Every great Songwriter begins their journey by listening, but it’s still strange putting it first since it’s something you should be doing all the time. Pressing play on music made by others isn’t just something you should be doing right before you put pen to paper but at all times!
If you want to make the transition from being solely a fan of music to a musician and songwriter, you need to stop listening passively and start listening critically. For a long time, you’ve probably just enjoyed the sounds that were coming out of your headphones, but when you make the decision to become a musician yourself, it’s time to think while the music plays.
Also, I challenge you to diversify what you listen to. If you’re planning on writing a rap song, chances are you already listen to a lot of hip-hop, but you should do everything you can to try new things and hear what other people in every subset of every genre are doing.
Dive deep into the rap world and explore the many different kinds of hip-hop being produced these days, while at the same time, force yourself to press play on everything from K-pop to EDM to classic rock.
There’s a reason millions of people love these types of music and the smartest musicians out there are constantly trying to understand what makes them so successful in hopes they can grasp just a bit of that so they can then incorporate it into their own art, or at least learn something new.