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#920294 - 09/06/11 05:45 PM CONTUNITY IN SONGS  
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Ray E. Strode Online content
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Ray E. Strode  Online Content
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I just listened to the top 4 Video songs on CMT. I haven't explained what I don't like about most modern country songs but there is no contunity from one line to the next in most of these songs. All I hear is dis-jointed lines that make little sense to the overall song. You never know where it is going next and is to me a turn off, basically poor writing. Anyone Else?


Ray E. Strode
#920302 - 09/06/11 05:52 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Ray E. Strode]  
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David Gill Offline
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David Gill  Offline
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I have to agree with you, Ray. Walking along the shoreline.
Makes no sense at all to be that way at all. Can't seem to forget that it's all it ever was. There's really no continuity in songs. Ya right? smile

Peace,

Dave


"Where there's a Gill, there's a way"
#920338 - 09/06/11 06:38 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: David Gill]  
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AJ Love Offline
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hmmm... which songs specifically are you talking about?

In general I wouldn't use the words "poor writing" to describe what the Nashville hitmakers are putting together. I think many (most?) of those songs are EXTREMELY well crafted


A.J. Love - Telecaster player & Songwriter
#920344 - 09/06/11 06:44 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: AJ Love]  
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AJ Love Offline
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I guess I would add: I don't rush out to buy those songs or the albums they are on because they don't personally appeal to me to THAT LEVEL: not a whole lot of Telecaster chicken pickin other than Brad Paisley (who I do really like), a whole lot of Eagles & Allman Brothers influences and not a lot of Johnny Cash or Ray Price influences...

But that's just my personal preferences that influence my buying habits. (I do plan on buying Brad Paisley's latest CD). At the age of 45 I am way out the main demographic that the major labels are aiming at...

Having said that I think the writing and the production in general is stunningly GREAT for what it is. I can listen to something on CMT and just marvel at how great the studio musicians are (Eddie Bayers anyone? Good LORD is he great...) or how extremely well put together the hooks of the songs are....

Last edited by ajlove; 09/06/11 06:53 PM.

A.J. Love - Telecaster player & Songwriter
#920365 - 09/06/11 07:37 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: AJ Love]  
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What exactly are you listening too? There is complete continuity in most songs out there. That is the hallmark of country songwriting. If you can give a few examples to underline what you are talking about. If not, I think you might be confusing formats. That is true in almost all of pop or rock music, but country is not one of those. Or you might have a different view of songwriting. But you are in a pretty small minority if that is your opinion. Of course everyone is entitled to their own opinion.

MAB

#920430 - 09/06/11 10:51 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Marc Barnette]  
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Ray E. Strode Online content
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Sorry Marc,
It was 5 "Top" Videos on CMT. They are:

I LOVE YOU THIS BIG-Scotty McCleery
REMIND ME-PAISLEY/UNDERWOOD
WANNA TAKE YOU HOME-GLORIANA
THE HOUSE RULES-CHRISTIAN KANE
DIRT ROAD ANTHEM-JASON ALDREAN./

All disenjointed songs. Mediocre at best.

For a song that has great lyrics and has great contunity listen to EL PASO by Marty Robbins or even HEARTS OF STONE by Red Foley.

Last edited by Ray E. Strode; 09/06/11 10:53 PM.

Ray E. Strode
#920458 - 09/07/11 12:43 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Ray E. Strode]  
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Gary E. Andrews Offline
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There will always be another song to be written. Someone will write it. Why not you? www.garyeandrews.com
#920467 - 09/07/11 01:46 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Gary E. Andrews]  
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Jen Warner Offline
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Thanks for posting the links. I watched/listened to all of them, just to scrutinize in regards to this topic. I think if any of the writers of these songs would have posted them here for comments/feedback before pitching, I would have given a thumbs up. IMO, "Remind Me" gets my biggest vote all the way around for continuity, but not for that alone. Maybe none of these songs will make it into MY list of all time favorites, but they are decent songs. These people deserve success, from the performers to the musicians, to the writers, to the producers and publishers who recognized why these songs had hit potential verses the other songs they were faced with at the same time they were sorting through to select these. All the hits and classics from days gone by, way back when, well they weren't the only songs out there at that time. There was also "crap" out there way back then... and much of what was out there sounded alike way back then, too. I love a lot of the old stuff in many genres, but I get a little tired of it, and WANT to hear something new and fresh. I'd be disappointed if all the new stuff coming out sounded like all the old stuff I've heard all my life. Yes, the music industry has changed. The way music is brought into being is nothing like it used to be, so I'm learning. That's a shame, and makes my dream much more difficult. But, it doesn't mean that worthy material isn't being put out now-a-days, imo. Now, a lot of what comes out today is "crap", I agree... but not all of it. And I still maintain that not all of it was good, even way back when.

That's just my 2 cents.

--Jen


The dictionary is the only place where success comes before work.--Mark Twain
#920469 - 09/07/11 01:48 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Gary E. Andrews]  
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I LOVE YOU THIS BIG-Scotty McCleery

4:07 Fans' comments might give some insight into the market. The 'qualities' of the lyric and production are not elements in their considerations, as they might be to us as analytical students of songwriting. The girls like the boy singing it. He has some past name/face/persona recognition from American Idol which plays a role in the appeal.

In one listen I found it hard not to drift off to my own thoughts. It's very repetitious. It seems to have one big idea and no support for it. The theme seems to get repeated, lots of concept, and no story came across to me.

REMIND ME-PAISLEY/UNDERWOOD

4:07 Long intro. Very repetitious. I didn't watch the videos as I listened to these songs. I wanted them to sell me with sound, not pretty girl and scenery. The 'Remind Me' concept seems weak to me, not a real punch-line hook.

WANNA TAKE YOU HOME-GLORIANA

3:55 A song of desire. But it doesn't seem to go anywhere as a story. It repeats the desire, all seeming to be in the imagination, not in reality. The whole thing could take place in a guy's head without moving off a bar stool. Sounds like a dance tune, which, again, may account for some of the popularity. Again, most of the consuming public is not as discriminating as you or I might be when critiquing the product in consideration of a purchase.

THE HOUSE RULES-CHRISTIAN KANE

3:54 A party song. There are no characters in a story. It comes close to being a laundry list of elements for a drunken barroom scene. It does a good job of giving me that picture. But it's not my scene, not a place I enjoy being, and seems to admire behavior I don't admire. And the lyric tells me not to come there if I don't like that sort of thing. It's a song about using alcohol, the most widespread and abused drug on planet Earth, and making the mistakes we make while under the influence.

DIRT ROAD ANTHEM-JASON ALDREAN./
3:41 It gets real laundry-listy right away, listing elements to set the scene as country, but the singer-character is barely in a story, not going beyond telling us where he is, what he's doing, but not interacting with anybody, saying what a pleasure it is to be drinking and driving, risking life and limb for himself and others, name-dropping George Jones, snuff (mouth/throat cancer), tobacco (435,000 dead a year, including the Marlboro Man; kills 1 of every 5 Americans who die), whiskey (250,000 dead a year, living lives of misery, creating misery for loved ones, and even strangers).


None of these songs appeal to me as a consumer. I don't want to buy them. I don't even need to hear them again. Of course I'm not their market, age, musical taste, etc. But they sure could use some good songs to sing couldn't they?

The mediocre, forgettable, weak product is adequate to float the industry along, but it's not sparking fire, blowing up big sales like some acts have at various times in the past, is it? There might be some big sellers out there, even among this top five list, but they're probably not as big as 'the good ol' days'. And they're not inspiring a new wave of good product either, in my opinion. They're imitations of what they think country's all about, and others will write imitations of these imitations and on it will go.

Probably none of these will become classics, covered by dozens or hundreds of other acts as time goes on. The fame these songs will garner can keep these acts touring for decades though. And radio will play them and pay royalties to writers and publishers, and probably make everyone involved a nice living for a while. And that's good enough for business. There's a market for each of them. I'm just not in it.
_________________________


There will always be another song to be written. Someone will write it. Why not you? www.garyeandrews.com
#920555 - 09/07/11 03:28 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Gary E. Andrews]  
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Marc Barnette Offline
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Marc Barnette  Offline
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I think you guys need to get out of your living rooms, learn a little about your audience, and the current world we live in because I really don't think you live in it.

If you can do it, get on the playing field. If you have to go back thirty to fifty years to find something you like, that is too bad. Sorry that you find this is weak writing. I dissagree incredibly with you, but that is what makes the world go round.
You are always welcome to suit up and play on the playing field.

MAB

#920563 - 09/07/11 03:49 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Marc Barnette]  
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I just listen to all of them (at least about 1/2 way through). As a collection of five -- they really don't get me that excited. But they are "popular" songs -- someone likes 'em and buys 'em (a lot of folks actually). Did you notice the crowd start cheering when Jason Aldean started rapping?

Of course, since I have been listening to popular country music over the past 3 or 4 years, I have heard lots and lots of songs that I really, really liked. Those five are not in that group, though.

There is an art to writing popular, commercial songs -- it is dang hard to pull off. Also, popular music today is major "artist" driven (and maybe it always has been). In those 5 songs, some of the melodic parts are real good, the lift and chorus lift and separate the song to a higher gear. It is decent, formula commercial pop country. Nothing wrong with that. I'd like to be able to to do it that well with the songs I write.


"It's supposed to be hard. If it wasn't hard, everyone would do it. The 'hard' is what makes it great."
Kevin @ bandcamp: Crows Say Vee-Eh (and Kevin @50/90 2019)
#920566 - 09/07/11 03:51 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Marc Barnette]  
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David Gill Offline
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Sweet, lovin' baby back ribs!! What's all this fussin' 'bout not havin' no good songs to listen to nowadays? They are what they are. You either like em or ya don't. If ya do? great. If ya don't? Well, that's just fine too. Nothing has changed. We all accept what we're willing to and curse what we don't. Somewhere in the middle we find time to love, laugh and be good to one another.

Today I choose to be in the middle. Anyone care to join me?


Peace, ya'll....

Dave


"Where there's a Gill, there's a way"
#920606 - 09/07/11 07:11 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: David Gill]  
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Sometimes I wonder if songwriters are not the best judges of songs grin

Scott

#920613 - 09/07/11 07:54 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Scott Campbell]  
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Sit down there, Sonny. Why when I was your age, I was older. We had horses that could outrun those autymobiles.


You've got to know your limitations. I don't know what your limitations are. I found out what mine were when I was twelve. I found out that there weren't too many limitations, if I did it my way. -Johnny Cash

It's only music.
-niteshift

Mike Dunbar Music

#920616 - 09/07/11 08:33 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Mike Dunbar]  
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Vicarn Online content
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Vicarn  Online Content
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I listened to the first three on this list.
I don't know what you mean by continuity.
Seems to me they all made sense. One line seemed to be connected to another.
I think there are songs that tell a story and there are hooky songs and then there are hooky songs that tell a story and stories that have hooks.
These fall into the hooky songs catagory. Great for partying and dancing but I wouldn't choose them if I was having a reflective and moody moment though.
Vic


It's never too late? Yes it is, so do it now.

If, given time, a monkey can write the complete works of Shakespeare maybe there's hope for me.

http://store.cdbaby.com/cd/vicarnold2

http://www.soundclick.com/vicarnold

http://soundcloud.com/vic-arnold

#920618 - 09/07/11 08:41 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Marc Barnette]  
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Mackie H. Offline
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Mackie H.  Offline
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MAB--

JMHO

BIZ IS BIZ--BUCKS--COULD THEY DO IT DIFFERENT MAYBE--LOTS OF WAYS TO SKIN A CAT--WE'RE STUCK WITH THEIR SYSTEM AND RULES

ART IS ART--JUDGED AND BOUGHT MUCH LATER, MAYBE AFTER WE'RE ALL GONE

MUSIC IS MUSIC--MAYBE NOT AS GREAT NOW--THE CLASSICS ARE DECIDED BY OTHERS LATER ON--LOOKING BACK AT 60 YEARS OF THE INDUSTRY, THERE ARE ONLY A FEW SONGS THAT I THINK ARE CLASSICS--I HAVE BOUGHT THEM AND LISTEN TO THEM FROM TIME TO TIME. NOT MANY ARE CURRENT HITS--

IT'S EACH TO HIS OWN--TIME MAY OR MAY NOT SMILE ON TODAY'S (GIN MILL APPROACH) TO NEW MUSIC --NO MORE 13 WEEKS ON THE HIT PARADE--I ALWAYS ASK "DO I REALLY LIKE THAT SONG ENOUGH TO BUY IT" -- MY RETIRED DOLLARS DON'T GO AS FAR AS THEY USED TO.

ALAS!……………


HISTORY OF MUSIC WILL BE HERE AFTER WE ARE ALL GONE! CLASSICS ARE DECIDED AFTER WE'RE GONE--

Mackie



Last edited by Mackie H.; 09/08/11 12:29 AM.
#920651 - 09/07/11 11:58 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Marc Barnette]  
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Gary E. Andrews Offline
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We've all listened to the links, presumably. Some of us have heard the songs on the radio.

Can you sing them? Can you sing some part of them? Or did they fail to hook you?


There will always be another song to be written. Someone will write it. Why not you? www.garyeandrews.com
#920668 - 09/08/11 02:25 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Gary E. Andrews]  
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Jen Warner Offline
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Well, I have to be honest, no I cannot sing any of them, not even in part unless I listen again... and the only 1 I liked well enough to listen to again on purpose was "Remind Me". I'd heard them all before, but none of them stayed with me. That still doesn't convince me they are all bad. Then next person might feel differently about these songs than I do.


--Jen

Last edited by Jen Warner; 09/08/11 02:27 AM.

The dictionary is the only place where success comes before work.--Mark Twain
#920670 - 09/08/11 02:40 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Jen Warner]  
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Jack Swain Offline
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Marc, I know you have found success in Nashville and are a strong proponent of the current writing that is taking place. Knowing that, could you please provide some insight on what is really good about any of these five songs? Could you just pick one of them and walk us through how it is so good? Where the craft is that makes it stand out in your mind as a good piece of songwriting? Or perhaps it is better to simply call it song craft if that is more appropriate to describe it? Anyway, I would love to get your perspective on one of these five songs.

#920671 - 09/08/11 02:52 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Jen Warner]  
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Rob T Offline
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Arizona
Once in awhile a really great song comes along in almost every genre. Country fans grew up with a certain feel, format, expectation even, and as we got older, things changed and evolved.

Like technology and almost everything else, the evolution in Country and it's various pop crossover versions has accelerated over the last few years. It has come to a place where the music that country fans would love to listen to is almost unrecognizable to them because of the feel and format they have learned to love and expect.

I feel that this is due to the demographics that the lables and for that matter the radio stations are catering to. The older I get the less music I buy. The less radio music I listen to.

Being a songwriter myself, it's second nature for me to evalutate the merits of any song I hear, especially if it is a top seller, (since none of mine are). Most people who fall into the targeted demographic are not songwriters, and hear what the stations play. The stations play what the lables send them to play (with the exception of a few stations that play independent artists.

Most people who are in the buying demogrphic buy what is on the shelves and what they hear all day long on the radio or TV. What else can they be expected to do?

Ever meet anyone that doesn't know who Alison Krauss is? That would be someone who is missing out on a great deal of musical enjoyment, simply because she is not played much on the radio, even most so called Country stations.

My opinion is that the industry has decided what they want to sell or what they can sell, and after all, why else are they there?

Does it have to be a great song to be a hit? I guess that depends on who is defining great, and who is believing them.

Rob


#920673 - 09/08/11 02:55 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Mackie H.]  
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Heck Mackie,

If I liked a song good enough to buy it, I would'a wrote it ...... crazy

Rob

#920706 - 09/08/11 09:47 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Rob T]  
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Dave Rice Online content
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Mornin' Fellow Twangers:

I'm guessing that in two years time, none of these songs will be echoing through dormitory halls or blaring on the radios of passing cars. (Well, maybe on an iPad or two at McDonalds... LOL!)

To my way of listening and thinking... these songs are okay... just okay. Probably began as the figment of some collaborative effort then molded and shaped by some New York Producer living in Nashville and creating his idea of what constitutes "Country."

Let's see, what would Simon Cowell say? Probably nothing constructive... LOL!

#920716 - 09/08/11 10:25 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Ray E. Strode]  
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Hi Ray

I don’t really know what you are talking about, they all make perfect sense. In fact there’s a little songwriting lesson to be gleaned from that list – i.e. pick a hook and drive towards it. Maybe it’s the succinctness (less conversational) of the lines you don’t like, but that’s something that generally makes songs sound slicker and often occurs in the re-writes.

Have a go as a writing exercise – you might enjoy it smile

Nige

#920718 - 09/08/11 10:33 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Scott Campbell]  
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Originally Posted by Scott Campbell
Sometimes I wonder if songwriters are not the best judges of songs grin

Wonder no more grin

#920724 - 09/08/11 11:03 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Dave Rice]  
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OK, I hate to just sit on the Sidelines whenever there's a good Controversy a-Goin'.

So..I listened to all 5 & here goes some notes & nits:

1) "Love You This Big". Opening Line: "I know I'm still young". Guess we KNOW the Demographic this one's penned-for, don't we?
This Big repeats the Hook like every successful Pop Song ever has.
"I love you to the Moon & Back/Deeper than the ocean/Write your name in stars across the sky" are as cliche as all-get-out. Half-Step MOD UP for Closing Chorus is also a pretty-cliche device for Ending Strong. (Works tho, don't it?)

2) "Remind Me" felt more truly-Conversational than the first one did. The Guitar Intro kicked it off nicely...I liked the pairing of these 2 stars who can both Write as well as they Sing.
"If you still love me, don't just assume I know"..now THERE'S a Killer Line that well-sets-up a Killer Two-Word Hook. There's some seemingly-genuine Chemistry Here/This'd be MY Choice for the One-In-5 Songs that'll Still Be Playin'..Years from Now.

3) "Wanna Take You Home": Enjoyed the Bitta Banjo on the way in.
"You're the best I've ever seen/You should never be lonely"..."2 AM & the bar is closing"..etc: Cliche City, right down to the Title...but, hey, it IS a Bar Song/The "Thought"-Conveyed is as old as Time Itself/Sex STILL Sells.

4) "The House Rules": LOVED the line "We don't take kindly to serious"..some real-good rhyming here. The phrase "Rock-&-Roll Rodeo" seemed Prophetic for What's Happening To Country, all right... I've yet to hear this one on the radio...but would listen to more from this Artist. Good, but maybe too-brief, Guitar & Harp Solo in there.

5) "Dirt Road Anthem"...This one's ALL OVER the Airwaves lately, IS both Pleasant to Hear (Chorus-Wise) and Me, Personally, I kinda Hate the RAP Sections..in a "Country Song". Still, this one ranks as the "Most-Poetic" of the 5, & it TOO is aimed at a much Younger Country-Hood. The Chorus gets Repeated maybe Once-too-Often (& gets boring) by Song's-End. The lyrical-Mention of "George Jones" is "Formula-Formula" again...

Think this Last One..and "Remind Me"..are two you'll hear on Oldies Nights..years in The Future. (Me, I'll take "Red Dirt Road" over the Anthem one, any day..& that "Cold Beer sittin' on the Console" line shows a Total Disregard for Public Safety/SHAME onya, NashCity!)

All JMO--Best Wishes/Big Hugs,
Stan

#920727 - 09/08/11 11:23 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: "Tampa Stan" Good (D)]  
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Well I had me a listen to all them country songs and all of them are simply written, with a simple story line and message.

I honestly found that each line lead into the next like they should and each had an interesting hook.

I cannot see, from these examples anyway, where you might see a problem with continuity.

They sounded alright to me.

Just my 2 cents.

Douglas


"Is this a practice? They are all practices." John Denver

www.soundclick.com/dougmurphy

Skype Contact: douglas.murphy8
#920728 - 09/08/11 11:24 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Nigel Quin]  
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CONTINUITY. Sorry, I mispelled the word. That will teach me to check the dictionary. Continuity. A continuous state or quality, An unbroken choerent whole, etc. If a song leaves you guessing to what happens next or suddenly drops off a cliff and has no rime or reason for doing it but to fill a space you aren't going to give it much time. These songs are somewhat disjointed to me. Doesn't mean they won't be sucessful they just don't send me. And to be sure, these songs are a good example of what is coming out of Nashville. The Labels find a young, good looking artist, try to make them into a songwriter, because they don't want to pay outside writer's and get a mediocre product in most cases. The Artist may have one good Album and then get dropped from the Label.

Nigel, I have been listening to good songs since the early 50's. So If I ain't hearing it, it ain't there.


Ray E. Strode
#926569 - 10/06/11 12:25 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Ray E. Strode]  
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The chicken or the egg?
Does the public's short attention span cause the record industry, to push songs that are mostly hook heavy and unfulfilled story ideas?
Or does the industry's production of songs that are mostly hook heavy and unfulfilled story ideas contribute to the public's short attention span and low expectations? confused

Keep your chin up Ray.
Be careful when speaking ill of the Holy grail. laugh
Correct me if I wrong but I thought you where stating your preference, not saying that the songs shouldn't be played. confused confused

Like all businesses it's about the moo-laa and if the public is satisfied with hooks, dance anthems and reality shows, the entertainment industries will gladly accommodate us.

I too was disappointed in the Paisley/Underwood collab "Remind Me" but then my faith was restored when I heard "Easy" by Rascal Flatts and Natasha Bedingfield. What a stunner?
Remind me is #1 and Easy is #5, so I'm in the minority.
Hey, it's all subjective.

My quote for the day: "Rudeness with a smile doesn't make it less so" MisterNelson


"Yeees, I know... but I so enjoy trying!"
#926707 - 10/06/11 08:58 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Nelson]  
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What everyone has to remember is that every one of these songs and hundreds more like it, are "released" to the public every year. They all have the exact same promotion money, they have the exact same marketing campaigns, the exact same people putting them out and working them up and down the line. And every few months new songs and artists are released.

At the end, there is NO song that doesn't have popular support that continues on the radio, television, motion pictures, or in the public conciousness. In the end the public makes the final decision. If they don't buy it, it is gone faster than you can imagine.

There are and always have been songs and artists that defy everyone's sense of what is good or isn't good. All of us can site chapter and verse things that we didn't think deserved the attention it got and can recite chapter and verse things that we thought could not miss.

But you can't blame other people if your taste runs counter to theirs and you can't blame some "Machine" that controls anything because there is no such animal, contrary to what a lot of people looking far outside seem to think.

Whenever there is any thing in public conciousness that runs counter to our own opinions, the natural reaction is that "They are all crazy" and blame the public, music producers, artists, writers, whatever.

I don't agree with everything but I know how hard it is to get stuff out there. I am not arrogant enough to think that I know it all. There are things I "don't get" but I can't blame other people because their opinions differ from mine.

Just part of life.

As always, all anyone ever has to do is write those monster songs, form their own publishing and record companies, raise the nessasary capital, get their artists out there, convince the public what they should do through marketing campaigns, and prove their opinions.

Only takes about $2.5 million to get into the game. Go for it.

MAB

MAB

#926801 - 10/07/11 10:54 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Marc Barnette]  
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They are ALL run of the mill mediocre pop songs.....take a good looking kid and a clever engineer and allow his production skills to mask the poor writing and performance skills to sell the record...well the rest is history and probably the future.

#926806 - 10/07/11 11:14 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: BIG JIM MERRILEES]  
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Then write them better, get your own artists and show everybody how it's done.

MAB

#926820 - 10/07/11 12:14 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Marc Barnette]  
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Marc we have been there before with your argument....as I say it is a closed shop and NOBODY is going to let the little guy muscle in....no matter how talented they are.
You should know more than anybody else....in this business talent counts for little...it is all about connections.....and just about anything will make it given the right backing, hype and marketing....talent and song quality dont enter the equation.

#926887 - 10/07/11 08:10 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: BIG JIM MERRILEES]  
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Jim,

We have been down that road before and you are as wrong now as you always are and being as far away from it as you are I understand why. I personally have worked with and still do work with people who two years ago were no body and now have top ten records. I also have personal knowledge of dozens of others. I get a little tired of you belittling all of us here and talking about things you don't have any knowledge of.

You don't understand the way this works, you have no knowledge of what you talk about. Sorry but you just don't. I watch it almost every day. I see little nobodies rise and I see people that were once on top of the charts fall.

I really think you probably should either learn what you are talking about or really not talk about it.

MAB

Last edited by Marc Barnette; 10/07/11 08:11 PM.
#926891 - 10/07/11 09:10 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Marc Barnette]  
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Marc things here in the UK are exactly like I say....I know that from first hand knowledge and experience and there is apparently little difference between us and you.......I watch AI and America's got no talent....just like everyone else. Now I occasionally listen to the Country charts and check on what is happening across the pond..I do not see much difference in talent between the pop and country charts...If you say that these people are very talented and deserving of their success then it is you that has the problem. Nashville is just as corrupt and guilty of producing mediocre crap as everywhere else.

Put your money where your mouth is and explain just exactly why these 5 songs are anything special and deserving of top ten success.... cause I sure as hell do not see it. I could almost at random select 5 songs from our own MP3 boards or from Ourstage or from Soundclick or just about any other similar site that would stand up against them....given the hype and backing these people get.

One question I would ask you which will prove my point and prove you wrong......Now you claim that there are many thousands of guys going to the Mecca called Nashville writing songs and performing and trying to climb the ladder and getting a cut. I know that to be true. So how come so much garbage rises to the top? Even I know that in Nashville they cannot all be that bad.

For once get off your soapbox and admit the truth......the music industry is a sham it is corrupt and having talent has nothing to do with success...and success is nothing to do with having talent.

There are as always exceptions to the rule...but the rule is pretty constant....whatever side of the pond you live on.

I still cringe at the vocals of Taylor Swift despite first class production and her simplistic lyrics are pretty lame....but you rate her.....nuff said.

#926924 - 10/07/11 11:36 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: BIG JIM MERRILEES]  
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Big Jim: I won't argue with you on the quality of some of the stuff that rises to the top, but Taylor Swift is the real deal when it comes to writing "real" stuff in the country style.

I think these lyrics are pretty hot rod:

Our Song
(Taylor Swift)

I was riding shotgun with my hair undone
In the front seat of his car
He's got a one-hand feel on the steering wheel
The other on my heart

I look around, turn the radio down
He says, "Baby is something wrong?"
I say, "Nothing I was just thinking
How we don't have a song" and he says

Our song is the slamming screen door
Sneakin' out late, tapping on your window
When we're on the phone and you talk real slow
'Cause it's late and your mama don't know

Our song is the way you laugh
The first date man, I didn't kiss her and I should have
And when I got home, 'fore I said amen
Asking God if He could play it again

I was walking up the front porch steps
After everything that day
Had gone all wrong or been trampled on
And lost and thrown away

Got to the hallway, well, on my way
To my lovin' bed
I almost didn't notice all the roses
And the note that said

Our song is the slamming screen door
Sneakin' out late, tapping on your window
When we're on the phone and you talk real slow
'Cause it's late and your mama don't know

Our song is the way you laugh
The first date man, I didn't kiss her and I should have
And when I got home, 'fore I said amen
Asking God if He could play it again

I've heard every album, listened to the radio
Waited for something to come along
That was as good as our song

'Cause our song is the slamming screen door
Sneakin' out late, tapping on his window
When we're on the phone and he talks real slow
'Cause it's late and his mama don't know

Our song is the way he laughs
The first date man, I didn't kiss him and I should have
And when I got home, 'fore I said amen
Asking God if He could play it again
Play it again, oh, yeah, oh, oh, yeah

I was riding shotgun with my hair undone
In the front seat of his car
I grabbed a pen and an old napkin
And I wrote down our song


"It's supposed to be hard. If it wasn't hard, everyone would do it. The 'hard' is what makes it great."
Kevin @ bandcamp: Crows Say Vee-Eh (and Kevin @50/90 2019)
#926926 - 10/08/11 12:03 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Kevin Emmrich]  
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Here's another new group making it up the charts: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QGwnFz_5xRE , dont they deserve to be popular?


"It's supposed to be hard. If it wasn't hard, everyone would do it. The 'hard' is what makes it great."
Kevin @ bandcamp: Crows Say Vee-Eh (and Kevin @50/90 2019)
#927013 - 10/08/11 12:43 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Kevin Emmrich]  
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Marc Barnette Offline
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Jim,

You don't like the current state of the music business. Fine. I don't have to "put my money where my mouth is" or get off my soap box" to your arrogance. I don't view it like you do and I won't be talked to like a child that doesn't know what he is talking about by you or anyone.

You talk about America. You don't know America, you are not here, and the business. I respond to your comments, not invent whatever you are inventing. You are claiming everything is crap, you are claiming that our industry sucks, the entertainment industry sucks. Fine. You have your own soapbox.

Your comments on this is that it is all controlled by a group of people and that is garbage. They all compete. Material and artist compete. You continue to tell me that "the nobodies" can't get anywhere I and I give you example after example of people that were nobodies two-five years ago and you ignore it. You ignore pretty much everything due to your biases.

But you can be ignorant and belittle all you want to. If you want to do something about it why don't you instead of everything that doesn't fit into your idea of what is good or not.

There is really no talking or dealing with you. You are like every crumudgeon I have ever met who's time has past and you want to sit around and be bitter. Well, be bitter. I've tried to reason with you but there is no reason.

And I've done it for the last time I am going to. There are people I can't get along with and I guess you are one of them.

Good luck in whatever you do.

MAB

#927040 - 10/08/11 02:44 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Marc Barnette]  
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That is OK Marc....I know now that you cannot back up what you say......or are afraid to speak the truth.....I have no aspiration to be a star...never have had.....I had my chance and refused because I did not like the people who make the decisions or the way the Biz is run. Not much has changed...if anything it has got worse......what surprises me is that YOU who obviously has talent and do have aspirations have not progressed as far as you could.........Your blood must boil when you see those untalented nobodys you talk about leapfrog you and reach the dizzy heights you can only dream of....while you mentor starters hold songwriting classes for no hopers and guide tours of places you should be master of.
Some of us know talent when we see it and can spot hype and mediocrity a mile off. I am not hypocritical...or pretending we all have a chance...... enough to pretend these acts have any talent. Yes I may be a crumugeon or whetever the word is...but that is better than an ass licker....looking for crumbs... in a sea full of shallow untalented folk who have no thought other than making money.....and those two faced suits who have no appreciation of music or knowledge of it....but control it.

#927047 - 10/08/11 03:03 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: BIG JIM MERRILEES]  
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Ray E. Strode Online content
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So Big Huhah,
How the hell is the weather in Scotland these days? Wind blowing off the North Sea? Snow flying yet? A neice of mine as far as I know visited there in September. I may get a report in December. There are some realitives of mine that were from Scotland as I understand it. But they came to America a century or so ago. Write a hit!


Ray E. Strode
#927058 - 10/08/11 03:50 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Ray E. Strode]  
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Thanks Ray.....You know there is a story about it raining for forty days and nights and a man called Noah had to build a boat to save everyone......HUGH just a typical Scottish summer. I have no aspirations to write a hit although hearing the crap in the charts it would be no big deal....now getting it in front of the bloodsuckers who decide what the next hit will be is another matter.
I am in a showcase next month where the top Scottish acts perform in front of an invited audience of agents and bookers. A years diary depends on that one spot and an acts ability to impress.....there are some great acts performing.....I bet some of those so called stars in the charts both yours and mine who earn millions would not get any bookings or last five minutes in the business from what I have heard of their performances especially the live ones....even on a bad day most of our showcase acts would struggle to put on such a bad performance. No I am not bitter just truthful.
Now when it comes to mediocrity I think both of us can make a pretty astute judgment......sadly there would appear to be those who cannot.....some are regulars on this forum and others are the suits who cannot spot talent if it bit them on the ass and persist in feeding us the crap we have become accustomed to.

#927078 - 10/08/11 05:53 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: BIG JIM MERRILEES]  
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I've been scanning this thread and have been involved in others like it. I like the old stuff but that doesn't mean I think the new stuff is always bad. It's just not my cup of tea, not what I'd choose as my musical drug of choice.

Merle Haggard is my all-time favorite singer. I could listen to him for hours singing songs I'd heard a thousand times. But in the 70s he did songs like "The Old Man From The Mountain's Coming Home" and it was a number one song that almost made me puke.

I like the Beatles. Some of their stuff is sheer magic to me. Some of their stuff is the among most idiotic rendering of notes and chords I can imagine.

Ever notice how the "most hated songs" TV retrospectives are full of hits? Songs that people loved but are now seen as drivel? How do we explain that?

That's life. I'm 55. I'm one of the old curmudgeons Marc talks about. I sort of like being a curmudgeon sometimes.

For me, "Proud Mary" is nowhere near the song "Both Sides Now" is but man I love "Proud Mary."

Let people like what they like. Taylor Swift has a lot of writing talent in my book. Carrie Underwood is a lot better singer than Taylor Swift in my book. Jason Aldean is a good singer but I don't like his music as a whole though I do like "Big Green Tractor."

Let the good times roll but don't be crushed!

#927084 - 10/08/11 06:33 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Sausagelink]  
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I am 58 but young at heart and can appreciate good music regardless of the age or taste of the person who writes or performs it. I am not suckered in and never have been by just hype, image or looks. Problem is now more than ever the people who make it big tend to have the hype looks and image but lack the quality of material and performance....and whatever happened to originality. It has been a very long time since I saw anything in the charts that had that element.
That is my gripe......and I think it is a very fair one....especially when there are countless many who do have the skills and talent but are never given the chance.
I am writing this as I am watching the X factor.....not only are the third rate acts woefully bad to be considered top artists but the comments from the judges/mentors are so shallow twisted and obviously contrived.....of course they would never tell the truth and admit their acts suck when their breadwinners are standing in front of them....but it does turn my stomach to hear such rubbish and hype for at best mediocre people who can barely sing in tune. Sad thing is that in several weeks at least one of them will hit the charts with a number one.....now it could be anybody...that is the power of the people behind them....what is disgraceful is watching the twisted judges abuse such power....sometimes I wonder if they are deliberately doing it to win a bet or just show they can.
Now someone will say that I am talking rubbish and that if they were no good then the public would not buy their records......sorry I am too cynical and experienced to fall for that...the public ar so gullible they will believe in and buy anything if told to. Looking up a duo called Jedward or a guy called Wagner who were on previous years shows will prove my point.

#927192 - 10/09/11 10:17 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Ray E. Strode]  
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It's about 'feeding the industry'. The CM industry is going to crank out so much work every month, but only the best that is available in that increment of time. Some months are going to be better than others. once in a while, a great song will make it through. Do you think that the business will ever say, "We just don't have any good songs this month, so we aren't going to produce any".?
The Taylor Swift song is cute if you are 18-20 years old. It's what that audience can relate to. Many of us can remember that time in our lives but want to be moved by our emotions rather than our glands. One does what sells and she does that very well.
One more aspect of our condition as songwriters is worth mentioning. I can really only speak from a personal perspective, but when I started writing songs, I started really LISTENING to song lyrics and productions, and most of it began to sound kind of shallow. I think that's because there are very few people making the decisions about what gets through, and that's based on formulas and individual tastes, plus the mood the exec is in that day.
The real creativity is coming from indie artists, and once in a while one of those gets through.

#927193 - 10/09/11 10:28 AM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Daddio]  
Joined: Apr 2011
Posts: 67
Daddio Offline
Serious Contributor
Daddio  Offline
Serious Contributor

Joined: Apr 2011
Posts: 67
Louisiana
Big Jim,
The 'talent shows' are about building a following for the eventual winner. They will have ready made sales before the CD ever comes out. Those shows have proved how strong CM is in the music market since the listening audience votes on the acts. The last Idol was a perfect example. The last two standing were country. Ever wonder how that must chap the judges, who are Pop and Rock, and they have to sit there and see CM dominate? A couple of the shows have added 'token' CM judges recently, wonder why that was?

#927242 - 10/09/11 03:41 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: Daddio]  
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 8,463
BIG JIM MERRILEES Offline
BIG JIM MERRILEES  Offline

Top 20 Poster

Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 8,463
Edinburgh, Scotland. UK
I understand exactly what you are saying but it still remains that the general standard of popular music whether it be pop, rock or country has fallen dramatically.
Gone are the days when people had to serve an apprenticeship to gain experience and had to have a certain minimum standard of musicianship before even being considered for a career in the industry. Nowadays anybody off the street regardless of talent and ability, can, and do make it.
All I am saying is that it is so wrong.......and lowers the bar.

#927313 - 10/09/11 10:52 PM Re: CONTUNITY IN SONGS [Re: BIG JIM MERRILEES]  
Joined: Oct 2011
Posts: 5
Phil314159 Offline
Casual Observer
Phil314159  Offline
Casual Observer

Joined: Oct 2011
Posts: 5
Originally Posted by BIG JIM MERRILEES
Marc we have been there before with your argument....as I say it is a closed shop and NOBODY is going to let the little guy muscle in....no matter how talented they are.
You should know more than anybody else....in this business talent counts for little...it is all about connections.....and just about anything will make it given the right backing, hype and marketing....talent and song quality dont enter the equation.


Close-knit shop, yes. Closed? I don't believe so. Connections do help, yes. That's just life for just about anything.

Connections aren't that hard to make. Go to open mics in Nashville and sing your best songs. Meet people and make friends. If your songs are any good, eventually you will be asked by other writers to write with them. Even if they don't have a deal yet, make friends with them and do some co-writes. Who knows where they'll be later on, and then you'll have some connections.


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