Here are the main points of the songwriting podcast episode:
When I write songs I feel right with myself
With the recent launch of her 10th studio album ‘Ready For What I Came Here For’, Karen is 100% clear and focused on her purpose as a songwriter and what songwriting brings to her life:
“I’m here to shine light on the truth and help people see the truth for themselves. It’s a mission that chose me… If I haven’t made time to write, it shows in my general well-being.”
Self-care and Songwriting
Karen openly shares how motherhood created some deep learning opportunities about self-care and the importance of prioritising this, in order to be your best with everybody. For example, songwriting is part of Karen’s self-care ritual (along with ping pong!).
She says, “When I’m aligned everything feels right. I feel light and there’s a flow of energy and that tells me I’m on the right track. If something starts to feel hard and isn’t flowing, there’s something to pay attention to.”
At the same time, Karen acknowledges that it’s not always easy to find the time to write songs, but don’t discount small pockets of time, which can be so useful.
“If I can’t find one hour a week to do the thing that I love the most, then there is something seriously wrong. And in the weeks where I don’t find that hour, I have to practice not judging myself and know that I’m making choices and not being a victim of my schedule.”
Listen to the podcast audio for more practical tips about finding time to write.
How writing songs every week has changed my connection with myself and the divine
Karen remembers it was only years ago she felt really frustrated because she wasn’t writing songs, recording them and performing all the time, even though that’s what she felt pulled to do.
“When I’m writing regularly I feel right with myself. It’s like being in integrity with myself and that was missing for a long while and I didn’t feel good. There was an undertone of feeling bad about myself.”
Writing songs every week in I Heart Songwriting Club has opened Karen up to so much more…
Regular songwriting is:
- being in integrity with yourself when you’re doing the activity that is important in your life;
- a connection to authentic and honest expression and acceptance of what is created (vs self-editing to please others);
- a gateway to freedom – for example, through the permission to write songs that are not very good, rather than editing on the go;
- so much more enjoyable when allowing the song to go wherever it wants to go;
- a creative opening space to so much more and connection to a flow of divine energy;
- resulting in a lot of finished songs – with a realistic goal to record an album a year; and
- a huge quality of life shift!
Accessing songs through meditation
Karen joined I Heart Songwriting Club in August 2019. Similarly this was also the time she started a transcendental meditation practice. After about a year of doing both these activities, she noticed song ideas coming through in the meditation space. Thinking that this might just be an opportunity to be distracted from meditating, she initially rejected the song ideas, but when the ideas became clearer and louder, she picked up her phone and sang into her voice memos the complete song idea, which she later took to the piano to complete and put lyrics to.
As a result of this experience, songwriting through meditation has become Karen’s new way of writing songs each week.
What being a 50 year old songwriter and artist means to me
In conclusion, Karen shares how she experiences a society that doesn’t celebrate artists in their 50s as much as artists who are 15.
“I have something to say. And I have finally given myself permission to say and and to say it my way and to run my own race. Stop looking around at everybody else and run your own race. The only person we have to reconcile ourselves with is ourselves.”
Timestamps for podcast audio:
3:27 – Karen shares why she writes songs, the purpose of songwriting in her life and what songwriting means to her.
11:24 – How motherhood affected her capacity to write songs.
13:03 – Karen shares how inspiration used to come to her whilst traveling on the train, and how she didn’t always find time to finish songs.
17:13 – Karen talks about her 10th studio album and her regular songwriting practice.
20:00 – How her songwriting practice has evolved to creating through meditation and how this changes her access to creativity
27:30 – Karen talks about the magic of songwriting
33:30 – Songwriting as self-care and connection to self and how this benefits everyone in your world, and practical tips for how you can make time for your creativity each week.
43:12 – Karen talks about being inspired by listening to other songwriters’ brand new songs and how this feels like being part of an energetic collective
47:18 – Karen shares about writing her song “Approval” and how it was inspired by the Taylor Swift documentary “Miss Americana” on Netflix
1:04:11 – Karen performs “Approval” live at I Heart Songwriting Club headquarters
1:10:40 – Karen finishes up with a call to action to hear more from older songwriters
About Karen Jacobsen:
In a late 1970’s living room in Mackay, Australia, seven-year-old Karen Jacobsen saw Olivia Newton-John on television and knew what she was meant to do with her life; to become a professional singer and move to America.
Driven to follow her dream and born to light up the stage, Karen moved to New York City with one suitcase, becoming an award-winning singer and songwriter.
Musical career highlights include: sharing the stage with Norah Jones, Neil Sedaka, Jon English and Christopher Cross, national anthem performances at major sporting events – Madison Square Garden, Fenway Park, Dodger Stadium, for 80 000 at Giants Stadium for a New York Jets game and at Queensland’s Suncorp Stadium for an Australia vs South Africa TriNations International Rugby Game for 52000.
A prolific songwriter and Recording Artist, “Ready For What I Came Here For” is her 10th studio album. Her songs have been licensed to US network television and heard on the Dawson’s Creek soundtrack. In addition, her voice is used in millions of devices worldwide as the voice of Australian SIRI.
Song Credit: “Approval” – Music and Lyrics by Karen Jacobsen. Performed live by Karen Jacobsen at I Heart Songwriting Club Headquarters.
Episode Show Notes:
Get your creativity, confidence, and songwriting output flowing. Join The Club and receive the support and structure to write 10 songs in 10 weeks and get feedback from a private peer community. This is THE essential writing practice that has changed the careers and lives of 1000s of songwriters worldwide.
Just getting started on your songwriting journey and need more hands-on support? Establish a firm foundation and develop your musical and lyric skills with our Beginner Songwriting Courses. They are the perfect place to begin and cover everything you need to know to write your first songs. You’ll receive lessons from Francesca directly!
Don’t struggle to write your next album – write an album a year with ease! Watch our Free Songwriting Masterclass.
Want more for your songwriting but don’t know where to go from here? Take the I Heart Songwriting Club Quiz to discover your next steps and inspire your way to writing better songs.
Get songwriting insights from I Heart Songwriting Club:
Be inspired by Francesca on socials:
Podcast theme song: “Put One Foot In Front Of The Other One” music and lyrics by Francesca de Valence
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