Matthieu Brant's Songwriting on Guitar

Songwriting is a creative process, but there are still key guidelines and formulas that ALL of the great songs and songwriters follow. Songwriting on Guitar covers all of these essential musical rules in layman's language, but Songwriting on Guitar is so much more than a 'textbook' approach to songwriting; it's an immersive, contextual and highly creative process that you play and compose your way through. No tedious theory or boring exercises to work through here. In fact, you will likely create hundreds of your own motifs and song ideas as you journey through Songwriting on Guitar.

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There are dozens and dozens of musical and physical characteristics that make the guitar THE ideal instrument to compose songs with. Songwriting on Guitar reveals a truckload of 'guitaristic' tricks-of-the-trade that every guitar-playing songwriter should know. Songwriting On Guitar is bundled with Chord Cookbook giving you over sixteen hours (yes, 16 hours!) of demonstrations, playing examples and on- screen-charts to guide your creative and technical growth as a songwriter.

Songwriting on Guitar box art There are few instructors walking the planet today that can assimilate, document, organize and then present a curriculum as robust and insightful as this one. Dutch recording artist and top European guitar educator, Matthieu Brandt, invested several years researching and compiling the curriculum for Songwriting on Guitar and its companion, Chord Cookbook. Brandt, who also authored TrueFire's highly popular Jump Blues and Slap, Frail and Thump courses, is considered one of the most thorough, creative and insightful educators in the biz and he's clearly delivered his Sistine Chapel with this course of study.

Brandt has constructed the curriculum in an interactive manner so that you can 'play' and compose your way through the course as you cover key topics like:

  • How to use harmonic devices to craft the atmosphere of your song
  • How to shape your melodies with melodic contours using closed and open phrases
  • How to create strong and memorable hooks
  • How to organize your song sections and hooks with AB and ABAC formulas
  • How to use repetition and contrast in your songs
  • How, when and why to use symmetric and asymmetric shapes
  • The conscious placement of important chords in your composition
  • How to support your lyrics with solid melodies using regular speech patterns
  • How to use the capo as a creative tool in your writing process

Need more detail? Here's the chapter list…

  • Harmony
  • Major Harmony
  • Identifying the Key
  • Chord Options
  • Leaving Home Base
  • The Perceived Key of a Progression
  • Patterns in Chord Changes
  • Number of Chords in a Bar
  • Chord Rate and Placement of Melody
  • Placement of Important Chords
  • Harmonic Concepts: Minor from Major
  • Inversions in a Solo Setting
  • Inversions & Bass Lines
  • Layering with Inversions
  • Finding Inversions
  • Chord Order: Closed and Open
  • Chord Order: Adding Minors
  • Repetition in Chord Progressions
  • Bass Movement in Chord Progressions
  • Coloring Chords
  • Chord Progressions Based on Chord Tricks
  • Minor Harmony
  • Blues Harmony
  • Mixed Mode Harmony
  • Changing Minor to Major
  • Changing Major to Minor
  • The VII chord
  • Modulating Relative Minor and Major
  • Capo Di Tutti Capi
  • Melody: The Basics
  • Melody: Scale Options
  • Melody: The Edge
  • Melody: More Power To You
  • Melody: Horizontal vs. Vertical
  • Writing Melodies on top of Harmony
  • Melodies Using Subsets
  • Melody: Mixed Mode
  • Melodies Using Secondary Dominants
  • Melody: Super Sad
  • Melody: Light and Jazzy
  • Melody a la Mode
  • Melody: Stress and Stability
  • Melodic Phrasing
  • Melodic Contour
  • Puzzling Melodies from Lyrics
  • Open and Closed Harmony, Melody and Rhythm
  • Open and Closed
  • Symmetry and Asymmetry
  • Song Structures
  • Composing Hooks
  • Steal From the Best
  • Harmonizing a Melody
  • Finding Melodies with Triads

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Mattieu Brandt Those are the song-crafting topics that you'll work through in Songwriting on Guitar. But there's much more; Brandt's entire Chord Cookbook course, included in this bundle, adds another 8 hours of video instruction on chord flavors, systems and tricks for composing songs.

"It's no secret that hundreds, perhaps even thousands of hit songs, were inspired by a cool chord voicing or vamp. And so I've also included my entire Chord Cookbook curriculum in this course as the second section."

 Chord Cookbook explores several of the most powerful polyphonic wonders of the guitar – chord systems, flavors and applications. The creative resource and firepower of Chord Cookbook will feed you flurries of ideas for vamps, original songs and arrangements.

Chord Cookbook presents and organizes chord systems and applications to train your ear and teach you the how, why, what and when for purposes of performance, accompaniment, composition and arrangement applications.

You'll likely grow accustomed to referencing Chord Cookbook frequently (although this course is NOT a chord dictionary). Chord Cookbook guides your selection and application of chords to 'flavor' the songs you play, arrange and write. You will explore 35 categories of chord systems and flavors with performance examples, breakdowns, theoretical analysis and an extensive compendium of reference charts and related information.

Chord Cookbook Box ArtYou'll learn how to apply open position chords up the neck, barre chords without the barre, closed voicings, pedal tones in chord progressions, counterpoint, contrary motion and melodic movement, inversions, triads, power chord triads and ways to expand them, quartal harmony and dozens of other approaches. You'll also learn to classify chords by their 'flavor' to make it easier to recognize chords used by your favorite artists.

All of the performance examples are notated and tabbed. Plus, chord diagrams are superimposed on the screen in sync with all 35 performance examples. Practice rhythm tracks are also included so that you can practice the examples and create your own flavors and compositions.

The 100-page PDF reference manual supplements Chord Cookbook with chord grids, tab, standard notation and formulas for all 35 categories of chords and also includes a set of harmonic and melodic tricks that you can use to extend the chords and create chord progressions.

Here your chapter list for the Chord Cookbook section of the course:

  • Auditory Index
  • Chord Formulas
  • Open Position Chords
  • 4 Note Open Position Chords
  • Barre Chords
  • Sus4 Chords
  • Dom7 Sus4 Chords
  • Sus2 Chords
  • Sus4 and Sus2 Chords
  • Add9 and Add11 Chords
  • Min7 Chords
  • Maj7 Chords
  • Maj7 Chords
  • Add6 Chords
  • Chord Extensions
  • Dom7 Chords
  • Dom7 Chords in Blues
  • Dom7 Chords on the 1st Degree
  • Dom7 Chords with an Altered 5th
  • Dim7 Chords
  • Power Chords
  • Add or Remove a Finger
  • Chord Colors
  • Building Chords out of Triads
  • Triads: 2nd, 3rd and 4th String
  • Triads: 3rd, 4th and 5th String
  • Expanding Triads: Sus4 and Sus2
  • Expanding Triads: Maj7 and Dom7
  • Expanding Triads: Min7
  • Power Chord Based Triads
  • Move Up The Neck
  • Double Cross
  • Bar Chords Without A Bar
  • Pedal Notes
  • Open A Pedal Point
  • Open D Pedal Point
  • Alternative Pedal Points
  • Close Chord Voicings
  • Complex Slash Chords
  • Chords by Music Style
  • Chord Progressions
  • Adding Melody To Chords
  • Adding Melody To Finger Style
  • A Word about Chord Grips
  • Motion of Bass and Melody
  • Counterpoint
  • Movement Within a Chord
  • Spooky Move
  • Harmony: The Basics
  • Harmony: 4 Note Chords
  • Adding Chords To A Maj Key
  • Dominant Chords
  • The VII chord
  • Adding Chords From the Min Key
  • Chords In Minor Keys
  • Alternative Chords in a Min Key
  • Floating Chords
  • Stacks of Fourths
  • Stacks of Fourths and Fifths

All in all, 'Songwriting on Guitar with Chord Cookbook' is the most comprehensive, guitar- centric songwriting course ever published. You'll have at your fingertips, 16 hours of video instruction, 100 pages of reference charts, hundreds of playing examples, and all of the technical and creative insight you'll need to write a lifetime's worth of original songs – perhaps even that big #1 hit!

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Check out sample lessons from Songwriting on Guitar from TrueFire TV

Student Discounts and TrueFire Cash can be applied!
This is a companion course to Chord Cookbook. Get the bundle if you don't already own Chord Cookbook.

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For PC, Mac & Linux computers only. Not compatible on iPad, iPhone, Android or other mobile devices. For a list of our mobile apps, click here >>

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Video software (Windows and Mac) with TrueFire's Lesson Player, PIP, full-screen, looping, slow motion, keyboard shortcuts, plus...

- 493 Minutes of Video
- Practice Rhythm Tracks
- Text Commentary
- Tab and Notation

Late Beginner to Advanced

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