It takes a unique idea and a unique angle on that idea to get attention for your song. Here are some questions to ask yourself to see if you have a unique song idea:
1) Have I heard this before?
If I’m already aware of another song or songs with the same title, I usually don’t write it. You can’t copyright a title, but I’d rather spend my time on something fresh. Sometimes I search for my title on ASCAP and BMI’s web sites. If there aren’t many songs by that title, I know I have something unique. If there are NO songs by that title, then I have something REALLY unique! If there are already 500 songs with my title, then I usually move on unless I have a really unique angle on that idea.
2) Why should someone care about this title?
What is the power in this idea? Will it make the listener laugh, cry, dance, etc? If not, it’s probably not unique enough. A great idea is one that moves people when they hear it. It causes some sort of reaction in the listener because it has power and passion behind it. Writing about things YOU care about increases the likelihood that the listener will care as well.
3) Will this title grab the attention of an A&R person or an artist that is listening through thousands of songs?
If they have hundreds of CDs on their desk, will YOUR title get their attention over the others? If you have a song with the title “Concrete Trampoline” (yes, I wrote that), it’s likely to get a listen before one called “I Love You”. Ideally, you want to have a title that makes people go “I HAVE to hear that one!!” Ordinary is the enemy in songwriting! People want to hear something fresh and new.
Before you write, ask yourself those 3 questions and try to only write the most unique, best ideas you have!