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(Credit: Andy Witchger)

Music

Fleet Foxes’ Robin Pecknold to host an online songwriting workshop

Fleet Foxes frontman Robin Pecknold will be hosting a revealing online songwriting workshop. In collaboration with the LA music education service, School Of Song, Pecknold’s course will take place over four weeks.

Lectures are scheduled for every Sunday between January 16th and February 6th, 2022, and there will be two lecture sessions on each day to allow people from different parts of the globe to access the course. A statement on the School Of Song website explains: “Each week will include a homework assignment to write a song using the techniques discussed in the lecture.” 

In addition to the teaching, after each lecture, Pecknold will host a Q&A with students. Each week of the course will focus on a different part of the songwriting process. The first, will discuss the “full life-cycle of a song’s creation” and teach “how to come up with musical and lyrical ideas, achieving consistency by establishing a musical vision early on, and understanding the many different hats we have to wear as songwriters”.

The second is all about melody and lyrics. It explains: “Various means of melodic development, the importance of rhythm to memorability, interval relationships, utilising extensions and common tones, and techniques for writing melodies that accommodate harmonisation”.

The third instalment is focused on “utilising musical ‘technologies’ for defamiliarisation”. During this lesson, Pecknold will “discuss the difference between songcraft and the employment of these novel technologies, and the importance of both to the creative process”.

The final lesson concerns itself with the rather abstract question, “How can we best rise to the occasion of maintaining a listener’s attention?” – A typically Pecknold question, this is sure to be a genius instalment.

Pecknold and School Of Song have been clear that they want musicians of every background to enrol, be it the inexperienced or the veteran, and maintain that “people across all musical levels will be able to gain something from the course”. However, their one proviso is that students should “be comfortable playing a few basic chords on any instrument of your choice”.

2021 has been a busy year for Pecknold. Back in June, it was announced that he had teamed up with Aaron Dessner and Justin Vernon of Big Red Machine for their new album How Long Do You Think It’s Gonna Last? The Fleet Foxes frontman appeared on the track ‘Phoenix’.

Listen to ‘Phoenix’ below.