What Inspires a Song

What Inspires A Song 

Sometimes I hear a phrase and I just know that it’s a title for a song or that it will be a great thing to write about.  When I was on vacation at a summer camp I go to one of the women said she was the queen of returns and I remember writing it down knowing I was going to write a song about it.  They were one-upping each other with what they had returned… a house, a car, big items indeed!  As I started writing, as with any song, I have to relate to it somehow.  Shopping has been one of my go to things to distract me from feeling deep emotions. I’m looking for a place to get my mind off of things. When I wrote Queen of Returns it was poking fun at the way I would buy something, feeling like I had to have it (usually clothes) and then getting it home and wondering why I even bought it knowing that I have a closet full already– but in the song she goes back to return it and for me I don’t usually take it back because it was from a resale shop – a final sale! 

Sometimes I am just writing about my feelings and it starts to become a song without even trying – when I can relate real life experiences to some analogy or convey some life lesson or the meaning of an event, then I feel like its something worth sharing with others. When I know someone was touched in some way it inspires me to keep at it. 

There was a gentleman in my chorus that I sing in and one day I asked how he was doing. His reply “nearly perfect” and I loved that! I wrote it down. He was always smiling in spite of his struggling with health issues. He has recently left this world and will be missed and I will be thinking of him as I write this new song. 

I also belong to a Songwriting group where we all encourage each other.  One of the best gifts I gave myself!  We share what we know and offer critiques of a song but only if its asked for.  It’s a great way to try out a song and get a feel for the reaction from fellow songwriters as well as experience a quiet room of listeners giving you their full attention. We had this one exercise where we were given a prompt and had to co-write a song with another member of the group.  I had never done this co-writing thing and it turned out to be so much fun! We came up with a pretty nice song from it and ended up performing it at our Songwriters Showcase concert!

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