How to Avoid Melodic Cliches in Writing Songs

Cliches in writing

Guess what? Cliches aren’t just limited to lyrics. Melodies can fall into the cliché trap too! When a melody becomes too predictable, it loses its impact and leaves listeners yawning. As songwriters, we want to steer clear of melodic cliches and create captivating melodies that keep our audience engaged. Let’s dive into some ways to avoid those melodic cliches in writing and make our melodies interesting and engaging.

1. Skip the Tonic and Explore

The tonic, the first and last note of a melody, can become too predictable if we rely on it too much. So, let’s shake things up! Try ending a phrase on a different note to create tension and add intrigue to the melody.

2. Embrace a Bit of Dissonance

Dissonance can be your secret weapon. Introduce notes that clash and create tension in the melody. This adds interest and keeps listeners on their toes. But remember, a little goes a long way. Too much dissonance can make the melody sound downright jarring.

3. Leave Them Hanging

Leave your audience hanging by not always resolving the melody. This builds anticipation and keeps them curious, eagerly waiting to hear how the melody will eventually resolve. It’s like the musical equivalent of a cliffhanger!

4. Spice Up the Rhythm

A strict and predictable rhythm can quickly become snooze-worthy. So, let’s give our melody some rhythmical flair to avoid cliches in writing! Vary the rhythm by using syncopation or changing the note lengths. This adds interest and creates a sense of movement in the melody.

5. Surprise Them with Unexpected Intervals

Intervals are the spaces between notes in a melody. Injecting unexpected intervals adds surprise and captivates the listener. You can use larger intervals to create tension or smaller intervals for a comforting sense of familiarity.

6. Get Adventurous with Scales and Modes

Dare to explore different scales and modes to infuse your melodies with freshness. For instance, try the Dorian Mode to evoke a melancholic vibe with a touch of brightness, like a minor key with a twist.

Now, cliches in writing aren’t always the enemy. As songwriters, we have the power to choose which cliches to embrace and which ones to leave behind. By incorporating these techniques, we can craft melodies that are unique, memorable, and keep our listeners hooked. So, let your creative spirit soar, break free from melodic cliches, and watch your songs shine!

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