Are you a singer looking for songs to explore as potential numbers to add to current set or for a new set altogether? Are you a songwriter that’s curious about the number of songs that a key phrase or word has been used? Are you a musician looking to expand your repertoire?
There are a number of sites available with impressive extensive song banks for you to freely search. Though many have fields of annoying pop-ups to navigate, the treasure trove you unearth is well worth the nuisance. Besides, you can minimize the interruption via settings on your PC or Mac.
Freaky For The Words
One of the richest bank vaults of lyrics is housed at www.lyricfreak.com. The site offers an advanced search option and also provides bio’s on artists that have performed the songs you pull up. The site is truly deep and rich in terms of genres, artists, and various eras of music.
If you simply want to find ways to play with words, take a nostalgic trip, read lyrics as poetry, or put together fun a sing-along game with friends, band members, or co-writers – this is the go-to site to get started. You can simply put in a catch phrase or word in the search engine, and it will pull up song titles where that word or phrase is used.
Mix + Match
Let’s say you’re a singer that’s going to do a wedding gig for some extra cash and exposure. You can put in phrases like “newlywed” or “first love” or “married” or “wedding.” The results will provide options to explore, artists you may want to check out, and will likely trigger ideas for additional searches.
There may be a vibe you’re going for with your bad or for you that you associate with a particular artist. You can search for the artist, and many songs they have performed will show up. The song bank includes contemporary tunes and acts, as well as classics from artists that were mainstays as early as the fifties and sixties.
It’s a great resource for pulling lyrics to play with. For example, you could pull a handful of pieces with the word “heartache” in the title. You could explore the subject by reading each piece as a conversation, a letter, a rant or rave – just for the sake of exercising your emotions or to provide food for thought on material you might want to write on the subject.
Look for common factors on a specific subject matter. Think about unique ways to spin the song interpretively or stylistically. Or, think of some fresh perspectives that you feel are overlooked, misrepresented, or just given a brief skimming on the surface.
Reading lyrics will naturally help develop interpretive skills for a singer and will help sharpen songwriting skills by revealing the emotional power of words that can sometimes be stifled or compromised by the melody, arrangement, or an artist’s interpretive spin. You can even sing through sets of lyrics by improvising your own melody. Break and bend the rules as you explore the words to songs.
Head Games + Heart
You can create puzzles from lyrics as well or even unique wall art. Take lyrics and pull out lines, phrases or a chorus that resonates on some level. Repeat this process with several different songs. Then, take a stretched canvass or similar sturdy surface. You’ll use it to create what becomes a crossword puzzle representation or similar pattern to lay out for your wall hanging.
You can tie in a theme with a broad-stroked stylized sketch to tie it all together. For example, your crossword puzzle of heartache and recovery could have a simple, stylistic heart that runs around the outside of your lyric puzzle, thus framing and defining the play space. You can then paint it, shellac it, or lather it up with a few protective coatings of Mod PodgeÂ® to preserve it. Use your imagination and inspiration. It makes a fun, unique statement and will serve as a great conversation piece.
Band members can create “personal statements” by stringing together hooks and bridges from favorite songs. You and your friends can cut up the lyrics, fold them up, and then draw them randomly to make up fun, abstract observations of life and its absurdities. You can create wall art of favorite lyrics and then truthfully say, “I can see the songwriting is on the wall.”
Don’t underestimate the power of words, and never dismiss the impact that simply playing with words can have on your ability to deliver with greater focus and clarity the message of the songs you sing, play, or write.