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Writing from the Heart

Exploring the power of authenticity in songwriting.

It was 1980 and I was 7 years old. I had started #piano lessons and kinda hated the part about reading notes off of a page. What I didn't know at the time was that I suffered from a mild case of #Dyslexia. And even to this day, when I look at a written piece of music on staff paper I feel like I'm going to vomit, lol. So what I decided to do, at 7 years old, was just start making up my own #songs. And so Samm the #songwriter was born.

Keeping It Simple

Songwriting isn't just a technical skill. Songwriting is about taking a life experience, a feeling, a hope and putting it to words, putting it to music.

#Songwriting, for some reason, was one of those things that just kind of flowed out of me effortlessly. When I was in Highschool I really began to develop my unique style of playing and writing. And I found that, when I was struggling with my emotions, or liked a girl or just needed to vent, the piano was right there calling to me. As I dove into songwriting, I found a whole world of musical therapy. I would always feel better, be more at peace, after writing a song. I realized that this was a very special gift God had given me to help me cope with life. And since that time, I've come to realize that this gift is for others as well. That the songs I write aren't just for me. These songs are meant to help others work through the real issues of life that we all face on a daily basis. And now, more than ever, I am honored to be able to share my gift with others, that they may find healing, joy, peace, faith and hope. And sometimes just a good time :)

#Writing from the #Heart

This is why it's so important that we get past the commercialism of #music and begin writing from the heart. What makes people connect with your music? I believe it is the heart connection. For the listener to think, "man this guy really gets me," that's where the connection begins. For me, comedians have the same affect. They make us laugh 'cause they are saying all the things we want to say (but are afraid to say). That's why Kevin Hart has the perfect last name!

One way to cut through the clutter in your head as a #songwriter is to ask yourself these questions:

  • "What am I feeling today?"

  • "What am I experiencing right now in my journey?"

  • "How can I encourage and empathize with others?"

  • "What's a story I heard recently that inspired me?"

  • "What's something that made me laugh or cry?"

  • "How could I rejoice with those who rejoice and mourn with those who mourn?"

  • "What kind of song would remind others of the good things in life?"

These are some of the questions I like to ponder before diving into a write. I think that keeping a #journal is a great way to keep a pulse on what your heart is saying.

Be original, write in your style, and tell your #story.

I have a piece of art on my wall that simply says BE - YOU - NIQUE

I keep it up there because it reminds me to be authentic. To be artfully unapologetic and to be vulnerable. Sometimes being vulnerable can get tiring. As artists it seems like we are always giving and giving and sometimes, unfortunately, get little in return. This is where you may need to take a break, and find your strength again before facing burnout. This is one of the reasons I love photography and production. #Photography and #Production allow me a break from emoting my own heart while helping others express their unique voices.

Stay Inspired

You know yourself better than anyone. So do the things that help you find your center and live and write out of that space. I guarantee that your audience will appreciate your voice the most when it comes from a place of authenticity. Yes, keep writing, but always try to do it from the heart.


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