Write a song in a day
Whether you're a rapper, a folkie, a rocker or a unique mashup of your own, we're here to pass on the art of writing a great track.
It's hard work and there'll be moments of I-just-can't-do-it despair. But our coaches are hot. And they'll help you find your way. There'll be times when you soar, sky-high with hope and pride, humming your very own tune or belting out that killer lyric in the shower.
Work starts at 9.30 with a briefing on your song-writing assignment (see below) for the day.
By 10.30, you'll be teamed up in threes - a lyricist, a melody maker and a composer - and starting to write.
Emily and Paul will visit each trio in turn and help you weave that gold.
Lunch is between 1-2.00 and dinner from 7.00 - 8.00pm. You've got to stop to eat and you might find that as you leave your co-songwriters and chat with others that inspiration strikes. Or you might want to tune into John Cage's 4' 33" - a knock-out source of fuel whether you've heard it once or a thousand times.
Apart from that, you can spend your time where and how you like - walking, swimming, sauna, singing, snoozing, arguing ... just so long as you have a song to perform by 8.30pm.
With years of writing and teaching experience behind them, Paul and Emily know that wherever your talents and influences lie, it's good to get out of your comfort zone and give your creativity a work out with a tight brief. Of course, if inspiration strikes you with a melody over breakfast or an idea floats in when you get down to work on the day, then you should definitely go with it.
But if you need a little help, these are the kind of assignments you can expect:
Brill Breakout: The Look of Love, Devil in Disguise, Supernatural Thing, River Deep Mountain High ... when the hits started rolling out of Broadway's Brill Building in the '60s, they conquered the world. Today is your first day in the building as a Brill songwriter ... use their techniques and time-honored craft to help you pen a hit by sundown.
Laurel Candy: Travel back in time to a land peopled with giants - the first singer songwriters. Take inspiration from Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, Linda Ronstadt, Carole King and other Canyon royalty. Write an acoustic heart-breaker.
Noughtie Noughtie: summon up the courage to pen a number that fits between tracks five and six on one of the legends of the noughties: think The Blueprint, Kala, Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots, Back to Black, Time the Revelator or American Idiot. We give you notes on what was going on for the masters behind these albums, you choose your bag and make it rock.
When's the next course?
Our next one-day course is on November 25 - it's £150 for expert tuition, delicious lunch, dinner and fine wine thrown in. But if you can't afford that, tell us what you can. Sing for your supper ... we don't want to turn anyone away. Book now
Week-long and weekend courses will run in Spring 2018.
Weekend costs start at £400 if you camp, up to £600 for an ensuite room. Week-long courses: £800 for campers: £1100 for a shared room, £2000 for ensuite.