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Writing credits for chord change/ removing parts
Old 20th October 2018
  #121
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This is the sticking point.

It doesn't happen "all the time"

Producers SOMETIMES co-write with an artist.

I, and all of the artists I have worked with, have NEVER written a song with a producer.

So, by your logic, it never happens?
Old 20th October 2018
  #122
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clump View Post
This is the sticking point.

It doesn't happen "all the time"

Producers SOMETIMES co-write with an artist.

I, and all of the artists I have worked with, have NEVER written a song with a producer.

So, by your logic, it never happens?
I'm saying that its common enough to work that way.

I'm not saying other things don't happen. .

You're just arguing.

EDIT:

Perhaps its a language thing. "All the time" doesn't mean "every time," its slang for "often enough."

As in "people jump off this bridge for fun all the time man, let's go for it."

Last edited by newguy1; 20th October 2018 at 11:07 PM..
Old 20th October 2018
  #123
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no i'm not
Old 20th October 2018
  #124
Quote:
Originally Posted by newguy1 View Post
Its still common for songwriters to write vocal ideas to instruments playing basic chords and pitch those to the producers they work with, either in voicenote form, or when they meet up for a songwriting session the writer will play out a bunch of ideas. Not everything is written to pre-existing tracks.
Who said anything about ‘pre-existing tracks’.
I was saying the need for an arranger is very rare these days. Songwriters and producers ‘arrange’ as the song is beibg written.
It seems to me you like to pointlessly argue for some reason.
????
What happens immediately after your songwriter pitches a bunch of basic ideas?
The producer or co-writer picks one idea and immediately seeks to progress the idea by designing sounds. They’ll find some percussive sounds and compose a beat, or they'll find a keyboard sound and start fleshing out some chords.
So from a very basic initial idea, the next thing that happens is sound design and arrangement.
That’s how the song is developed.

Hence no need for arrangers to work on completed songs. Exactly what I said.
The writers and producers sound design and arrange the parts as they are writing the song.
Often recording as they go in a DAW.
Some sounds and parts become keepers.
Old 21st October 2018
  #125
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You said this: "Hardly anyone presents a song as voice and guitar and needs an arranger or producer to make it sound like a record."

That's the only bit I corrected. People present songs as a voice and guitar to producers to make sound like a record fairly often. That's still a common way for songs to be made, especially in the songwriting to pitch to artists world. That's all.
Old 21st October 2018
  #126
Don’t know why I typed ‘producer’. I guess I was thinking of the Quincy Jones style that was mentioned earlier. But I started that post by saying there are hardly any pure arrangers working today. The exception being orchestral arrangers of course.
But my point was this.....songs are arranged and orchestrated from the early writing stages these days.
My post was about arrangers. Sorry for the late night slip of the finger.
Old 21st October 2018
  #127
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newguy1 View Post
You said this: "Hardly anyone presents a song as voice and guitar and needs an arranger or producer to make it sound like a record."

That's the only bit I corrected. People present songs as a voice and guitar to producers to make sound like a record fairly often. That's still a common way for songs to be made, especially in the songwriting to pitch to artists world. That's all.
I think that perhaps the reason I am struggling to agree with you has something to do with our differing opinions as to the definition of 'Songwriter'.

When I hear the word 'Songwriter' I immediately think of people like Paul McCartney, Elvis Costello, Stevie Wonder, Burt Bacharach , Kate Bush, Joni Mitchell, Alex Turner, Miles Kane, David Bowie, Prince etc etc.....The list is endless.

All of the above are musical, they can compose on a number of instruments, they probably know their way around a desk, they do not NEED a 'producer' to help them complete a song.

The "people" you reference are more than likely 'Top line writers' (a grand title for those who simply can't play a musical instrument)

By definition top line writers, are NOT songwriters. They need a producer to build a song around their sketch, because THEY CAN'T.

Not many musicians, ie SONGWRITERS, are going to enter a studio with a top line only, and ask the producer to write the music.
Old 21st October 2018
  #128
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clump View Post
I think that perhaps the reason I am struggling to agree with you has something to do with our differing opinions as to the definition of 'Songwriter'.

When I hear the word 'Songwriter' I immediately think of people like Paul McCartney, Elvis Costello, Stevie Wonder, Burt Bacharach , Kate Bush, Joni Mitchell, Alex Turner, Miles Kane, David Bowie, Prince etc etc.....The list is endless.

All of the above are musical, they can compose on a number of instruments, they probably know their way around a desk, they do not NEED a 'producer' to help them complete a song.

The "people" you reference are more than likely 'Top line writers' (a grand title for those who simply can't play a musical instrument)

By definition top line writers, are NOT songwriters. They need a producer to build a song around their sketch, because THEY CAN'T.

Not many musicians, ie SONGWRITERS, are going to enter a studio with a top line only, and ask the producer to write the music.
I’ll ignore the snobbyness and stick to the facts.

Some “topliners” only sing and write.

Most are proficient enough on an instrument to lay out chords and song ideas.

Many are great on an instrument and bring a guitar to every session, or spend much of the songwriting session at the keyboard.

Most have voicenotes full of ideas, from small clips to fleshed out songs, very much like the Taylor swift clips.

Most also have already-produced vocals where the original demo fell short, that they’ll redo with the producer if they’re feeling it.

Point is songwriters bring producers songs at the vocal/chord (or just vocal, in the last case) level to be turned into a record, which IMO sounds like what the OP did (since he’s talking about the producer changing chords and doesn’t bring up any parts. If he had brought the producer all the instrumental parts he’d be talking about those too. Who knows though, as usual the OP tapped out and us peanut gallery keep going on )
Old 21st October 2018
  #129
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I think you are being quite creative with the words "some" "most" and "many" there.

"MOST" songwriters per se do NOT work like that.
Old 21st October 2018
  #130
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I personally don't know ANY creatives that don't have scratch ideas. Spanning outside music into the other arts. And most songwriters I've worked with can play chords on an instrument, and have failed past demos with already-produced toplines. Those are the three "mosts" I used.

I'll amend to "many" instead of "most" though if you like. Doesn't change the point.
Old 21st October 2018
  #131
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newguy1 View Post
I personally don't know ANY creatives that don't have scratch ideas. Spanning outside music into the other arts. And most songwriters I've worked with can play chords on an instrument, and have failed past demos with already-produced toplines. Those are the three "mosts" I used.

I'll amend to "many" instead of "most" though if you like. Doesn't change the point.
I'm sorry but we keep coming back to this......"You Personally" do not represent the entire music industry.....can you not understand that?

You are assuming that your own experiences represent the entire industry and how it works.

That is the same as me saying (as I illustrated earlier)....."None of the artists that I know work like that, therefore it doesn't happen".

I am aware that SOME artists work that way, but they are in the minority.
Old 21st October 2018
  #132
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clump View Post
I'm sorry but we keep coming back to this......"You Personally" do not represent the entire music industry.....can you not understand that?

You are assuming that your own experiences represent the entire industry and how it works.
I'm not saying that the entire industry works a certain way because its my personal experience. I already amended that to "many" to appease you.

I'm just saying I personally have never met a creative who didn't have sketch ideas, in any creative field, ever. That doesn't even make basic sense to me, sketching out ideas tends to be a fundamental step of the creative process.

If you don't have sketches of ideas, or know creatives who don't and only roll with polished final product or nothing at all, cool. Ammended to "many."
Old 21st October 2018
  #133
Personally I don’t like to go back to things. So when writing I always start from a blank page.
My music is instrumental, so I appreciate that great songwriters are going to have notebooks or audio tapes of scratch ideas - lyric and melody ideas.
Talking of personal experience, since 1980 I’ve never worked on a record with an arranger (except for orchestral arranger). Producers tend to do a lot of arranging, chord changing, section editing.
FWIW, it seemed to me the OP was recording completed songs. That’s why they were miffed the studio owner asked for a co-write credit just for suggesting a couple of chord changes, or cutting the intro in half.
Old 21st October 2018
  #134
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
Personally I don’t like to go back to things. So when writing I always start from a blank page.
That's cool. That's more unique though, there's a 186 page thread called "rough demos" at the top of this forum for a reason.

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
My music is instrumental, so I appreciate that great songwriters are going to have notebooks or audio tapes of scratch ideas - lyric and melody ideas.
Yep

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
Talking of personal experience, since 1980 I’ve never worked on a record with an arranger (except for orchestral arranger). Producers tend to do a lot of arranging, chord changing, section editing.
Yep, the producers and songwriters pretty much do all the arranging now. Unless they're hiring out a string section or choir or something.

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
FWIW, it seemed to me the OP was recording completed songs. That’s why they were miffed the studio owner asked for a co-write credit just for suggesting a couple of chord changes, or cutting the intro in half.
Yeah who knows. . that's the big "depends" I keep saying: Writing credits for chord change/ removing parts
Old 21st October 2018
  #135
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newguy1 View Post
I'm not saying that the entire industry works a certain way because its my personal experience. I already amended that to "many" to appease you.

I'm just saying I personally have never met a creative who didn't have sketch ideas, in any creative field, ever. That doesn't even make basic sense to me, sketching out ideas tends to be a fundamental step of the creative process.

If you don't have sketches of ideas, or know creatives who don't and only roll with polished final product or nothing at all, cool. Ammended to "many."
This just seems to be fragmenting into other areas now......I don't think it was ever about whether or not artists sketch things out, that is pretty much a given.

It is about whether most songwriters ask their producer to finish their songs for them or not.

Let's just say we disagree with one another.
Old 21st October 2018
  #136
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clump View Post
It is about whether most songwriters ask their producer to finish their songs for them or not.
This is where things get murky.

A lot of songwriters see the "song" as the vocal and chords. Not the instrumentation, they see that as the record or SR (sound recording) which they see as something outside the "song" itself (a legal distinction does exist there).

But then there's the Andy Summers type situation, where the instrumentation holds publishing value. So is the instrumentation indeed actually part of the "song?"

Historically, publishing value = songwriting = vocal and chords. But in the real world this simply isn't the case, per Andy Summers.

So "finishing the song" depends on what's meant.

I know whole scenes of songwriters who focus almost solely on vocal + chords, and bring those to a producer to turn into a record (IE the Taylor Swift example.). That's how a significant part of the published songwriter world works. Is the producer "finishing their song" by instrumenting and arranging it? Or is he just making a record? (rhetorical questions.)

Anyway, these discussions always go awry because its complicated.
Old 21st October 2018
  #137
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I worked with a band some time ago, we toured relentlessly for about 12 months. We had an album worth of songs which were honed and tight.

We went into the studio and recorded those songs as an album with a fairly renowned producer.

He put his stamp on them.....dropped a sax riff here, halved a chorus there, even suggested a complete change of rhythm on one track....generally sprinkled the proverbial 'fairy dust' everywhere.

The album was completely different to the live versions of the songs, the changes were so radical.

He didn't get any writing credit.....he did get quite a good points deal on the album though.
Old 21st October 2018
  #138
Quote:
Originally Posted by newguy1 View Post

But then there's the Andy Summers type situation, where the instrumentation holds publishing value. So is the instrumentation indeed actually part of the song
We have discussed this....
Being an official member of a trio, the right moral decision would be to credit Summers as a co-writer.
If he was a freelancer playing on the session the norm is - no.
Probably the one thing most people remember about Paul Simon’s ‘50 ways....’ is the Steve Gadd signature drum groove.
Likewise the bass on Lou Reed’s ‘Take A Walk On The Wild Side’.
Session musicians have lobbied for a cut when creating signature parts.....and lost.
Old 21st October 2018
  #139
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Yes, it's a very grey area.......I personally think Steve Gadd brought more to '50 ways' than Andy summers brought to 'Every Breath'

Quite telling that when Summers is complaining about being ripped off, he is often sitting by his pool.
Old 22nd October 2018
  #140
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newguy1 View Post
You said this: "Hardly anyone presents a song as voice and guitar and needs an arranger or producer to make it sound like a record."

That's the only bit I corrected. People present songs as a voice and guitar to producers to make sound like a record fairly often. That's still a common way for songs to be made, especially in the songwriting to pitch to artists world. That's all.

Thank you sir! I work like that also. At least 40% of the time because some songwriters can form their original idea into a fully finished polished song. One of the things I’ve heard for years is. You can’t receive a writer credit for coming up with a chord progression for the melody of the song. I was thrown off by that. I understand you can’t copywrite a progression but to not receive credit.
Old 23rd October 2018
  #141
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sagicorn35 View Post
You can’t receive a writer credit for coming up with a chord progression for the melody of the song.
You can

Again, there ARE NO rules.
I was given a writing credit JUST for playing drums on an improvised song.....by one of the most famous songwriters on the planet.
It is down to individuals involved in the process to negotiate and agree.
Simple as that.
Old 23rd October 2018
  #142
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
You can

Again, there ARE NO rules.
I was given a writing credit JUST for playing drums on an improvised song.....by one of the most famous songwriters on the planet.
It is down to individuals involved in the process to negotiate and agree.
Simple as that.


And I understand that now. But I’m really referring to a time when I was told you don’t receive anything for chord progressions. I couldn’t understand why not at that time. As time moved on and I started creating more original music. Chords seemed like so much to a melody where as I felt like chords are important. Just from chords alone. I get my harmony, bassline, timing and style, rhythm. Just from rhythm alone I can hear how drums would sound before I get into production. But yeah. When a person says they’re a songwriter and that wrote the whole song. It has to mean that. Not just toplining or writing just lyrics. Most rappers would say they’re a songwriter and only contribute lyrics. When they’re actually lyricist.
Old 23rd October 2018
  #143
Yes, that's fine.
As far as I've experienced there are no rules.
It can be confused with copyright. Yes, you can't copyright a chord sequence, as there are several very common sequences used in multiple songs, also it would stop other people using those chords in sequence.
You can copyright melody and lyrics.
It is a separate issue to songwriter credits though. If someone is willing to share their credit, you can get a co-write for anything you contribute.
Old 23rd October 2018
  #144
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
We have discussed this....
Being an official member of a trio, the right moral decision would be to credit Summers as a co-writer.
If he was a freelancer playing on the session the norm is - no.
Probably the one thing most people remember about Paul Simon’s ‘50 ways....’ is the Steve Gadd signature drum groove.
Likewise the bass on Lou Reed’s ‘Take A Walk On The Wild Side’.
Session musicians have lobbied for a cut when creating signature parts.....and lost.
Where sessions musicians lost, the modern producer has won. Maybe not every case, but back to my very first page post where it’s common to take (and be offered) at least 25% if you're brought a song at the vocal/chord level (no instrumentation) and create and perform all the parts to turn it into a record.
Old 23rd October 2018
  #145
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I think theirs traditional songwriting and producing. Where the song comes first. Lyrics, Melody and Chords. And the producer chooses what instruments are gonna play chords and obviously the lead vocals are gonna take the melody and be layered with an instrument too. It seems like producers back then focused more on receiving a good song from the jump. For the past 35 years we actually have a new traditional way of working. Where the producer is a songwriter too. And he’s creating half of the song and production. And the songwriter just toplines over what he has. That’s a 50/50 deal up from if that’s all who’s envolved. But I’ve learned a lot from adding myself to these long and nice post.
Old 23rd October 2018
  #146
Producers always got a cut, but it was a cut on the record, not on the song.
If any producer is contributing majorly to any song then yeah, they are due a songwriter cut as well.
It's not sooo new. David Foster famously co-wrote hit songs with artists he was producing in the 80's.
Old 23rd October 2018
  #147
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
Producers always got a cut, but it was a cut on the record, not on the song.
If any producer is contributing majorly to any song then yeah, they are due a songwriter cut as well.
It's not sooo new. David Foster famously co-wrote hit songs with artists he was producing in the 80's.
Exactly! Coming up as a teen and young adult. This is the way I’ve always known to work. Production first scenario. But when I did get hit with a complete song first style. I loved it more. For a songwriter to have the barebones laid out first hand. It made the job of music producer make more sense to me. I think I’ve gotten the whole thing with credits and copyright confused at certain times.
Old 11th November 2018
  #148
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Put it this way...unless i am getting paid a very decent amount of money upfront, i expect to have a fairly decent percentage of the song itself. But if i go in and start changing chords...without a question.

Otherwise it is not worth the time and effort. Most I know work this way as well.

ej
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