writing a song

When it comes to writing songs, there are a whole bunch of things that count.

  • The Accompaniment
  • Structure
  • Melody
  • Lyrics


All of these are important.

If you get one element wrong, the song can fall apart.

For instance, some people can write a really cool accompaniment but struggle with melodies.

Others can write great lyrics but have no idea what to do with them.

Then there are those who don’t know how to structure a song so it sounds cohesive and flows and builds with enough emotion.


Well, in the Fingerstyle 101 Facebook group songwriting challenge (where we are all writing a song together), we’ve so far covered the accompaniment.

The accompaniment is the chord progression for the verse.

We are using the chord progression of G-D-Em-C.

…And we have the fingerpicking pattern to play it with (which is the “Going Up” pattern from the Fingerstyle 101 book).

The next two steps for writing the song are getting a good melody and structuring the song.

Today, let’s talk about melodies…

This is your chance to contribute your melody.


Can you create a simple and memorable melody to be played over the chords of G-D-Em-C?

If so, I’d love to hear it.

The melody we want is the vocal melody designed to be sung over the chords.

The song is in the key of G, so you can use the G Major scale to create your melody.

Create the melody…

…Write down the notes on paper, use software like Guitar Pro, or record yourself playing the melody.

Give it a go.


Create a melody and email it to me.

Or you can add it to the Fingerstyle 101 Facebook group.

Then together we will take the best of what everyone sends and use it for the song.

Don’t worry if you think your idea is not that great or all that exciting.

Many melodies use just 4-8 notes and then get repeated with a few simple variations.

I’d love to hear what you create, so feel free to email back with your melody or if you struggle to send it over, email anyway, and I can advise.


If this is all new to you, and the idea of writing a song together appeals to you, you’ll need to join the Fingerstyle 101 Facebook group.

It’s free to join for anyone who has ever purchased any of my products (that’s so we can keep the quality of the group high and spam-free).

There are 2000 members now, which is wonderful.

Anyway, a good place to begin if you’re new to my lessons is with this…

Fingerstyle 101 – a step-by-step guide to beautiful fingerpicking guitar playing


Don’t forget to send your melody!

Dan Thorpe

Guitar Domination


P.S. To access the Facebook group, scroll down to the bottom of this post and you will see the link to join for free. There are just a couple of quick verification questions to answer.


P.P.S. This post was originally taken from Dan Thorpe’s private email list. To get blog posts like this sent to you which are full of great tips to make fingerpicking, strumming, and learning guitar more enjoyable (especially if you are over 40) join Dan’s list. It’s 100% free, HERE.



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