People who want to learn more about songwriting often ask me if I can show them examples of songs I’ve written.
Rather than sending mp3s, here are a couple of performances of songs I’ve written.
This instrumental song is titled “I Wonder,” because the verse melody feels like an open-ended question, and the chorus feels full of life in awe and wonder.
Last year I was looking in the pantry because I had a sweet tooth craving, and found this vanilla pudding pie I had forgotten about. Oddly… The texture of the vanilla pudding felt rubbery, which was weird cause I had eaten these pies before and loved the pudding. I asked Tiannah if this was how it was supposed to taste/feel. (Maybe they changed their recipe??). She took a small bite and promptly ran to go spit it out in the trashcan. Upon checking the date on the back of the package, turned out that the pie was almost 4 weeks past due date… which we found out after I had almost entirely eaten it. I just made up the song “Rubber Pie” about the experience. I wrote this joke song about it
In 2014 I had this dream, where I saw me and my band members Dave and Cela on stage performing this amazing song. It all seemed super real, like it was really happening, and I had no awareness I was actually laying in bed dreaming.
But… while I was performing with my buddies, I had this “funny” interesting kind of feeling like something was off. “Why is it ME singing?” It’s usually always Dave or Cela who sing? Weird! And… why do I not recognize this song? Did Dave and Cela just write this? And then it hit me… WAIT… THIS SONG IS COMING TO ME? And the moment I realized that, I instantly woke up with the whole finished song in my mind. It was around 3:30am and I had only been in bed for like 2 hours or so haha.
So I quickly rushed down to my studio: set up the amp in the recording booth because everybody was asleep upstairs, put mics on, and connect the midi controller to record piano, and started recording the whole thing. It was all done in an hour and by 5am I was back in bed. The tracks you hear in this video are the original tracks recorded that night. I finally, a couple of days ago, managed to write the lyrics.
This is my song Impressionist Painting, performed at the ZOTZinMusic studio in Santa Clarita. The song has lots of interesting chords and voice leading.
Despite its complexity, the whole song literally wrote itself in about 15 minutes’ time. I named it after the place where I live, Santa Clarita, because I feel that the beauty and high quality of life in this town is why this song came to me. I tried to encapsulate the beauty of this town into song.
Stop Looking At My Wife
I keep this list of ridiculous or stupid song titles to help inspiration for lyrics. I came across this title in my list the other day and decided to write a joke song with that title. This is it. Stop Looking At My Wife. My wife loves it.
A couple of years ago I set out to write a song that would in the form of sound and composition encapsulate my wife Tiannah and my deep, strong love feelings and affection for her. I wanted the song to express her kindness, her beauty, her incredibly easy-going nature, her warmth, and her strength, while also maintaining her deep complexity and intricate richness of mind and character. This is “Tiannah.”
Many people are surprised to find out that almost all the songs you heard in above videos, were written in about 15 to 30 minutes. I have my many years of ear training and composition study to thank for that. 🙂
I’m also currently writing a book about songwriting, which I am on schedule to publish in 2023.
So yes, the sky is the limit: when you have lyrics you would like me to write music too, I can literally write a totally unique, outstanding melody and chord progression to your lyrics all together forming a unique song that will sound as if a team of songwriters spend many hours or days writing the song, though I will have written your song in less than an hour.
Contact me anytime if you would like to chat about songwriting, if you are ready to book your first songwriting lesson, or if you would like me to write music to your lyrics or greatly improve songs you already have.