Which singers or musicians are songwriting frauds?
The songwriting frauds are the ones who who brag about how they "write their own songs" as if they sat down and wrote them all by themselves, but when you look at the writing credits their names are listed with a committee of like ten other people
Vadge - the queen of fake songwriting.
She slaps her name on it for the money.
Don't know about Ringo's solo stuff, but apparently George Harrison was the actual writer of "Octopus's Garden"
I've always suspected the jagged pill chick, too...what was her name
Beyonce owns this thread. Isn't it pretty common knowledge that the only way she will put someone's song on her album is if she can add her name to the credits?
Courtney Love. She'd get a lot of "help" writing her songs (I guess so; she can't even play an instrument) and takes the credit for the finished product.
Exactly who has been helping Bob Dylan write his songs?
Barbra "Evergreen" Streisand
Beyonce writes her own songs. Just check the credits on any of B's albums. She's married to Jay Z for christ sakes. Talent runs in that family.
i remember reading somewhere that when asked, Beyonce said she co-wrote the Destiny's Child song 'Emotion', which is pretty embarrassing considering it was written by the Bee Gees in 1978.
"Exactly who has been helping Bob Dylan write his songs?"
Wasn't there some controversy over whether he stole Blowing in the Wind? Someone who knows more about him can refresh me.
"Beyonce writes her own songs. Just check the credits on any of B's albums"
Usually her name is listed along with at least 3 other names...
Beyonce owns this thread - perfect example
Jon Mclaughlin's Smack Into you - she changes Smack into Smash (which honestly makes no sense) and gets co-writing credit.
Hell, the music isn't original either.
Just old songs sung with new lyrics.
Taylor Swift. Her father hired people to ghost write her songs.
My Mummy the maneater: How the wild promiscuity of Edwina Mountbatten - wife of Prince Charles' mentor - took a heartbreaking toll on her children
Pamela Mountbatten has written a memoir about her mother Edwina
Edwina was married to Lord Louis Mountbatten, a relative and confidant of the King
[quote} Wasn't there some controversy over whether he stole Blowing in the Wind? Someone who knows more about him can refresh me.
Accusations were made and they turned out not to be true. The kid who claimed Dylan stole the song admitted to making up the story.
Wikipedia covers it pretty well.
Beyonce is legit retarded. Bob Dylan "stole" his music from regional folk songs and music books he would buy at used bookstores and flea markets.
[quote]Nothing "runs in a family" between spouses,
R20, I laughed when I read that at R10. Maybe she acquires some of his talent every time he screws her.
When you get caught between the moon and New York City....what was the Bette Midler quote?
May all your teeth fall out except one, and from that may you have an eternal toothache r9.
Allen Sherman wrote all of Joni Mitchell's catalogue until his death in 1973.
After that, her stuff was written by factory hacks, including the people who gave us "Billy, Don't Be a Hero," "I've Never Been To Me," and "Boogie Oogie Oogie."
R25 such bullshit
Most every Prince protege that ever existed...despite what the credits said.
Like Apollonia 6 wrote "Sex Shooter".
I once heard a producer she worked with say during an interview on NPR that Beyonce will only work with people on her albums who will "do business", meaning giving her her "credit". Beyonce truly writes very little of her music. Other than the paychecks, why would anyone wanna claim all that sound-alike hack?
Streisand has very little songwriting credits to her name, so why deprive her the simplistic drivel of "Evergreen"? If she said she wrote the music to that song, which is what she maintains while Paul Williams wrote the lyrics, I find that very believable.
Does crossing the "t's and dotting the "i's" count?
Beyonce thinks adding harmonies to a melody line is "songwriting".
Taylor Swift, hello.
Katey Perry, hello.
Madonna? Bitch, please.
Taylor Swift writes her own songs - music and lyrics.
Quit lying for fun.
I, too, was crushed to learn that most of my beloved Tin Pan Alley songwriting teams were actually legal partnerships that included non-musical shareholders.
Who came up with the material, and who will people pay to hear it performed?
If you enjoy hearing the song, STFU.
Vadge and Beyonce own this thread. They both do the exact same thing-steal or buy writing credits. Hell, just 1 pathetic example, Vadge even fucking bought a poem featured in a fucking GAP commercial for her song "Sky Fits Heaven".
As far as female recording acts go, Vadge and Beyonce are the most fraudulent when it comes to songwriting. They both are shameless about it too.
Hank Williams Sr. wrote new lyrics for old songs. He never wrote an original tune in his life but the lyrics were his.
"That ain't no Hank Williams song!"
Bob of Bob's Country Bunker, The Blues Brothers, 1980
At least Madonna and Beyonce, while queens of doing this bullshit, aren't known for "writing their own songs" in the way that Swift is.
Every popular song of Swift's is co-written by a professional songwriter. Yes, I know that she might write a lot of the filler on her albums mostly by herself. Yet all of her hits off this last album were co-penned by the same guy, Max Martin, who wrote Britney's stuff and now writes a lot of Katy Perry's stuff. Pink uses him too. Why these girls are able to cling to some sort of "authenticity" with the public, I have no idea.
Does anyone have the inside scoop for how professional songwriters like Martin etc work? My guess is that the puppet (Swift, Perry, Pink) helps to come up with the general theme or vibe of what she wants the song to convey, but for all intents and purposes, the songwriters and, to a lesser extent, the producers basically just write the song.
Swift released her third studio album, Speak Now,in October 2010. She wrote all fourteen songs alone and co-produced the record with longtime collaborator Nathan Chapman.
Swift's fourth studio album, Red, was released in October 2012. She wrote nine of the album's sixteen songs alone. The remaining seven were co-written with Max Martin, Liz Rose, Dan Wilson, Ed Sheeran and Gary Lightbody.
I've also wondered about Alanis.
For Carrie Underwood's most recent album, she went around saying she wrote certain songs on it and touted herself as a songwriter.
I haven't checked her CD for song writing credits, but I somehow doubt that she was the principal songwriter for any of the songs, rather than working for other songwriters to put her recent CD together.
I'm guessing she got her name put on the songs so she could gain the financial benefits of being the songwriter.
Somehow I doubt that she has any songwriting abilities, but I could be wrong.
I do not question Taylor Swift's songwriting abilities at all, though, as she has written the majority of the songs on her CD's.
Madonna is more of a lyricist in songwriting. She knows how to write songs. She said in an interview in CNN's World Beat show in 2000 that she's conventional when it comes to songwriting.
Many pop singers who are involved in writing their songs usually CO-WRITE their songs. How much input they have of course varies from song to song and singer to singer. Sometimes their involvement is just them telling songwriters what kind of songs they want in terms of lyric subject matter and/or musical style. Sometimes all they do is change or add a word or phrase or line or section to song.
People forget that Lil' Kim could no longer sustain her career once Biggie died and Biggie's friends stopped ghostwriting her raps.
I think Foxy Brown also had the majority of her songs written by Jay Z and now that Jay Z is married to Beyonce, Foxy adopted some weird Island influenced sound where she just says "blood clot" and the N word over and over.
Why is it that so many female artists have to have their songs written for them? Usually it is only lesbian musicians who have the ability to write/produce music while the straight chicks ALWAYS need men to help (I once read this interview from Tori Amos where she dismissively said "men love turning knobs in the studio" - bitch, they make you sound GOOD.) I think Missy Elliot is the only female producer to ever have success and I'm not saying anything about her sexuality
Madge and that Pedophile...Quincy Jones wrote for the pedophile.
Beyonce can barely string together a sentence, so I don't think she's able to compose song lyrics.
I don't think Katy Perry tries to take full credit for writing her songs. She's pretty vocal about having a "camp" of Bonnie McKee and Dr Luke and others who work on her new material for her. I think Katy envisions herself as an old school diva like Diana Ross and others who had songs written FOR them.
Not too many years ago, the majority of singers or at least a great number were solely singers and gave no pretense of being a songwriter.
They were appreciated for just their singing, and it was not expected that they would write anything.
I heard Peter Allen say an air traffic controller kept the plane he was on in the air over New York City, hence the line about the moon and NYC. I heard Ringo say that he was in the Greek Isles on a boat and the captain said
that octopusses make little gardens of shells and rocks. George did write It don't come easy,
his demo with him singing has Hare Krishna chants which needless to say Ringo did not copy. (It's on youtube, if ya wanna hear George's version)
I think Beyoncé is just one big lie from beginning to end. I really don't trust anything she says.
Her team does everything for her, Rihanna maybe the same but for some reason i like her.
r47 You mean, you don't trust anything HE says.
"Not too many years ago, the majority of singers or at least a great number were solely singers and gave no pretense of being a songwriter."
Yep, but now singers are expected to write, because they earn more money that way and it gives them "cred" in the eyes of music snobs. Out of all the singers who hit it really big in the last 30 years or so I think Whitney Houston is the only one who never really pretended to be a songwriter.
R50 I think Celine Dion. What you said about gaining respect from music snobs is soooo true. You notice how singer who involved in songwriting love bragging about how they write their own songs? Think Avril Lavigne. It's like they're saying "I am sooo smart and talented".
I wish would just chill about that. Nothing in wrong in being just a singer.
Frank Sinatra and Tony Bennett - not songwriters.
R51, that comes from the idea that lots of people in the world can sing well, but only a select few people in the world have good songwriting abilities.
What about Tom Jones?
R53 I think everyone can learn to become OK songwriters. But that's not enough to score a hit.
P Diddy or whatever he's calling himself these days....
Just a huge bullshit artist and has been since his days as a "promoter" in nyc.....
Anyone remember the concert he "promoted" that had a stampede resulting in several deaths because it was vastly over-sold....more tickets sold than were printed....
I don't think he ever received any reprimand for that little debacle.
R55, I think that is absolutely unequivocally not true.
Almost no one has songwriting abilities. Just a select few people in the world can write songs.
Are you thinking songwriting is solely just writing lyrics?
It is writing MUSIC. Very few people in the world, even singers, have any idea whatsoever how to write MUSIC (not lyrics.
Writing music (not lyrics) is a very highly defined rare skill.
A person needs to be a musician to be able to even begin to write music (not lyrics) which means playing an instrument or instruments.
Many singers do not play a musical instrument at all.
Your statement at R55 is ridiculously absurd.
R57 and R58 I meant that people can LEARN how to do it. Yes,I mean both lyrics AND music. It's obviously EASIER to write a short,simple,formulaic song than a longer,complex one. And yes, composing the music is harder than writing lyrics.
No, not everyone and anyone can learn how to write music and songs.
What a ridiculous unknowledgeable idea, R55, R59.
To write music (not lyrics) one needs to play a musical instrument and many singers, if not most singers, do not even play a musical instrument.
Shakespeare never did write those sonnets
R60 Says you. But do they also need to know how to write it down? Sheet music?
Loretta Lynn and Dolly Parton taught themselves to write music.
R63 It is possible to do so. Even more so today,what with all knowledge on the web, tutorials and stuff.
Dolly Parton plays a musical instrument really well - guitar.
And some people who play musical instruments have songwriting abilities, but only a select few.
You seem to be missing the point, R63.
The Bob Dylan accusation is such bullshit, and I am hardly a fan of his.
Courtney Love always writes 100% of her lyrics. She's had help from other musicians around her (the ones who form the band Hole, in most cases) rounding out the different instrument parts, most successfully with Eric Erlandson. Yes, ERLANDSON. Not Kurt Cobain, not Billy Corgan.
I don't have any trouble believing Taylor Swift writes her own songs. It's not like they're such genius pieces of work that they couldn't *possibly* have been written by her. WTF?
The Joni Mitchell accusation is also utterly absurd and the person making it is either a moron or mentally ill.
Mick Taylor supposedly took over song writer duties from Keith Richards due to his drug issues. Jagger supposedly failed to give Taylor his credits while Richards' name stayed on. Taylor allegedly left the band because of this - don't know if he ever got his songwriter credits. Anyway, that seems fraudulent on Jagger/Richards' parts if true.
Taylor Swift is a musician who excels at playing musical instruments - she plays guitar, banjo, mandolin, and piano.
On top of it she has songwriting abilities in writing both music and lyrics.
In her 3rd album, she wrote all 14 songs alone.
In her Red album, she wrote 9 of the songs alone and the remaining songs with collaborators.
I'm a professional country music writer in Nashville. I've written with a lot of singers, and, truth is, almost none of them really contribute anything to the song. They do, however, help with the direction of the song -- saying, yes, I'd sing that, or no, I wouldn't say that, etc -- but they don't necessarily contribute much or do any of the heavy lifting. There are some exceptions to this, some singers who actually are gifted songwriters -- including Taylor Swift, who is an incredible writer, and I don't understand the hate for her gifts -- but they're the rarity. I know some writers who won't do this on principle, but, the truth is, it's just easier to get a song recorded if you write with the artist. It. Just. Is. So...if you see, say, Beyonce's name listed as a writer, she probably didn't add anything to it, but my guess is that she was in the room and helped direct it. To me, it's worth giving up a little of the writer's share to guarantee a song getting on a project. It does, ultimately, lead to watered-down, bland songs, especially in the country market.
I'm pretty sure Taylor Swift writes her songs. They are all about her.
The Joni Mitchell post was clearly meant as a joke. Non?
R69--How often is the singer credited with songwriting? Many don't claim to have written what they perform.
R69 I'm not surprised at all. I mean, if you're going to sing songs for a living, I would like to sing a song that I like to sing.
R71 Joni did accuse Bob of being a fraud.
Johan is too stupid for this discussion.
R76 Were you the one who said that what I had said about songwriting was ridiculous?
Bob Dylan HAS plagiarized in the past. One group of songs was taken directly from translated Japanese poems, etc. Even his paintings were discovered to be frauds: he claimed that he painted them from observations on his travels, but, it was discovered, that he actually just painted from some already-published photographs. So? He lied about his inspiration, but he still has an incredible gift, even if he's, uh, heavily-influenced by something that caught his eye.
r 69 here. If you look at country cd writing credits, the singer has writing credits on the vast majority of the songs. There are some exceptions: TIm McGraw, Faith Hill; Martina McBride, etc don't try to write, or at least not often. Most of the others do try to write their songs. It just helps them get songs tailor-made for them. As for Carrie Underwood, I know the writers she uses mostly, and they're great writers. They don't need her to be there, but their songs probably wouldn't get cut if she didn't "co-write" them. (For the record, they deserve their reward: I wouldn't want to spend any time with Underwood, who isn't the friendliest or nicest person on earth.) Some people complain that the singers shouldn't try to write, but, my feeling is, why wouldn't they? I've told some pretty awful writers how great they are as writers, because I want to keep writing with them and get songs on their projects. Do they really believe they're writing? Absolutely. They have no idea how little they're actually adding to the final song. ALSO, slightly off topic, I know the guy who wrote "Crazy for You" with Madonna. He didn't like the experience, and said she was very difficult to write with. There were a few lines that she didn't like, and she kept the writing team in the hotel room for hours and hours trying to get lines that she liked better. So..Did she come up with the lines herself? No. But she steered the writers in the direction that she wanted, and, to my ears, it's a great song. Although Madge might not necessarily write, she probably has good instincts about what she wants to say. Bottom line: it is the rare singer who is actually a good writer. If you see more than two names on a song, chances are the singer is a weak writer, and the writers did the heavy lifting.
Everything Johan says is wrong. Is he a new troll?
Everything about Taylor Swift's image is an orchestrated fraud, why should I believe her supposed song writing abilities?
As far as Katy Perry, she doesn't deny working with Bonnie McKee or Dr. Luke but she always talks 'writing' her songs and her 'inspiration' - I'm sure she has minimal involvement, at best.
R80 I can't wait for you to die. :)
R79 Do you know the story behind Madonna's You Must Love Me?
R79 thanks for that story about Vadge. WOW-that song was written in 1985 before she was super huge and was simply on the rise. Interesting that even before her height of fame she was a bitch. I'm glad you confirmed what most of know: that she is not a writer at all and simply buys or takes co-writing credits.
What about Kelly clarkson? I think she is involved in the writing process but I'm not sure how much. I think her most successful self-written song is "because of you."
Clarkson's desire to write her own songs is root of her issues with Clive Davis. He wanted her to keep singing Max Martin written hits, she wanted to write her own stuff. Because of You was hers, My December was mostly co-written by her. Probably her best penned song with Aben Eubanks was Sober off my December.
r83 - it was written by Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Weber....the end.
R84. Not that I want to defend Madonna -- I'm not really a fan -- but I'm not sure she did wrong there. The guy I know didn't like her and thought she was a pain, but, the thing is, he could have left the hotel room at any time and not finished "Crazy for You." The song was commissioned for a movie -- I forgot which one -- and he dealt with Madonna because he wanted the song to get in the movie. To Madonna's credit, she stuck in there, too, and kept at it until she was happy with what they had. A lot of lesser talents would have settled and left it at that, or she could have left and told them to call her when it was done. She put in the hours, even though she didn't really come up with anything of value. Everyone who writes with artists is complicit. We all put up with writing most of the song, but, in the end, we get rewarded with getting more songs recorded.
R88 he put up with her in order to get paid and to have it on his resume. I don't fault him for it. Vadge is notorious for being a bitch in the industry, even before she was famous. Sure, she puts in time, but is not a songwriting talent herself. From what you say, she was simply overseeing the process instead of helping to write it. Anyone can say "I like this" or "no, I don't like that-rewrite it" but not just anyone can actually come up with song lyrics.
it seems some people are missing the point a little. songwriting now is a mixture of writing poetry and music. its very hard to do either and very few can do both. at least not well. thats why historically songwriting tended to be partnerships. to claim that hank williams or woody Guthrie or any one else coming from the folk or blues tradition didnt write their songs is missing the point. it was common practice back in the day to take a tune and either slightly rework it or just use it. rock music wouldnt exist without this practice.
Madonna does get quite involved, at least on the production side. I recall an interview with Shep Pettibone who produced Like A Prayer and Erotica. She would drive him crazy insisting on little sounds and tweaks he needed to add to the mix, like the backing track and the gospel choir on Like A Prayer, or that flamenco guitar middle eight on Deeper And Deeper. William Orbit has similar stories to tell. To her credit, she does (or, rather, did) have good instincts as to what makes a hit song. I'm less convinced of her songwriting abilities, at least in the traditional sense.
Justin Timberlake( yes I don't think he is smart enough to understand music)
Anytime more than two people write a song it is always a fraud.
The music of Bob Dylan and Hank Williams was certainly derivative of earlier works (EVERYTHING is derivative of earlier compositions), but they were certainly not songwriting "frauds." REAL songwriting frauds take credit for doing little or absolutely nothing.
Sheryl Crow is a particularly nauseating example of this. Her debut was largely the result of the the talent of her then boyfriend Kevin Gilbert, record producer Bottrell and a group of musicians who called themselves the Tuesday Night music club. The later described Crow as "as a marginally talented singer who exploited his (Gilbert's) skills and theirs in a ruthless grab for success."
This is from an article about the matter:
"For Gilbert, the final straw came when Crow sang "Leaving Las Vegas" on the David Letterman show. Afterward, when Letterman asked her if the song was autobiographical, a flustered Crow blurted out, "Yes."
"I've never been to Las Vegas," continued Crow, who nobody remembers having contributed greatly to the writing of the song. "I wrote it about Los Angeles. It's really metaphorical."
The next day, she and Gilbert exchanged angry words over the phone. He wasn't the only one furious. Author John O'Brien -- who wrote the novel that inspired both Baerwald's (David Baerwald was a member of the Tuesday music club) early song lyrics and the movie starring Nicolas Cage -- was still grumbling about Crow's gaffe to his literary agent on the day he blew his brains out, a scant few weeks before the movie deal was complete."
Kevin Gilbert, a very talented but troubled person, died a sordid death by autoerotic asphyxiation.
"I saw something in Entertainment magazine that said Kevin Gilbert, the piano player on Sheryl Crow's record, had died," said David Baerwald. He paused, sadly shaking his head. "He hated that Sheryl Crow record and that's all he's going to be known for. The piano player? Roll over, Kevin Gilbert."
R93, that's a sad story. It's too bad when celebrities get credit for doing work that is really done by talented but anonymous people.
R19 I misread your post as "Bowling in the Wind"...
[quote]Everything about Taylor Swift's image is an orchestrated fraud, why should I believe her supposed song writing abilities?
What about Mariah Carey
No question that Vadge is queen of fraudulent songwriting with Beyonce in at #2.
I read somewhere that Nashville is a song writer's town. People really like and respect the song writers. Most country stars are fine singing other people's songs. So, Carrie Underwood and Luke Bryan are not surprising, and I would say that there is no shame in that. Not everyone is a Zac Brown... less attractive but a great songwriter.
Zac Brown is not unattractive.
It's funny that Crazy For You was mentioned. I just listened to the demo last night. The lyrics were pretty much the same, I think (perhaps it was the final demo), though it was done in a very MOR/countryish style.
OTOH, the Open Your Heart demo is very different lyrically. I wonder who wrote my favourite lyric from that song ("don't try to run, I can keep up with you").
Lauryn Hill settled a 5million dollar lawsuit with songwriters who weren't (sufficiently) credited on her Miseducation album, a couple of years after its release.
R92-Justin Timberlake was my first choice. His music sucks, but with little help from him.
So who's considered to be the most accomplished (singer/)songwriter in pop, i.e. someone who writes both great music and lyrics single handedly?
It's obviously a very rare talent, even geniuses like Schubert and Wolf relied on the poetry of others. Only Mussorgsky and Wagner come to mind.