All posts by SingBetterEnglish

Because the Night

There are times when you need to sing an English word in a new way.

Native speakers naturally strengthen the word because by emphasising the ‘cause’. Not the ‘be‘.

Why does Patti Smith sing the word oppositively?

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Feed the Birds: Serendipity on Sunset Boulevard

Our dad had a secret for writing songs. He said, “You’ve got to have them Simple, Singable and Sincere. And they should have a special sound to them. That’s the only way it’ll work.”

Robert Sherman

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Don’t Fear the Reaper

When you invite Death into your love song, how do you keep It on message? You build a regular, reassuring heartbeat of guitar and drums, with a hint of melancholy in the A minor scale.  Use words with warm, round ‘m’, ‘n’, ‘y’ and ‘b’ sounds. No guillotine cuts of ‘k’, ‘tt‘ or ‘ss’. No heavy, dead thuds of ‘d’ or ‘ug’. Light words, sung lightly, layered with the lalala of summertime. Death becomes a fact, not a fear; a natural part of life and love:

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Nothing Like a Friend

When you sing in English, small words offer big opportunities. They can stretch and dance in song. Give them room; pay them attention.  Be ready for Russian doll words: tiny words that appear then reappear, nestled inside bigger, emotion-carrying words. Listen to tiny ‘in‘, working alone and within:

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