One of my favourite songwriters is Paul McCartney and I found a video of him on the Parkinson show describing how he wrote a song after being inspired from a Picasso print hanging up at the hospital where his first child was born.
Paul mentions in the interview that after a week of staring at this picture while waiting for his wife Linda to recover, he had the urge to try and work out what two fingered chord the old man in the painting was playing.
From that idea he decided to see if he could write a song by limiting himself to using only two fingers on the guitar at all times.
Here is the video of his interview with Michael Parkinson…
This really shows the genius of Paul McCartney at work and how through setting your own limitations, you can create your own inspiration.
On further research I discovered that the song in question became When the Wind Is Blowing an unreleased song from around the time Paul McCartney’s RAM album was recorded in 1970…
Have you ever set up some self imposed limitations as a way to write a song? What was it? Let me know.
As songwriters, we all need a bit of inspiration every now and then to keep our songwriting process moving along.
So… With this in mind I found a two part series of Songwriting Inspiration Tips from the Bandzoogle Blog that gives all of us songwriters a timely reminder that songwriting inspiration can be manufactured through disciplined activity rather than just waiting for it to appear from the ether.
Part 1 of the Songwriting Inspiration Tips series starts off with the following statement…
When you’re suffering from writer’s block, the solution can come in many forms, including de-stressing, self-care, external influence, or some sort of inspiration. For the songwriter, two types of inspiration can help: internal or external (sometimes both!)
The article goes on to list internal and external activities that you can do to generate songwriting inspiration for yourself while Part 2 gives us…
…non-traditional ways to inspire hit songs by using numbers, letters or sounds.
Both articles are definitely well worth the read if you’re looking for ways to increase your ability to generate songwriting ideas. I know I certainly got a lot out of it.