If you are a college student, you’ve probably heard of the term ‘plagiarism’ in relation to academic papers. Plagiarism is the act of submitting another person’s work as your own. And there are serious consequences for doing this. It doesn’t just apply to academic papers but also to other popular sectors such as music. Most nations around the world are governed by the rule of law. Plagiarism is an act that goes against copyright laws. In the music world, it can destroy your reputation and lead to heavy fines if you get sued. By reading this article, you’ll discover a few simple tips that you can use to avoid plagiarism when writing lyrics for your song.
How does plagiarism occur?
This is one of the oldest experiences that every musician has. You write a great song. But something doesn’t feel right. A voice in your heart tells you that you’ve heard the song somewhere before. Is it because you’ve written the song? Or you’ve listened to it countless times? Have you copy pasted some parts of your favorite song? While listening to other tracks before writing your song can act as a source of inspiration, you must avoid plagiarism completely. Even if your favorite musician has grown by copying others, you cannot win with such an argument in case you are sued. So what can you do to avoid it?
1. Let your close friends listen to the song before releasing it
If you think that you might have copied another musician, there are a few simple methods that can help you find out whether it’s a real concern or not. You should consider letting your close friends or spouse listen to the song before releasing it. Even if you’ve written the first half only, you should share it with friends to find out if you copied it somewhere. Always share the music with people who are conversant with the industry. You can consider running your lyrics on Fixgerald plagiarism checker or hiring a professional in your genre. You can easily avoid court cases by learning why plagiarism is bad and using an online tool with percentages.
2. Hum the song
Most plagiarism cases in court have one similarity – the melodies are quite similar. You can avoid these cases by simply humming. As you do this, you can record and listen to yourself or with your friends. If you are worried that you might have copied another song, humming it will either prove you right or wrong.
3. Avoid listening to the song for a few days
If you notice that your new song sounds familiar, you should consider putting it away for a couple of days or weeks. Giving your brain and ears a break will allow you to have a new perspective on the track once you start listening to it again. This technique is not only effective at eliminating plagiarism but also fueling inspiration. Whether you are a songwriter, singer, or producer, this practice will help you make progress rapidly in the long run.
4. Study your genre
If you want to avoid plagiarism easily, you should take some time to know the top musicians in your genre. You should also listen to as many tracks as possible and study them. A good musician can easily tell when a song has been plagiarized. Listening to as many songs as you can in your genre will expose you to tunes that you wouldn’t want to copy. Understanding your genre will inspire you to do your best without having to copy.
5. Acknowledge that you plagiarized
If you have gone through the processes that we’ve discussed here and realized that you plagiarized by accident, don’t waste your time and energy complaining or coming up with excuses. Start by admitting that you copied – this happens even to the most successful musicians – and then focus on correcting the song. If you copied a small section, it doesn’t mean that you have to do away with the entire song. If you’ve realized that you copied, here are a few simple things that you can do:
Make small changes to push it in a different direction
Change your melody
Put it aside for a while and revisit it later
Music plagiarism is quite popular in our modern world. Both successful and upcoming musicians fall into this trap when they are composing tunes. A small slip-up can end up destroying your reputation and career. Therefore, it’s important to avoid copying at all costs. Using the tips that we have discussed here and getting help from an expert will go a long way in helping you achieve your music goals. There are a lot of people around you who are willing to help you make progress. And they can’t help you if you don’t ask them. Rising in this industry takes a lot of time, energy, and patience. Having a support system will ensure that you keep on keeping on when things get hard. Which tips are you going to use today to avoid copying others?
About the Author:
Sylvester Greer is a talented speaker and experienced content writer. He enjoys interacting with music students and helping them create amazing songs. He is passionate about music and learning.