"I want to introduce you to a songwriter in our community who has been a real bright spark of positivity and encouragement to myself and many others in the group. I appreciate her willingness to share her songwriting process and find ways to build up the people around her." - Rigel, our community founder.
Mandy J is from the sunny southeast of Ireland.
What do you do during the day?
During the day I am super mum, full time mother to three wonderful children. I am also studying to be a mindfulness life coach. I continue to write and practice already written songs for my up and coming album. Busy schedule, just the way I like it.
What Day of 100 is your piece from?
This RAW piece is from day 89 of 100 days of songwriting and this is the first take. I do want to work more on this song to wrap it up.
We've been doing this for some time, baby
And tonight your love lights mine,
Oh when your calling out my name
I know I hear yeah ,
I know I feel yeah,
I know I want you yeah
Tonight Im catching feelings
Got me calling, your name
Baby I don't need yeah
But I want you, all the same
You know I see yea
You know I feel yeah
You know you keep coming back for more
You know I'm catching
Do you have any guilty pleasures in music?
What is it that makes a guilty pleasure? It is hard to say because one mans pleasure is another mans pain, right. To tell the truth I have a lots of guilty pleasures in music, when they pop up on the radio like, Cyndi Laupers hit song Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, Journey's Don't Stop Believin, Cringe I know but I love it. The classic from dirty dancing by Bill Medley & Jennifer Warnes I've Had (The time of my life). The gambler by Kenny Rodgers, Dirty Old town by our Irish Legends the dubliners sang by the amazing Luke Kelly & Whitney Houstons how will I know just to name a few.
What inspired you to want to write songs?
That is a really good question. I come from a musical family and I have been playing music and writing songs and poems since my teenage years. What inspired me was when other people, friends and family and acquaintances have heard one of my original songs and ask me to play them at a functions. It was very early days then, and in 2014 I decided I was tired of singing covers and wanted to do a song writing course to gain a professional approach. This is what I achieved and since then I have been writing and in pre production for my up coming album.
What does your songwriting habit look like?
My Song writing habit is to free write every day for ten minutes to keep to flow going. When I write a song hook pick a title or have an idea I tell myself I am going to write this song now and I will do it. I will do a re-write the next day. Then, I will take a break after a lot of habitual work and do nothing, leaving time to reflect and practice. Then the creative process start all over again. It comes in bursts for me.
How has developing a songwriting practice effected your life?
It did for a while until I found a balance. Even then my most creative time is early hours of the morning while all the world sleeps and the kids are in bed. I quietly practice already written songs, or come up with a new song to write when I feel the urge. That effects me then as I'm tired the next day. These are the joys of a creative I guess.
Who are your influences? How have they shaped you?
Artists I grew up listening to as a teenager, friends and their stories, my own life stories all inspire me to write my songs. However my children are my main inspiration for my creativity. When you hear your teenage daughter singing one of your original songs, at the top of her lungs in the shower, thats inspiration at its best. Or when my three year old carries my guitar over to me asking me to sing. It fills up my creative love cup driving me to create more songs.
What challenge are you facing with songwriting?
I don't feel I have any challenges with songwriting, thankfully. It has taken a lot of writing and practice to be in this space.
Check out Mandy J’s music page here: