If you are serious about your songwriting, this course will provide the tools and skills to improve yourself in what you do. We will work on basic songwriting tools such as phrasing, lyric writing, harmonies etc, but there will also be a strong emphasis on hands-on training and improving the way you write and the way you work. This summer school will offer you a wealth of skills, knowledge and training on everything you need to make a big step forward in your songwriting. It will do so in a relaxed and friendly international environment, with our hub of activities right in the centre of the beautiful, historic city of Leeuwarden, with its canals, beautiful old buildings and rich cultural life.

Learning Goals:
What defines ‘a good song’? We analyse the great songs in many different styles from the great songwriters: the songs from the early days of pop music to what’s happening today. From Bob (Dylan) to Bruno (Mars). We start each day with our ‘Song of the Day’, discovering what is going on beneath the surface, and applying what we learn to our own songwriting.

Co-writing is perhaps the scariest but most valuable approach to songwriting. How can I share some of my deepest thoughts with somebody I haven’t met before, and come up with a song? This course will supply you with the tips and tricks about how to make it work for you, how it’s done in the co-writing capital of the world (Nashville) and how to improve your skills. And then, of course, we will just do it!
And once the songs are written, how do you go from there? How do you get your voice as a songwriter heard? You will receive tips about performing, presenting yourself online and about the music business. Also: how to record good quality demos, vocal recording and editing techniques and hands-on training in our onsite studios. We will record demos of the songs you write, so you will have something to take home!
Our course takes a hands-on approach. We mix and match workshops, theory and practical sessions. We will make use of cultural centre the Neushoorn in the centre of the city of Leeuwarden.
We have a few electric pianos at our venue, please bring your own (acoustic) guitars and other equipment you might need.
Professional assistance is always on hand should you get stuck, and we have daily feedback sessions so that the participants get to hear each other’s work and to share tips.
There will be some collaboration with other courses, for example Creative Music Production or Filmmaking so you can broaden your horizon and engage with other disciplines.
The results of the course will be presented during a fun and informal show on the final evening.