Hi Nigel,

Yes lists should not be taken to extremes, but if you are writing to make a little money or for the want of hearing your song sung on the radio, T.V. that certain rules come into play,

So many writers think it's all inspiration and hardy change from their first so called ispired draft, that's nonsense.
beacause we are writing and composing from our thoughts,
first drafts are bound to be cliche.

Re writing is essential honing it down till it's the very best you can do, and that may not be good enough.

In the same token a listener can only react if his brain has
a reasonable helping of the subject matter, and he/her is in tune to the voice and the emotion. comedy songs apart.

Brittany sings songs for young people who are growing up
The majority of country singers sing songs that apeall to women from 25 to 35,.

Catchy songs do not need to be novels, just a fresh way of saying things in a new and apealing way.

What I listen for in a song is the singers voice, and the song
needs to match the image of that voice, take Sex Bomb Tom Jones
a great lyric, great music matched to a great singer.

I dont know of anyone on todays country scene who can bring a lump to my throat like Wille Nelson.

But the song must be very good as well.

Good writing is the answer, prosody between your lyric and the music, of course we can bend the rules.

But without rules, familiar format ,a catchy hook, and clever chord harmony, all you have is songs fit only for a vanity album.
that no one can, or wants to remember.

Sincerely Matt Stoneham

Without the right music your clever lyrics will never be heard, if you want success be prepared to re write many times and even change the meter you chose originally