Al Joseph: Masterclass Q&A
Think of songwriting greats and the likes of Ray Davies, James Hetfield or Stevie Wonder might spring to mind. Artists with an inert gift, backed up by years of practice and an approach that allows them to squeeze every last drop out of the most basic idea.
It’s a hard task to write a track that lasts the ages, but Al Joseph’s Ultimate Songwriting Masterclass will give you the tools to get started.
We caught up with Al to find out the backstory behind this monster release.
Q: What was the inspiration behind this Masterclass?
I’d been getting a lot of questions over the years about writing music and melody seemed to be the foremost important aspect. There is a need in the guitar community to refine the way we play and write melodies, so I’m happy to finally offer a guide.
Q: It’s a very big release, how long did it take to put together?
Well I had to write the song first so we’re talking two weeks for that plus another two to then make a tutorial out of it. So give or take, around a month.
Q: What is your favourite part of it?
My favorite part was definitely breaking down the melodies in separate dynamics for the player to play. I’ve created different licks and phrases to help the player understand more deeply how I construct the lines for all my songs. This should be an eye-opening experience to say the least.
Q: What’s the best method for taking on this pack?
Patience. You definitely need to time to absorb this pack all the way through. My hope is that the player truly learns how to control their dynamics and their sound. I also hope that they learn the various mechanics of melodies so that they can replicate the true sound of a professional guitarist.
Q: Is there a type of player you’ve aimed this release at?
This Masterclass is for all players. Doesn’t matter whether you’re a beginner, intermediate, or advanced player. You’re never too good to improve on your time feel, dynamics, and analysis of music. It’s a constant journey.
Q: Did you write ‘Surgeon General’ with the Masterclass in mind, or was it a more organic process?
I’d say both. I plan to release this single soon in its original key (D major). However, I retracted it in the key of E minor so six-string players can get a clear chance to breakdown the song within the package.
Q: If there is one person YOU would like to learn from when it comes to songwriting, who would it be and why?
I’ve been listening to a lot of “Tears For Fears” these days. The production and songwriting is just so innovative. It would be nice to learn how to craft a classic tune that lasts a lifetime like they have!
Before you go…
A huge thanks to Al for giving us an insight into his amazing new release. We're always looking to hear from our community, so if you want to find out more or have feedback on this release, get in touch.
Here's the full track "Surgeon General", enjoy!