Sunday, May 12, 2013

Songwriting on an Island

So you're stranded out there somewhere, and you're writing songs, but there's one problem: There's no one to give you any real constructive criticism or help. Now, I’m not talking about friends and family listening, then telling you are great and they are oh so proud. I’m talking about someone to tell you when that verse section goes on too long, or when the hook just isn't hooky enough, or that this one is just okay, and maybe you should ditch this idea for now and work on another.

Those of you who are serious writers, and really looking to take a step in your game know what I’m talking about. You know this is exactly what is needed, and you've been waiting for it. But local guys just seem to want to use you and your songs as an experiment for their basement dungeon studios. You are likely the only one you know in your area that is seriously trying to write contemporary Christian music that sounds like what is on the radio (or better!)

So you sit on the beach, playing your guitar, waiting for your ship to come in...

Hey we all have done it. But I need to tell you something: the ship isn't coming by. Oh sure maybe that big American Idol thing sails by close to you and you think about putting up a smoke signal, but you really would rather write for Christian audiences.

So how do you find someone to help if there is nothing near you? Well, you get a boat, steer it off your island, and cross the seas to a place where people can help. You find musical civilization and serious folks that can truly help you get those songs to the place they need to be.

For Christian music, this mecca is Nashville. Like it or not, this is just where professionals who know the contemporary Christian music business live and work. They don’t sit around and play banjo all day, they don’t run around barefoot and yell “Yeehaw”!

Nashville and its suburbs Brentwood and Franklin are just the place you go to get work done in this industry. I’d even go as far as to say that Nashville is the top music center even over New York or Los Angeles for music work for almost any artist (unless you are an actor, stage singer, or want to get your music in films or in theater).

Just go to Google and type Christian Songwriting Services and see where it leads you, or email us for who might best serve you.

Isn't it time to get off the island before someone finds your bones and your songs dry up and float away into the surf?

Send an email message in a bottle and get rescued!

Have a great week!

Eric Copeland as been a songwriter, producer, and artist/songwriter rescuer for over two decades. He lives outside Nashville, TN and is president of Creative Soul, in association with Word Entertainment. For more information, go to


Jen Haugland said...

A peninsula is almost like an island. :) It's true, you need to get help from those who really know the industry. Even meeting great people at conferences around the country to help you in your goals via Skype, or whatever long distance of mentoring. But eventually, all roads seem to lead to Nashville when you are ready to get really serious about what you are doing. You can always take it back to your "island" and then share it with the others that seem to be stranded with you. Maybe it will motivate them to get off the island every now and then?

Looking forward to some great work down in Nashville and Franklin in a little over a week with Creative Soul!

Gerry Peters said...

Yep Eric you nailed it. My opinion also is that For Christian music, Nashville is the mecca. I also agree that Nashville is the top music center even over New York or Los Angeles for music work.

I've been living here for more than 25 years and working as a studio musician, producer, studio owner. I absolutely love the level of immense talent in all styles. The level of professionalism in the studios is contagious.

It's far more than Country. There are people from all over the world that have moved here. This gives the music community a very rich diversity of ideas and approaches.

I've thoroughly enjoyed producing artists from all over the world in my studio. It's keeps life interesting for sure.

Thanks Eric, for your excellent contributions to LinkedIn.

Gerry Peters
Midi Magic Studio
Alleluia Christian Music Productions

Unknown said...

Well, my island is called England. Any suggestions for me cuz Nashville is a bit too far to row.

Paul Aleman said...

Hi Eric, in reading your Songwriting on an Island I got inspired and added something to what you said:

In my basement dungeon studio/
I'm a hero and a Romeo.

What do you think? Is there hope? Remember, "from a Jack to a King, from loneliness to a wedding ring". Maybe this could develop from "a basement" to a lavish penthouse?

Seriously though, I'm not sure what contemporary Christian music is....rapola? Of the many songs I have written in different genres, I do have one Christian song which may have the necessary substance to get out of the basement. Are you interested in songs, or are you a song craft guru such as the late John Braheny?

Best of luck,

Jason V said...

Always love your posts. Such sensible wisdom!
Thank you!

Unknown said...

Fine post about music and really helpful info for
musicians .Please write write more about songwriters wanted .I wanna read more similar post from yours .Please keep writing for music.

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Eric Copeland is an author, producer, keyboardist, songwriter, and president of Creative Soul Companies. What is Creative Soul? Our main goals are to inform, encourage, and assist Christian creative folks in ministry, no matter where they are in their journey. Thanks for reading! Find out more about us at