How To Write A Popular Song - online manual

A non-technical how-to-do it system for the aspiring song writer.

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and where to place them properly, that the amateur song­writer should seek and try to become familiar with.
Whenever you find it difficult to continue satisfactorily in a melody you have commenced upon, or hard to remember a melody the second time you play, whistle, or sing it over, you can safely rely upon it that this is not the melody you want. Lay the work aside until some later time when you can formulate and work out some new idea that flows readily and easily, and that "sticks" to you right away. There will grow upon you then the pleasant conviction that this latter melody is the right one, and that no amount of further ex­perimenting will ever make it otherwise.
Often, upon reading over a set of good lyrics, a melody will instantly formulate itself; you feel inspired, you sing it from beginning to end with almost the same ease as you would a familiar air; it almost talks the words. When a happy combination of circumstances like this, occurs it is safe to say that in ninety-nine cases out of a hundred it is an inspiration, and that it is the one and only melody for the lyric with which you wish to associate it.
Do not, however, think that your work is over when you have transferred this inspiration to paper. Far from it. It is here that the successful composer really starts. It is just as well to put your melody aside for a while; let your enthusiasm have time to grow cold; take it up again in a few days and see if it appeals to you as strongly as it did at first. See if it sings as easily, see if you have placed it in the right key for the best popular range —(this will lie discussed in another chapter)— and see if your intervals are easily sung Discard any awkward accidentals, if possible,—re-member the simpler if is the beticr the chance of real popu­larity. If you discover, after a strict analysis of all these
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E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III