Check out this awesome John Braheny interview with Dianne Warren. This interview is especially interesting because at the time, Warren had just experienced her first few hits after years of persistence. She started receiving song critiques at 15 in 1971. Do the math: that’s over 15 years spent honing her skills. Read this if you feel disappointed that you’re still “not there yet” after one year with Taxi. By the way, she is a very shy person who does her own song pitching and publishing. We have no excuse! I remember reading in Jason Blume’s book that he had a similar learning period.
Another very interesting fact is that she started on guitar before switching to keyboards. Personally, my own songwriting improved ten-fold once I switched to keyboards. It’s just a better instrument for writing and arranging songs. I can always go back to the guitar for actual recording, but for initial arrangement, nothing beats a keyboard.
Lastly, both Dianne Warren and Jason Blume are musically self-taught, which I find quite interesting. I mean, in all their years songwriting, they have not managed to learn to read or write music notation? Instead they focused on learning how to turn the ideas in their heads into finished songs. Very wise