home > songwriting > songwriting part one

Songwriting Series:
Part One - Harmony, Form and Layout


SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend



One of the most popular questions into the studio is that of how to write songs.

It almost always begins with a rhythm groove, a riff with a series of notes pushing a certain harmony, or perhaps with a strong melody line.

From there, it obvioulsly needs to grow and expand to create a full song structure. It can be a simple structure of a verse and chorus. Or, it can be very complex with key changes, bridge sections, guitar solos, intros and outros, etc.

One thing is for sure, songs should pull the listener in. The piece of music needs to capture the listeners interest. Obviously style plays a massive role here. People interested in say primarily country-western music might not exactly enjoy a heavy metal song - no matter how well it was written.


This songwriting series will be taught as a three part series. It will cover the analysis of various songwriting ideas used to create a pop/rock song.

The example piece was written by your instructor Andrew Wasson for this video lesson series. The piece contains several sections in it's form and layout.

In this video Andrew examines the songs key signature, the use of harmony and the layout of the harmony through the various sections of the piece.

Sections for our example song include:

- Intro.
- Verse
- Bridge
- Chorus
- Guitar Break
- Guitar Solo
- Breakdown
- Out Chorus

Thank you for participating! A copy of the lead-sheet for this piece is available for download below as a Powertab file.


The Powertab Document below contains the
Chart for the Songwriting Lesson Example Piece


To Download > Left Click > Save

Powertab is Windows software. To download the program and watch a few tutorials, just follow
the link provided below. Mac users will require Tabview, the Powertab opener/player for Mac.

Windows users: Click Here     |      Mac users: Click Here

To watch Part Two or Part Three of this series please follow a link below:

Watch Songwriting Part Two   |   Watch Songwriting Part Three