How To Meet Songwriting Co-Writers You Click With
Finding co-writers can be difficult.
Well, let us clarify. Finding good co-writers can be difficult. If you live in a small town or suburb, it can be hard to find people in your area who share the same passion for music as you do. However, moving to a major music city like L.A. or Nashville, may not solve your problems either.
Even though these cities are crawling with musicians, finding people who you click with, not only musically but also personally, can still be a challenge.Follow these steps, and you’ll have a greater chance of finding co-writers you love writing with:
Step 1: Define What You Want
There are a few questions you’ll want to ask yourself before seeking out people to collaborate with.
Why do you want to collaborate? Are you working on an album and want to co-write songs that will potentially be released on that project? Are you a songwriter hoping to land credits on other artists’ projects? Are you hoping to start a band or a more long-term collaborative arrangement?
What are you looking for in a co-writer? Are you looking for someone who writes in a specific genre? Are they not only writers but also producers/instrumentalists/vocalists? Are you a beginning songwriter looking for other beginners to learn with? Or are you looking to write with more experienced writers?
What do you want your collaboration process to look like? Do you want to write together in your home studio? Are you comfortable with writing with someone long-distance, via Skype or FaceTime?
Step 2: Do Your Research
After you determine your co-writing goals, the next step is to research places where you can meet people who fit the bill.As far as research goes, there are two main categories of places to find co-writers: Online and Offline.
Offline Places To Look For Co-Writers
Local music schools, music classes, and rehearsal studios: Attending a music-related college program can be a great way to meet other serious musicians, but it’s not the only way. Check out the types of short-term group music classes that are offered in your area. In many cities, there are schools offering programs ranging from guitar and drums to music production and DJ-ing.
Music Industry Conferences and Events (in your area and beyond): Events like Songathon and the ASCAP Expo are places where songwriters from all over gather to network and connect with other music industry professionals. Check them out if you’re interested in meeting songwriters with more experience as well as meeting people on the industry side of things as well.
Open Mic Nights: Local open mic nights are great ways to display your talent to the local community. You’ll also be able to meet other people in the area interested in writing and performing with you.
Gigs of other local musicians: Research local music venues, and consider attending gigs of other musicians in your area. Not only will the performing artist/band be glad that you showed up, but many of the times, the performer will have other musician friends who will be in the audience supporting them that you can connect with, too!
Online Places To Look For Co-Writers
Facebook groups: Search for groups on Facebook related to music and songwriting. There are also music groups on Facebook that are more locally-focused as well.
Music networking apps: There are some great apps available, specifically dedicated to musician networking. One example is Vampr, which describes itself as “Tinder for musicians.”
Social media and Youtube: Searching for hashtags like #songwriter or #nycsongwriter (or the equivalent in your city) on platforms like Instagram and Twitter can help you discover songwriters that you would like to work with. Youtube is also a great place to search for songwriters posting videos of their original music.
Craigslist: In every local Craigslist site, there is a section called “Musicians”. Check it out and consider posting your info there.
Online music courses that foster a community: Online music courses/challenges like SongFancy’s 5 in 5 Challenge and Hyperbits’ Music Production Masterclass often include a community component like a Facebook group for everyone who is enrolled in that course or participating in the challenge. Those Facebook groups are often great places to find people who are committed to learning and growing as a musician.
Reddit: Head to Reddit to find tons of forums dedicated to music creators of different genres. One we like – /r/Wearethemusicmakers While all of these places are great places to find co-writers, not all of them will be right for you. It may be best to determine which two or three places to focus your attention on based on your goals. From doing your research, you’ll notice that most groups and communities center around a particular genre or skill live. Choose a few where you feel confident you’ll find people who match your goals.
Step 3: Start Reaching Out
Once you’ve determined which communities you want to meet people, it’s time to start reaching out to people.Join those classes and in-person groups, and start attending regularly. Become a part of the community. It’s not enough to just show up. Make an effort to meet other members and the organizers. Offer to help out if you can.
If you’re mostly doing your co-writer search online, DM people or post messages in groups saying something like:
Hey! My name is [name], and I’m a songwriter looking for new people to write with. Would love to connect!
You can also try posting up flyers on bulletin boards in places like rehearsal studios and music schools.
A lot of musicians, especially ones who have a lot of experience, will want to hear examples of your work, so make sure you have a link ready to share (even if it’s just a private Soundcloud link).Stay patient throughout this process. Don’t worry about people who don’t respond to your messages. Those aren’t your people.
A lot like when dating, as you begin scheduling co-writing sessions with people, you’ll quickly learn who you like collaborating with and who isn’t your cup of tea. This process may take a bit of time, but eventually you’ll start meeting people, and your network of fellow musicians will grow. Good luck, and let us know in the comments if these tips were helpful to you!