Which comes first, music or lyrics?

Q: Could you give me some advice on how to structure lyrics – is it a question of writing lyrics in repect to the rhythm or write the lyrics and construct the chords and rhythm around them?


For better or worse, there are no hard and fast rules in songwriting.

Many many successful, professional songwriters write the lyrics first or add music to lyrics already written by a co-writer.

And many many just as successful songwriters do it the other way around. They write the lyrics first and then the music.

Then there are those who do both at the same time.

I heard an interesting concept the other day. The idea is that the music is IN the words and the words are IN the music. Certainly the music conveys a mood and informs the writer what sort of lyrics to write.

Likewise, when you write lyrics first, they make it clear whether it should be a sad, happy or bittersweet song. Should it be uptempo, slow or something in between?

Good luck. I hope I’ve given you something to think about.


Tags: , , ,

2 Responses to “Which comes first, music or lyrics?”

  1. mandythompson Says:

    There’s no hard & fast rule on this – for sure. I’m the type that sometimes gets music first, sometimes words, sometimes both. It just depends. I’ve learned not to question it – but grab my guitar / pen / computer as fast as I can and record what’s flowing.

    Love the idea that the music is in words & words are in music. That’s profound.

  2. Tempat Karaoke Says:

    Artikel Anda bagus sekali banyak memberi inspirasi dan nambah ilmu nih. Jangan lupa mampir balik ke blog ane yah.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: