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Bernd

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About Bernd

  • Rank
    Active Muse
  • Birthday 10/02/53

Contact Methods

  • Website URL
    http://bernd-harmsen.com
  • Facebook
    http://www.facebook.com/bernd.harmsen

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Germany
  • Interests
    Songwriting, lyrics writing, Rock music

Previous Fields

  • Lyricist, Composer or Both?
    Lyricist, sometimes Composer as well, yet not exactly a Musician
  • Musical Influences?
    mainly Blues Rock and Hardrock, yet sometimes also Pop and even Folk
  1. WRITING VERSES

    When I write for other musicians I normally begin with the chorus as well. That must be the strongest part of the song and present the hook that usually also is the title. When both, the composer and I, are happy with the chorus - the heart of the song - I begin working on lift and verses. Bridge, if needed, usually comes last. As for the veres I ask myself: what (story) could lead up to what the chorus says. At this moment I have a chorus fragment that goes: I give you time to think come clear with what you feel I won't give up hope too soon that you'll be back with me So the story will have to be: they got together, became lovers yet somehow got seperated because she (male singer) got somewhat unhappy. Could have been some misunderstanding. She might have seen him with another girl. Another story could be that they fell in love during both their vacation, and because of the seperation once they had returned home the feeling cooled down, at least on her part (that was my first idea). Probably, this background will make one verse, maybe two - before the first chorus. In the second part I then could write over his time after they had drifted apart, his yearning, his hopes. In the bridge I then could describe how he tried to forget her, to get over it - yet didn't succeed. *** When I write my own folk songs I normally begin with the verses. Some don't even have a chorus. It could be a good exercice for you just trying to write an AAA song (only verses) instead of jumping right into the middle. The content, the story, could be anything. Among other things I retell Greek myths in some of my songs (Dionysos, Ganymede, Europa), for example. Once I retold a news story that I found hilarious (rule of thumb). There are more stories to be told than anybody could do in a lifetime.... Good luck! Bernd
  2. fool for two

    Thank you all! I corrected the typo and another little mistake. The part beginning "when I fell in love with you..." is the bridge. And yes, it repeats what's already been said. The new aspect I wanted to add is that "I" actually loved her attitude, her outspokenness - at first. I'll keep your suggestions in mind and see if I can come up with alternative phrases to replace the repetitions.
  3. April Rain

    I like the imagery. Quite romantic. Maybe "before new leaves began to show" instead of "blow"? I was also a bit irritated about the season you were talking about. The line "blowing down through the birch trees" doesn't work for me because of the stress that should lie on "trees" to rhyme with "breeze". Cheers, Bernd
  4. Black Queen

    As Paul suggested I'd also drive the ambiguity a bit further. The first two verses are great. The third verse is a bit of a disappointment - at least to me. The bridge is fine again. As for the chorus I'm not sure. It works for me as some kind of resolution, yet 'model' might add a little finesse, indeed. Kudos! Bernd
  5. fool for two

    [chorus verse verse chorus verse chorus bridge chorus] fool for one fool for two fool enough for me and you fool for one fool for two why are you doing what you do you've laid all our secrets bare we're the topic of the day just go to the market square to listen what the people say our weaknesses, our private life, all our foibles, all our faults public where the gossip's rife not a chance to call a halt fool for one fool for two fool enough for me and you fool for one fool for two why are you doing what you do our kids scorn of the class while we're the scorn of our town hear them snicker where we pass did you intend to play their clown? fool for one fool for two fool enough for me and you fool for one fool for two make fools of our children, too when I fell in love with you I found you open-hearted and outspoken I'd no idea there'd be a risk of a family life out in the open fool for one fool for two fool enough for me and you fool for one fool for two make fools of our children, too
  6. How do you know that the SONGS will be under two minutes long when there's only words? There may be an intro, a long instrumental part in the middle, and an outro. If Led Zeppelin had done them they'd last around 8 minutes each ;-) This is 1:49, by the way (150 bpm): you have lots of admirers you can afford to take your pick secretely I wait for you to get rid of your current prick I'm standing in the row, I'm next in line you won't keep me waiting, you are being kind I'll be served in a minute, so I'll be fine don't you worry little Baby, I'm next in line doin' my Friday shopping I think I've got all I need today I'll do the cooking I've got a few mouths to feed I'm standing in the row, I'm next in line they won't keep me waiting, they're all being kind I'll be served in a minute, so I'll be fine don't you worry little Baby, I'm next in line I've lived life to the fullest I hardly ever missed a trick the writing on the wall says soon my clock will cease to tick I'm standing in the row, I'm next in line they won't keep me waiting, they're all being kind I'll be served in a minute, so I'll be fine don't you worry little Baby, I'm next in line
  7. Sometimes it feels like you cannot stop the flood... I just published my third Rock Bernd album and have completed two new songs since. As I always like my latest song best my new favorite now is "all for free". It's free to download (nomen est omen). My favorite until yesterday was "too much", closely followed by "the angels' choir" (because these two songs are VERY different). Both are on "Rock Bernd III", my first compilation that does comprise no old stuff altogether as did "Rock Bernd" and "Rock Bernd II". All my stuff is "garage rock" - in it's literal sense ;-) Well, sort of, actually it would have to be "home office rock", but you'll get the drift. Here are samples from Rock Bernd III (older versions of sevaral songs are on my player as well): http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/berndharmsen3 (it's on Amazon, ITunes, Spotify etd. as well, of course) And here is my freebie (my personal favorite song as of today): http://soundclick.com/share.cfm?id=13535650
  8. Anyone here use Spotify?

    It gets you exposure - and about 1 cent per 2 streams. If you're interested in the money you should become VERY famous first ;-) (as for others Spotify is included in my CD Baby deal) Cherrs, Bernd
  9. Music first lyric wirting?

    Actually the 'restriction' when you write to music is not that much different from writing the second verse after the first, i.e. once you've decided on a meter. Just a thought...
  10. Beautiful song! Kudos! I wish you to find a suitable partner or two (pity it ain't me) and to hear more from you! Bernd
  11. garden of grief

    Thank you, Tammy for your uplifting comment. To my own amazement it is always "music first" for my own songs - chords first, actually. Normally, I just write lyrics, i.e. poetry with a tune that only exists in my mind, and only while I'm writing. Or I write words matching someone else's tune (that's how I make a little money). But when I create my own music I begin with the guitar part - which I enjoy the most - adding bass and drums (Midi) later until I have a complete backing track (as raw and unskilled it may be). Only after that is completedd I try to come up with a tune and fitting words. Had I written the words first I might have come up with quite a different tune. On the other hand I prefer rock, so chances still would be hight that I'd have made it rock anyway ;-) But then, I have written the odd piece of folk as well in the past ... Also, the lyrics are not as nice and empathic as they may seem at first sight: I only do this for your sake = irony! free you so that you can leave = irony! take the apple from the snake = that's a bit sleazy (I put the line in after I had decided to make it a "RockBernd" song. Thanks again and see you around, Bernd
  12. http://www.soundclick.com/html5/v3/single_player.cfm?type=single&songid=13458492&q=hi sneaking in like a thief I enter your garden of grief what I find I cannot believe terror, doubt, or relief? beauty as far as I can see ponds, flower beds, blooming trees your lone soul lies on the lawn anxious, silent, withdrawn dreaming of times long since gone what's needed to switch you on? free you so that you can leave your beautiful garden of grief I've come to kiss you awake I only do this for your sake take the apple from the snake sneaking just like a thief I enter your garden of grief what I find I cannot believe terror, doubt, or relief? beauty as far as I can see in your wonderous garden of grief I've come to kiss you awake I only do this for your sake take the apple from the snake
  13. Music first lyric wirting?

    Not that I'm professional in any sense... I use three 'methods': 1. lyrics first. I do this when there is no song or chord progression yet. But I always have a tune in my mind that is - more or less - dictated by the words' flow. Basically this is writing poetry with a song in mind and with a song-like structure (repeated chorus, maybe a part that can serve as bridge etc.) 2. tune first. I do this when I write for other people. I have them either sing some nonsense on top of their backing track or put in a Midi track that sticks out so I can identify the 'vocal line'. I also ask them to point out the song structure, i.e. giving the time marks for verses, chorus, etc. - saves time for me ;-) Then I usually write some matching nonsense text - or write down the singer's words - that I step by step replace with meaningful words. 3. chord progression first. I only do this for my own songs. Twice I tried topline-writing with other partners but both songs were rejected. Normally, the singer should do the topline writing himself. I am not a musician or singer, I could only provide rough guides as to how I interpret their track. Those of my lyrics that actually generate royalties (little enough) have all been written after the second fashion. Although there are heaps of songs that use my lyrics, but they have all been written and publish by hobby musicians. So writing words for existing tunes seems to be my 'road to success' ... Good luck! Bernd
  14. I've sort of given up on finding musicians to breathe life into my songs so I started 'producing' them myself. After "Rock Bernd" here is "Rock Bernd II" - a far cry from anything professional but 'garage rock' as straight as it comes: https://www.cdbaby.com/cd/berndharmsen2 Also on Amazon, iTunes, Spotify or wherever you're roaming ;-)
  15. some refugee song lyrics, no title yet

    Thank you, guys, yes it should - and shall - be "false". I came up with "fake" because there was a video that actually propagated claiming asylum in Germany portraying nice shelters, a warm welcome,... yet was very far from reality - and has been replaced meanwhile. Even then it should have read "fake promises" or so, but nobody would have understood that either without knowing the particular background. My original order ob 'blocks' was: VERSE ... LIFT: no future, home, or shops ... CHORUS: heading for the dim light... (possibly with the introductory words "now you're...") that might be better. I'll also edit the second line. Thanks again. Your attention, corrections, and suggestions mean a lot to me. Bernd
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