Tuesday, November 18, 2014

The Establishing Lyric

by Gary Fearon

Frequent establishing shot from TV's Seinfeld
At the beginning of any story, the first thing the audience wants to know is what's going on.  Those first few sentences have a duty to satisfy that curiosity by identifying some sense of who, what, when and where. In a song or poem, where much has to be conveyed in even fewer words, it's especially appreciated when the scene is set up front.

Just like the establishing shot in a movie, a good opening lyric gives the listener an instant understanding of the current state of affairs so that they feel caught up on whatever they need to know to jump right in with us...

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