Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Here's to Singer/Songwriters

I get to rub shoulders with lot of great singer/songwriters at the Cambridge Drive Concert Series.  They amaze me.  I've never been a good songwriter.  It requires skills that I just don't have.  Think of it for a second...  a good songwriter has to be able to write a memorable melody, surround it with chords that make sense and aren't too predictable, and has to be able to condense human experience into three or four verses with a chorus and bridge that fit rhythmically and likely have some sort of rhyme scheme.  Then, they have to be able to play and sing all of that in front of an audience.  More often than not, they do their own booking, web site management, and maintain their relationships with their fans.  And they have to have at least a passing knowledge of how to use the gear they need and what gear is available to do whatever they need.  It is just a very broad and diverse set of skills that not any people have.

I'm a reasonably good guitar player with a good ear, a good sense of melody, a good sense of how an acoustic guitar (vs. an electric guitar or some other instrument) works in a song, and reasonable knowledge of theory (both in my head and in my hands)...  I'm not good at writing lyrics.  I'm much too prosaic.  And I'm not particularly good at performing by myself.  I forget lyrics.  When I'm singing, I tend to get nervous about the whole package and it impacts my guitar playing in a not good way.   Then there are the other non-musical pieces... some I'm quite good at and others not so.    I marvel at the singer/songwriters who do all of that while making incredible music.

So, here's to the singer/songwriters who do all of that AND make our lives richer with songs that touch our hearts and delight our ears!


stevekey33 said...

We are own our worst critics. You're an excellent guitarist, and the songs you've written with Alexis are particularly good. Did I mention that you're on our radio show next week? I included a song from your performance at Laetitia Winery. So here's to Roy Donkin, Songwriter At Play! SK, host of Songwriters At Play,

roy said...

Thank you Steve.

I was very happy with most of the songs that Alexis & I wrote. She does the parts I don't quite well... Probably 50-75% of the melodies are hers and almost all of the lyrics.

I'll have to listen to the radio show... although being our own worst critics is not necessarily a bad thing.

You, on the other hand, do put the entire package together in a wonderful way. So, here's to Steve Key! (and for my readers who don't know Steve, here's his URL - Go listen to some of his amazing songs)