CCOG for MUC 166 Spring 2024

Course Number:
MUC 166
Course Title:
Songwriting and Music Publishing
Credit Hours:
Lecture Hours:
Lecture/Lab Hours:
Lab Hours:

Course Description

Covers the basic forms of popular music songwriting. Includes the opportunity to create songs, individually and in collaboration with others. Includes the business aspects of music publishing and how they affect the songwriter. May be taken three times for credit. Audit available.

Intended Outcomes for the course

Students will:

  • Apply knowledge of genres (e.g. country, rap, hard rock), forms (e.g. verses, choruses, bridges) and aspects of a song (e.g. hooks and pre-hooks) to create and modify contemporary songs.
  • Engage in the songwriting process from creation of a first draft through revision and preparation for a demo recording.
  • Apply knowledge of various royalties that songwriters may earn through recordings, radio and television airplay, printed music and the use of songs in plays, film, and television to market songs effectively.
  • Distinguish between using a music publisher, self-publishing, and co-publishing to make an informed choice regarding song publication.
  • Compare and contrast the various performing rights organizations to maximize financial return for the songwriter and music publisher.
  • Use appropriate procedures to submit a song for publication and performing rights.

Course Activities and Design

  • Examining the words and music of songs by other writers, and analyzing the student’s own songs.
  • Recording at least one song, evaluating songs by other students.
  • Playing recordings of songs, and explaining the structure of these songs.
  • Collaborating with another student on at least one song.
  • Examining actual music publishing and performance rights contracts and go through the application process.

Outcome Assessment Strategies

Students will:

  • Present their songs to the class for critique.
  • Students will analyze their own songs.
  • Students will record at least one song.
  • Provide a rationale for choosing a publishing option and performing rights organization.

Course Content (Themes, Concepts, Issues and Skills)

  • Writing and re-writing songs.
  • Examining royalty and performing rights agreements in song contracts.
  • Evaluating existing songs by listening to recordings and examining lyrics.
  • Develop the ability to distinguish between verses, choruses, bridges, and refrains.
  • Understand the differences in popular songs in various styles (e.g a country vs. a rap song or a hard rock song.)