Jeffrey Pepper Rodgers speaks with Songwriting Scene!
Jeffrey Pepper Rodgers, author of The Complete Singer-Songwriter, had a Q&A with the online blog, Songwriting Scene. Songwriting Scene is a blog for songwriters about songwriting, and that is one of the many things they spoke about in this Q&A. Read an excerpt of the interview after the cut and feel free to leave your thoughts in the comment section below.
Looking to take your craft and career as a performing singer-songwriter to the next level? Sometimes the right book can help you do just that.
I recently had a chat with my friend Jeffrey Pepper Rodgers, whose critically-acclaimed book The Complete Singer-Songwriter: A Troubadour’s Guide to Writing, Recording, Performing and Business just came out in paperback. This updated and expanded second edition features songwriting tips and techniques from more than 100 artists, including Joni Mitchell, John Mayer, Paul Simon, Rosanne Cash, Jewel, Jeff Tweedy, Ani DiFranco, James Taylor, John Fogerty, Brandi Carlile, Richard Thompson, Jason Mraz, Rodney Crowell, Jerry Garcia, Dar Williams, and more.
Rodgers is the real deal: He is a grand prize winner of the John Lennon Songwriting Contest, a contributor to NPR’s All Things Considered, and founding editor of Acoustic Guitar magazine.
Here are some highlights from our talk:
Q: What made you want to write The Complete Singer-Songwriter years ago? Why bring it now to paperback — how has the world of the performing singer-songwriter changed?
A: I wrote the book originally because I felt like I had something unique to offer. As a lifelong songwriter and founding editor of Acoustic Guitar magazine, I had the privilege of talking in depth with so many brilliant songwriters about their creative lives—people like Paul Simon, Joni Mitchell, James Taylor, Pete Seeger, Jerry Garcia, Ani DiFranco, and on and on and on. There were always “aha!” moments in the interviews, where the artists shared a piece of hard-won advice or an anecdote that cut right to the heart of things. I realized if I combined nuggets from these conversations with my other reporting on the songwriting scene, I’d have something really valuable and enduring that would be altogether different from all the books out there that purport to teach you the “secret formulas” of hit songwriting.
The first edition came out in 2003. Since then I’ve done so many more incredible interviews—John Fogerty, Elvis Costello, Dar Williams, Richard Thompson, Brandi Carlile, Jeff Tweedy… I also wanted to add to the book new lessons on chord progressions, rhyme, songwriting games, and more, and advice on emerging business topics like online performing, house concert networks, digital royalties, and fan funding. So all these things went into the second edition. It is a labor of love.
Read the rest of the interview HERE