Oct. 1-3: Deep Dive into Writing Just ONE Song


Oct. 1-3: Deep Dive into Writing Just ONE Song

Join us as we spend a weekend on the craft of songwriting, specifically on a strategy for writing songs from the ground up.

We’ll lead you through the steps of choosing an effective title, writing the chorus and verse sections, and then diving into how to write the best bridge for your song.

The entire weekend will be presented online, in Zoom meetings, designed to give you direct face-to-face interaction with our mentors and with your peers.  We will use breakout rooms when it’s time to do some writing.  The group sessions will be recorded for you to watch again later.

You’ll have the choice of writing alone or with collaborators.

And you’ll be guided by two of SongStudio’s best:

  • Blair “The Professor” Packham, who has spent a life avoiding a “real job”, choosing instead to write hit songs, compose for television, perform for adoring crowds, and share his knowledge with songwriters everywhere.
  • Allister “The Keener” Bradley, who has dedicated himself to decades of learning all he can about songwriting craft and nuance, and is ready to apply it all towards your songwriting journey.
  • Throughout the weekend, when you’re in writing sessions, you’ll have the opportunity to call for help and one of our mentors will join you in the writing room.

Deep Dive into Writing Just ONE Song, October 1-3, 2021

All times are listed in Eastern Daylight Time (Toronto).

Wednesday, September 29th

7:00-8:00pm:  Orientation

(Optional, but encouraged) Join us for an orientation session, to share our mechanisms for online meetings and to learn about what to expect on the weekend.

Friday, October 1st

7:00-10:00pm:  Selecting a Song Title

Why start with a song title?  Where can you find great song titles?  We’ll discuss strategies for starting off on the right foot, and we’ll spend some time in search of great song titles to use this weekend.  We encourage you to bring song titles that you’ve saved for a rainy day!

We will also spend some time getting to know one another, as we embark onto a weekend together.

Saturday, October 2nd

9:00am-12:00pm:  Writing a Chorus

Let’s talk about how to build a strong chorus for your song title, and why starting with the chorus is a great strategy for songwriting.

After we talk about the process, you’ll stretch your songwriting muscles in a songwriting session (either by yourself or with collaborators) to develop your chorus.  Done early?  Rather than skip ahead to writing verses, try writing the chorus to another song title!

1:00-4:00pm:  Writing Verses

Once you have a killer chorus written, it’s time to decide how you can write verses to support the chorus.  What should the verses say?  How should they sound, to lead to the chorus?  And how do you avoid “2nd verse hell”?

Again, after the discussion on how to write verses, you’ll jump into the writing rooms again and write verses to go along with your chorus.

4:00-5:00pm:  Follow-up Discussion

How did the writing go today?  Let’s talk about where things went well and where they became challenging.

7:00-9:00pm:  Social Time

Put down your pencils and your rhyming dictionaries, and hang out together, sharing songs and stories.

Sunday, October 3rd

9:00am-12:00pm:  Writing a Bridge

What does the ultimate bridge do for your song?  How is it different than anything else in the song so far?

We’ll talk about writing bridges, and then you’ll write a bridge to go with your song.

1:00-4:00pm:  Song Sharing and Wrap-up

Time to listen to the songs we’ve written this weekend!  Don’t worry if they still need some polishing, this is about sharing the process and finding a shared inspiration from the great work we’ve done in a short period of time.

And to wrap up the weekend, let’s talk about how to take everything you’ve learned, and repeating the steps to write the next song, and the one after that.


Price for the whole Deep Dive weekend:  $299 Canadian (+ tax).

Active Members of the Songwriters Association of Canada (SAC) and SongStudio alumni receive a 10% discount.

Allister's history with SongStudio dates back to 2005, when he was a participant in the first workshop. He's been back ever since, and in 2009 he became SongStudio's Technical Director.

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