Ever written a song? Thinking about writing some stand-up? Here are two pro-tips! (idiot)

There are some interesting similarities and differences between those who create music and those who create comedy.

Qualities like discipline to practice, earnestness of expression, and attention to dynamics hold true across both forms. 

It's been a challenge to transition from songwriter to joke-writer, but here are two pro-tips I would have given myself starting out:

1) You have to get specific with meaning. Lyrics are closer to poetry, in that the meaning of any given line (or sometimes the piece as a whole) is subjective, ie. you don't have to know exactly what the songwriter meant for the song to be meaningful or pleasant. See any of ABBA's music for a good example. They didn't even fucking speak English. #MAGA #NotMyEuroVision. But knowing exactly what they meant isn't necessary to enjoy the song. You can transfer your own feelings and storyline to the music. 

In comedy, this is not the case. You have to know exactly what the speaker means when they speak. Often times, a joke will in fact rely on there being two meanings, and the audience perceiving the first one before being brought to recognize the second one. No dancing queens feeling the beat on the tambourine, here. 

2) Related to the first point: Diction. This is one I thought about listening back to a set from last night. I got some laughs, but my diction was terrible. In order for the audience to get your specific meaning (see above), they have to be able to hear you.

For singers-songwriters, that means no mumbly shit. I'm looking at you, Isaac Brock singing Float On ("Aye dro macaw into a CAW CAW, the a the, day"). 

Do some articulation warmups, "the tip of the tongue is the dick of the mouth" etc. and be sure they can clearly hear every word. Don't sound like a methodical voice-and-speech psycho though, that will probably hurt your chances for laughter.

That's all for today, see you tomorrow!

-Jon 

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