Monday, November 26, 2012

Songwriting Motives

I must confess; I’ve not wanted to write songs lately.  I’ve not been inspired, motivated or encouraged to write songs at all.  I actually LOVE writing music, and really enjoy it when the juices are actually flowing.  However, I hate it when there are dry seasons in writing.  At that time, I ask myself “why even write at all?”  It wasn’t until yesterday that it occurred to me that my songwriting motives might need some calibrating.  My husband wants us to write a song for his parents’ 40th anniversary coming up soon.  We simply want to write a song that expresses our love and our appreciation for them even though the song will never make it to radio or even be appreciated in proportion to all the hard work we’ll put into it.  So, we’re gonna do this thing!!!  Please pray for us in the process.  :D

It led me to want to ask others about how much they appreciate songs written for them.  So, I’d like to ask YOU the following questions to hopefully gain insight into how songwriters are appreciated (in general):

  • Is it appropriate to give a song as a gift?  Why or why not?
  • What expectations do you have if someone were to give you a song as a gift?
  • What would you do with the song?
  • How would you respond if the song were the ONLY gift to you?
  • What are some ways we can encourage songwriters to write out of “gift giving” as opposed to “attention getting?”

Of course, my questions are in general terms, not necessarily for writing worship songs – although, the thought process is similar.  I may ask more questions later depending on how the conversation goes.  So, this is just a start.  With that said, what are your thoughts?


  1. When I write, it is usually an outlet for my feelings or thoughts for "non Christian" music. Sometimes the tunes are downright silly, But when I write Christian music, it's almost magic. Songs "bloom" out of nowhere. I have played chords on the guitar writing songs that I didn't know existed; my fingers are guided to where they need to be to get out what has been put inside of me. Is it going to be played on the radio? Nah, and I don't care. I do it because I'm guided to write it, and if one person is moved in the Holy Spirit, then it was worth it, no matter if it took 5 minutes or 5 days.
    As far as songs as a gift; years ago I wrote a tune for a friend who was scared of the possibility of having cancer; I was told that she would listen to the tune over and over again to give her strength and praise Jesus to get through the troubles. And you know what? The cancer either disappeared or wasn't there, so it was all good. That makes writing worth while. JPL

  2. WOW!!!! LOVE THIS! I honestly have never heard from anyone who wrote a song as a gift for someone suffering. It's especially moving when miracles happen! :-) This adds MORE depth to our songwriting motives. It's easier to write songs for someone's wedding, anniversary, etc, compared to writing a song of encouragement to one who is suffering tremendous heartache. Thanks for sharing, JPL! Blessings to you, bro!!