wikiHow to Write a Rock Song

One Methods:Sample Rock Song

There are many good rock songs out there. However, to write your own song playing the guitar, drums, bass, or singing is not enough. In fact, you can write a great rock song without even playing an instrument. Writing a rock song can be hard, but once you know what you are doing you'll find it gets easier. You just have to be inspired.


  1. 1
    There are many different types of rock songs, and it would be extremely hard to cover all of them on one page. However, most rock songs all break down to 4 parts: The Hook, The Melody, the Bridge, and The Chorus. (but there are so many other kinds of ways to set a rock song, so don't worry about it). But before you begin to record the song, before you begin to develop the song, before you begin writing the song, before you even have an idea, you must have inspiration. You can't force inspiration, it comes to you in the right moment. Like, you have just broke up with your girlfriend, or you've just have been kicked out of your school, so don't waste your time, this is the best moment, write down the first thing that comes in your brain, now you've got the idea. The idea is the very first part of everything. So, how do you get the idea? First, start thinking about the message and the mood the song will carry out. This doesn't have to be very detailed or anything, just a basic idea.
  2. 2
    Get a pen or pencil and a piece of paper to record your ideas. Start thinking about the hook. The hook is a sort of a sub-melody, a riff, something you can easily hum, or the part of the song that gets stuck in your head. The hook generally sets the mood for everything else. Keep the hook simple as it is not the main melody of the song. After thinking about how the hook should sound, start to actually write it. Rock music is generally based on the major/minor/power chords of two sets of chords: I, bIII, IV, V, bVII (In the key of E the bar chords begin on the frets: 0,3,5,7 and 10) or I, bIII, IV, bVI and bVII ( these are 0,3,5,8 and 10). The first set will give you a more "classic Rock" sound whereas the second set sounds more modern. Mess around with the chords from one of the sets above until you get something that works.
  3. 3
    Develop the main melody. The main melody usually appears in the verses of the song. It is usually played in an Intro and then sang as the vocals throughout the song. However, it's too early for the lyrics yet, so just think up a general melody. One thing you can do is record the hook and just jam to it until you find a clear melody that sounds good and goes well with the hook.
  4. 4
    Often melody starts with the same note as the "ground note" or root in the key chord, for example in D major it would be a d-note and in E minor an e-note. Then melody might lift up to third or fifth above, or drift to third or fifth below the note where it began from. (In key of D major, to f# or a and then down to B or G.) Usually a verse ends up returning to the same note as begun with or go one octave below.
  5. 5
    The two main components of a song are the verse and the chorus. Each time the verse is played the words differ, whereas the words for the chorus stay the same throughout. Verse pretty much follows the hook and the main melody. But the chorus should be catchier and more memorable than the verse.
  6. 6
    Think of a chord progression that is a little different from the hook and (possibly) in a different key. Then write the melody. Another thing to keep in mind is the transition from verse to chorus. A good idea would be to add a bridge. A bridge is like a verse but the music is different and it is only played once.
  7. 7
    Develop a background. Add a bassline (base it roughly around the chords used by the guitar), drums, and any other instruments you think are necessary. They should go along with the theme and the hook. Also, add any backing vocals. It is a good idea to work through this step parallel to the previous ones.
    • Now, it's time for the lyrics. The lyrics should relate to the mood and the message of your song. They are the part that speaks to people. Lyrics in the verse should be more like telling a story. Lyrics in the chorus, on the other hand, outline the main theme(s) of the song. Some rock lyrics will have a statement, some will have a suggestion, some will tell the story and some will just be gibberish. The lyrics that write a great song are the lyrics that a crowd can sing along to.
  8. 8
    You should now be able to write your solo. Solo is usually played on a guitar, however there are no limitations. Solo should be like the verse, chorus, or both, except instead of the lyrics the guitar (or another solo instrument) is playing the melody. Note, though, the solo instrument should not be playing the main, secondary, or any other melody used previously in the song. Good solo-writing technique is simply improvising. if you are a beginner solo-er, then a great rock solo would be playing the pentatonic scale.
  9. 9
    Put them all together. Most rock songs are organized in this manner: Intro, Verse 1, Chorus, Verse 2, Chorus, Chorus (repeated), Solo. Some songs have another part after the solo: The Outro. There also might be another verse somewhere inside the song. But as a beginner, you should stick to the general structure and then, as you gain more experience, develop your own. Get a piece of paper and write all of these down. Insert parts of the song in appropriate places.
  10. 10
    Organize a band. Start practicing the song. Then you might want to put ads somewhere to get some members. During the practicing time, you may make some final changes to the hook, melody, and any other part of the song. Then, you are ready to record.
  11. 11
    Get some good recording equipment and record the song. (Pawn shops or music stores usually have all you need.)
  12. 12
    Show your song to your friends and family. You want to have other opinions other than your own. Then make necessary changes according to feedback you got.
  13. 13
    You can now burn the song to a CD and release it to public, or write more songs and produce an album.

Sample Rock Song

Sample Rock Song


  • Make sure you enjoy the music you are writing, if you don't, there will be less inspiration and you will hate playing it.
  • Experiment. As you gain more experience, you can make changes to the general structure and even make up your own.
  • Be real. Rock is about passion, emotion, and power. Write about whatever you want. The more real, the better the song is.
  • If you think of something catchy in your head write it down or you will probably forget
  • Always be yourself. Write about your emotions or personal experiences, or the experiences of people close to you. People want to hear about stuff that is personal and true. If something is fake they can tell almost immediately. Any experience that effects you and/or changes your life, for better or worse, is something that others can relate to and something that they will enjoy.
  • Relax and get in a comfortable spot to think.
  • The lyrics don't have to rhyme.
  • As you write, try to keep the same theme. Don't be too complex with your lyrics.
  • Remember to copyright your songs before you sell them.
  • When writing instrumental parts, try having the guitar and the bass playing in a different rhythm. This makes the song sound more complex; like you put some thought into it.
  • Try to get some inspiration from other bands or other songs, but do not copy/parody their songs.
  • If you have to, walk around for a while and think of a couple things you may want to write about.
  • If you've come up with a bit of a song but have to leave record it on your phone so you don't forget it.
  • It's easier to compose a rock song when you know how to play an instrument.
  • It's easier to write the lyrics when you have the guitar part done.


  • Don't make it too repetitive otherwise people will get bored with the song.
  • Make sure the song is okay with the band before you set it in stone. Your band will get angry if you start to become independent.
  • As a beginner, keep your songs under 3 minutes as it gets a little boring after that. However, as you gain more experience, you can write much longer songs that are not boring at all.
  • Obviously, don't copy other existing songs/melodies because you will get in trouble eventually and sound very fake. Try to be original (You can borrow and alter bits and bobs, like guitar effects, vocal styles, a few chords here and there, words you admire, etc. But not whole chunks and riffs.). It sounds terrible to completely rip someone else off, unless you're in a cover or tribute band.
  • Don`t argue with the crew/band. Let everyone have a turn to voice their opinions.
  • Don't try it so hard, if the song doesn't come to you, so go to the pub, have a beer, or just call a friend and it will come easier in your mind.
  • Don't make it hurtful

Things You'll Need

  • Pen/pencil or computer
  • Paper
  • inspiration
  • Instruments
  • A reason
  • A message
  • passion for your music

Article Info

Categories: Songs and Song Writing