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A certificate, $50 cash and a 1 year DSA membership.

The 1st, 2nd, 3rd place winner's lyrics and judges critiques will be published in the DSA “Songwriters Notes” and on the DSA Website.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Winners of the 2013 Summer Lyric Contest

Sizzlin" by Dana Young, Anthony, KS
Handle With Care by Mario Spinosi, Eynon, PA
Friends by Bill Kapac, Williamstown, NJ
Time Is An Illusion by Bill Kapac, Williamstown, NJ
Arms Stronger Than Mine by Rachael Hughes, Markville, MN
Lunchbox Bill Kapac, Williamstown, NJ
There's A Pill for That by Sarah Ashley, Maryville, TN



J1) This is a clever title and a fairly well written song. I put in parenthesis the word or phrases I'd leave out and replace them with my words.  Also, I made the teenagers older.
J2) Sweet song, nicely done. Why does 3rd verse have only 4 lines instead of 6? Could it be stronger with two more good lines? Overall, a nice generatiol cycle of lessons passed down.
J3) Good impact, hook, originality and appeal; very good focus and form, excellent phrasing.

She was barely (eighteen) nineteen with a child of her own
She was out in the world, now she's living back home
(She) Cries out to her mom, what chance does he have
How can he grow up without knowing his dad
How can he survive with  this burden to bare
Her mother just said, "handle with care"

Handle with care, just treat him right
He's yours to love for the rest of your life
Be  there for him, show him love is to share
And he'll turn out right if you handle with care

She watched as he grew, she watched and she prayed
She did what she could to keep the promise she made
Now he's barely (eighteen) twenty and he just met a girl
He says to his mom, "she's all I want in this world
What can I do to keep her love always there"
All that she said was "handle with care"

CHORUS 2  usually the chorus is the same throughout the song
Handle with care, just treat her right
She's yours to love for the rest of your life
Be there for her, show her love is to share
And you'll keep her love, if you handle with care

VERSE 3  I would make this a bridge because you only have 4 lines and verse 1 and 2 have 6 lines.  You have to have the same number of lines in each verse or you could add 2 more lines

Now he's holding his son, like his mother once did
He says to his mom, "I'll be there for him
I'll teach him to love and I'll teach him to share
I'll do what you did, I'll handle with care"

I'll handle with care, I'll just treat him right
He's mine to love for the rest of my life
I'll be there for him and show him love is to share
I'll do what she did, I'll handle with care

Repeat last line for emphasis


J1) This is a cute song with lots of imagery but make sure your meters match
J2) Very fun, well structured, nice wordplay. Only minor suggestions to consider: Use sizzlin' instead of flaming in 1st line of chorus so you get a repeat of your title word to drive it home. Reading the lines makes it sound like a few extra syllables could be omitted for a stronger rhythm (e.g. omit country and ever from 3rd line of chorus and rhythm is stronger), but I know this ultimately depends on how it is sung as to how well it works. Nice job.
J3) Good impact, appeal and focus; very good hook and originality; excellent phrasing and form

We're sitting on the bank, fishing at the creek
Our lines dangling in the water and so are our feet
The sun is shining bright on our favorite spot
When you turn to me and say "baby, I'm hot"

Yeah, you're flaming, smoking fiery red hot
Like steam rising up from a boiling pot
You're the sexiest thing this country boy has ever seen
Kicking your feet in that cool, cool stream
And when you kiss my lips, I can almost hear them hissin'
Cause sssss...baby you're sizzlin'

(You hit me on the shoulder) You turn around and say "that's not what I mean"
Then you roll up your (pantlegs) jeans and wade out in the stream
Splashing water on your body, then you take off your top
You look at me and say "I'm really, really hot"


BRIDGE ...I would make this VERSE 3
Now I know what you mean, I know what you're saying
It's a warm, warm day, a good day for playing
So let's work up a sweat, then go skinny dipping
Cause you're so doggone hot, (it makes me) I feel like strippin'


I would add a
Come on, baby, heat up my arms
Maybe we'll set off some fire alarms
Cause sssss...baby, you're sizzlin'


J1) This is a good song with a lot of meaning but you need to work on the structure. For example, Verse 1, 2,3 and 4 all have a different number of lines.  Also, the meters need to match in all verses because the music would demand it.  It's a great idea and has good imagery but structurally it wouldn't adapt to music.
J2)  Hook is OK, but verses rambles, and say the same thing over and over rather than building emotion. Same words keep repeating (storm, torn, rain, burden), which should warn that same ideas keep repeating. Focus the story, and build it. 


J1)  This song has a lot of possibilities but it needs work.  No songs (except maybe hymns) have 7 verses so you need to shorten it.  The 1st verse is good and verse 4 is good. Unless a verse adds needed info to a song, it isn't needed.  Keep working on it!
 J2) Analogy of the rose is inconsistent. The rose dies in the first line, but love, which is LIKE the rose, does not die. ?? Song needs focus, consistency and clarity. See Bette Midler's "The Rose" for similar idea expressed more clearly.

 Semifinalist Comments

J2)  Are friends permanent or temporary? This song implies both, lamenting how they may be temporary but advocating for permanence. But the way it shuttles back and forth between these two ideas is unsatisfying.
J3) Good impact, hook, originality and phrasing.

J2) OK idea, but lacks focus and strong impact. Look at Pink Floyd "Time" lyrics for similar idea. Explore if there may be more emotionally deep examples you could express about HOW time is an illusion without just repeating the phrase.
J3)  Good impact, hook, originality and phrasing.

J2)  Really like this idea and how it is carried out. Just a few weak lines could be boosted, e.g.. "Feeling sad is a bore"(when the previous verse is about physical ailment, not feelings) and "Make the rough places plain" seems weaker than it shold be.
J3) Very good originality.