Sounds like a new angle

Fender Rhodes stage piano

I’m a keyboard player, and I remember back in the 70’s when I got a brand new Fender Rhodes stage piano with the Satellite speakers (that had the cool stereo effect). It sounded so good to me that the sound alone made me want to play it, and explore what kind of great noises I could make. Many a tune was written because I loved, and was inspired by the way it sounded. And to this day, I actually believe that I play better when I use a Rhodes sound!

Flash forward to the current decade.

Here’s the deal. Go to your favorite music store and check out the new guitars if you play guitar, keyboards if you play keys, etc. Make friends with the sales people, and have them show you what’s new and hot. This can only enhance your relationship with the store, while providing you with some fresh ideas.

In the case of a guitar or other non-keyboard instrument, check out the new effects/processor boxes. Effects like reverb, echo, distortion, or whatever can add such a fresh, new dimension to your playing that you will literally get ideas right there in the store. With keyboards/synths, try layering your melodies by adding together two different voices.

If you can spend a couple of hours at this occasionally, there are limitless things you can try out. It’s sort of like surfing the web; you can get lost in a sea of sounds, but I’m guessing you will love it.

Now do whatever you need to do to remember your ideas, and use them when you get back to your own ax. You may even come home with some new equipment.

The goal is to approach songwriting from a new angle. Any new angle like this can help you break out of old habits, especially the habit called writer’s block.

Let us know if you find this helpful. If you’re thinking about writing us, give in to the temptation and sound off with positive or negative feedback at the end of this post.

— Submitted by Robert CotĂ©


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