Sometimes a track just spills out of you and other times it is an epic battle equaled to the fight on the mountains of Mordor. Through the years I have figured out some techniques to get me out of those ruts. Once and a while you just need a little creative nudge to finish that idea or come up with a new one.
One technique that has helped me a lot, I call the title question. The idea is you start with a title and start exploring questions and answers that it envokes. I know… seems cheesy. Well, it is but it works.
1. Start with the track title. Usually, when I start a track the title is the last thing on my mind. I usually don’t even have the name until I send it out for mastering. But when I am lost on ideas to get a track started, this technique is a lifesaver. One of the best ways to come up with an idea is to start with an action. Like running, fighting, breaking, and so on. Then add something else to give it context, and you have an evocative name.
2. Start to question the title. Now that you have a title, start asking yourself what it might mean. Make a list of questions you might ask to unlock the meaning of the title. Things like: When did this happen? Who was there? How does it make me feel? What will happen next? Try to get at least 3 questions, but 4-5 is better.