A few weeks ago, the beautiful and talented 16-year-old songwriter Kayla Stockert checked in to give us some songwriting tips. Many of you left questions for Kayla in the Comments, and here are Kayla’s replies!
DancingLavender38 asks: I am a struggling singer, and I’ve got a big voice, I just don’t know what to do with it.
Kayla: The best advice is to take singing lessons. Learn all the techniques. Even people who professional singers now (like Lady Gaga) still take singing lessons and get coached. I take them and it continues to make my voice stronger. It’s kind of like exercising to keep in shape. Good luck!
Dane says: You look nice.
Kayla: Thank you, Dane!
Victoria says: Amazing!
Kayla: Thank you so much, Victoria!
Allie asks: Hi Kayla. You came to my camp but I wanted to ask you what advice you can give about being good at singing and songwriting?
Kayla: Hey, Allie! I would say that if you really love to sing, just keep practicing every day, and be sure to schedule voice lessons to learn the proper techniques for singing. I still take them, and so do most recording artists. As for songwriting, maybe if you have a feeling one day about something or somebody, write it down right away so you don’t forget. I even sometimes use the voice memo on my phone if I don’t have a pen and I’m thinking of catchy lyrics or a melody. You can ask a friend to help you and you guys can share opinions. Songwriting is hard at first, but like anything else in life, practice makes perfect! Good Luck!
TurquoiseDolphin396 asks: I want to know how to write a good song but I have trouble. Could I have some advice?
Kayla: Hi I am going to give you the same advice I gave to Allie in the last question. Songwriting is hard at first, but practice makes perfect! Good luck!
Anonymous asks: When did you know that you wanted to be a singer and follow and achieve your dream?
Kayla: I have always liked to sing since I was a baby. I started singing at a local street fair when I was 9 and haven’t stopped performing since. I realized very early that I wanted be a singer. I practice every day and have gained so much experience that gets me one step closer to my dream. I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world!
Samantha asks: What if your experiences aren’t like everyone else’s? Can you still make a song?
Kayla: Hi, Samantha! Absolutely. Most songs you hear are about love or heartbreaks, but sometimes you hear songs that don’t have to do with any of those things. If you have an idea/experience for a song, put together the words. You can always go back and change the lyrics. There are always going to be people who identify with your song.
Kyle asked: Who do you think writes the best songs?
Kayla: Hi, Kyle! I personally love Taylor Swift as a songwriter. Her lyrics are relatable, and I love the music that goes along with it.
Makayla asks: Are you nervous to perform?
Kayla: Hi, Makayla! I have moments when I get nervous or anxious about performing. For some strange reason, I get more nervous when my family asks me to sing. I think it’s completely normal to have nerves. Once I’m up there singing, the nerves seem to disappear.
Chloee asks: What makes an award-winning song an award-winning song, and how do I write one?
Kayla: Well, think of your favorite song. What do you like about it? The music or the lyrics can all be factors on what makes it popular and successful. Although award shows in general are subjective, in my opinion, a song that is relatable to people and catchy should be award-winning. Keep listening to other songs, practicing your songs, and constantly ask for opinions. Good Luck!
This is amazing advice! Thank you, Kayla for joining us on the STACKS! We love you!
— Sonja, STACKS Staffer