You can go and read this whole article if you want – but a lot of it is about guitars and tech gear that the interviewee uses and might not be your bag!
I read it all though and pulled these two nuggest from James Blunt’s wisdom.
Hate him all you like (even he is bored by his massive hit’s ubiquity!) but don’t ignore what he thinks made his song such a hit.
We talk about the basics of what make a hit song in our free eBook for musicians (get it if you haven’t yet) and this is along the same lines.
“Well, I don’t have any kind of formula. Stay The Night is something like three minutes and 30 seconds or something like that, and You’re Beautiful is probably bang-on three minutes and 30 seconds, as well. That seems to be kind of a marker, in a way – it’s enough, but it doesn’t drag on forever.
“More than anything, though, I think the role of a songwriter is to capture an emotion. If you can do that with absolute honesty and clarity, then you’re well on your way. Don’t get me wrong: I do like a lot of music where the meaning is open to interpretation. But if you’re talking about the kinds of songs that hit people straight away and they can relate to directly, you’ve got to go for a very pure message.”
and on whether he injects his own feelings into his work:
“My songs are my way of looking in the mirror and seeing my own flaws, so it’s not difficult. In fact, it would be much harder to write very superfluous songs, things that didn’t mean anything to me.”
See those bits in bold? That’s the bits to take away and use.
I just got the Adele album at the weekend. It’s awesome. She’s great. ALL the songs do this. It’s the fastest selling record of the year so far in 15 countries. Wonder if that’s got anything to do with the songs?