Sunday, July 6, 2008

Writing lyrics over someone else's song

I've got to write some lyrics about Galileo over a beautiful piece of music written by Oli Hayhurst. At first I did some research about the great man (Galileo that is, though Oli is a great man as well) and then I started listening to the track, a lot.

I'm new to this approach to song writing having normally written the melody, chords etc. at the same time as writing lyrics. So my process has been to:
- work out the tempo, time signature etc.
- work out the basic structure (verses, choruses, breakdowns etc.)
- write some suitable lyrics (subject wise - they don't scan with the track yet)
- write a melody line over the top of the track

And then to where I am now. Cutting up, condensing the lyrics/ideas so they fit with the melody I've written. The chorus melody is already there in the piece Oli wrote and great is to, a really nice timing for vocal delivery.

The key points of Galileo's life seem to boil down to experimentation, telescopes, catholicism, house arrest, death. Should be a very positive song then... He was a devote Catholic, never I think questioning his faith even when it landed him arrested for knowing the earth revolved around the sun. He denounced his Copernican theories by request of the Spanish Inquisition, a good self-preservation technique I think. Most importantly though, and is the case with many of the scientists on this album, he had a great beard.

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