University Of Tasmania
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Form, content, craft and the individual lyric

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posted on 2023-05-27, 08:57 authored by Jenkins, SD
This research, conducted through reflective compositional practice, examined and experimented with the lyrical elements of form, content and craft. The project investigated how the songwriter may utilise these elements to fulfil the potential of a song, and examined ways in which the individuality of the lyricist could be enhanced. A key output of this research was a folio of original songs including two albums, The Last Polaroid (2017) and Nylon String Songs (2018). The twenty songs in the folio demonstrate the effective deployment of a range of lyrical elements, including the use of the cognitive length of line, the influential authority of rhyme and rhythm, how sections of variation and repetition organise detail, depth and sonority, how patterns of sound and image intensify sense, and how shapes can inform consequence to allow finer textures to present more immediately. Analysis and critical reflection on poetic and lyrical models from Sappho to Shakespeare to Sondheim that guide the lyrical process are presented in the exegesis, along with a discussion of the key lyrical elements of the songs contained in the folio. The research revealed the deep-seated charm and power of the song form itself, and the potential to harness its adaptability for individual content. The research recognised the appropriate organisation of lyrical elements that then leads to their concealment and enables the engagement and seduction of which songs are capable. This research represents a significant contribution to the literature on techniques of successful songwriting and identifies strategies of relevance to aspiring songwriters.


Publication status

  • Unpublished

Rights statement

Copyright 2018 the author The recordings are not avaiable for release due to copyright Authors preferred name is Charles Jenkins

Repository Status

  • Open

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