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#1124709 - 03/01/17 11:29 AM Her Not So Secret Weapons  
Joined: Feb 2017
Posts: 123
Toby Barns Offline
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Toby Barns  Offline
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Central Illinois
When I wrote the music and lyrics to this song called "Her Not So Secret Weapons" my main goal was to write in the "style" of contemporary, mainstream country music.

By "style" I don't mean production so much as I mean in the way that Nashville mainstream, commercial lyrics have a knack for being really "clever" in the lines and lyrical hooks.

This song is just me working on trying to develop my songwriting from that kind of a lyrical approach. I find it really challenging, and that is what I like about it!

The creative lyrical hooks that come out of Nashville never cease to amaze me.

http://tobybarns.com/her-not-so-secret-weapons-song/

Check out the song, I would be happy to know what you think!

#1124755 - 03/02/17 08:34 AM Re: Her Not So Secret Weapons [Re: Toby Barns]  
Joined: Feb 2005
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Dave Rice Online content
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Hi Toby:

You have certainly put your stamp on this one. Sounds Nashville to me! Edgy, uptempo and well performed.
Best of luck pitching on Music Row. Hopefully, you know somebody capable of opening "doors and ears" there.

Having contacts "in the biz" is equally as important as having talent.

Thanks for sharing.

----Dave

#1124791 - 03/02/17 07:34 PM Re: Her Not So Secret Weapons [Re: Toby Barns]  
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Jim Colyer Offline
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I like it, Toby. It's good enough to be an album cut if you know the right people.

#1124798 - 03/02/17 09:09 PM Re: Her Not So Secret Weapons [Re: Toby Barns]  
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Martin Lide Online content
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Good song Toby. smile

#1125198 - 03/11/17 11:49 AM Re: Her Not So Secret Weapons [Re: Toby Barns]  
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Toby Barns Offline
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Hey Dave, Jim, Martin - thanks for the feedback!

What I have observed is that even if you know people who work in "the biz" in some capacity, that does not mean that they stand any better chance to pitch songs to the "right people" than I do unfortunately.

#1125204 - 03/11/17 02:32 PM Re: Her Not So Secret Weapons [Re: Toby Barns]  
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Sounds cool, Toby. If you'd like lyric suggestions, post the lyrics too, as some members on these forums does have the skills to pull of a contemporary country lyric.

I really like the singer. Really good!


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#1125594 - 03/20/17 03:24 PM Re: Her Not So Secret Weapons [Re: Toby Barns]  
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Toby Barns Offline
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Hey Kolstad - I've meant to say thanks for your feedback!

#1125598 - 03/20/17 04:45 PM Re: Her Not So Secret Weapons [Re: Toby Barns]  
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Trollboy 1 Offline
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What I hear here is a derivative song written with the intent of making money and nothing else.

The lyrics are pop, mainstream and trite. There is nothing special about this song that makes it stand out from the millions like it.

Not that its not good and catchy cause it is, if you like that country pop type of thing. But to me it its a disgrace to what I think music should be. No offense!

#1125605 - 03/20/17 07:20 PM Re: Her Not So Secret Weapons [Re: Toby Barns]  
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Toby Barns Offline
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Hey BlakeAllyn - no offense taken at all!

Actually I think it is great that you step-up, voice your impression, and that you DO get exactly what this song really is!

My intent, (as a major enthusiast of an extremely wide-range of not-so-commercial music) was specifically to write a song with nothing but the intent to emulate all of the trite qualities of mainstream, contemporary, pop Country music.

Because I am aiming at the market.

Songs like these are indeed COMMODITIES, which I create.

That is using the art of the craft.

So this song is just one of my attempts, as a songwriter, to take another dead-aim, straight-shot at the bulls-eye which is commercial Country music!

You, me or anyone who listens to this song will hear a song written with the very specific intent of making money!

I think this song would fit-in perfectly done by an artist on the streams, satellite, terrestrial, album cut, charts and etc.

That's the intent of the song.

Now, if only some real publisher, A&R person or artist (or someone very close to an artist) would listen to the song, realize that the lyrics are pop, mainstream, trite AND set within catchy musical components which allows the product as a whole to fit VERY NICELY into all of the "millions like it" would show interest in cutting the song, then I've certainly got plenty more than just this one song!

This is what the market wants. This is the type of song I hear on the current Country scene.

The lyrics of this song are unique, and actually AVOID many standard cliches' which can be tough to do in mainstream Country lyric writing.

The song is catchy, full of hooks, and it has a very EDGY attitude.

Writing a song like this is the "challenge" which is, nailing what the market calls for.

I am ready and willing to write songs which meet the demands of the market.

This song is only one example from my catalog which I consider extremely PITCH-ABLE and that is my intent when I write for the market.

You have provided one of the most "direct" and "correct" critiques of one of my songs that I have received in years!

I really enjoyed it!! :-)

#1125627 - 03/21/17 09:16 AM Re: Her Not So Secret Weapons [Re: Toby Barns]  
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Trollboy 1 Offline
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Can I just ask? It doesn't bother you to write music purely to make money?

#1125642 - 03/21/17 11:45 AM Re: Her Not So Secret Weapons [Re: Toby Barns]  
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Toby Barns Offline
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BlakeAllyn - I am actually glad that you ask this question.

I believe that something is getting lost in this topic about "writing music purely for money" as you say. Or, as I say, "creating a commodity".

My perspective is that songwriting is a craft. When a person has hard-earned knowledge, skill sets, talents, abilities, capabilities then they possess a craft of sorts. In order to survive, humans typically need to have some form of capabilities in order to earn money.

Interestingly enough, it is also possible that some of us have creative capabilities, yet we cannot turn any of them into any form of income. Maybe because our brains are not wired correctly and this is ultimately why we are so creative.

I have been pulling melodies out of musical instruments and thinking poetically for as long as I can remember. I can't stop doing that even if I wanted to.

I am just another songwriter. The amount of sweat, tears, pain, emotions, boredom, over-the-top enthusiasm, successes, failures, love, hate, rushes of inspiration, complete lack of inspiration, passion and etc. are ALWAYS in my music.

So, I have a craft. The craft uses me, and I use the craft.

I don't know how many musical pieces, and songs, that I have written but it is somewhere in the three figures. Some of those captured epiphanies as well as unbelievably creative rushes which I have experienced. Some have captured lows darker than I care to think about.

The creative process is absolutely an unbelievable experience. I could not even imagine a life without making music.

My attempts at songwriting usually focus heavily on melodies. That comes pretty naturally.

Also, I have endured endless amounts of brutal, agonizing, painfully disciplined time studying and analyzing poems, storytelling, scripts, and using WORDS within the confines of a song.

I am yet just another creative type of person, like many people on this forum and on this planet!

However, I see the commercial marketplace for what it really is. And anything that has the word "commercial" in it is going to likely be about the promotion of something, frequently for financially gainful purposes.

Not every song I am involved with is going to be from a commercial perspective. I go "artsy" and way-out-there, all the time! Riding flowing creative waves and there is no hope of reeling me in!

I have a deep knowledge of music theory, the craft of songwriting and of the music "business" and how it functions as such. That is all hard earned over a very long period of time.

Everything is a work in progress; that's life.

I put some songs on TobyBarns.com which simply show an example of where I come from as a SONGWRITER. They include a few different genres of music. They do not all aim for the commercial market specifically.

So, I am available and happy to utilize whatever song creating skills, or lack-there-of, which I may possess, for the pursuit of money. Having versatility is actually a strong point, IMO.

#1125646 - 03/21/17 12:08 PM Re: Her Not So Secret Weapons [Re: Toby Barns]  
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Trollboy 1 Offline
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Fair enough and well said. I just personally feel once we have decided to pursue a song in the commodity sense, it is no longer a song.

I am young and perhaps naive. As Dylan said, perhaps I am younger then that now!

#1125653 - 03/21/17 02:30 PM Re: Her Not So Secret Weapons [Re: Toby Barns]  
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Toby Barns Offline
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Toby Barns  Offline
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Central Illinois
Awesome!

Welcome on-board. This really is a quality songwriting forum.

And, maybe the answer is blowin' in the wind.

#1125659 - 03/21/17 03:12 PM Re: Her Not So Secret Weapons [Re: Toby Barns]  
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Trollboy 1 Offline
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I checked out some of your other stuff. You weren't lying. You have a wide array of cool stuff, sharing to some of my friends.

#1125678 - 03/21/17 09:02 PM Re: Her Not So Secret Weapons [Re: Toby Barns]  
Joined: Feb 2017
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Toby Barns Offline
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Toby Barns  Offline
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Thanks for sharing! Absolutely every bit helps.

That website is just a small example of songs I write.

Basically another work in progress.


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