• Maisie Loh

Are Great Songwriters Made or Born?


There has been a lot of debate about whether talent is born or whether it is developed through practice. When it comes to sports, someone with a taller built certainly would have an advantage over a much shorter competitor in the swimming category. For when it comes to physical sports, part of a sportsman’s success comes from whether he has the physical attributes required for the sport. But when it comes to songwriting, there are no salient advantages between people. Someone who has years of musical training may not surpass the talent of a prodigy who has less training. Are great songwriters made or born?


Arguing about whether talent is made or born is itself discouraging. Scientific research has shown that genes matter whether someone performs better than another in music or sports. But what the studies emphasized is that training is a key importance for becoming an elite performer.


It takes Desire and Effort

To be good at anything there must be a desire. Everything we do starts small and the beginning is almost always difficult. Early failures may seed doubts in the mind that one is not good at it. Therefore, the desire and the ability to visualise one’s success, added with patience will bear fruit.

Songwriting skills don’t come easy or naturally. It helps if you have an interest in poems. But if you ever get stuck, it is never because you aren’t good enough. But rather, it is impatience and doubts at work. History and scientific research have all shown that people with the desire and patience to hone the skills they want to develop are always successful.


Accelerate Your Songwriting Skills

Although genes can play a part in how fast you learn, it does not necessarily limit your potentials. You are the one who decides how far you would like to pursue your skills in songwriting. There are ways to accelerate your learning in songwriting skills.


You can find yourself a good teacher and read good books on songwriting. You can also practice writing and having experience with speaking also helps with your fluency. Another key factor to help with your learning would be your ability to focus on a task without distractions. Develop good habits to practice by setting aside time each day and concentrate. You will find yourself improving over time.


How to Reduce Doubt

If you feel like your work is not good enough and doubt starts to creep in, the best thing to do is to continue working on it. No song is good enough the first time it is written. You can revise it until you are happy with it. Any song can be slowly repaired and reinforced.

So, relax into doing what you love. Songwriting, like other creative endeavors, cannot succeed without the fact that you are doing it because you love it, not because you want to be a great songwriter or to make a lot of money out of it. The best works are usually created out of love, not ambition.



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