The Argotist Online
Do you think of your lyrics as poetry?
Yes I do. Especially when I see them written down. I donít know how they would
work as spoken poetry, but they might hold their own.
Do you think it is important that songs rhyme and if so why?
I have to say yes, I think it is important to me, but I know not everyone will
agree. I find it more comfortable listening to songs that rhyme, and there is
also a feeling of, (for want of a better word) closure at the end of a phase or
verse, as if to say, that was one thing, now hereís another. I donít mind in
spoken poetry though, I seem not to have the same need to hear rhymes, donít
really know why that is.
Do you think song lyrics must conform to recognised song structures such as
clear rhyming schemes, choruses, refrains, hooks and bridges or that songs can
also be like free verse?
Surely itís up to the individual. I donít think song lyrics ďmustĒ be
any specific way. I always write in the choruses and refrains style, but I never
ever have middle 8s, for some reason they just annoy me. I tend to just have the
verse-chorus rule for myself, but every one is different, there are only rules
set my individuals.
you read poetry in school or elsewhere did you recognize any connection to the
music you enjoyed?
I recognised it when reading Shakespeare at school, the way a story is told
using rhythm and rhyme.
Was there anything about poetry in books that influenced your
Well I see all songs as poetry, and I have lots of old ballad books which I look
through to find songs to sing. And I am heavily influenced by traditional song,
so therefore poetry in books has been a huge influence.
Why do you think songs are more popular with people than poetry is?
Ha Ha, they just donít realise that all songs are poetry. As for spoken poetry
being not as popular, oh tough question, and I donít think I have an answer.
Perhaps itís to do with greater coverage in the media of songs rather than
spoken poetry, perhaps to do with the availability of recordings? Perhaps due to
the added music making it more accessible, I really donít know, sorry!
© Kate Rusby