What weighs more with you? The sweetness of melody or the thoughtful lyrics that makes you listen REPEATEDLY to a song?
For e.g., Sugar, Sugar
Times, they are a-changing?
Both have their place and are needed. The world would be incredibly boring all one way or all the other. For me, as a songwriter, I've written music first, then lyrics, and also lyrics first and then music. I have a tendency to want to describe the lyric with the music one way, or describe the music with the lyric the other way.
As for people who like to listen, they all have preferences, but both are valuable.
i sing sugar sugar..... because that type of song, sticks in your mind whether you want it to or not..... and is suitable for everyday wear, like a cheapish but nice perfume...
However, the more maningful, harder to remember lyrics, and music, needs the right enviroment. It could not be wasted on everyone, as you go about your daily duties, as you would not splash expensive perfume around, just going shopping at the supermarket..... that is my opinion
To me, it is usually the tune that first catches my interest but the lyrics have to capture me for me to want to listen to the song over and over.
I enjoy both of those songs at different times.
For me it's the music, first and foremost. Effective words add to the message. Music, though, is its own message, and for me it touches more deeply.
Depends on the band and the mood.
If a serious band like Smashing Pumpkins came out with cheesy lyrics, I would hate it.
But if Weezer came out with a catchy song with cheesy lyrics, I would love it.
And if I'm in a depressed mood, I would want to hear more serious lyrics.
If I'm in a fun mood, I would want catchy beats and wouldn't care of the lyrics
I agree with Tim. Some dayz I wanna bounce of the wall to some heavy stuff. Then later I'd want to chill to some instrumental, soundscapes. Got my drift. Life is like music and I'm the beat.
Definitely agree with bodhiron, it all depends on my mood or how I'm feeling that day. You need a little mix of "cake" and "nirvana" every once and awhile in your life.
See what I did there? Both are great bands by the way in their own respect; one happens to write more downer/depressing songs while the other write more upbeat and catchy songs.
For me it's the lyrics. There are several country music songs I like because of that but I don't like country.
My son prefers all instrumental, lyrics ruin music for him he says. He writes a lot of songs but refuses to put any words to them. When I've given him lyrics and asked him to write music for it, he can write music that "says" what the words are saying but can't stand trying to write music around the words.
My grandson is always commenting on how music makes him feel, he's three. My granddaughter is interested in the words more because she likes to sing.
I've been interested in studies on the effect of music on people ever since I saw an insane child "normalize" due to learning music.
I would definitely choose music. Melody in particular.
With regards to lyrics, it would be better sometimes if I did not know English at all
Some of both. I like some songwriters who have engaging lyrics, but I also like music with a good beat that makes me want to dance.
I like both to be honest. Lyrics in some songs are very powerful. Music can change your mood and provide a much needed distraction.
I think that if a person has studied and has a good hold of music they could do whatever they want, but I also think music has to be somewhat good for the psyche. Now there are some artists that use intelligent lyrics and those who listen usually are benefited by them, but then you also need to have those fun songs that don't really take much to listen to.
For me the music will always take precedence. Great lyrics are the icing on the cake. Bad lyrics will taint a good song but a bad tune just makes a downright bad song.
In the case of Canadian band RUSH with Neal Peart's lyrics you can get the best of both worlds when they hit the mark.
Like several other responses to this question, I will admit the music grabs me first but the lyrics keep me listening to a song. The best music combines the two, of course. A good beat or nice melody with banal or offensive lyrics will not draw me in for long. Remember KC and the Sunshine Band? Lyrics seemed an afterthought to those guys. They had their moment of fame, because they could produce a sound, but had no staying power. Likewise, if lyrics were all that made a song, Rod McKuen would probably be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame! (Just kidding, of course....)
Where melody and lyrics perfectly marry
beauty improves mankind
they are equally needed to me. I love music in all forms and sorts.
Music is the most important thing. I mean it has to at least sound good to keep you listening.
Content is next, but not as important if the music is good.
Intellectual Content, that is a matter of opinion.
Bad Religion fortunately has BOTH. They always give me a run for my money.
I think a good tune makes you perk up but when the lyrics are superb, you remember the song and you want to sing.
I wholly agree with Daniel.
I feel that lyrics speak to the music just as the music speaks to the lyrics. There can be an alliteration or even syncopation to the lyrics just as certain musical phrases almost sound like speech.
It all depends on what you want to "say" with your compositions-- right?
I have always been a big fan of Elvis Costello he combines the best of both of these ! I love good music the band Tower of Power has a song called " Squib Cakes " that is one of the best soulful/jazz fusions I have ever heard . Both good lyrics and good melody are virtually extinct in modern music now .
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