4 Huge Mistakes Musicians Make When Trying To Create Tons Of Good Ideas For Writing A Song

5 minutes read, by Ryan Buckner

Fact: You will not become a great songwriter until you understand how to ‘consistently’ think of ideas for writing a song. However, if you are struggling to come up with good ideas for songwriting, you are not alone. The truth is, there are tons of musicians out there become very frustrated because they can never seem to think of great ideas for their music.

The reason you struggle to think of good songwriting ideas is NOT that you lack potential to because you’re not a ‘natural’ – Instead, you are probably just making one of the 4 most common songwriting mistakes (made by most songwriters) that are crushing your ability to be musically creative.

That said, in order to come up with tons of awesome new ideas for writing a song, take the following two steps:

  1. Step 1 - Download and study this free eBook about how to create music that sounds the way you want it to. This will help you find many more creative songwriting solutions not mentioned in this article that you will apply into your own music to quickly come up new ideas.
  2. Step 2 – After downloading the free eBook from the previous step, read the rest of this article to discover the 4 main mistakes that keep tons of songwriters from thinking of new ideas in their music so you can learn how to avoid them for yourself.

Below are the 4 huge mistakes musicians make that keep them from coming up with tons of good songwriting ideas. Read through each mistake and follow the advice given to learn how you can think of many new ideas for your own music:

Mistake #1: Writing Only For One Instrument

When you try to come up with new ideas of writing a song, do you usually use your main instrument? This is an extremely common approach for songwriting, but not necessarily the best approach. Why? By only using your main instrument when trying to think of good songwriting ideas, you are very likely to limit yourself to the usual licks or techniques you play, your personal playing style and the musical limitations of the instrument itself.

Instead of using this approach, take the time to either learn how to write for different instruments other than your own. Not only will this expand your capacity for writing higher quality songs, but it will open up a new world of musical possibilities and give you tons of new ideas for songwriting.

Mistake #2: Making Things Too Complicated

For some songwriters, the main solution to ‘not having ideas for writing a song’ is ‘adding more’. Songwriters with this mindset have a very hard time coming up with good ideas for songwriting because they just keep adding more and more notes or musical parts together until everything sounds like a complicated mess. This happens because the songwriter does not really know what they want to write about to begin with so they use a ‘shotgun approach’ to combine as many ideas as possible until something sounds cool.

Truth is, it is good to continually experiment with writing new ideas and trying different approaches. However, you should not underestimate the effectiveness of writing ‘basic’ ideas. In fact, there have been countless good ideas for songwriting that have consisted of only a few chords or very simple melodies. As a general rule of thumb, begin with a basic songwriting idea first. This approach will help you gain some momentum and increase the flow of ideas.

Later on (if you still want to), you can always make the idea more complex. Learn how to write music that is complex, yet expressive by studying this free songwriting eBook about how to create good music.

Mistake #3: Not Having Anything To Say

One of the hardest things to do as a songwriter is come up with interesting ideas for writing a song despite not having anything to really talk about or express musically. Countless musicians think that great songwriting is all about thinking up cool melodies, interesting chords or catchy vocal lines. However, these musicians are not able to consistently write great songs for years and years because they do not have a strong foundation of inspiration that will motivate them and act as a never-ending source of ideas for writing a song.

Although you can certainly think of a few good ideas for your songwriting by only focusing on the ‘music’ itself (cool melodies, chords, etc.), you can give yourself an endless amount of ideas for writing songs by taking the time to think critically about what important things you have to say in your music. Anytime you get ready to write a new song, take the time to understand specifically what it is that you want to talk about and express in your music.

Do ‘not’ skip over this foundational step. Trying to come up with ideas for writing songs when you don’t have anything to say is like planning to take a road trip to a specific location and forgetting to bring a map. After driving all day, you might end up in a nice town, but there is little chance that you’ll end up in the ‘right’ town where you wanted to be.

Moreover, focusing on ‘what’ you want to express musically before you begin thinking of new musical ideas will help you think of ideas for your songs by narrowing down the nearly countless songwriting possibilities to a smaller pool of expressive options.

For example, if you decide you want to write a love song about your significant other, your mind will probably be more likely to fluctuate to softer musical parts and ‘romantic’ sounding chord combinations rather than lightning-fast drum solos and death metal guitar riffs.

Mistake #4: Not Practicing Or Tracking Your Progress

Too many musicians fail to get better at songwriting and struggle to think of good ideas for songwriting because they never think to actually ‘practice’ or track their progress. For some reason, many musicians falsely believe that songwriting is something that ‘cannot be practiced’ since it deals with self-expression and personal creativity. This is NOT true!

Additionally, some people write a lot of songs, but have no true methods for getting better at songwriting and improving their ability to quickly come up with ideas. Just like how you would create a practice schedule for practicing an instrument, you must also ‘practice’ songwriting and continually track your progress to improve. With this in mind, you do not necessarily need to write ‘entire songs’ in order to get better at songwriting. Instead, target specific areas you want to improve on and work on them with laser-like focus.

By doing this, you will naturally become much better at thinking of ideas for writing songs because you will be in the habit of writing in different musical situations with different musical elements (ex: writing melodies, writing choruses, etc.)

Now that you understand what NOT to do in order to come up with ideas for writing songs, how do you come up with new, exciting songwriting ideas? How do you create music that sounds exactly how you want? If you want to learn all that and more, download our FREE eBook "7 Reasons why your music does not sound the way you want it (and how to fix it)" by clicking on the button below:

Get tons of creative ideas for songwriting .