“Together, we create!” on brick wall

Why You Should Consider Collaborating With Other Songwriters

Here’s a songwriting tip for you all… Sometimes, two (or more) heads are better than one when writing a song.

This is because songwriting doesn’t have to be something that you have to do by yourself. Some of the greatest songs ever were written by two or more people.

Examples of these great songwriting teams are:

  • Elton John and Bernie Taupin
  • Hal David and Burt Bacharach
  • Mick Jagger and Keith Richards
  • John Lennon and Paul McCartney

Working in collaboration with another songwriter (or two) can be the most rewarding thing that you can do for your songwriting process and there are a number of reasons for this.

  1. You can be challenged by someone else:

Collaborating with another songwriter can provide a stimulating environment that pushes you to give your best. It’s easy to become complacent and settle into a comfort zone when you work alone.

However, when you work with others, you are exposed to different perspectives, which can challenge your own ideas and provoke you to think in innovative ways. This can invigorate your creativity, push your limits, and help you grow as a songwriter.

  1. You can cover more strengths:

Collaboration allows for a blending of talents. You may excel in creating poignant lyrics, while your collaborator may be proficient in crafting infectious melodies. The process of creating a song involves various elements such as lyrics, melody, harmony, and rhythm.

When each collaborator brings their unique strength to the table, you can cover more areas proficiently, resulting in a well-rounded and impactful song.

  1. Brainstorming is much more fun with others:

Brainstorming with a collaborator can be a fun and productive process. With more than one mind at work, you can generate a greater number of ideas, which can lead to more creative possibilities.

It’s also rewarding to witness the evolution of an idea as it’s bounced back and forth, growing and developing through each person’s contribution. This can lead to an exciting journey of discovery, where the final product may be far from where you started.

  1. You can (at least) double the experiences to write about:

Each songwriter brings their unique experiences, perspectives, and emotions to the creative process. This significantly broadens the range of topics, themes, and emotional depths you can explore in your songs.

Your collaborator’s experiences can inspire you and push you to write about subjects that you might not have considered otherwise. This can bring a richer diversity and authenticity to your lyrics, resonating with a wider audience.

  1. You get exposed to new songwriting ideas:

Working with a collaborator can broaden your musical horizon. Each songwriter has a unique style and approach to songwriting. When you collaborate, you get a front-row seat to observe, understand, and learn from these unique methods.

This exposure can provide you with new tools and techniques that you can incorporate into your own songwriting, helping you grow and evolve as a songwriter.

  1. It’s a great way to network and meet new people:

Collaboration can open doors to meeting new people and expanding your professional network. This not only includes your immediate collaborator but also the people they know in the industry.

Such networking can lead to more collaboration opportunities, constructive feedback from different sources, and even potential performance or recording opportunities. This expansion of your professional network can significantly enhance your growth and visibility as a songwriter.

  1. You learning and develop new skills:

Collaborating with others can be an effective way to learn new skills or improve existing ones. You can learn about different songwriting techniques, various musical styles, and alternative approaches to creativity from your collaborator.

This active learning can happen naturally during the songwriting process, as you observe your collaborator’s methods and experiment with new ways of doing things. This kind of learning can boost your songwriting skills and also enhance your versatility as a songwriter.

  1. You just get more done:

When multiple people contribute to a task, it often gets done faster and more efficiently. This is true in songwriting as well.

Two or more songwriters working together can generate ideas faster, troubleshoot problems more effectively, and produce a finished song more quickly than one person working alone. This increased productivity can lead to a more consistent output of songs and give you a better opportunity to establish a presence in the music world.

  1. Responsibility shared is responsibility halved:

Songwriting can be a daunting task when you’re facing it alone. There are so many elements to consider – lyrics, melody, harmony, rhythm, structure – and the pressure to get everything right can be overwhelming.

In a collaborative setting, this responsibility is shared among the collaborators, reducing the pressure on each individual. This shared responsibility can lead to a more enjoyable and less stressful songwriting process.

  1. Built in quality control:

Having another person involved in the songwriting process can act as a built-in quality control mechanism. They can provide constructive criticism and help identify areas of the song that need improvement.

This second set of ears is invaluable for catching mistakes that you may overlook or getting an objective opinion on whether certain parts of the song work well. This can lead to the creation of higher-quality songs.

  1. You have someone else to support you emotionally:

Songwriting is an emotional journey. It involves pouring your heart and soul into creating something deeply personal. Having a collaborator during this process means having someone who understands the highs and lows you’re experiencing.

They can provide support when you’re feeling stuck or doubtful, and they can share in the joy when you’ve created something you’re proud of. This emotional support can be incredibly valuable in making the songwriting process a more positive and rewarding experience.

  1. Creative synergy is more dynamic:

Collaboration can lead to a phenomenon known as creative synergy, where the combined creative output of the collaborators is greater than the sum of their individual outputs.

When two or more songwriters blend their creative energies, they can come up with unique and innovative ideas that they might not have thought of individually. This creative synergy can lead to the creation of distinctive and impactful songs that stand out from the crowd.

  1. You can share in each others success:

When a song you’ve collaborated on does well, the joy of success is shared. This shared success can provide a strong motivational boost and a sense of achievement.

It’s a testament to the value of your collaborative efforts and the power of teamwork. This shared success can also strengthen your collaborative relationship and inspire you to continue working together on future projects.

  1. You can improve your negotiation and communication skills:

Collaboration necessitates open and honest communication. You’ll need to discuss ideas, provide and accept feedback, and sometimes make compromises.

These interactions can significantly improve your communication and negotiation skills. These are valuable skills not only in songwriting but also in many other aspects of your professional and personal life.

  1. You can (at least) double your audience reach:

Different songwriters often have different followers or fan bases. When you collaborate, you have the opportunity to introduce your music to your collaborator’s audience and vice versa.

This can lead to increased exposure and potentially broaden your fan base. It’s a win-win situation, where both you and your collaborator gain increased visibility and reach a larger audience.

What if your can’t collaborate in person?

Well, with technology the way it is today, collaborators don’t even have to be in the same room, even in the same town or even country because you can use online services like Google Docs, Skype or Zoom to write with others plus, there are also collaboration websites such as Kompoz, SoundTrap and BandLab that can be used as well.

I’ve personally used these services and websites in the past and there are some songs that I’m very proud of have been written in this way.

One of THE most important thing about working with a collaborator is to have open and honest communication with each other especially after the song is written and it’s time to work out the songwriting percentages because there’s nothing that destroys a song collaboration team faster than the feeling that credit is not being given where it’s due.

So, if you are feeling like your songwriting is in a bit of a rut, go and write with other people for a while, you wont regret it and you might get some pretty amazing songs that you would not have thought of writing out of the experience.

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