Saturday, February 26, 2011

Latest Local Songwriting News

Last week's songwriting showcase was cancelled due because of a disagreement with the owner of The City Loft. The Cartersville Songwriters Exchange is meeting at the home of Randy and Patricia Owens for now. The search is on for a meeting place where we can perform our music. If you have an establishment and would like to help out the local talent, please contact us. Visit to find out more and to contact Randy.

I wrote a song this morning inspired by the Gershwin classic "Summertime". I hope I like it tomorrow. I found a handy website for songwriters struggling to find the right rhyme. It is an online rhyme finder that will provide one, two and three syllable rhymes as well as phrases that end with a rhyming word. As songwriters we are extremely fortunate to live in these times when so much is right there at our fingertips to help us develop as musicians and songwriters. The link to the online rhyme generator site is

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Part One of Job One for Aspiring Songwriters by Rand Bishop

Taken from

I find that I really don’t know exactly what I know until I express it, sometimes verbally, but more often via the written word. My compulsion to keep reminding myself of the many things I’ve learned over the course of more than four decades in the music biz (went quick, believe me), has led me to author two published books for songwriters, along with numerous essays, articles, and blogs on the subject. And, during those 40+ years, I’ve observed some patterns as to how songwriters become successful—and stay that way.

Read more -

Friday, February 18, 2011

Protest Songs - Will Anyone Want To Hear Them These Days?

I've written a sixties style protest song that I think has pretty decent lyrics and a good chorus. The song actually had its genesis back a few years ago after it became more and more clear that the Iraq war was turning out to be a debacle based upon lies. In its original form it was in a different key and I attempted to make it have a three-four time signature like a waltz. I wasn't too happy with my lyrics, and the waltz time signature made it sound a bit too sing-song, but I did like the chorus. There it sat for quite some time. Lately I have been trying to extend my playlist of original songs, so I thought to myself it would be a shame to scrap this one entirely. With this in mind, I changed the lyrics, chord sequence, melody and time signature. Now I am happy with it.

I sang it acapella at the last Cartersville Songwriters Exchange meeting (last Wednesday). I guess they liked it, but I wonder how many people were thinking "Oh great, a protest song...". It was cool I got some compliments on how my singing. One of the guys said I sounded a lot fuller and more resonant vocally than I usually do when I sing and play guitar. I am still developing as a singer so this is encouraging.

Here is the chorus of the song:

My country right or wrong

Don't ever ask yourself why

My country right or wrong

While the fire rains down from the sky

So what do my readers think? Are politically charged protest songs dead?

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Cartersville Songwriter's Exchange Meeting Now at Antonino's Italian Grotto

Last Wednesday evening marked the first Cartersville Songwriters Exchange meeting at Antonino's Italian Grotto in Cartersville. The owners of Antonino's have agreed to let us meet and perform inside the restaurant on Wednesday nights. This has been a slow night for business. We will also be able to hold special events in the upstairs room. Patricia Owens is hard at work trying to make the room look more like a venue to hear live music and she also has encouraged CSE members to try to think of a name for it.

I enjoyed the meeting, and I thought the food at Antonino's was very good. For dinner I ordered Chicken Francese with a side salad and a glass of chardonnay. The meeting began a few minutes after 7:30 to allow people who were still eating to finish their meals. We did not have the benefit of having a P.A. system in place, so performers generally had to strum their acoustic guitars harder and play material that didn't have quiet sections. As usual, it was a treat to hear local songwriters play their stuff.

CSE always encourages the general public to come out and attend our meetings. Admission is free.


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