Earl's Pearls
By Earl Meyers

I was surprised recently to hear a local songwriter say that he thinks "all ideas have been used in songs." I was even more surprised to hear two other songwriters agree with him. It may not have been a big deal, had I not had a lot of confidence in their writing skills. I've also heard similar statements concerning song melodies from writers on occasion.

Possibly I took a statement out of context, but I disagree either way. Why do publishers continue to tell writers to write songs with fresh lyrics, to be creative, or that it is necessary to have a great idea if you have a chance to bump one of the excellent songs that he/she already has. The same publishers are asking for a musical hook that they feel is necessary for a song to make it in today's competitive music market.

Walk in the door of a publisher with a song equal to Rory Bourke, Glenn Ballard and Kerry Chater's "You Look So Good In Love" or Jeff Silbar and Larry Henley's "The Wind Beneath My Wings" and see if you don't open some eyes and get some immediate attention.

I admit that every word in the dictionary has probably been used, but the skillful songwriter continues to create new ways to express his/her feelings and develop new ways to melodically hook the listener into their song without infringing on existing songs.

The songwriter must have the confidence they can fine-tune their skills with the melody and lyrics alone or with a co-writer. He/she also must believe there are ideas floating around out there that are searching for pen and paper. Now, if we only knew whose pen would scribble down that next great song.

Note: NSAI Louisville Songwriters Workshop meets second and fourth Mondays of the month at 7:30 p.m., 1733 Bardstown Road. Songwriters and friends are welcome.