At the heart of every songwriter’s creative journey lies a fundamental question: “Why do I write?” This inquiry explores the motivations and inspirations that drive artists to share their voices through songwriting.

Whether it’s to heal, connect, protest, or celebrate, each songwriter embarks on a uniquely personal journey with every song, resulting in as diverse a range of reasons as the songs themselves.

Examining the “Why” behind the songwriting process offers a deeper understanding of the purpose driving the music. It’s not just about the notes, rhythms, or harmonies; it’s about the soul-stirring reasons that give birth to each song.

By uncovering the motivations that propel songwriters, we gain insight into the profound impact songs have on both the creator and the audience. It reveals the intrinsic connection between music and the human experience, showcasing the transformative power of art in expressing and shaping our emotions, thoughts, and perspectives.

1. The Soul of Songwriting

At its core, songwriting is an act of revelation, a means through which the intangible is rendered tangible through words and music. It’s a form of expression that transcends the mere assembly of notes and lyrics, venturing into the realm of personal catharsis, emotional exploration, and the sharing of universal truths. 

For many songwriters, the craft is as much about uncovering facets of their own soul as it is about connecting with others on a profound level.

Emotional Expression and Catharsis

For countless artists, songwriting serves as an essential outlet for emotional expression. It’s a therapeutic process, allowing one to process, articulate, and sometimes exorcise personal demons. 

Songs become the vessels for conveying love, grief, joy, and a spectrum of human emotions, offering a form of release not just for the songwriter, but for listeners who find their own feelings mirrored in the music.

Connection Through Vulnerability

A song’s power often lies in its vulnerability. Opening up through lyrics and melodies creates a bridge between the songwriter and the listener, forging connections based on shared experiences and emotions. This act of sharing can turn personal stories into universal ones, reminding us of our common humanity.

The Drive to Tell Stories

Songwriting is also a narrative art, a way for storytellers to weave tales that captivate and resonate. These stories may be drawn from the songwriter’s life or completely fictional, yet they all seek to engage the listener, to transport them to another place and time, and to evoke a response.

A Reflection of the World

Many songwriters are motivated by a desire to reflect on the world around them, to comment on social issues, or to inspire change. Music has always been a powerful tool for social commentary, offering a voice to those who might otherwise go unheard. Through their songs, songwriters can challenge listeners, provoke thought, and even motivate action.

The Joy of Creation

Beyond these deep and often complex motivations, the act of creating music is, for many, a source of immense joy. The process of bringing a new song into the world, from the initial spark of inspiration to the final composition, is a deeply rewarding experience. It’s about playing with language, experimenting with sounds, and ultimately, creating something that didn’t exist before.

Understanding the ‘why’ behind one’s songwriting process can lend greater depth and purpose to the craft. It’s a question that invites songwriters to look inward, to understand their motivations, and to channel these insights back into their music, enriching their creative expression and forging a deeper connection with their audience.

2. Beyond Words and Melodies: The “Why” of Songwriting

Delving into the motivations behind songwriting illuminates the diverse and deeply personal reasons artists are drawn to this form of expression. It’s not solely about the act of creating music or penning lyrics; it’s about what drives the artist to make art in the first place. 

Understanding these motivations not only enriches the songwriting process but also deepens the connection between the songwriter, the song, and the listener.

Storytelling with Purpose

Many songwriters see themselves as storytellers, tasked with the mission of conveying narratives that might otherwise remain untold. These stories can be personal, reflecting the songwriter’s own experiences, or they can serve as a mirror to society, reflecting the joys, sorrows, triumphs, and trials of the human condition. 

The purpose here is twofold: to bear witness to the lived experience and to connect with others who might see their own stories reflected in the song.

Emotional Resonance and Healing

For some, the primary motivation behind songwriting is emotional healing, both for themselves and their audience. Music has the unique ability to touch hearts and heal wounds by articulating feelings that listeners may struggle to express themselves. This emotional resonance creates a powerful bond between the songwriter and their audience, offering solace and understanding through melody and verse.

Advocating for Change

Another compelling “why” behind songwriting is the desire to advocate for social or political change. Songs have the power to mobilise, inspire, and unite people. Songwriters often use their platform to highlight injustices, challenge the status quo, and call for action. In this context, the song becomes more than just a piece of music; it’s a catalyst for change.

The Search for Identity

Songwriting can also be a journey of self-discovery, a way for individuals to explore and affirm their identity. For artists navigating questions of self, crafting songs that express their innermost thoughts and feelings can be a way of asserting who they are and where they stand in the world. This search for identity is not only a personal quest but also an invitation for listeners to explore their own sense of self.

Connecting Across Cultures

Music is a universal language, and songwriting can bridge cultural and linguistic divides. Songwriters often draw inspiration from their cultural heritage, sharing stories, rhythms, and melodies that celebrate their identity. These songs can introduce audiences to new perspectives and experiences, fostering a sense of global community and mutual understanding.

The Drive to Create

At the heart of many songwriters’ motivations is a simple, yet profound, drive to create. This intrinsic need to express oneself through music is often what compels artists to pick up a pen or an instrument in the first place. It’s about capturing moments of inspiration, experimenting with new ideas, and the sheer joy of bringing something new into existence.

Understanding the “why” of songwriting is crucial because it shapes the creative process and the final product. A song born out of genuine emotion or conviction carries a different weight than one crafted without a clear purpose. 

For songwriters, reconnecting with their motivations can reignite their passion for music and lead to more authentic and impactful songs. For listeners, it can transform a simple melody into an experience, deepening their appreciation of the art form and the artist behind it.

3. The Impact of Purpose on the Creative Process

Understanding the underlying purpose behind one’s songwriting can profoundly affect the creative process, influencing everything from the initial spark of inspiration to the final touches in the studio. When songwriters have a clear sense of “why” they write, their work not only gains depth and authenticity but also connects more deeply with audiences. Here’s how purpose can shape and enrich the songwriting journey.

Guiding the Creative Vision

A well-defined purpose acts as a north star for songwriters, guiding the creative vision and decision-making process throughout songwriting. It helps in setting the tone, theme, and message of the song, ensuring that all elements align with the intended impact and expression. This clarity of vision can make the creative process more focused and efficient. Decisions about lyrics, melody, and arrangement are all informed by the overarching “why.”

Enhancing Emotional Depth

Songs written with a clear purpose tend to possess a greater emotional depth, resonating on a more personal level with listeners. This is because purpose-driven songwriting often stems from genuine feelings, experiences, and convictions. When songwriters infuse their work with real emotion and intent, it transcends mere sound, becoming an emotional experience that listeners can feel deeply connected to.

Fostering Authenticity

In an era where audiences crave authenticity, understanding one’s purpose can set songwriters apart. Authenticity is not just about being true to oneself; it’s about being honest and genuine in one’s artistic expression. Songs that are rooted in an authentic purpose tend to stand out, as they reflect the unique perspectives and truths of their creators, offering something real in a world often saturated with manufactured sentiment.

Inspiring Innovation and Creativity

A clear purpose can also inspire innovation and creativity in songwriting. When songwriters are driven by a strong “why,” they are often more willing to experiment and take creative risks. This can lead to unique musical styles, unconventional song structures, and innovative lyrical themes. Purpose acts as a catalyst for creativity, pushing songwriters to explore new horizons and express themselves in novel ways.

Providing Motivation and Resilience

The songwriting path is fraught with challenges, from writer’s block to industry pressures. A sense of purpose can provide the motivation and resilience needed to navigate these obstacles. When songwriters are clear about why they write, they are more likely to persevere through difficult periods, as their purpose serves as a constant reminder of the importance and value of their work.

Enriching the Connection with the Audience

Finally, purpose-driven songwriting enhances the connection between the songwriter and their audience. When listeners detect the sincerity and intention behind a song, they are more likely to form a deep, lasting connection with the music. This connection is not just based on the enjoyment of melody or rhythm but on a shared feeling or idea, making the song an enduring part of the listener’s life.

In essence, the impact of purpose on the creative process is profound and multifaceted. It shapes the direction of one’s artistry, enriches the emotional and authentic quality of the music, inspires creativity, provides resilience, and deepens the bond between artist and audience.

For songwriters, reconnecting with their “why” is not just beneficial; it’s essential for crafting music that truly resonates.

4. Finding One’s “Why” in Songwriting

Identifying the underlying motivations for writing songs is a journey that can lead to more meaningful and resonant music. For songwriters at any stage in their career, understanding their “why” can be both enlightening and empowering. Here are some ways to explore and clarify the purpose behind your songwriting.

Reflect on Personal Experiences

Begin by reflecting on your life experiences and the emotions they evoke. What stories do you feel compelled to tell? Consider moments of significant change, challenge, or realisation. These personal narratives often fuel the most powerful songs because they come from a place of authenticity.

Identify Themes That Resonate

Find recurring themes in your music. Do you find yourself drawn to writing about love, social issues, personal growth, or perhaps a combination of these? Identifying these themes can provide insight into what drives you as a songwriter and what messages you’re passionate about sharing.

Consider Your Musical Influences

Think about the artists and songs that have affected you most deeply. What is it about their music that resonates with you? Understanding the influence of these musical heroes can offer clues to your own songwriting motivations and aspirations.

Engage with Your Community

Interaction with your audience and fellow musicians can offer fresh perspectives on your work. Feedback and discussions can help you see which aspects of your music strike a chord with others, potentially guiding you towards a deeper understanding of your “why.”

Set Goals for Your Music

What do you hope to achieve with your songs? Are you looking to connect on a personal level with listeners, to provoke thought, or to provide entertainment? Setting clear goals can help focus your songwriting process and clarify your motivations.

Embrace Experimentation

Experimenting with different musical styles, themes, and writing processes can uncover new sources of inspiration and motivation. Sometimes, stepping out of your comfort zone is what you need to find a deeper connection to your craft.

Write Regularly and Reflectively

Consistent writing can help you navigate your thoughts and feelings, leading to discoveries about what truly motivates you to write. Keeping a journal of your songwriting journey, including ideas, inspirations, and reflections, can be a valuable tool in understanding your “why.”

Seek Inspiration Beyond Music

Inspiration can come from a multitude of sources—literature, visual arts, nature, and even day-to-day experiences. Engaging with the world around you can spark new ideas and deepen your understanding of what you wish to express through your songs.

Finding your “why” is not a one-time task but an ongoing process that evolves with you. As you grow as a person and artist, your songwriting motives may shift. Embracing this evolution is part of the creative journey, enriching your music and connecting with your audience. Remember, the most compelling songs come from a place of truth—understanding your “why” is the key to unlocking that authenticity.

5. Case Studies: Songs with a Purpose

To illustrate the power of having a clear “why” in songwriting, let’s explore a few case studies of songs that were born from a deep sense of purpose and have left an indelible mark on listeners and the music industry alike.

“Imagine” by John Lennon

One of the most iconic songs in the history of popular music, “Imagine” was John Lennon’s call for peace and unity in a world riddled with conflict and division. It’s simple melody paired with profound lyrics invites listeners to envision a world free from borders, religions, and material possessions, highlighting Lennon’s hope for global harmony. The song’s enduring popularity underscores the impact of a powerful message delivered through heartfelt songwriting.

“Man in the Mirror” by Michael Jackson

Michael Jackson’s “Man in the Mirror” is a testament to the influence of personal change on broader societal transformation. Encouraging listeners to reflect on their own lives and take steps towards making a positive change, the song blends pop sensibilities with a deeply reflective message. It’s a prime example of how introspective songwriting can resonate widely and inspire action.

“Fast Car” by Tracy Chapman

Tracy Chapman’s “Fast Car” tells a compelling story of escapism and the desire for a better life, grounded in the realities of poverty and struggle. The song’s narrative style, combined with Chapman’s evocative vocal delivery, captures the listener’s imagination and empathy. “Fast Car” demonstrates how personal stories, when artfully told, can illuminate larger social issues and connect deeply with a wide audience.

“Alright” by Kendrick Lamar

Kendrick Lamar’s “Alright” has been hailed as an anthem of hope and resilience within the African American community, particularly in the context of police brutality and racial injustice. Its refrain, “We gon’ be alright,” offers a powerful message of optimism and strength in the face of adversity. Lamar’s skillful storytelling and poignant lyricism showcase the potential of songwriting to galvanise and uplift.

“Zombie” by The Cranberries

Written in response to the 1993 IRA bombing in Warrington, “Zombie” by The Cranberries is a protest song that condemns the senseless violence of the Troubles in Northern Ireland. The song’s haunting melody and stark lyrics express the anger and sorrow felt by those who lived through the conflict, making it a powerful example of how songwriting can be used to reflect on and critique historical events.

These case studies exemplify how understanding the “why” behind songwriting can lead to the creation of music that not only stands the test of time but also inspires, challenges, and comforts listeners. Each song, with its unique origin and message, demonstrates the varied ways in which songwriters channel their motivations into their work, creating art that resonates on a universal level.

In conclusion, as a songwriter, discovering one’s “why” is a pivotal moment, akin to uncovering the soul of the music. It’s this core purpose that imbues songs with depth and authenticity, enabling them to touch hearts, provoke thought, and inspire change.

As we’ve explored the myriad reasons behind songwriting and the profound impact of purpose on the creative process, it’s evident that music’s power extends beyond entertainment. It has the capacity to reflect and shape human experience.

For songwriters, the journey towards understanding and articulating their purpose is both a personal challenge and a professional imperative. It requires introspection, honesty, and a willingness to evolve. But the rewards of this journey are immeasurable, not just in terms of personal fulfillment but also in the ability to connect with others on a deeper level.

As we conclude this exploration, I invite you to ponder your own “why.” Dive deep into your motivations, aspirations, and the messages you yearn to convey through your music. Remember, the most unforgettable and impactful songs are those that emerge from a place of authenticity and purpose.

Yep… It took a little while but as of yesterday (Friday, February 23rd 2024) all of the internal framework for the studio is now complete.

This also includes the central wall separating the control room and the recording/live streaming area.

Tasks that are left to be done…

  • Install insulation on ceiling
  • Define power points/finish off electrical work
  • Install control room window
  • Put up walls
  • Set up control room – Hardware
  • Install light fixtures/split system AC

I’m sure I’ve missed some things off the list but hey… We’re all making it up as we go along.

A HUGE thank you to Hen Sweet from Home Sweet Home for doing all of the framing work and also my nephew Cooper who acted as Hen’s helper for all of last week.

It’s all coming together. The light at the end of the tunnel is getting larger and brighter with every day that passes. I’m “Big Kev” excited.


Corey 🙂

Picture yourself in the vastness of space, surrounded by twinkling stars and silently orbiting planets. There you are, alone, observing the universe.

This idea is more than mere fancy; it’s a meaningful reflection on our existence. We each have a unique spot in the observable universe, effectively making us the centres of our own universes. But what does this mean for us as individuals? How does it influence our view of the world and our role in it?

Understanding Our Place in the Universe

At first, it might seem self-centred to say we’re each at the universe’s centre. However, if we consider the universe’s vast and ever-expanding nature, any point, including where we stand, can be seen as a centre. This isn’t just a physical reality but also a metaphorical one, reflecting our personal experiences and perceptions.

From my viewpoint, my experiences, joys, and challenges revolve around me. The same is true for you – your life orbits around your thoughts, dreams, and realities. This isn’t self-centredness; it’s a fact of our individual perspectives. We each experience life through our lens, placing us at the centre of our stories.

However, this central position doesn’t suggest we’re more important than others. Realising this helps us see ourselves differently. We are central, but so is everyone else in their lives. This thought fosters humility and connection with others, as we recognise that everyone is living a life as rich and complex as ours.

The Philosophical Implications

Being at the centre of our own universe has significant philosophical implications. It makes us question our perceptions of ourselves and others.

On a personal level, this understanding can be empowering and humbling. It acknowledges our role in shaping our experiences, yet reminds us that this is a universal truth, shared by everyone we meet.

In my life, I’ve realised that recognising my centrality doesn’t make me superior to others. It’s a common human experience, a shared reality that connects us all. This is key to avoiding egocentrism.

While it’s natural to view our lives as the main story, recognising others as central to their narratives fosters empathy and compassion. This shift in perspective has profound implications for our interactions with the world. It encourages us to approach others with understanding, acknowledging that they, too, are navigating their central universe.

The Illusion of Hierarchy in Centrality

There’s a misconception that being central to our universe implies a hierarchy of importance. However, I’ve come to see this as an illusion. If we’re all central to our universes, this centrality is shared, not distinguishing. It doesn’t raise any of us above the rest; rather, it places us all on an equal footing.

In my life, this has been freeing. It has helped me step away from competing to prove my worth over others. Understanding our equal centrality removes the need for such comparisons. In a sky full of stars, each star is central in its right, yet no single star dominates.

This perspective changes how we view our relationships. Instead of seeing life as a race for significance, we can appreciate each person’s unique centrality. This doesn’t lessen our value but adds richness to our understanding of the human experience. We’re all stars in the universe, shining in our way, yet part of a magnificent whole.

Equality in Centrality: A Humbling Concept

Embracing our roles as centres of our universes leads to a humbling conclusion: our equal importance. This concept of equality in centrality is enlightening and grounding. For me, it has been a journey towards humility and a deeper appreciation of others.

It’s easy to think our central position makes our experiences more significant than others. But in reality, everyone around us experiences life with the same intensity and centrality. This invites us to live with more compassion and empathy.

When I consider this, I’m reminded of the countless stories unfolding around me. Each person I meet, each life that intersects with mine, is a universe in itself. Acknowledging this doesn’t lessen my experiences but deepens my connections.

This understanding teaches us to value each narrative and encourages us to listen, understand, and appreciate the diverse tapestry of human experiences. It’s a reminder that while we are authors of our stories, we are also part of a larger, interconnected narrative.

Personal Reflections and Experiences

In my life, understanding my position as the centre of my universe has been both a journey of self-discovery and a path to connecting with others. I’ve had moments of feeling like the protagonist in life’s grand story, only to realise that everyone around me is living their version of this story. This has been both humbling and liberating.

There have been times when I felt my issues were the world’s most significant. But seeing others as central to their universes shifted my perspective. I began to see that my challenges, while important to me, are just one part of the vast human experience. This didn’t make my problems smaller; it made my world bigger.

This perspective has changed my interactions, making conversations more about understanding than being understood. Each person I meet adds a new chapter to my understanding of the world.

This journey towards recognising my centrality and the centrality of others has been profound. It has taught me to appreciate my journey’s uniqueness while valuing those around me. It’s a balance between recognising my significance and understanding that I’m part of a larger, interconnected community.

My Conclusion

Viewing ourselves as centres of our universes is a concept rich with implications. It challenges us to think deeply about our place in the world and our relationships with others. This realisation has guided me towards a more empathetic and connected way of living.

Understanding that we are all equally central doesn’t diminish our importance; it enhances our appreciation for the shared human experience. It encourages us to view each person’s life as a unique story, deserving respect and understanding. This perspective is not about diminishing ourselves but about recognising the value in everyone.

As you go about your day, consider this concept. How does acknowledging your centrality, along with everyone else’s, alter your view of your interactions and experiences? How can this understanding impact your relationships and life approach?

Have you ever considered your place in the universe in this way? How has this perspective influenced your view of yourself and others? I’d love to hear your thoughts and experiences on this subject. Let me know what you think.


Corey 🙂

An organ playing the longest and slowest piece of music in the world has changed chord for the first time in two years.

In a remarkable musical event, an organ at the Burchardi Church in Halberstadt, Germany, has recently changed chord in its ongoing rendition of John Cage’s piece, “As Slow as Possible.” This piece, known for being the longest and slowest in the world, began in 2001 and is set to conclude in 2640, marking a total duration of 639 years.

The composition, a brainchild of the legendary avant-garde musician John Cage, has experienced only 16 chord changes since its inception. Interestingly, the piece commenced with an 18-month silence, and the first audible notes emerged in 2003.

The recent chord change, a rare and much-anticipated event, occurred on February 5, exactly two years after the previous change. This unique musical experience has garnered significant attention, with enthusiasts booking tickets years in advance to witness the chord transitions in person.

The organ, specially constructed for this performance, employs an electronic wind machine and sandbags pressing down the keys to sustain the drone-like sound.

The score of “As Slow as Possible” spans eight pages and can be played on either a piano or an organ. While Cage intended the piece to be performed as slowly as possible, he did not define a specific tempo, leaving much to interpretation.

The current performance, set to continue for centuries, starkly contrasts with its 1987 premiere, which lasted less than half an hour. Subsequent renditions have varied in length, with a notable 14-hour performance by organist Diane Luchese in 2009.

This extraordinary musical endeavour, born from a posthumous meeting of musicians and philosophers in honour of Cage, continues to captivate and intrigue, promising a chord change next expected on August 5, 2026. As the organ plays on, “As Slow as Possible” stands as a testament to the enduring and evolving nature of musical expression.

This is the ultimate in “slow music.”

Source: An organ playing a 639-year-long piece of music has changed chord

Call me old fashioned but I still prefer writing songs with a pen to paper rather than to use a computer.

There have been many times where I’ve attempted to use a computer keyboard and word processor instead of pen and paper to jot down my songwriting ideas and I’ve found that each time the special feeling of continuity I get between head, heart and computer screen is not as intense as the organic scrawling of a really good quality pen onto paper.

It’s like the act of putting pen to paper somehow allows me to become an integral part of what I’m writing whereas I feel an uncomfortable distance from my songwriting ideas if I just type it out.

Yes, I know that for this very post to exist I would’ve had to have typed the words into a word processor or directly into the WYSIWYG editor in my blogging platform of choice, WordPress however, this particular post was written on paper first.

I got the idea for this post from automatically and randomly writing on pieces of paper as a means of clearing my mind of the stuff that has collected in it over time. A bit of mental cleaning as it were and some indication that automatic writing works.

I’m a big fan of technology but at the same time I’d hate to see the art of writing a song with a pen and paper disappear for good.

What do you think? Which medium do you prefer to write songs with? Pen and paper or keyboard and word processor?


Corey 🙂