Kara DioGuardi

Kara discusses the love songs she adored and which contestants let her down.

on Jun 27, 20110

Love -- It's the subject of some of the greatest songs ever written. "Maybe I'm Amazed," by Paul McCartney, "At Last," by Etta James, and "A Song for You," by Donny Hathaway (to name a few) all give different commentaries on the most important emotion you can have. Many of the songs I have written have come from falling in love (and out of it, but let's keep it on the positive for purposes of this blog). LOVE is such a powerful and universal experience that it's almost impossible to be a a songwriter and not write about it. The first question I always ask when I walk into a room with someone I am writing with is, "So you got a boyfriend (or girlfriend)?" From that question can come great material for songs. I had high expectations for this challenge. Writing a hit love song is the songwriters' jackpot.

I loved the title "Love Me To Life" and was happy Sonyae was rewarded with immunity for it. So many relationships can love you to death, but a good one can fill you up and make you feel the best you've ever felt. It was a very inspired way of expressing the beauty in a relationship. I hope that viewers are starting to see how her lyrics and song titles really are contemporary and meaningful at the same time. I know in the beginning people were a bit shocked that we rewarded her for "Love It or Hate It," but she has always had a strong point of view with broad appeal. I was beyond impressed with Brian's melancholy melody in the verse and how it helped convey the pain of past hurts. His melody did a great job of setting up a chorus full of hope. And, let's not forget Scotty and his chord choices/voicings. They complemented the melodies perfectly. Brian, Scotty, and Sonyae were really the dream team this week and brought their song to "life."

I was happy to see Nick finally write about something that was personal to him. I have been missing that in his songs. They are well structured and hooky, but at times lack any real heart. When he started to sing the verses to his team's song, I felt (for the first time) some vulnerability from him. That's why when the second verse came around and the focus went to Stephanie and Monique it threw me for a loop. Hearing it today I thought it was an odd choice still.

8 comments
marleneelise1
marleneelise1

I think Sonyae is one of the best song writers on this show. Even though she does not play a musical instrument, it is clear how well she knows what type of melody and lyrical composition will captivate everyone who listens to it. I had goosebumps listening to this song on an actual track.

keke7685
keke7685

At times, Kara DioGuardi comments sound very cruel and cold. The comment about the NURSE was very off beat.

Correction
Correction

Etta James did not write "At Last", as Kara's post suggests. Mack Gordon and Harry Warren did. Etta's performance made it a classic, but on a blog about a show about songwriters, we should give credit where credit is due.

MontrealGirl
MontrealGirl

I like both Sonyae and Nick's songs, even though the Monique/Stephanie part was a bit weird. (i like the idea, but it just didn't work) I found Melissa to be very confident considering she seemed to do nothing in the whole competition, I think that the reason she didn't want to show what she had done is because she did nothing. By the way, I just wish we got to hear more feed back from the judge. I would love to get to hear all of what you say to the contestants.

P.S Love you on the show!!!

anon41
anon41

I want to be honest. I didn't watch the show when it started. In fact, I didn't watch it at all. I now love the show. You know what hooked me? Jes's song, "It's You." I heard it on the commercials and I could not get that out of my head. I went to my OnDemand and watched every episode. I then went to iTunes and downloaded the song. I am not a songwriter, but music is a large part of my life. That song, to me, was simple and pure. It's you, that's all. As a 41 year old woman, I fell in love with that song. I want the sheet music, I want to sing it to my daughters.

I cried when I thought Jes might go home. I felt that she went into her heart and exposed her raw emotions and that wasn't appreciated.

Thanks to Jes, I am now a fan

Monty "YOMONT" G.
Monty "YOMONT" G.

As a songwriter I love this show and I love seeing how the progression of how a song develops is interesting. I sit there and say damn "that was a great line" or "man I would have wrote it this way" but in the end when they are standing up in front of the judges I think how scary that is. Just watching it on the show makes me nervous. I would love to showcase my songs and songwriting though.

Sami Denise
Sami Denise

I also hated the Monique/Stephanie thing that Nick's group came up with. It was so confusing to me and diluted the love-theme of the song. Sonyae's song was absolutely beautiful...this show is awesome and the judging is superb! You're great, Kara!