Songwriting 101


Instructor: Jared Fiske
Tuesdays, 6 to 7:30 pm, 9 classes 
Members $165 | Non-Members $175
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August 1st, to September 5th
Tuesdays, 6 to 7:30 pm
6 classes
Members $157 | Non-Members $175

Instructor: Jared Fiske

Most of us have been tempted to try our hand at songwriting. Some of us may have even taken a stab at it! If you’re own of those people, chances are you’ve found there are some stumbling blocks that can be difficult to get past without a little guidance.

Questions like: What kind of structure should my song have? How many verses? What makes a good chorus? What chord should come after a G7? Without a structure to fall back on, the sheer volume of choices can be overwhelming. In this class, we will learn many of the songwriting conventions that have governed the popular music of the last century.

We will cover song structure, rhyme schemes, chord selection, lyric writing, and how to get the most out of inspiration when it strikes. But it’s important to note that songwriting is a creative form, and one of the benefits of learning the “rules” is that when you understand the reasons behind songwriting conventions, you know when it’s a good idea to throw them out the window! This class is bound to be lots of fun. This is going to be a relaxed class with an emphasis on writing for the sheer enjoyment of it, and I encourage students to bring a handheld instrument such as a guitar or small keyboard as there will be plenty of hands-on work alongside the theory.


About Jared:

Jared Fiske is a performing musician out of central MA.
He has been performing professionally for 20+ years.
Fiske is best known for his work as a solo performer
and songwriter, and as a member of the popular
Americana/rock outfit “The Casters”. He also performs
in an acoustic duo with his wife, Jessica, under the
pseudonym “Never Say Never”. He was also a member
of the (now defunct) folk-pop duo “Fiske and Herrera”,
who recorded and toured throughout the country from

Fiske’s original song “Choice” was selected for use in a
short film by the non-profit organization
He also co-wrote the song “On a Monday” which
received the $5,000 grand prize award
at for best song in 2009. His music has
been described as “Alluring and beautiful” by Tim
Harrington of the band Tall Heights, and Worcester
Magazine said of his most recent album “We’re Already
Gone” that “there’s really no way to prepare oneself for
how achingly beautiful and melancholy Jared Fiske’s
new album is.” (Victor Infante).
Fiske runs a small home studio, “Foundation Studios”,
and has produced and/or engineered albums for many
prominent musicians including Tall Heights, Dave Dersham,
and many of Fiske’s own solo and group recording
Hailing from an artistic family, Fiske began performing
in musical groups with his father, Rob Adams, and
brother Seth at a young age. “It was the best possible
way to learn,” recalls Fiske. “You really had to sink or
swim and get over the stage fright in a hurry.”

You can catch Jared performing at bars, coffeehouses
and festivals throughout Massachusetts.
You can find Fiske’s latest solo LP, “We’re Already Gone”
and The Casters album “Shave Your Soul” on Spotify,
iTunes, CDBaby and Bandcamp.
Praise for “We’re Already Gone”. (the new solo record by Jared Fiske)
“Alluring and beautiful…songwriting is everything, and Jared Fiske is making
beautiful songs!”
-Tim Harrington (of Tall Heights)
There’s really no way to prepare one’s self for how achingly beautiful and
melancholy Jared Fiske’s new album, “We’re Already Gone,” is.
-Victor Infante, Worcester Magazine
“Jared Fiske’s new album We’re Already Gone brings to mind one of those sealed
glass terrariums—tiny glass vessels with plants, soil, and water that are simple yet
self-sustaining worlds unto themselves…Listen to this one with headphones and
you can thank me later.”
-Mark Erelli
“A common thread binds the blend of sound that ranges from indie-pop to classic
country: The compositions speak to the heart, and take listeners along for the
-Eric Troy, Quaboag Current (cover story)