Sing My Song: A Kid's Guide to Songwriting

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Award-winning songwriter Steve Seskin has long helped budding balladeers discover the songs within them. Now, in a book based on his elementary school songwriting workshops, he shares the creative process that led him to seven number-one hits, including DON'¬?T LAUGH AT ME.

Through author's notes and songs written with students, Seskin shows readers how to come up with a title, create lyrics and rhymes, and use emotion and imagery Each song appears with an original illustration ...

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Overview

Award-winning songwriter Steve Seskin has long helped budding balladeers discover the songs within them. Now, in a book based on his elementary school songwriting workshops, he shares the creative process that led him to seven number-one hits, including DON'¬?T LAUGH AT ME.

Through author's notes and songs written with students, Seskin shows readers how to come up with a title, create lyrics and rhymes, and use emotion and imagery Each song appears with an original illustration by a top artist. The accompanying CD, which features this spirited collection of songs performed by Steve and a chorus of kids--plus four instrumental tracks to pair with new lyrics--will inspire readers to put their own feelings, whether silly or sincere, to paper and write a song of their own.Reviews"Schools that teach songwriting or children and adults who want to get started in singing their own songs will be inspired by this cheerful celebration."-Kirkus Reviews

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal

Gr 1-5

Seskin has tapped a mother lode of musical enthusiasm in this book by showing young readers the "how to" necessary to create songs and set them to music. Following 12 excellent examples and step-by-step instructions, readers discover how to put together the parts of a song. Musical terms are defined, song forms are suggested, and a CD of tunes provides sample accompaniment as Seskin backs up his relaxed vocals on guitar and with choruses from various schools. Among the highlights, the echo response in "Good Morning" shouts with energy, while laughter comes across in the words and voices of "My Pets." The author guides students past more difficult intervals and bridges of songs but avoids drowning out the younger voices of his fellow musicians. Environmentally conscious listeners might appreciate the chorus of "Four Rs"-an infectious "green" message, or "Read About It," a selection to touch the heart of any librarian. The breakdown of song parts and explanations for beginners, illustrated by seven notable artists in a range of styles and mediums, make this lesson in creativity an easy pick for all libraries.-Mary Elam, Forman Elementary School, Plano, TX

Kirkus Reviews

Songwriter and frequent school-assembly performer Seskin explains the process of collaborative songwriting for those who might like to try it. Step-by-step instructions, along with an audio CD of his favorite songs sung by the children who helped create them, help make his process clear. Seven different illustrators provide pictures to accompany the songs, giving the volume an appropriately collaborative, haphazard, albeit joyful feel. The CD, filled with the off-key exuberance of young children singing and yelling, adds much to understanding how the whole process works. The final tracks are instrumental, allowing budding songwriters to fill in the music with songs of their own. While the author's enthusiasm is inspiring, this is more a book for adults who work with children than for children themselves. The lyrics are valuable, but there is no sheet music or musical notation to show how words become music that might be sung by anyone but the writer. Schools that teach songwriting or children and adults who want to get started in singing their own songs will be inspired by this cheerful celebration. (Nonfiction. 8-12, adult)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781582462660
  • Publisher: Random House Children's Books
  • Publication date: 10/28/2008
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.10 (w) x 10.10 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

STEVE SESKIN has been teaching children songwriting for five years. He is the author of the Tricycle Press books DON'¬?T LAUGH AT ME and A CHANCE TO SHINE, and many hit songs. He lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with his family.
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