COVID-19 Hiatus

To all our valued listeners and guests,

Song Talk Radio will be on a (hopefully short) hiatus. The station where we record the podcast is pretty small, and our guests are literally within spitting distance of the hosts and others.

In the meantime, we’ll be re-publishing some of our favourite theme episodes in our Throwback Thursday Themeshows series!

You can also take a listen to our vast archive of shows, read our blog, and take advantage of isolation and get some songwriting or recording done!


Michael, Neel, Phil, Don, and Vanessa

Fresh Content

Show date:  Jun. 28, 2020

Kitchener, Ontario-based singer-songwriter and storyteller Jesse Parent talks about the danger of his song “For a Moment” becoming a conventional love song, and how to avoid that!

We talked about:

  • How to do banter well when you’re performing
  • How Jesse went from one-draft songs to editing all the songs
  • “Write with your heart, edit with your brain”
  • How easy it is to let your songs devolve into love songs, if you’re not careful
  • How to play harmonica and guitar at the same time well (hint: if you can sing and play guitar, you can do this)
  • Writing to an unconventional song structure
  • Taylor guitars

Download the lyrics to For a Moment to follow along.

Show date:  Jun. 26, 2020

So are people still writing protest songs? How do the protest songs of the ’60-’70s compare to the songs by Childish Gambino and Kendrick Lamar?

When you start songwriting and your goal is a protest song, how do you start? Vanessa stops by to lend her views.

We talked about:


Show date:  Jun. 18, 2020

Neel, Mike, Blair, and Phil

One of our favourite guests drops by to give practical advice on performing. Blair Packham – songwriter, teacher, performer and 80’s hitmaker – talks about the best practices to entertain and present your songs to an audience, live or on-line.

Blair also shows off his dulcimer, which is very impressive.

Blair is the host and co-creator of SongStudio, a week-long songwriting workshop which pairs emerging songwriters with industry-connected mentors. So he talks about the first virtual, on-line version of that too.


So… give it a listen.

Show date:  Jun. 07, 2020

Jesse, Mike, Phil, and Neel

This week we welcomed Kitchener, Ontario-based singer-songwriter and storyteller Jesse Parent to the show to talk about his COVID-19 pandemic inspired song, Learning to Live Apart.

We talked about:

  • Our new podcast format for 30 minute episodes
  • How valuable it is to play and study cover songs
  • Why you should record your ideas right away, even if it’s the middle of the night
  • Our episode on Songs that don’t change their chord progression
  • Emotional lyrics vs. sentimental lyrics
  • How to write lyrics with specifics without being too specific
  • How to spotlight the title in your song through melody and rhythm

Download the lyrics to Learning to Live Apart to follow along.