She Shoots, She Scores, She Sings

Think R&B and Pop. Think Keshia Chante.

Her song Shooting Star is lifting rising in popularity alongside its uplifting lyrics, beat, and spirit.

This is christyb, I own a thesaurus. And I watch YouTube.

The Video

The video starts by flashing the name of the artist, then song title, followed by the director’s name. I liken these tags of ownership to published poems.

The title fills the lead role at the top of the poem and the author’s name is often attached below. The poet attaches ownership to the poem by including his or her name. For a music video such as that of Keshia Chante, she and the director are given credit.

Wait.

Who wrote the song lyrics? Why are they not mentioned in the video or given credit here? Had this been a poem, the author would likely be sited upfront. Why not for a music video? Let me grab a peanut-butter cookie and think this over.

On second thought, you continue to read while I grab another cookie. Sugar helps me think more clearly.

And listen to the words of the song.

Lines include “I’m going to break the mold” and “I’m invincible.” Note, there is no mention of love or a relationship.

Pause.

Consider this. How many songs today are based on being in love? Breaking up? Being cheated on?

Shooting Star focuses on the “I” in the song rather than the “he and I” or “she and I”. The song is about being powerful and independent, aside from any relationship.

“No turning back.”

Don’t look back, don’t question the path of independence you are on. Go with your instincts. And move forward like a shooting star.

There is hope, promise, and motivation.

This is christyb, I’m flipping through my Thesaurus.

Do you think the person who writes the lyrics should be given credit in the music video? Who else should be mentioned?

Better yet, do you own a Thesaurus I can borrow? Mine is a little tattered.

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21 thoughts on “She Shoots, She Scores, She Sings

  1. Matthew Abuelo

    Hey Christy:

    I’m said to say that the reason that the people who write lyrics don’t receive credit is because they under contracts similar to those of ghost writers. You’ll get paid but not the credit unless you were Isaac Hayes. That is the nature of the music industry these days. There are many great independent labels to choose from however, including, killrockstars.com or http://www.righteousbabe.com/ani/

    Take care

    Matt

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    1. christyb Post author

      Hi Matt,
      Nice to see you here! I enjoyed the link you posted. Yes without the famous name it is a long shot to be mentioned for lyric writing. I like your comparison to ghost writing, very perceptive.

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  2. Cassie (@cassiedash)

    Actually, the songwriters do get credit even if not listed in the actual video, they are listed as songwriters on her album. And, they’re are also featured in the BTS footage of the video as well on Keshia’s YouTube page so even though their name in plastered on the video, they still got their deserved recognition. 🙂

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    1. christyb Post author

      Thanks Cassie for the information. I thought it interesting that the songwriter did not get mentioned in the same way the artist and director of the video did, at the beginning of the video. I am now following you on Twitter by the way.

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  3. simon7banks

    “She shoots, she scores, she sings” – she is a panda? (“Panda: eats, shoots and leaves”)

    Going with your instincts is fine if your instincts are good.

    Shooting stars are small rocky bodies which burn up in the earth’s atmosphere. Alternatively, they don’t burn up entirely and they cause massive destruction.

    Third alternative: shooting stars is illegal except in self-defence.

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    1. christyb Post author

      Haha I used my thesaurus for my post while you supply the dictionary in your comment here! We are a good pair Simon. Good point about instincts, perhaps asking another person for advice should be added to ‘go with your instincts.’

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  4. Marc Phillippe Babineau

    Great post! Sounds like an ode to Kate Smith, she of the infamous hockey anthems, and the origin of “It’s not over ’till the fat lady sings”. However, I do like the thought of being able to line up the Hollywood stars that you dislike the most and shooting them!

    Music videos used to be original and watchable, now they’re just part of the singer’s contract. Maybe the writers of many of the songs that make it to the videos would rather not be associated with those singers? I’m sure there are more than a few occasions where that would be a viable observation.

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    1. christyb Post author

      MB you make me laugh! Keshia sings of Shooting Stars not Shooting Celebrities as you suggest. No I know you are joking, but I had to comment. Yes perhaps there are times a director would rather NOT be mentioned in the credits, you are bringing up a valid point my friend.

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  5. Julie Catherine

    Christy, I think I like these responses as much as your post, lol. My nephew, Dan Scruton, is a singer/songwriter – he writes his own songs, and is now working (I believe) on his second CD and also creates his own music videos. He’s still very early in his music career, but can I say how proud of him I am? His songwriting absolutely amazes me – he’s a ‘poetic musician’ in my eyes! ~ Julie 🙂 http://www.reverbnation.com/danscruton

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    1. christyb Post author

      Julie, dang your nephew has talent! He now has another ‘Facebook like’ thanks to the great video I watched on the website. Lyrics are like the words in poems, I think they are similar which is why I am hoping the music section here works. Nice to see your face here today!

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  6. Keri Jaehnig (@connectyou)

    Christy,

    Thank you for inviting me to read.

    Your creativity in presenting a review is great.

    At the same time…

    This song/video does not resonate with me. When I think shooting star, I’m not thinking “confined in an empty garage with scaffolding.” Does the songwriter want credit?

    it is mentioned above – The songwriters are given credit. On the albums and anywhere it is presented in tech/hard form. At the YouTube channel, it is probably noted there somehow. Artist agreements usually stick.

    But I’ll give ya one. It is considered proper etiquette to give credit to someone we get info from in a tweet. I suppose we could note the songwriter in a video.

    Shooting stars and daylight,

    ~Keri

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    1. christyb Post author

      Keri, Thanks for taking the time to stop by and look at my post. A few people have commented that the songwriter may not want to be disclosed, I supposed personal taste would be the deciding factor. You are quite right that the details would be ironed out in a contract. Keep shooting for the starts Keri!

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  7. Paul B

    Of course lyricists should (and often do) get credited and paid on a royalty basis for songs they write. Most will prob have started off on a buy out, like session musicians, but if they get a reputation they will get publishing deals.

    I write lyrics for an as yet unsigned singer / musician. The writing credits are 50/50. the performing credit would be obviously heavily weighted in his favour as he is the one who goes out and plays the songs. But without either part there is no song. I believe the current rate to lyrcicists for their songs being sung is sometihng like 2%. Whereas a genunie collaboration would garner 50% writing credit. For the song being using in a video, a promotional tool, it may be that no-one gets paid any extra.

    I wouldn’t personally liken lyricsists to ghost writers because they genrally operate under their own name and there is no ‘deception’ involved. ie the purpose of ghost writers is to provide the content which is sold under a more marketable name.

    Bernie Taupin, lyricist for Elton John, has made a fortune. And neither he nor Elton would have been as successful without the other. Music writing and lyric writing are two distinct skills. Neither is more important than the other. Elton John would not be selling out arenas doing instrumental shows. Taupin wouldn’t be making money writing poetry. Together they make something greater than the sum of their parts.

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    1. christyb Post author

      Hi Paul! Aha you said you would be stopping by and you are a man of your word. I like that! I also like the idea of collaboration between one lyricist and one singer; the two get to know one another’s habits and preferences. The result as you say is superior to their individual actions. What type of music are the songs that you write? I wish you success!

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      1. Paul B

        thank you 🙂 I play guitar so tend to play something basic as I’m writing, or someitmes just write lyrics with no music at all. Then email them to my writing partner (confusingly also called Paul!) he plays piano and he constructs the melody etc. and brigns me back a song. Sometimes there is a big of to-ing and fro-ing like ‘can you change this line, it doesn’t scan’ or write an extra verse etc but it goes pretty well in general. We are both massive Elton John fans so I guess we aim to be like that – only with less strange clothing haha

        It is true that the more you write with a person you get to know teh sort of things they will be able to write to. Lyrcially he knows piano ballads are my strong point so he will send me a melody sometimes and say ‘there you go, put words to that’.

        Elton John tells a story of how ‘Rocket Man’ was written. Apparently during the perios when Elton was heavily into drugs and was generally very unhappy, Bernie Taupin had been to see him and as he was driving home a line kept popping into his head ‘She pakced my bags last night, pre – flight / zero hour, 9 a.m.’ and he wrote the song from Elton’s POV. you’ve got to really know then well to get inside their head. That is why as a rule ‘lyrcists for rent’ who write to order tend to write much less personal stuff. I am lucky to have found a musician who values a good lyric too because I couldn’t do it without him. He could write songs without me, because he does, but he would admit that my lyrics are generally better than his, as his mucis is mile better than mine. So why not share the work and make it better?

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        1. Paul B

          And here is a beautiful version of teh finished product from the Red Piano Las Vegas show. always gives me goosebumps when I see him live and he does this.

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  8. christyb Post author

    Ooooh I am a big Elton John fan. Think about the lengthy periods he was on drugs and how possibly that helped him be more creative. But as for his clothing choices…? Enough said. I like your description of the song-writing process. I hope you and Paul (the other one hehe) are successful in your venture. Keep me posted on the process, I will live vicariously through your rock star lives!

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