I have written hundreds of lyrics. I can provide references from satisfied clients and examples of my work. I'm easy to get along with & I'll keep working with you until the words are just right. If English is not your first language, I can help with pronunciation, etc. because I used to teach English to non-native speakers.
I'm currently working with Brunettes Shoot Blondes, Andreas Leinemann, and many others, along with releasing my own music at davidmorrison.bandcamp.com.
Would love to hear from you. Click the contact button above to get in touch.
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Interview with David Morrison
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: I think the two most important aspects of a good lyric are singability and a memorable theme. One area where experience really helps is in matching words to musical phrases. This is a subtle but critical part of the process. Some words sound great, others don't. It's not enough just to avoid putting the emphasis on the wrong syllable. The notes and the words have to fit like a rich guy's tailored suit. An example of a truly great lyric would be Paperback Writer by the Beatles. It rolls off the tongue. It tells a story that is immediately understood, but is evocative enough to linger in the mind. Man, I wish I had written that one!
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: I have a system for writing lyrics that does not rely on "waiting for inspiration." I use a pencil & paper and I work out a lyric, usually within a couple hours.
Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
A: I've recently written a batch of songs with Andreas Leinemann, a gifted songer-songwriter from Germany. He gives me the music and I write the words. I'm particularly proud of the song It's All Free. https://andreasleinemann.bandcamp.com/track/it-s-all-free I'm also very proud to have appeared as a guest vocalist on several albums by The Rudy Schwartz Project, a musical hero of mine.
Q: What are you working on at the moment?
A: I'm writing songs for a steady stream of clients, including Brunettes Shoot Blondes (Ukraine), Andreas Leinemann (Germany), and Rich Woodson (USA.) I'm also playing drums in a group in Missouri, (where I live): The Lemon Settlement. I'm forming a band to play local clubs, and releasing my own music on bandcamp.
Q: Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: For professional releases, digital is the way to go. The sound is fantastic these days and it's cheaper. There is one advantage to analog, though, and that is that it encourages more continuous takes, less punching in & out, less editing, less cutting & pasting. For that reason, I use an analog machine for songwriting. I want both the structure and nuances to be sufficiently memorable that I can play it all the way through.
Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?
A: I will keep working with you until we get you a set of lyrics that you feel great about singing.
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: I have been a performing musician since the 80s. I've played lots of small stages and a few big ones. I've been on the TV and the radio, though honestly not much. I've never really made a living just playing my own music, but I have supported myself at times operating a small recording studio out of my home. Earlier this year, much to my surprise, I found that there are enough people who will pay me to write lyrics that I can feed the cat and not have a real job. I've been supporting myself just writing words for other people's songs since April 2021.
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: I love the people I work with now. I guess I would like to work with somebody just stupid famous and write such a big hit that I never had to worry about money again. I would keep writing songs, of course. I would just be able to fix up the house & maybe hire a frou-frou cat groomer.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: I have a Zoom hard disk digital recorder and about a dozen miscellaneous mics. I have a couple of keyboards, several guitars, a bass, a set of Gretsch Catalina Club drums, a mandolin, percussion instruments, a baritone ukulele, various amps, and some effects pedals. I mix in Reaper and I have a guy does mastering for me.
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: I have many heroes in the lyric-writing field. I am in awe of classic songwriting teams like Lieber/Stoller & King/Goffin. I also like a songwriter with an idiosyncratic but approachable style, like Richard Thompson, Warren Zevon, or Robyn Hitchcock. I also greatly admire Brecht & Weill and Jacques Brel.
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: The work itself. Meeting other musicians.
Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
A: Surprisingly, they ask me what a melody is exactly. At least beginners do. My answer is that it is the notes that you sing. Think of a song that you really love. Now sing it with just doo doo doo or la la la. That's the melody. See how memorable it is? That's what you want.
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: That it's all inspiration. Although some ideas do just come out of the blue, much of lyric-writing is work, and hard work at that. I mean, it ain't working on an Arizona highway crew, but you do have to buckle down and keep at it.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: Is your melody fully written? Do you know what you want the song to be about? Do you have any particular phrases you would like worked in? What songwriters do you admire?
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: Look at their work and see if what they do will help bring your melody to life.
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: A satellite phone, ha ha. But in terms of music: guitar, drums, bass, mic, 4-track.
Q: How would you describe your style?
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: Here's a tip for writing lyrics. Before you start writing, come up with a list of IDEAS for the song that fills a full sheet of paper. Finish the list, even if you think you've hit on one. Then go back and pick the strongest concept. If you come up with a good idea, it practically writes itself.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: My own music is kind of quirky alternative rock, but I've written in many other styles..
Q: What's your strongest skill?
A: Collaboration. I've worked with lots of people and I know how to engage in a friendly and productive way to get the best result the team is capable of.
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: Usually, someone comes to me with a song that needs words. They may hum or whistle the melody, or play it on a keyboard, or sing "la la la," or some random words. I write lyrics that fit the melody exactly. Sometimes people have an idea what they want it to be about. There may be a phrase that I need to develop into a full song. Sometimes people don't have a topic, in which case, I pitch a couple of ideas and then develop the one they like best.