Trust me. I know how it is. Being a past aspiring songwriter and musician - I know how hard the music journey can be. And I’ve often wondered … when it comes to making the best most epic songs of all time, are there secrets or song hacks, that only the pros know?
I mean really - I’ve always wanted to know. Is there an "Illuminati DNA" to what makes great songs tick … and if so, how can I tap into that? How can I make hits faster? Or why do some songwriters / artists, after putting in those first hard 5-10 years, suddenly overnight everything just … clicks.
Being obsessed with the songcraft process, I’ve always thought - wouldn’t it be great if there was an online songwriting course where an insider (aka I don’t know, someone like moi!) could reveal the songwriting tips that are never commonly discussed nor found in the textbooks (textbooks which aren’t usually great to begin with!).
Well, it got me thinking. And that has led me to releasing (drum roll please) my first ever digital online songwriting course! Check it out here!
Having worked as a senior creative executive for 25 + years in the music publishing business (both for the majors, 12 years and for the #1 independent, Kobalt Music for 10 years, and my own company for 4 years), I’ve had the amazing opportunity to work with literally the biggest hit makers in the world … either signing them directly (for instance, Grammy Award Winners: Greg Kurstin, Savan Kotecha, Kelly Clarkson, Cirkut, Ryan Tedder, Ariel Rechtshaid) or in the case of when I was working at EMI Music Publishing, I was able to work directly with some of the Grammy Award Winning greats (i.e. Sia, Guy Chambers, Rick Nowels, Billy Steinberg, etc). You can actually check out my past signings here.
Additionally for context, I was also a dual performance major at Berklee College of Music (Songwriting and Guitar Performance) and have written a few singles myself, so when it comes to the art and secrets of crafting songs and how to write music - it may be no surprise that - yeah, I’m obsessed! (And also I "speak" the language, which is your language - music and songs!).
Essentially, this obsession has inspired me to put all my cumulative knowledge, both from what I learned at Berklee, my own unique observations and protocols, and what I’ve learned from literally over 100 other hit songwriters … into 1 digital course with over 5 hours of video content and 25 video modules, writing exercises, etc!
And by the way, I should also mention the emphasis on HIT songwriting here as it applies to this course. This is not a “basic” course nor “introduction to songwriting” by any means. (And also don’t go "hit shaming" me (LOL) on my desire to write and publish HITS! HITS is not a four letter word here : )
Thanks, B. But that being said, if you’re a singer/songwriter type, or in an alt rock band, a rapper, etc. this course absolutely and definitely 10,000% applies to you and the crucialness of being able to write “perennial” masterpieces that stand the test of time and what I call “FIRE SONGS” that just jump off the page.
The ability and know how to consistently write those types of songs are more crucial today - than ever before at any point in modern history.
Additionally, if you’re taking the course, you should already have a core understanding and a degree of songwriting skills already under your belt, as we’re taking a deep, advanced dive here on how to make #1 songs that resonate and are “on brand” personally with you and your style. But that also doesn’t mean that if you’re totally new to songwriting - that this course won’t help give you a jump start! I just wanted to emphasize the following - we’re shooting for the top of the charts here in this course, no matter what genre you work in.
And by “hits” - as I mentioned, this can absolutely apply to the indie, singer/songwriter, etc. world, writing those classics, those perennial sellers, those singles that constantly get playlisted, radio support, synchronization action (used in Film / TV / ads), etc.
Literally, these are topics, songwriting tips and music hacks that I just don’t hear anyone talking about. It’s my opinion that a lot of this information just has never been made accessible or packaged in this way, and I truly believe you’ll find epiphany after epiphany in the song course.
My goal is that at the end of the course, you’ll be able to see and apply, much like Neo in The Matrix, the Insider Secrets to Hit Songwriting matrix … and what makes huge songs tick. Yes, the idea and subtitle of the course is actually “Unlocking the Hit Songwriting Matrix.”
It comes down to this.
If you’ve ever asked yourself … Is there a method to the madness? Are there songwriting techniques or even a “secret language” that only a handful of hitmakers know about? Like a special sauce they’ve discovered by trial and error - or that they just intuitively have learned?
My answer is YES, and I 1000% believe that you’ll discover what I personally believe are the key elements of hit songwriting. These are the essential elements which I find consistently present when it comes to “how to write hit songs.” You'll learn exactly what these elements are, as they just show up again and again and again. And no, we're not talking lame-o generalizations like “you gotta have a great melody.”
Again, for context, I’m saying this from the perspective of someone who’s been in the daily company of these hit makers for the last 25 + years, and having signed writers and artists who've created and won ASCAP and BMI Songwriters of the Year Awards.
I have assembled all this knowledge - and finally found it was time to share it to a broader audience. (Plus, I hope you’ll remember me when it’s time to do a publishing deal).
What I’m providing - are 25 modules and over 5 hours of video content, essentially where you’re getting all my BEST stuff.
Usually, this is something you would only have access to, if you were one of my publishing clients. But, if you want to check out the class immediately, I have a special sale on this going on right now where you can get the course, instead of $997, for just $197 (including installment plans), as well as a VIP upgrade for 1 on 1 song coaching (Yes, I’m offering an upgrade in the course if you review your songs in a virtual meeting, one on one with you).
And if you’re wondering what’s actually in the song course, let’s take a look at the rundown of the curriculum by some of my favorite video modules and accompanying descriptions.
If there is a chart topping songwriting formula - it’s this one. There are 3 elements I find are almost always in most huge hit songs. They are the following:
Melodic rhythm + 2nd melodies + unique concept / lyrics = HIT SONG.
This is easier said than done! Those 1st 2 concepts - I just never hear anyone else talking about! If there was a secret equation - it’s this one! But that’s just the start. In this module I break down these elements and shine the spotlight on your new 3 new pillars when it comes to writing hits:
In this module I do a deep dive presentation on what “melodic rhythm” is. But more importantly, how to leverage melodic rhythm to your unfair advantage, as well as key song examples from multiple genres and decades.
If you ever wanted to know what the “God particle” of hits are - it’s melodic rhythm. And I’ll help open the door for you.
This modules is actually one of the backbone sections of the course, as it’s a 3 part series further exploring melodic rhythm, how as humans, we’re hard wired by our DNA to recognize rhythm first - with melody to follow, and how melodic rhythm instantly creates “fire” and organization in your songs making them literally explode off the page.
This is another HUGE anchor of the online songwriting course. This module breaks down exactly the concept of “2nd melodies” (trust me, it’s not what you think!), as well as multiple examples and the “rules” for what makes a great “2nd melody.”
Besides melodic rhythm, this concept is supremely crucial - and also a concept that I’ve never heard talked about in this way. It comes down to this. There’s a reason why the majority of them have never seen the light of day - while others go in the Top 10 or at #1 on the charts.
If you’re asking how to write hit songs - 2nd Melody is a key cornerstone and if used correctly, will buy you a house!
This might sound obvious but you’d be surprised how by - just making sure your song has a great, unique, “jump off the page” concept - that it instantly gives you the edge.
We get into the nitty gritty and how to leverage this in your favor. Not just the concept of how to write lyrics - but how to write hit lyrics! Part of this is also cataloguing all your song lyric ideas and how to generate new ones.
This module is all about making the songs that A&Rs at labels, editorial playlisters, music supervisors, your fans - are looking for in the first place!
Check out the 10 “must have” elements in your song. And let me make an analogy. If you’re in Vegas and you’re playing roulette - and you know that 80% of the time, you’ll win if you bet on red … you’re always going to bet on red, right?! But you’d be surprised how many writers continually (to use this as an analogy) just always bet on “black!”
Give yourself the “house” advantage by knowing the DNA of what “Fire Maker” songs are in the first place.
I can nearly guarantee you won’t find this in another song course. This is a Seth Godin-ish lesson (i.e. read his life changing book, “Purple Cow”).
In the era where we have 30,000 new song releases … PER DAY!! (not an exaggeration) - how do you stand out?! And how do you compete against Netflix, the latest video game craze, and other entertainment? The answer is - being purple.
There are some huge secrets in here, including overcoming creative fears and resistance and how to make huge, bold statements in your artistic craft. In other words, most people would encourage you to just “fit in” and write what’s on the charts. Nah eh.
Please listen up : ) Your verse does not “just” exist to get to the chorus. This is a huge epiphany and this module also includes a deep dive into the art and game of contrast, ensuring that your chorus, your pre verse, your verses - all POP, while also supporting and complementing each other.
Also - let me ask you. When’s the last time you heard someone say “WOW … WHAT A VERSE!?” OK - Never! This module is all about changing that - including our mindset of making the verses as big as the choruses, while servicing its purpose.
This module is all about how to become a better songwriter.
The simple question here is - what are you doing to get better as a songwriter? How are you going to do that? Or are you just recycling your own (let’s be real, "starting to sound tired") vocabulary and writing in circles along the same familiar melodic moves, chords, productions and lyrics that you’ve grown too familiar with?
This module is all about getting out of your comfort zone, learning songwriting from the greats and how to start incorporating their moves into your own vocabulary - be it song lyric ideas, writing better melodies, chords, etc. To be one of the best - you have to study the best!
Having been at this career for over 25 + years, there are indeed some tricks in “cutting the line” and getting in with that artist or co writer of your dreams - not in 5 years. But next week.
That’s right. For that special co-write you desire, you’re probably writer #183 on the list of possible candidates (even if you’re already a professional hit maker!). This module shows you how to jump the queue to the front of the line.
This module provides clarity - on what it takes to be a real hit maker.
The world of the hit makers is not about “good enough” or “well, this bass line I guess is fine.” Nope. The real hit makers uncover every stone and pebble with their song, lyric production, mix etc. to ensure that they just don’t even have “maybe” a hit - but they have a masterpiece that stands the test of time. It’s this type of mindset, whereby the song will be as exciting in 2 months as it will be in 20 years. People in this lane, in my opinion, range from Max Martin, to Mutt Lange to Beyonce to Prince (definitely Prince).
Check out the module to make sure you’re playing in the right sandbox when it comes to mindset and not settling for less in realizing the full potential of your song.
I learned this simple music hack from a Grammy Award winning writer / producer. It’s the daily practice which he and his co writer did at the end of each session, as a 15 minute challenge. They wrote at least 1 Grammy Winning Song with this method.
Check out the module and I’ll show you how to do it! Which leads me to one of my favorite sayings - Songwriters and Wall Street bankers have one thing in common. They’re both able to do $1 Million dollar an hour work. Yes - many hits were written in an hour, 30 minutes, or 15 minutes! Think about that. Learn how to unlock this secret.
More songwriting tips! Do you want to sit in front of your computer, guitar, piano and just explore and noodle around some “randomness” until you find something that sounds “pretty good?” Or can we fast hella track this?!
Maybe the longer you stare at that wall - the faster you’ll get that melody you’re looking for. Yah - you know what I’m saying. Tooling around with ideas, trial by error, this melody, that melody, blah-ditty day. Or let me ask you? Could you “turn on” the hit radio station of your mind, that supercomputer each one of us carries on their shoulders...and just let a hit song “play” effortlessly in your mind … and then capture it!
This module and “meditation” study will show you how to do that.
As a songwriter - you’re building something. Yes, you are building your house. And you need the right tools!
How can you build that beautiful mansion (or even a single story ranch house) without nails and a hammer? This module gives you the permission and logical thinking on why you deserve to get the tools, the instruments, the computer, the perfect environment, the plug-ins, the instruction, etc. that you need in order to have the right tools to build your future!
This is the module that brings it all together. And I’ve saved the best for last. This is where you become Neo from the Matrix and see hit songwriting for what it is.
Via a guided video instruction, via homework and exercises, whereby we’re going to be analyzing your favorite songs of all time - digging in and seeing what makes them tick. What’s the secret hit songwriting DNA here?
It’s within this module and accompanying exercises where all the lessons and instruction are all going to come together for you. By the end of this module, my intention is you’ll be able to ideally see (just like Neo did in The Matrix) that actual “hit songwriting matrix.”
Once you have these learnings, we’re going to do the same analysis with your actual songs and see where you’re winning and where you might be missing out applying some of your new superhero writing tools.
Make no mistake - this is HUGE, and I believe will be life changing for you. Simply put, in my opinion, you’ll never approach songwriting the same way ever again!
Lastly, the course contains multiple downloads, supportive playlists, homework and specific songwriting exercises allowing you to build your hit songwriting tools (notice I didn’t say just “songwriting!” … because these are HIT songwriting tools here!). Of course, the object is no doubt, how to put these new tools and instructions to use and ultimately how to become a better songwriter.
On that note, I say this sincerely.
When it comes to signing and developing new writers and what I’ve historically experienced via my own real life track record - my intention is to put your career ahead 5 years faster with these insights, epiphanies and all the unfair advantages, secrets and music hacks provided in this course.
What I’ve done essentially, is refine all of my knowledge base on hit making, based on all my 25 + years in the music experience and relationships with over 100 key hitmakers, songwriters and producers, and distill it all into one course. Not just about how to write music but how to make hits!
There’s even a VIP package where you can get my personal time to virtually sit down with you, review your songs via a song critique session, or we can talk about whatever you like, be it setting up your own releases, questions on publishing, questions on the modules etc.
I sincerely hope you enjoy the course and hope to help you on your hit making journey.
See you online at the Insider Secrets to Hit Songwriting course!
Accelerate your hit songwriter path by 3-5 years! This is the advanced “mastery” program of the “Insider Secrets to Hit Songwriting” course below. Learn the beliefs, mindset and rarely shared techniques used by award winning hit songwriters. The course is filled with custom exercises and songwriting assignments to take your songwriting “out of the box” and on to the charts.
Unlock the Hidden DNA and “Song Matrix” of What Makes Hit Songs and Perennial Classics “Tick” in Any Genre! Benjamin Groff unpacks 30 years of music publishing insights and expertise, having signed or worked with over 100 hit songwriters via Kobalt, EMI, BMG and his own companies. These are insights and techniques not taught anywhere else and the same methods used with his current clients. You won’t be able to approach songwriting the same way again.
An A-Z Guide, Showing You Step by Step How to Release and Set Up Your Single, EP or Album! (You’ve made your great music - now what?! This is the exact release plan that my label, www.WeAreTheGuard.com uses for our own releases, which have generated over 100 Million Spotify streams).