industry.

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Balancing Innovation with Predictability in Songwriting

Everyone’s looking for innovation when it comes to writing songs. Obviously, you don’t want your songs to just sound like every other song out there. You want yours to stand out. Making a song stand out from the rest requires innovation – a new approach. But here’s the danger: if your songs are too innovative, you’ll find that listeners can get confused, or even bored. Songs need to have something predictable about them. In other words, if your song is too innovative, it can drive your audience away.


Innovation is not a bad thing, and many great bands and singers have spent years building up an audience for their material by being innovative. But for the most innovative performers out there, the building of that audience will require a long time, and lots of patience.


This article is for those of you who want to build audiences quickly. It’s one thing to be satisfied with taking years to build a listenership. But I know that many of you want to get a loyal following sooner than that. You can do that by concentrating more on predictability at first rather than innovation.


So if you want to build an audience for your music quickly, you’ll need to think about presenting your material in a fresh, innovative way that does not abandon tradition.


Once the Beatles got that audience, they began to experiment more with innovative compositional and recording techniques. So having built up a loyal audience, they were able to present songs like “I Am the Walrus,” “Strawberry Fields Forever,” and so on. And that loyal audience, generally speaking, hung in there with them.


So here are some tips by Ms. Helene Goldnadel to consider for balancing innovation with tradition:

1) Be sure that at least one element of your songs – either chord progressions, melody, lyric or basic form, is traditional, and somewhat predictable. This will help those looking for something “safe”, and will give you a solid basis to present something innovative.

2) For the element of your song that you might consider innovative, remember that the “further out there” it is, the stronger the possibility that you will scare away listeners. This is not necessarily a bad thing, because you may pick up listeners that you wouldn’t have otherwise had. Just remember that the more innovation you use, the slower you’ll build that audience.

3) Don’t be afraid to clothe complex lyrics or melody with a traditional ABABCB type of form. Simple forms are great ways to make sure that a listener doesn’t feel lost.


And always remember to be yourself. Being innovative simply because you want to try to sound different will not succeed. You need to always be presenting your material in a way that is true to the musician inside you. Being weird for weird’s sake will come across as pretentious.


Helene Goldnadel is a singing teacher who has empowered many lives. She has been working with children in voice placement, voice projection and has kept countless young performers from the painful damage which vocalist experience when they do not sing from the diaphragm.

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