The High Song

The Components of How to Write a Hit Song
by: Ty Cohen

As a songwriter, you’ll constantly be observing the world around you as well as looking deep inside yourself for material. There are several steps you can follow when exploring how to write a hit song. Your first step will be to create a title. From your title you can move either to the lyrical aspect or if you are more experienced as a music composer, you may want start with your melody.

A melody is defined as a rhythmically organized sequence of single tones so related to one another as to make up a particular phrase or idea. In layman’s terms, this is the most recognizable part of your song that people find themselves humming over and over. In fact, isn’t this the idea? You want your melody to play over and over again in people’s minds. You want it to stick!

Even though your song might be born from a chord progression or a set of lyrics, songs are historically written by designing the melody from the beginning. When writing your melody there are a few decisions and steps you must take.

You must first decide what key you would prefer your melody to be in. The two keys are major and minor, this is something every songwriter must know. Normally, minor keys are used for gloomy-like, dissident melodies and major keys are used for the more pleasant, upbeat songs. Next, pick a tempo or speed and you can continue to improvise from there.

The process of figuring out how to write a hit song does involve acquiring a general knowledge of music theory and instruments. My suggestion would be to either pick up a guitar or take a piano lesson so you’ll have an instrument to help you write that ever so crucial melody.

Remember, your melody cannot be weak. Sing your melody in your head, out loud or and an instrument over and over as you write it. This will ensure you hear if it is exciting, is catchy and most importantly, makes sense. Although it isn’t absolutely necessary to be a music composer to write a melody, those that are, are able to write out their melody on paper to see the shape and contour of the music.

Lastly, if you get to overwhelmed and need a breaktake one! No one said that melody writing is easy! You definitely need a clear mind and any serious focus. If you find that you aren’t skilled in music composition or have no idea how to play an instrument then get help. Even if you know how any extra help never hurt anyone. Learning how to write a hit song is a never ending process of discovery so don’t get frustrated and give up. Instead explore other avenues of help in the area of melody writing!