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Video:Matthew Koma: Writing Your First Song

with Matthew Koma

Matthew Koma, who has collaborated with artists like Carly Rae Jepsen and Ryan Tedder of One Republic, offers advice on writing your first song. Watch this About.com for tips from singer Matthew Koma on writing your first song.See Transcript

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Transcript:Matthew Koma: Writing Your First Song

What was the first song you wrote?  When did you write your first song what was that process like?

Matthew Koma's First Song

It was definitely an awful song. I think it was, I was 9 years old and it was called "Downtown," and it was about love -- because I knew so much about it at 9 years old. I knew how to win chicks. I was doing so many cover songs when I was growing up, just playing guitar and singing, that I just started thinking, "wow I can put my own words into this and figure it out." I think at first it was just quoting other lyrics I heard like Springsteen and Don Henley songs. I was like, I wrote this and it's called "Innocence," and it was like just using those keywords that they would use.

Use Influences When Writing Your First Song

I think a lot of that comes from influence, right? I think a lot of that comes from what you listen to and how you figure out being influenced by instead of being derivative of.  I think there's a journey for that, it's not something you necessarily even set out for and figure out just by saying I want to be unique it's something you discover over time by plugging away and figuring out and kind of mix your influences and figuring out your own voice.  You know it's something that I really think is just – it's time – it's just plugging away and figuring out what works what doesn't work.  Sometimes you're mimicking your heroes and realizing like, okay that's cool but it's not me, it's not unique to what I have to offer.

Push Yourself When Writing Your First Song

But it takes all those things and all the understandings of those paths to kind of get to that unique place.  Really it's just consistently just pushing and pushing and pushing -- because I really believe that you do find it just by discovering and just organically pushing forward and it evolves by itself against your control, you kind of find the thing that people react to.  And it's like, okay, reacting to that thing that I do, that's interesting, that's unique.  I'm going to hone into that more, I'm going to tap into that place a little bit more.

 

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