Many hands make bonafide and groundbreaking projects when it comes to creative minds colliding. If Beethovan was alive today, he would have teamed up with Nas or Alicia Keys but alas, they had to settle with the sample.
It can be daunting to wear your art on your sleeve and share a vulnerable part of your musical process, but when two musicians are in sync the results are like fireworks. (Ok I may have just understood the deeper meaning of Nsync’s band name 20 years later).
History is laden with the iconic mergings of our dreams
The Rat Pack, Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg, Symphony and Metallica, Mick Jagger and Bowie, Michael Jackson and Eddie Van Halen, Kanye West and the fifty other artists on “All of the Lights.” The list goes on longer than the 24-hour ‘Happy’ music video collab.
Here are 15 reasons why collaborative songwriting is a great idea:
1. It’s nice to have someone to finish your sentences when you just can’t find the words (or lyrics)
Run DMC: “She told me to?”
Aerosmith:”Walk this way, talk this way!”
2. You’ll gain confidence from sharing a work in progress, during its raw makings.
3. When you’re stuck, you’ll have somewhere to turn for a new perspective and fresh ears.
4. Complement each other’s sound in the same genre like PJ Harvey and Nick Cave and carve your own little niche of haunting, mirror image, alt-rock.
5. More hands help to keep a project moving efficiently, because you both don’t want to waste each other’s time. ‘You have as many hours in a day as Beyonce,’ or something like that. And she’s definitely a collaborative effort.
6. You’ll have someone to hold you accountable when you need a push to be creative.
7. You’ll get to learn from each other’s techniques and skills
8. Turn your art into song and vice versa. Poets like Jim Morrison, Patti Smith and Bob Dylan made the crossover into performance because they felt the need to further express themselves. They formed bands, alternative music projects and worked on lyrics with countless fellow musicians.
9. Collaboration will introduce you to a whole new fan base.
10. Give each other’s sound a new dimension like Pharell, Daft Punk and Nile Rodgers lent their iconic sounds to the track ‘lucky’ to create a classic.
11. Most successful artists are a collaborative effort, just take a look at the Billboard top 20.
12. Draw on each other’s experiences for inspiration.
13. Cement your creative circles and branch out. Thanks to Andy Warhol’s insistence, we have The Velvet Underground and Nico.
14. Put the focus on creating and sharing, instead of your insecurities and doubts, because we go to therapy or our moms for that.
15. You’ll have someone to say YES to a great idea that you may have benched.