Mini-Tip: Write and Record A Concept Album!May 24, 2008 6:34 am Songwriting
Normally, each of my songs is strictly a “standalone” unit, music and lyrics-wise. Each one is in a little world all its own. If I make a CD of my recent favorites, the songs on the resulting “album” have nothing in common other than having been recorded in my studio. These days, the emphasis is increasingly on individual songs rather than whole albums, so this approach makes sense.
As a songwriter, though, I find it significantly more stimulating and enjoyable to write and record a set of songs pursuing a common theme or story, in the tradition of “Tommy” by The Who, “The Wall” by Pink Floyd, or more recently Green Day’s “American Idiot.” It might seem that this would “hem you in” and restrict your songwriting options, but I have found that I can be more creative and write better songs when I have a specific story to tell.
Your set of songs could number four or twenty, whatever works. I wrote a five-song set about an alien abduction. I have also written or co-written longer sets of songs based on a Bowery Boys movie and the life of Robert Louis Stevenson. Maybe there is something like these ideas that would resonate with you and inspire you to write and record your very own concept album!
[An expanded version of this Mini-Tip appears in my eBook, Cheap Advice On Songwriting.]Tags: mini-tips, song ideas -->