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working for Ronson

Ronson is a new partner from India. We got in contact over a songwriting board. I had asked him to provide a vocal line as I do not offer topline-writing (I'll get to that in some other post). On his recording he sings "na na na..." as a replacement for the words that I am supposed to contribute.

First step: analyzing the song's structure
After listening to the song two or three times I began taking notes. This is the structure that I have made out:
0.15 verse
0.45 lift (also called 'pre-chorus')
0.59 chorus
1:16 verse
1:45 lift
1:59 chorus
2:16 [guitar solo]
3: 15 chorus
3:30 chorus

Second step: defining what's it about
It's a rock song. The verses sound light and maybe romantic. The melody of the lift gave me the idea that there might be a 'but', some catch. It could be something like: "it's all very fine and easy, BUT...." A strong chorus, quite a bit of drama there. And very short.

The idea I got: 'she' is very romantic but falls for the wrong guy (not 'me' - i.e. the singer); 'I' see bad things coming (in the lift); 'I' warn her (in the chorus).

Third step: writing ;-)
Here my 'job' actually begins, and depending on how the music goes - how narrowly it is defined, for example - this can be tough. I usually begin by writing the chorus. The chorus defines what the song is about, and the chorus contains the hook that in most cases also is the song's title. This part must be strong. And, of course, writing the chorus' lyrics might require modifying my basic concept. Would I begin with writing the verses I might run into an impasse: either write a weak chorus, or rewrite the lot.

The chorus
The tune goes

NA na NA na
na NA na na na na NA
NA na NA na
na na na na NA na na na na NA

and these are my words:

(your) eyes wide open
I (can) see you head for a fall
eyes wide open
I don't wanna watch you break down and fall

The idea behind it is "to head for disaster with your eyes wide open", the title could be "eyes wide open". The words in brackets are addtional - and optional. I can envision an upbeat note in the first line, and two short notes instead of one in the second without damaging the tune. But to decide this is up to the composer and singer.

That's all I have at the moment. I'll keep you updated.


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