View Full Version : Can anyone tell me...? (Questions about song format)

10-04-2004, 07:27 AM
I'm working on a Valentine's Day gift for my boyfriend (yeah I know it's early, but he's special :grin ) and I need some advice. See I found this site where if you write the lyrics, a professional will turn it into a song and make a CD for you. So I wanted to write a love song.

Here's where I really, really need help:

I need to know, what are the different parts of a song called? (Go ahead and laugh; I'm so new at this it's pathetic :p ). I mean First there's usually some verses, right? And then a chorus, and more verses, and the chorus again, and some more verses? What are some of the other parts called, and where do they go in a song? What is a "refrain"? Is there some kind of basic song format that songwriters use? Could somebody please give me a song format and tell me how many syllables I should use per line in a verse, chorus, etc?
I don't need help with the actual writing of the lyrics, just in figuring out the syllables and format and stuff.

Please reply! I could really use the help. I want to make this special so I need to do it right. :) Thanks!

10-04-2004, 07:58 AM
is the person turning your song Darrell Lindsey? If so, he will explain the different parts.

I got a file somewhere which gives the parts.
i'll look.


10-04-2004, 09:35 PM
No, it's not Darrell Lindsey. I don't know who that is...
Actually he says he'll turn my "poem" into a song, but I know a song is more than just a poem set to music. A song is more complex in structure. Right?

10-04-2004, 11:14 PM
Please be very very careful.... I have seen these companies come and go...It is like answering an ad in the back of magazines... send us your poems and we will make a song...
they are right in one avenue... they will make it a song... but YOUR name will never be on it... Yes I know allllllllll about the copywrites... and when you tell them it (the poem) is copywritten... they will not use it...
what they do is take the hook from the poem or portions of the poem and write a song to that.... and until you hear it on the radio... you won't even know that you have been taken for a ride.......
so please I wish you the best but be very very careful.

10-05-2004, 12:59 AM
the three main parts of a song are verse, chorus and bridge.

The verse is a set chunk of, well, verses. It can be as many or as few lines, syllables, etc as you want, but each time you play the verse, the words are different.

The next set is the chorus. It is repeated, both in melody and words, generally after each verse.

The bridge appears once. Its words are different than both the verse and the chorus and it usually has a different melody than each of these. It may also be marked by a key or tempo change. The bridge usually appears after two sets of verse and chorus. The bridge is not essential; see "Brompton Oratory" by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds for a song that is just verses.

To check out a good model that uses all three, here are the lyrics to "After Hours" by the Velvet Underground.
www.tabcrawler.com/archive.php?action=view&file_id=50671&artist=velvet underground&song=after hours (http://www.tabcrawler.com/archive.php?action=view&file_id=50671&artist=velvet)
The bridge is even labeled for you, but this doesn't follow perfectly because the verse and chorus are flipped. Another good example would be "People Ain't no Good" by Nick Cave, again, which was on the Shrek 2 soundtrack. The bridge here starts "To our love..."

and about this service... If you have a friend with, say cakewalk and a good soundcard and a cd burner, and another friend that plays decent guitar, that would come out sounding just as good as if you were to pay a so-called professional, and a lot more fun for you to hang out and get to have more of a creative say on how the song sounds in the end. Heck, maybe you even want to sing it?

01-17-2005, 06:26 PM
I agree with the cautions of others here. From what I've heard, these companies have 2 or 3 generic songs they score everyone's poem to. You're neither getting anything original nor anything of particular quality.