Try This At Home: Adventures in songwriting by Frank TurnerAt risk of coming across as a biased fangirl, I thoroughly enjoyed Frank Turners Try This At Home.
The book shares the stories behind how a selection of his songs from his long (and ongoing) career came into being, from the initial spark of inspiration to the riffs and chord sequences. As a lover of words I was especially interested in the evolution of lyrics and the images of early drafts of songs such as There She Is. It was interesting to hear which songs were written quickly and which took time to hone and was a reminder that a) creativity happens within its own time and b) outsiders who have only known the completed polished work cannot tell which have been slaved over and which arrive in their creators lap fully formed.
My musical skills are limited so the talk of chord sequences and key shifts was beyond me, but it didnt hinder my enjoyment as Try This at Home looks not just at the mechanics of song writing but also at the impact relationships, politics and the world have on creativity. All this alongside witty and personal anecdotes and Franks (at times unflinching) honesty pulls together a must-read book for fans.
As an aside, my list of must listen to bands has doubled in size as a result of this book, not to mention reigniting my love of songs that have fallen from my playlists over the years...
try this at home
Learning guitar or piano is, if not exactly easy, then at least something you can get your head round: put the hours in and sooner or later even the most ham-fisted musical illiterate will be able to knock out a semblance of a tune. Songwriting, however, is another matter. Plenty of people have written books on songwriting, but few have really explained how you get to grips with this dark art. Frank Turner, the engagingly enthusiastic songwriter who has straddled the line between punk, folk and protest music, has come up with an analysis of his material, the suggestion of the title being that this debunking of a much-mythologised skill will help the reader to throw a few chords and words together and come up…. Get The International Pack for free for your first 30 days for unlimited Smartphone and Tablet access. Already a member?
Frank Turner is quite clearly the driving force in his musical ventures — throughout the book, he recognises that the music is his project, and his decision is final. However, he is equally steadfast in his views that he cannot accomplish his aspirations alone, and although he is accustomed to composing individually, particularly in his writing, he is in no way opposed to outside influence, and on many occasions, happily welcomes it. The monthly XS Noize playlists on Spotify bring together the most essential new music of the last month that has been featured on the site. The July edition features tracks from: Iggy Pop, The […]. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.
Taking 36 songs from his back catalogue, folk-punk icon Frank Turner explores his songwriting process. Find out the stories behind the songs forged in the hedonistic years of the mids North London scene, the ones perfected in Nashville studios, and everything in between. Some of these songs arrive fully-formed, as if they've always been there, some take graft and endless reworking to find 'the one'. In exploring them all, Turner reflects with eloquence, insight and self-deprecating wit on exactly what it is to be a songwriter. From love songs and break-up songs to political calls-to-arms; songs composed alone in a hotel room or in soundcheck with the Sleeping Souls, this brilliantly written memoir - featuring exclusive photos of handwritten lyrics and more - is a must-have book for Frank Turner fans and anyone curious about how to write music. Please sign in to write a review.
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