Up Close With Deedee O'Malley


Estimating that she has helped over 3,000 songwriters take their skills to the next level, multi-award-winning songwriter Deedee O’Malley brings a dynamic array of accolades and experiences to her multi-faceted work as a first-call songwriting coach and consultant. With her studio based out of North Hollywood, CA—where she works one on one—O’Malley also operates via Skype and at three-day boot camps and seminars, leaving her songwriting “footprint” everywhere from Nashville, TN to Clearwater, FL and the island of Aruba.

The three-time winner of the John Lennon Songwriting Contest and winner of the Los Angeles Music Awards’ Singer-Songwriter of the Year is a seasoned performer who has opened shows around the US for Glen Campbell, Chris Cagle and Stephen Bishop. In April, she will be opening for Santana at an awards ceremony at the Los Angeles Museum of Natural History, sponsored by Relativity Media. O’Malley has also shared the stage with country greats Willie Nelson, Kenny Rogers and LeAnn Rimes.

In addition, this songwriter has released four award-winning CDs and recently had 21 actors singing 20 of her songs in her third musical which opened at The Matrix Theatre in Hollywood 6 months ago. She is one of the theme songwriters for Fox’s Live Life and Win and has had several songs in film and television.

In 2006, O’Malley published 10 Easy Steps to Writing a Song, a popular interactive e-book that doesn’t simply take the writer step by step through the journey of creating a song—it includes assignments for the user to complete three full songs by the closing chapter.

Those who are unable to interact with O’Malley in the more personal settings can benefit from her wisdom with the downloadable online 10 Easy Steps to Writing a Song video, which shows the first hour of one of her renowned songwriting boot camps where she lays down the fundamentals. The home seminar package includes the 10 Easy Steps interactive e-book. Watching the video, students will learn: what makes a hit song; how to cure writer’s block forever; how to write intelligent and clever lyrics; a simple method to write unforgettable melodies; all about song structure; how to sell your songs; and much more via http://songwritingbootcamp.com.

When recording artists are putting together original songs for their debut album, there are many benefits they can receive from working with a seasoned writer—including emerging from a session with a polished song that is ready to pitch (it’s a 50/50 split if it ends up being a co-write). O’Malley recently worked with an X-Factor finalist who came to her with a half written chorus. She helped the singer write a song, which was later produced by a top producer who had worked with Patti Labelle and Aretha Franklin. O’Malley also worked with a 13-year-old female singer via Skype and emerged with a song that has elicited the interest of L.A. Reid.

“When you write with a seasoned songwriter,” says O’Malley, “you’re working with someone who knows exactly the steps to get the song from point A to point B, someone who can help you organize your thoughts and knows exactly how to get your message or idea across with very little effort. Even if the client can’t write a great song right away, by seeing how I go about the process, they learn by observation.

“One of the keys is deciding who is singing the song, and who is that person singing to,” O’Malley adds. “It starts with that conversation and leads to other necessary decisions. My first album was called ‘Simple’ and that’s my motto. If a song isn’t simple, it’s not right. It’s pretty certain that if an artists comes to my studio to work with me, they will leave with a song. If you’re already an incredible writer, I can help you become even better. If you’re great, you’re going to be extraordinary. If you’ve never written a song before, you’re going to know how. I know it’s a great song if I hear it and can’t stop singing it and want to share it with everyone I love. It’s one that inspires you to want to memorize every single word.”

By Jonathan Widran