What is the secret to writing a great song? How can you turn a story or a personal experience into memorable lyrics? The Idler Academy has teamed up with award-winning lyricist Chris Difford of Squeeze to teach the art of songwriting in a unique interactive course.
For over thirty years, Chris Difford has brought us characters and sketches from everyday life, turning the mundane into the beautiful. With his partner and Squeeze co-founder Glenn Tilbrook, Chris has written some of the most enduring and best-loved songs of our time, including “Up The Junction” and “Cool for Cats”. With sixteen Squeeze albums, three critically acclaimed solo albums, countless hits and tours under his belt, Chris is the perfect guide on your songwriting journey.
Over the course of eight video lessons, Chris will share his life story, teaching you how to find inspiration in your own life and the world around you. He will talk about his top focussing techniques to combat writer’s block. He’ll show you how to learn from the masters – Joni Mitchell, Noel Coward, Johnny Mercer and more. There will be homework given after each lesson, which you can share in the online course forum so that Chris and other students can provide direct feedback on your lyrics and progress.
The Idler Academy also organises annual online ‘Meet the Tutor’ events, so that songwriting students can get together with Chris and discuss lyric writing. These events are free for online course students and Academy members.
‘How to Write A Song’ doesn’t teach you to adhere to strict rules or structures. It allows you to explore your creativity and to find inspiration in your daily life, turning chance encounters and conversations into great songs. It’s the perfect course for any aspiring songwriter.
Introduction: Chris Difford’s Life Story – How I Became a Lyricist, with Idler editor Tom Hodgkinson (10.03)
Lesson One: Be Yourself – Your Life Story (9.02)
Lesson Two: Focussing Techniques (9.06)
Lesson Three: Self-Inspiration and Where to Find it (8.29)
Lesson Four: Writing Partnerships (9.57)
Lesson Five: Listening to the Masters (4.55)
Lesson Six: Sharing Our Lives (8.35)
Lesson Seven: Show and Tell (2.39)
About the tutor
Award-winning lyricist and Chris Difford has brought us characters and sketches from everyday life, turning the mundane into the beautiful, the urbane into the exquisite, for over 30 years. With his partner, collaborator, friend and Squeeze co-founder Glenn Tilbrook, Chris has written some of the most enduring and best-loved songs of our time. “Up The Junction”, “Cool For Cats”, “Labelled With Love” and “Tempted”, to name but a few. Chris has sixteen Squeeze albums, three critically acclaimed solo albums, countless top 20 hits, 52 American tours, 50 UK tours and a variety of global tours under his belt. He is one of the country’s most respected songwriters and has co-written with a host of musicians and performers that reads like a veritable who’s who of the industry – Elton John, Trilok Gurtu, Marti Pellow, Lamont Dozier, Willie Mitchell, Bryan Ferry Jools Holland and Paul Carrack. Chris Braide and Sarah Brightman.