Day 1 – Storytelling: Intro

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Your mission for Day 1 in the Lyrics Bootcamp:

  1. Watch this video
  2. Bonus: Write an outline for a song’s story arc

Don’t overthink it. Just set a timer for 7 or 25 minutes and write. Whatever you can fit in. 

If you don’t want to write it out, then let the information work in the back of your mind. Let your subconscious do the heavy lifting for today, that’s fine. 

But at least ask yourself: What does this have to do with lyrics? 

You’ll know soon enough.

Let me know what you got out of today's lesson in the comments section down below.

Stay gefährlich,


  • The power of structure. It keeps us glued to the storyteller.

    Creating flawed characters helps us see ourselves in them.

    Storytelling gives us a lens to see life as it is and how to live it in a community.

  • I‘ve started songwriting because I am missing stories and songs that use Rosenberg’s language of Non Violent Communication, as it is easier to learn to use this language when there are examples in everyday life.
    I started with writing songs that describe a problem first (unmet needs) which can work fine as a story according to what I learned today. When I want to create songs where happiness and gratitude (when needs have been met) is expressed in Non Violent Communication, then I learned today that for a good story, the way of how to get there, needs to be described, before the expression of happiness.

  • Among others, I got this: Take 2 words (banana and vomit) and your brain makes a story from that. Nice!
    Thanks for doing it Friedemann!

  • Love this, and I really needed to hear it right now. I’ve been struggling with songwriting and in fear because I’ve come to it later in life. Just in the past week or so I’ve realized the biggest thing holding me back is me worrying about being not good at songwriting. What if I rewrite that story? It’s so time.
    This info also helps me understand that when approaching a song it can’t just be a vomiting (banana vomit!) of my emotions on the page. That won’t keep people listening like you said. I need to think more critically about how the story is evolving.
    This really helps! Thank you Friedemann!

  • I am looking at storytelling in a new way after experiencing this video; lights are turning on about how I might make songs have more emotion and meaning.

  • This is a great start to the 5 days. I always go for the empathy bid, the relatable. but i’ve never thought about the ruthlessness of the listener, yet my mission is to write songs that show a lesson, so this is perfect advice thanks

  • Really interesting video! I feel like I already intuitively thought of storys as a way of learning lessons with regard to one’s own life, but it was really insightful to hear someone explaining this explicitly. So far I have written a couple of songs, in which my main characters deal with their flaws, but I am going to try to do it more purposefully in the future 🙂

    I also really liked the evolutionary context you gave on the function of stories.

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