Writing, Recording & Sharing Your Music

The DIY Guide to Writing, Recording & Sharing Your Music

Welcome to the DIY Guide for Writing, Recording, & Sharing Your Music course forum! This is the place to ask questions, share your progress, and seek advice from both myself and your fellow course participants. I look forward to sharing in your songwriting and recording journeys and providing additional help when needed.

Please leave your questions and feedback in the comment box below, and I will respond as soon as possible. Feel free to respond to others, too, if you have tips or suggestions!

324 Comments

  1. Melissa

    I loved the songwriting assessment:) I am an “Earth Songwriter” which made perfect sense to me, but “Air Songwriter” was a close second. I guess the left side of my brain does most of the work when I write songs:)

    I am looking forward to the rest of this CMTE. I have written a few songs before, however I always seem to put too much thought into them. Or, I WANT to write a song, but I get too nervous and think its too hard. Hopefully after this CMTE I will do better:)

    Reply
    • Rachel

      Hi Melissa! So glad that you are taking the course and enjoyed the assessment. I really liked taking it too — it made me realize just how much we can differ from each other as songwriters (and that there is no one “right” way).

      I have found that the less I have to think and force a song to work, the easier it comes out and the more effective it is in sessions. I look forward to hearing about your progress, and please let me know if you have questions as you go through the course!

      Reply
  2. Katey

    I am so excited to be taking this course! I write spontaneous songs with/for my clients several times a week, but I want to make a habit of writing songs, recording them, and sharing them with others. I have very little experience recording music and am eager to learn more about the recording process and how to share my music online.

    The song writing style I scored the most point on was Fire. I write songs with my clients all the time! I love creating new music with my clients and allowing them the opportunity to have a product they are proud of. We improvise and come up with lyrics in the moment. Air was a close second.

    I have now made it through all of the material for Chapter 1. I have the song I am writing written out, chords assigned, and a rough recording done. Even if I don’t have this song recorded in time for my next session with my client, I am incredibly excited to share it with them.

    Reply
    • Rachel

      Hi Katey! I am thrilled you are taking the course! I still do lots of spontaneous songwriting with my clients, and sometimes those end up being my favorites :) It’s fun to take what you start during a session and flesh it out afterwards.

      I’m excited to hear some of the songs you’re writing, and I’m sure your clients are too. Keep me posted on your progress and let me know if there is anything I can do to help!

      Reply
  3. Cindy

    Hi Rachel,
    Very excited to be starting this course. I came out as Fire on the assessment, but the other 3 were all tied and close behind. I consider myself the “queen” of piggybacking songs and do it all the time. When I have composed, it has been on the spur of the moment and half the time I then can’t fully remember later what I did. That makes reusing the song a challenge. Sometimes I’m lucky and my client remembers for me. :) I’m also famous for using someone else’s song in a session and not fully remembering it. I start making changes as I’m singing, improvising on the spot and end up with a song that isn’t really the original, but not entirely different either. Again, I need a system to get these songs on paper for future reference.
    But I am ready to try some completely original songwriting. Your steps for doing so are great and I look forward to using them!

    Reply
    • Rachel

      Hi Cindy! Thanks for taking the course! Interesting to see another “Fire” songwriter — something to consider when you come up with a song during a session is to record it using a handheld recorder or the voice recorder app on your iPhone/iPod. I finally learned this after way too many great songs were forgotten afterwards ;) Can’t wait to hear about your progress as you dive into original songwriting.

      Reply
      • Dani

        Hi, Rachel! I’m excited to take your MusicTherapyEd.com course :) Have you heard of Music Memos? It’s a newish app for Apple devices that is designed as a “voice memos for musicians” kind of thing! You can sing or play an idea into the app, which records it and then analyzes it for chords, a bass line, and a percussion track. It’s been a really cool resource for me since we’re recording a CD of kids’ music at my practice and I have bee constantly coming up with song fragments and ideas as I write for it. Hearing my ideas play out with a percussion track has also given me ideas about how I want to tweak or deliver the song in the finished product :) It’s an awesome resource, as well as totally free and totally compatible with GarageBand, iTunes, and other Apple apps!

        Reply
        • Rachel

          Hi Dani! Thanks so much for taking the course. I loooove the new Music Memos app! It’s such a fun alternative to Voice Memos, and my kiddos love hearing their recordings with instant bass and drums. Happy to hear that you are getting great use out of it, too!

          Reply
  4. Cindy

    How embarrassing! My website address is actually cindysmtservices.com. I’m in the process of adding another domain name which has “music therapy” written out and so I’m just a little confused. Sorry!

    Reply
    • Rachel

      No worries! If it makes you feel any better, I just spelled my email address incorrectly on a new product I’m creating. Luckily I caught it before exporting the final draft!

      Reply
  5. Kate

    Just finished chapter 1 section, and I’m loving the course! Thanks for putting this together.
    I took the assessment and I was equal parts fire and water, but close on all of them! I agree with Cindy’s post, that my songwriting is usually in the moment and it’s a bit hard to remember what I did from week to week. I’ve gotten in to using the voice recorder to tape sessions, but now it might be good to go back and rewrite the spur of the moment songs into songs that are usable in future sessions.

    Reply
    • Rachel

      I’m so glad you are enjoying the course, Kate! And I fully agree that you should take those spontaneous songs and get them down on paper for the future — it’s amazing how many ways I’ve been able to adapt a single song that was born during a session. Keep on rocking the course!

      Reply
  6. Katey

    Super excited about having completed the action steps for Chapter 2. I thought recording in garage band would be so much harder than it actually was. It took me a couple hours because I’ve never fiddled in Garage Band before and I had to take some time to learn a few things. BUT, I love it! I love my song and I cannot wait to share it with my client next week! Perhaps, I can even record a few of our songs to put on a CD with it by next week… I am having a lot of fun with this course. This was something I had no idea I could actually do. Now, I want to go out an buy a lot of equipment to make it sound even better and function more easily. Can’t wait for chapter 3. Thanks again for putting this together!

    Reply
    • Rachel

      That is such great news! I have learned so much about GB just by playing around in it and trying out the features until they make sense. It’s a little addictive, isn’t it?! :) I’ve been recording on a regular basis for a few years now and still get excited every time I tackle a new song. Congrats on finishing up Chapter 2 and good luck with Chapter 3!

      Reply
  7. Katey

    I am now finished with chapter 3! My song may not be absolutely perfect, but I’m incredibly excited and looking forward to recording and learning more as I go. I started a bandcamp account and have my first song published. I also have it in a blog post on my website and on my business facebook page. All of your information has been so helpful!! THANK YOU!

    Reply
    • Rachel

      Wow, you are speedy! Congrats on finishing your song — and isn’t Bandcamp wonderful? There is something so satisfying about having your original work out there, displayed so nicely for the world to see. I’m going to check out your song now! So glad the course has been helpful thus far…keep up the awesome work :)

      Reply
  8. Cindy

    Just finished Chapter 2. The action steps are going to take me awhile. I’ve used gargeband, but only the VERY basics and have done next to nothing with different tracks. So that’s going to take some time and exploration, but it’s exciting to think what I might be able to accomplish at this lower level and then who knows what will happen, if I invest in equipment and move to the next level! Thank you, Rachel!

    Reply
    • Rachel

      You’re welcome! Take your time with the action steps…the learning curve seems really steep at first, but once you get the hang of it, I promise it becomes second nature. You will eventually be able to take it much further than you can even imagine right now!

      Reply
  9. Stephanie

    Hey Rachel,
    Great course! Just finished chapter 1 and am enjoying every minute. I ranked as a fire writer, which makes perfect sense. Looking forward to chapters 2 and 3! Thanks for putting this together.

    Reply
    • Rachel

      Hi Stephanie! I am so glad you are enjoying the course! “Fire” seems to be the most popular style around here so far. Thanks for taking the course, and I look forward to hearing about your progress!

      Reply
  10. Stephanie

    Hey again Rachel,
    Well I’m now beginning Chapter 3 and still loving every minute, except I wanted to bring to your attention a glitch in the first video of Chapter 3. From about 1:32-2:45 it freezes up, and I don’t think it’s my computer because the video on my end continues to mark time, but the actual video and audio of you just freezes in place. Has anyone else had trouble with this?

    Reply
    • Rachel

      Thanks so much for letting me know…it must have happened in the uploading process, which I don’t actually handle. I will let Kat know, though! So sorry for the inconvenience.

      Reply
      • Stephanie

        No problem, not an inconvenience at all! Didn’t hinder the course one bit. Thanks again for putting this together, I really enjoyed it and learned a lot, and I look forward to infusing all this stuff into my MT practice.

        Reply
        • Kat Fulton

          Hey Stephanie and Rachel – Glitch is FIXED! Thanks for bringing this to my attention =) Kat

          Reply
          • Rachel

            AWESOME – Thank you, Kat!!!

  11. Cindy

    Just finished Chapter 3 and feeling a little overwhelmed. I’m just not very comfortable with technology and tend to “shut down” rather than get out there and try it. However, I have to say, your vidoes and presentations were wonderfully simple and did give me the inkling that I may be able to actually do all this. Thanks, Rachel, for all the great information. It really doesn’t look too hard, but it’ll take some time for me to push myself past my technology phobia. :)

    Reply
    • Rachel

      I can definitely empathize with you, Cindy, because I felt the same way when I started out. Not necessarily with technology in general, but recording – I thought I had no business doing it myself since I knew nothing and there were tons of people out there doing it so well. The key is to take it at your own pace, one step at a time, and not to let yourself get bogged down by the big picture. You CAN do it, I promise!

      Reply
  12. John

    I just finished the first chapter’s videos and am excited to continue. I went to the chant writing session at WRAMTA conference last month and have been composing a lot of chants since– for personal and professional use. I seem to be a Water Songwriter but I’m looking forward to this course to give me a little more organization and discipline (bring me down to “Earth”) to write these down and expand on some of them. Thank you for the information in the first chapter. It already has given some direction.

    Reply
    • Rachel

      Hi John – I have found that they key for me as a songwriter is having an organized flow that I follow each time I sit down and write. You’ll find that for yourself, no doubt. Thanks for taking the course and let me know how I can help along the way!

      Reply
  13. Lelia Emery

    I just completed Chapter 1 and am loving the course so far! According to the assessment, I am tied between Fire and Air songwriting styles with Water close behind. As I was reading the traits of both of them I kept nodding to myself, especially on the qualities of an Air songwriter. I can’t wait to finish the course and improve my songwriting skills! Thanks for putting this together!

    Reply
    • Rachel

      Hi Leila! I am so glad you’re enjoying the course so far. I think it helps so much to know yourself as a songwriter, which is why I like the assessment so much. Please keep us posted as you progress!

      Reply
  14. Kate

    I just finished the course, and loved it- thank you!
    I have one question about Dropbox: If you post a link to the public folder, will that link will include everything in the public folder? So if you put a song in there for a client and give that client the link, they’ll have access to anything you put in there in the future?
    Thanks!

    Reply
    • Rachel