It’s out - the 2nd edition of Pat Pattison’s groundbreaking Writing Better Lyrics, featuring a foreword by three-time Grammy winner Gillian Welch and almost 100 new pages, including several new chapters plus expansion and reworking of most of the original chapters.
"[This book] is a priceless map through the minefields of cliché, boredom and laziness that often destroy even the best efforts...
I would not be the writer I am today without [Pat’s] teaching and his unique and comprehensive understanding of language, rhyme, rhythm, and structure. To this day, when I struggle with a lyric and find myself falling short, I am usually ignoring some very sound advice contained in these pages. And I read it again."
"The Must-Have Guide for Songwriters...Writing Better Lyrics has been a staple for songwriters for nearly two decades. Now this revised and updated 2nd Edition provides effective tools for everything from generating ideas, to understanding the form and function of a song, to fine-tuning lyrics."
I took a class with a great teacher named Pat Pattison... I learned a lot in that class...and I still read that book, Writing Better Lyrics. I think it's great.
- John Mayer
I've been writing most of my life, and I have to say that employing some of, some of (I said it twice because I'm not through with your book yet), your techniques, I have found places to pull from I never knew were there. Streams can coalesce to form a river, but if they never intersect, all you have are small streams. Your methods have caused an intersection of the many streams I have been pulling from, and I have now felt the force of the River, and I have to confess it is a little frightening. The impact is enormously draining -- a bit like going from a go-cart to a fighter jet. :)
- Kevin Wood
You are a gifted thinker and I'm very appreciative of how well your book was written. It's helped me to better critique my songs. It helped me to understand the things I did instinctively, both right and wrong. I'm beginning to develop a better flow when writing. Thank you.
This is the first year I've tried to pitch any material, and now I have one song already recorded by a major bluegrass artist and six others on hold with other major bluegrass/country artists, and the year is not over yet.
I hope to shake hands with you someday and thank you personally for the obvious extensive study and hard work you did helping people like me improve dramatically. You rock!
- Thomas Porter
Finally...the book we've all been waiting for! This is the newest, most authoritative, and most complete treatment of lyric writing available. If you have questions about metaphor, meter, structure, rhyme scheme, simile, or virtually anything else related to lyric writing, the answers are all here and all in one place. Best of all, for each subject covered, Pattison includes at least one exercise for the reader to do, using the skills taught in the chapter.
Pat Pattison is a teacher in the highest sense of the word -- he not only tells us what we can do, he shows us how to do it. Using examples from such songwriters as Janis Ian, Pat Alger, and Beth Nielsen-Chapman among others, he expertly examines every aspect of lyric writing in a way that leaves the reader with that wonderful feeling of "OOH! Now I get it!"
So... if you want to "get it," get this book. If you feel you’ve already got it, get the book anyway -- the last chapter alone is worth it.
- Renee Watkins, The Austin Songwriter
This is a much better book than I will be able to describe it as being, but I can tell you that if you only ever got to read the first two pages of it, your outlook of song craft would be dramatically shifted into a more profound and universal perspective. It's that kind of good. Read the full review
- James Linderman, The Muse's News, Canadian Musician Magazine, and Professional Musician Magazine
This has got to be the mother of "how-to's". Chock full of information and exercises for inspiration from start to finish, Pat takes the tough part of songwriting - the structure - and makes it seem simple.
His way of thinking seems so different from any I've come across before and yet all his words really strike home. They make me think about my song writing in a way I never thought about it before - as a process that really does have some sort of cohesive structure, whether I choose to acknowledge that or not.
After having read this book, I can see that not acknowledging it would be awfully silly. Why not try to write the best song I can write? This book will certainly help you do just that. In fact, this book is a must have in any songwriter's library. Read the full review
- Jodi Krangle, The Muse's Muse
"If I had a dollar for every time I've used this book, I'd be writing this in Napa Valley."
- Tom Hays, Platinum Pearls