melody

Neel, Phil, Lexie, and Jordana

Voices Only with Jordana Talsky

We have a fascinating show this episode with our special guest, Jordana Talsky. Jordana is a singer, songwriter and vocal looper who fuses multi-genre influences into her own sound. She accompanies herself by voice with a Roland Boss RC505 loop station. Her ethos is to incorporate digital means into live performance in an organic way, …

Read more

Mike, Neel, and Phil

Music – the International Language

This week SongTalk tried something a little different. We brought in some our favourite songs sung in a different language than English. They say music is the international language so we thought we would put that to the test. Phil, Neel and Mike each presented three songs in a language other than English and we …

Read more

Mike, Neel, Phil, and Bradley

From Classical to Personal with Bradley McCaw

Bradley McCaw is an award-winning singer/songwriter. His career started with him singing classical music and touring internationally with the group THE TEN TENORS. A native of Australia, Bradley spent fifteen long years making good in every job a musician and writer could possibly have, ending his day with a stack of old vinyls by his …

Read more

Neel, Mike, and Phil

Hit Songs with Unconventional Structures

  People think that pop songs have a standard structure – verse, chorus, verse, chorus, bridge, chorus –  and many do. Mostly because that familiarity works. But some hit songs challenge convention, they chart their own path to great success. So this episode we thought we would find some recent songs that go against the …

Read more

Neel, Mike, Phil, and Christopher

How To Write A #1 Hit with Christopher Ward

Very excited to have the Juno-award winning songwriter, author of an international #1 hit song and the very first MuchMusic VJ join us on SongTalk. Christopher Ward has done all that and more. In our recent interview, Chris talked about his new release Same River Twice, its unique recording process and why he wanted to …

Read more

Neel, Mike, Phil, and Matt

Challenging the Tyranny of 440 hz

This week SongTalk resolved the controversy over standardized tuning to 440 hz! Okay maybe we didn’t resolve anything. But we did invite our good friend and frequent guest Matthew Reid to discuss the origins of the standard tuning setting plus the pros and cons of having a standardized tuning set at 440 hz rather than …

Read more

Mike, Don, Phil, and Neel

Home Recording and Digital Audio Workstations – Part 1

This week SongTalk dives into how to best use DAWs or Digital Audio workstations. Home recording is booming and it’s not just because of Covid. Musicians have long been using different software at home to do what used to cost thousands of dollars in a professional recording studio. How do make the most of your …

Read more

Mike, Mikalyn, Neel, and Phil

Mikalyn – Getting started early with songwriting

Impressive new talent Mikalyn stopped by to talk about starting off early, collaboration and songwriting. We talked about: Phil bought a drum kit The Songwriting Challenge – stuff still coming in The Songwriters Association of Canada The New York Times: Now, THAT’s what I call a Bridge! Instagram: @mikalynmusic Twitter: @MikalynMusic Website: http://www.mikalynmusic.com YouTube: Mikalyn …

Read more

Phil, Neel, Mike, and John

Tomato Tomato and How Writing Simple Songs Can Be Complicated

This week SongTalk welcomed John from Tomato Tomato to our virtual studio. They just might be Atlantic Canada’s most entertaining musical duo. The New Brunswick based pair – John and Lisa McLaggan – have built a reputation on a live show that is as much about their on-stage charisma as their musical multi-tasking and vocal …

Read more

Mike, Phil, Neel, Brendan, and Adrian

New Life to Old Songs with The Fugitives

This week SongTalk welcomed Brendan and Adrian from The Fugitives to our studio. The Fugitives are a folk collective headed by songwriters Adrian Glynn and Brendan McLeod. They’re joined by banjo player Chris Suen (Viper Central) and violinist Carly Frey (The Coal Porters). Over the past twelve years, they’ve earned a reputation for unforgettable live …

Read more

Neel, Mike, Phil, and Jay

Making Your Influences Your Own with Jay Gordon Wright

This week SongTalk welcomed Jay Gordon Wright to our show. Jay a multi-instrumentalist songwriter and performer who has entertained audiences around the world. He is classically trained on violin, and has expanded his musical toolshed to include just about every instrument he can get his hands on. Writing songs at the piano or with a …

Read more

Neel, Phil, and Mark

Writing Songs For A Living with Mark Cawley

This week SongTalk welcomed Mark Cawley to our (virtual) studio. Mark Cawley is a hit songwriter, best selling author, in demand speaker, songwriting coach, and popular blogger. As a songwriter his songs have been on more than 16 million records to date – with a long list of cuts with legendary artists ranging from Tina …

Read more

Neel, Phil, Mike, and Melanie

Writing From The Heart with Melanie Peterson

BBC Radio has called Melanie, “Mary Poppins with a broken heart” and that is just part of her appeal. Besides her beautiful voice, Melanie is a terrific songwriter with lots of great songs to prove it. Her tune “Christmas Breaks My Heart” was a finalist in the Great American Songwriting Contest. And now Melanie has …

Read more

Mike, Neel, Phil, and Dokter Nomi

How To Write Songs (if you don’t play an instrument)

This week SongTalk welcomed Doktor Nomi to our studio. Admittedly Nomi is not a real doctor but he does have a unique and interesting way of creating music. As a topliner and lyricist, Nomi frequently works with other collaborators to create his music. Most recently, he and SongTalk’s own Neel Modi have been working together …

Read more

Neel, Phil, and Mike

Our Listeners’ Songs – what you are writing

This week SongTalk featured a few songs from our listeners. And it was loads of fun. We chose three of our listeners’ songs to take a closer listen to. Stuart Cook – near Manchester, England penned a delightful song inspired by the view from a hill near his home. Earthbound, his song has a traditional …

Read more

Neel, Mike, Vanessa, and Phil

Remembering John Prine

On this episode we are talking about the great John Prine. This American treasure, perhaps a modern day Mark Twain, a peerless songwriter and chronicler of the lives of regular folk sadly passed away recently – one of the many victims of the Covid 19 pandemic. Since his death, many of todays music’s stars have …

Read more

Neel, Mike, and Phil

The Best Songs Have Only 3 chords

This week on SongTalk we look at a simple songwriting technique that may be more complicated than you think – songs with one chord progression. That’s right, no guest this week just the SongTalk team – Phil, Neel and Mike – talking about the ways songs with just one series of chords repeated over and …

Read more

Don, Neel, Donna, Matt, and Phil

Donna Linklater: Songwriting and Composition, What’s The Difference?

This week SongTalk welcomed Donna Linklater to our studio. Soprano and composer/songwriter Donna Linklater studied opera with Sylvia Richardson at Brandon University. Toward the end of her studies, she began to focus on new music and was especially taken with the aleatoric music of John Cage which gave her greater freedom of creative expression. Her …

Read more

Neel, Mike, Blair, Don, and Phil

Keeping It Real with Blair Packham

This week SongTalk welcomed our old friend Blair Packham to our studio. The Toronto-based artist, first gained attention for his work with ’80’s power pop band The Jitters. He is now an acclaimed solo artist and musician. Blair released two strongly-reviewed solo albums before shifting his focus to composing music for TV and films, teaching …

Read more

The Hosts Take on Their First Songwriting Challenge

About three months ago, we asked our listeners to suggest a songwriting challenge or prompt for us to explore. Organizations like the Toronto Songwriting Association often prompt their members with challenges such as “Take a cliche and turn it on its head”, or “Write a song about a home appliance.” Singer-songwriter and former Song Talk …

Read more

Neel, Ritah, Mike, Lexi, Jon, Don, and Phil

How Featurette add emotion to Electro-Pop

This week SongTalk welcomed FEATURETTE to our studio. The Toronto-based duo FEATURETTE, formed by singer Lexie Jay and drummer, Jon Fedorsen, makes emotionally-charged, heavy-hitting electro-pop music that has been met with international critical acclaim. After receiving their first full recording grant from FACTOR Canada, the duo released their debut LP CRAVE in October, 2016. The …

Read more

Mike, Neel, Don, Vanessa, and Phil

It’s a Christmas Extravaganza!

  This week SongTalk welcomes… Christmas into our studio. For our Xmas Eve show, we all brought in our favourite Christmas songs and had a good chat about what makes them so great. Featuring some classics and some new songs that you may not have heard before. So pour yourself some Rum and Eggnog or …

Read more