} }

So in previous articles we've really talked about the value of empathetic songwriting or compassionate songwriting. This means that you're writing with someone in mind; that you're intending for your work to matter to them in a material way.

When you begin practicing writing this way, you notice the risk that comes along with writing songs that people actually care about. Writing a song for your dad about the deep heavy stuff that he has struggled with since he was little means that if you capture that moment wrong you could really tick him off.

Most of our songs seem like we're talking to ourselves. If someone sees you talking to yourself, they're not really that concerned either way about what you're saying. But if you're having a heated argument, you know the stakes are high and you've got to get to the truth of the matter right away. This is how your songwriting should be. Not lukewarm, but addressing sensitive issues with skillfulness and clarity. This is why people are going to care about your songs, because they feel like the songs are for them.

This is where it's important to understand that craft of communicating through songwriting. Because I'm writing songs that are important to the people I care about, I'm more motivated that ever to learn my craft as a songwriter.

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