The working relationship of two novice songwriters is examined in this ethnographic study, which highlights the importance of common goals and values in a songwriting collaboration. Stemming from this core there are a number of sub-themes: the pair saw a popular song as consisting of melody, harmony, and lyrics; they played on the strengths and offset the weaknesses of each others songwriting skills; both writers valued originality; and they believed songwriting had a mystical element to it. Finally, it will be shown how conflict in their status as writing partners resulted in the demise of the collaboration. The difficulty of being a participant observer researcher when only two people are being observed is also discussed.


Songwriting, Partnership, Ethnography, and Popular Music

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
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