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> If You Can Hum It, You Can Play It...
post Jun 3 2014, 08:17 AM
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I believe it was Cosmin's introduction video where I first heard that. And, I remember thinking to myself, "no way", but now I think I understand.

Recently I have become a huge Foo Fighters fan, and Dave Grohl is a massive musician, but not a technical one, however the Foo Fighters are a hit machine.

I've always written songs (either by myself or with a band) around guitar and then later someone else would form vocals/lyrics to them. During that process something almost always need to change, either a guitar part, the initial song structure - something in order to make the vocals cohesive. And it can also prove to be a difficult thing for a vocalist that is a bit shy about asking over and over if something else can change.

So the past few days I've been thinking it would be interesting to start with a vocal verse/chorus idea - don't even need the words - but just a melody idea can quickly pop into mind, and can be hummed to a metronome - then the root notes can be layed down on guitar and bass along with a drum track - and then guitar melody.

It wouldn't be much different from originating a song vocally on a piano or with a box guitar - except that (for me) I wouldn't kill my creativity by fumbling around trying to find the cords until after the initial vocal melody has already been captured.

I don't know why this formula didn't make sense sooner - but I think just recently it dawned on me from watching a few Foo Fighters documentaries and coming to understand that the vocal part is the hook - so write the hook, and make everything else compliment it.

I'm anxious to get started with this formula. If you can hum it, you can play it.

This post has been edited by Spock: Jun 3 2014, 08:18 AM
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post Jun 3 2014, 08:49 AM
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Starting with the melody line gives you a great opportunity to use interesting chords and progressions underneath too rather than your normal go to ones.

When you get to a place in the melody where you want something to tweak the listeners ear or give a whole different feel, you can just work on what chords and extended chords have that melody note in it and experiment until you find something you like.

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