We have received wonderful music from some of the best and most inspiring musicians throughout history. From medieval times to Baroque and contemporary music, music has kept flowing into the minds of musicians. It seems But where do these famous musicians find inspiration?
Jay-Z’s best songs are all written in five minutes. His writing process is fluid and uncomplicated and he stopped writing his lyrics down after his first album. He claimed that writing made him rethink his words too many times and stopped the flow of creativity. In an interview with Rolling Stone, Jay-Z said if he were to work on a song for more than 20 minutes, the song probably won’t work.
His creativity comes from daily building his mental stamina consciously. He described this practice as an exercise in an interview with Oprah Winfrey. He claimed the “muscle” only can get stronger if he consciously flexed it every day.
Songwriting to Sia is equivalent to breathing. She is inspired by her emotions and is able to write a story of heartbreak and survival into every song she envisages. “The Greatest” is about the 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting and “Chandelier” is inspired by her struggles with alcoholism.
A prolific songwriter, Sia has penned songs for Rihana, Katy Perry, and Beyonce, including for herself. She loves writing quickly and abundantly as it helps her identify the gems in her works. She is amazed at how fast a song can be created and humbly admits that only one out of ten songs she has written is a hit.
3. Kendrick Lamar
Lamar surrounds himself with staff who understands his creative output. They understand that when he gets hit with a lyrical idea, he will need to be in the studio immediately to get his idea off. They will help him reschedule his interviews and meetings to give him the space to make music.
4. Ed Sheeran
For Ed Sheeran, songwriting is a form of healing process for him. He said in an interview that songwriting is therapy for him. If he stopped writing, he might go mad. Whenever inspiration seizes Sheeran, he will need to seize the moment and respond to it immediately because he doesn’t know when it will come again. He said he is never in the mood for longer than a day in his song creation process. But in that day, if he happened to be writing a song, that song exists forever for him.
Sheeran is one of the most hardworking musicians in the industry. He said in one of the interviews that rather than not doing anything, or relaxing with a DVD or a drink of a bottle of wine, he would rather write two or three songs.
5. Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift gets hit by inspiration randomly, like other musicians. When she is hit, she will jot down notes in the car or at diners. She has written songs on trampolines. One special feeling she gets before she creates a song is anxiety. While many people avoid anxiety, it is integral to how Swift creates. When anxiety starts, the writing happens right after.
She related how anxiety had helped her create her number-one hit, “Love Story”. It was written in an anxious fit when her parents refused to let her date some guy when she was 17. She ran to her room and started writing “Love Story”, which she never expected to become her number-one global hit.