Inspiration, vulnerability, collaboration, breaking patterns, taking notes, repetition, phrasing
Building on a premise, storytelling, listener interpretation, wordplay, creativity levels, triggers
Altering lyrical delivery & mood, introspection, modulation, key changes, discarding ideas
Arrangement, chord progressions, setting parameters, minimalism, idioms, metaphors, clichés
Ableton Live composition workflow, leaving the computer, new directions, top-line melody, phrases
Layering loops, melodic ideas & development, colour-coding, dismissal, rejecting external stimuli
Songwriting Techniques #1
We're thrilled to release our first ever series with Alex Kapranos, frontman of the Scottish rock band Franz Ferdinand! We joined the acclaimed musician at Motorbass Studio to explore his diversity of influences and unconventional approaches to songwriting. Alex reveals his most notable inspirations, sourced from music, literature, and visual arts. Referencing original compositions and the work of others, he discusses pertinent elements of effective songs – vocal performance, phrase repetition, wordplay, vulnerability, and more. With his own voice and guitar, he demonstrates how chord progressions, melodies, song key, and arrangement can be altered to evoke certain reactions in the listener. He shares alternative methods of triggering creativity that involve setting restrictions and encouraging non-literal interpretation of lyrics delivered in a certain way. Using Ableton Live and a Novation Launchkey, Alex shows his process of building track foundations, developing melodic ideas, and many other aspects of his songwriting workflow!
About Alex Kapranos
Alex Kapranos is an English musician, singer, and songwriter known for being the frontman of rock band Franz Ferdinand. He moved to Scotland at the age of seven, and played in a number of Glasgow bands throughout the 1990s while undertaking a variety of jobs that included bartending, cheffing, IT lecturing, and music promotion. Kapranos formed Franz Ferdinand in 2002, and the band received critical acclaim for their debut self-titled album. Their most famous single, 'Take Me Out', was certified...