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Songwriters On Songwriting: Revised And Expanded Paperback – June 17, 2003
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Brain Pickings, 5/26/14
[An] excellent and extensive treasure trove [The] insights on songwriting extend to the broader realm of creative work in a multitude of disciplines A magnificent read in its hefty totality.”
Brain Pickings, 7/20/14
"[An] impressive interview compendium."
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And get ready. It is suuuuuuper thick. It might be the longest book I have ever read. It weighs in at 730 pages. That doesn't make it good or bad (probably should be considered bonus value). I thought I'd mention it because it's not a great suitcase book or knock-it-out-this-weekend book. If you want to carry it on the airplane with you, you might want to consider the Kindle version.
For example, I had experienced what is commonly called "writing block" for quite some time, and I kept telling myself it was just because really, I had nothing to say. Then I read what one songwriter had said about writer's block: That it's just a mind blockage, because you don't want to face what you have on your mind, so therefore you keep telling yourself "I have nothing to say". When I realized that I actually had lots of things to write about (I just didn't want to face it) I broke out of the writer's block and wrote one of the best songs I've ever written. This book is INSPIRING!
There's some advice to find directed at young and aspiring songwriters, as well as some interesting and funny stories about songwriters and the songs they've written. Sammy Cahn for example, said that he wrote with a cowriter "Let it snow" when it was really hot outside (which I found quite amusing). Instead of going out to swim, his partner said: Let's stay in and write a song about the winter.
Realizing that all of these amazingly talented and glorified songwriters are actually people just like us, made of flesh and blood, that made me feel closer to ALL songwriters. One of the interviewed said that "All songwriters are links in a chain". That's how this book made me feel, and that's why I bought it: Because I have no serious songwriters that are so utterly devoted to their craft as these are around me, and this book made me feel as if I had a group of old teachers who just happened to be some of the world's greatest songwriters.