A virtual songwriting workshop at Salt Lake Community College gave students a chance to expand their writing skills and create music based on their experiences.
The two-part course, held over Zoom on Oct. 19 and 26, taught songwriting techniques, the importance of word choice and other tips for making original music.
According to writing coach Nalu Francis, the workshop aimed to “teach writers the fundamental techniques of songwriting, both from a writing perspective and as a means of enacting change in others and the world around them.”
Francis is an English and music student at SLCC who also works as an outreach and communications coordinator at the Community Writing Center. His interests in language, music and art helped give him the background to teach the songwriting class.
“I wanted to teach this workshop because I consider myself a writer who happens to use music as my primary mode of storytelling and its relationship with our culture,” he said.
The first session went over the fundamentals of songwriting and different songwriting techniques.
“Since every song can start with a musical or lyrical idea, the only consistent requirement to starting a song is having an experience or emotion to draw from,” Francis said during his presentation.
Francis talked with students about how every word counts when writing a song, along with how pronouns are important to understand who is speaking and play with perspective.
The course also allowed students to try new things in a supportive environment.
“I come from the creative writing world and songwriting uses different techniques, so it takes practice getting used to that,” said Rodrigo Caetano, a student who took the class.
This course, along with many other workshops, can be found on the Community Writing Center workshops page.