Songwriting Magazine Issue 34

Songwriting Magazine Spring 2024 Issue 34

SPECIAL BANDS EDITION: Yard Act, The Black Crowes, Bob Vylan, Middle Kids, 10cc, Supergrass, The Feeling, Shed Seven, Barenaked Ladies

Welcome to your new “bands” themed issue of Songwriting Magazine. Packed with the best new groups and icons still out there making it happen, it gives us the chance to dive into the specific skills required to write songs for a band, and stay together long enough to record/release/tour them as well. We’ve even come up with our own fantasy supergroup and have asked our members to do the same.

Yard Act, cover stars for this special edition, have recently released their dynamite second album, Where’s My Utopia, a record that manages to be bolder in sound yet more personal lyrically. Founding members James Smith and Ryan Needham walk us through the band’s history, revealing their origins and confronting the pressures that accompanied following up the success of debut The Overload. Our chat with the lads also gave us the chance to discuss the importance of strong communication and how you know when a song is finished.

We also had the honour of chatting with Rich Robinson, guitarist of the legendary blues rock band The Black Crowes. The band’s new album, Happiness Bastards, is their first in 15 years and is a return to classic form. In our interview with Rich, we learn about how the new record was made and delve into his love of using unique guitar tunings – an essential part of the Black Crowes sound.

The chats don’t stop there. Bobby Vylan of grime-punk duo Bob Vylan brings us up to date with how their latest record Humble As The Sun was written and recorded – a fascinating brew of samples, riffs and freestyle lyrics. There’s also Hannah Joy, the lead vocalist and guitarist of soul-stirring Australian alt-rock band Middle Kids. With the pandemic and embracing new motherhood, the songs that make up Faith Crisis Pt 1 were the first she’d not written on the road.

Want to know how a quartet of bands wrote their best-loved hits, then look know further. We’ve got the stories behind the creations of Alright by Supergrass, I’m Not In Love by 10cc, One Week by Barenaked Ladies, and Fill My Little World by The Feeling. Each written in a completely different way, there’s something they all have in common – they’ve all stood the test of time and remain loved far and wide.

Feeling inspired by all those great bands and determined to level-up your own group’s songwriting? Don’t worry, we have all the tips you’ll need and more. Producer Robert Adam Stevenson is here to help you get the most out of your studio time while Shane Cooley has learned from experience the key things to think about when you’re a songwriter starting a band. Progressive rock outfit The Pineapple Thief talk us through the process of creating an album, ICMP’s Shane Beales knows the secrets to successful band dynamics and chemistry, and James Linderman hands his column over to his friend Sandra so she can share her knowledge of writing songs for a group.

With Shed Seven, Chastity Belt, Camera Obscura, Corella, Yaz, The Manatees, Friko, and Donna Blue completing this season’s roster, we’re confident that we’ve come up with a cracking line-up to be proud of.

So what are you waiting for, get stuck in!

Songfest 2024

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