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Verso University Presents: Song Arts Academy Contemporary Songwriting Workshop

September 18, 2023 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm EDT

Verso University, in partnership with the Song Arts Academy, offers an eight-week transformative songwriting program for adults, open to 15 participants.

The program begins on Monday, September 18, and goes through Monday, November 13, with each class running from 6:30 to 8:30 pm. (Note: Monday, 9/25 is moved to Tuesday, 9/26 and there will be NO meeting Monday, October 9, as the Library will be closed in observation of Indigenous Peoples Day.)

This might be the course for you, if:

  • Your interest in music and writing gives you a dizzying sense of expression.
  • You have a basic musical proficiency in singing or playing a musical instrument, or have a basic knowledge of music software (digital audio workstations [DAWS] such as Garage Band, Logic, Pro-Tools, or Ableton).
  • You have a band or enjoy building/writing your own tracks or collaborating with others.

Learning outcomes:

  • Proficiencies in analyzing song fundamentals: lyrics, song concepts, melody, and song structure and applying them in your own original songs.
  • Skill at collaborating with other.
  • Musical proficiency in creating exciting options for unique chord progressions and melodies for songwriting.

The workshop is offered at a nominal fee of $175. Advanced registration is required. (Fee includes a copy of Billy Seidman's book on songwriting strategies, The Elements of Song Craft, a definitive work on the craft of contemporary songwriting, and covers approaches today’s contemporary hit-makers use to win mass audiences for their music.)

(Program meets in Brooks Place, with last two sessions in the Verso Studios SSL Recording Studio at The Westport Library).


The Song Arts Academy Contemporary Songwriting Workshop will offer songwriters a chance to record songs written in the workshop at the Verso Studios SSL Hybrid Analog Recording Studio at The Westport Library. Miles above home-recording options, the Verso hybrid analog recording studio was designed by leading industry experts and thinkers for first-rate, distinctive, and powerful results.

The program is led by Billy Seidman, a veteran New York songwriter, guitarist, and producer who's logged studio hours with a diverse group of music legends from Jimi Hendrix to top pop producers, including Jimmy "The Senator" Douglass, (Justin Timberlake, Pharrell Williams) and Steve Jordan (John Mayer, Keith Richards, Eric Clapton).

Participants will leave the program with six to eight original songs written by themselves and in collaboration with group members. Each week, participants will learn a new craft and perspective tools, then write an original song using them. After four or five weeks of writing and rewriting with these strategies, participants develop new listening skills and a transformative way of being present as a writer. The Song Arts Academy program teaches students powerful communication strategies to express what matters most to them and to their peers.


Verso University programs are made possible by the generous support of the Nancy J. Beard Lifelong Learning and Education Fund.

More Resources...
Music Resource Guides
Creative Writing


The Westport Library
20 Jesup Road
Westport, CT 06880 United States
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