5 Lessons On: Musical Storytelling

5 Lessons On graphic

Soundfly 5 Lessons On graphic

Telling an Incredible Story

When you’re a musical artist, stories unfold across so many more planes than just your lyrics. How does it flow over time? What sounds add to the scenery? Who are your characters?

Below are five lessons from our artist-led premium courses that can help you expand your horizons and tell the most compelling, rich stories possible with your music. But the below links are only accessible with an active Soundfly subscription.

So make sure to subscribe to make the most out of this ideation toolkit, and everything else Soundfly has to offer. Here are our favorite 5 Lessons On… Musical Storytelling. Enjoy!

course lesson graphic with Com Truise

Com Truise: “I come up with design briefs for my music.”

Hands down one of the most unique aspects of Com Truise’s music is its marriage to art, design, sound design, and sci-fi storytelling. Across four albums he tells one epic story, we call this the “Com Truise Saga.”

Check Out This Full Lesson on Soundfly

course lesson graphic with Kimbra

Kimbra: “I like to use the characters inside me to tell a story.”

In one of her strongest lessons, Kimbra teaches how to create and utilize a range of vocal personas in your song to act as characters in the storyline. For her, rather than feeling theatrical, it brings out a deeper honesty.

Check Out This Full Lesson on Soundfly

course lesson graphic with Jlin

Jlin: “The sound tells me what to do.”

Rhythmic 4D chess player Jlin turned a titular prompt from Adult Swim into a metaphor for vulnerability and stepping outside of her comfort zone, themes which permeate every element of her track’s storyline.

Check Out This Full Lesson on Soundfly

course lesson graphic with Ethan Hein

Ethan Hein: “The mood adds up to a very particular dreamlike quality.”

Taken from Ethan Hein’s The Creative Power of Advanced Harmony, this lesson breaks down how Frank Ocean uses modal ambiguity in tandem with other tools like abstract lyrics, haunting strings, and flat vocals to paint a very moody portrait in “Pink + White.”

Check Out This Full Lesson on Soundfly

course lesson graphic with RJD2

RJD2: “You wouldn’t expect a magician to give you his best trick right away.”

Storytelling is as much about the flow of a narrative as it is the narrative itself. Sampling artisan RJD2 helps you build anticipation and “craft the reveal” of your song’s strongest moment, and lean into dramatic grandeur.

Check Out This Full Lesson on Soundfly

Subscribe Today.

Are you ready to learn? Join Soundfly’s monthly or annual subscription to access all of these lessons and more. Take a single course from beginning to end, or bounce around and pick up wherever you left off. Explore our full range of in-depth courses.

Join our Mailing List

We offer creative courses, articles, podcast episodes, and one-on-one mentorship for curious musicians. Stay up to date!


An Introduction to Sam Amidon — Experimental Folk “Crate Digger”

Some personal notes on the first time I listened to the highly personal, lyrical music of avant-garde folk balladier Sam Amidon.


Themes and Variation S2E05: “Songs About Science”

In the latest episode of Soundfly’s podcast, Themes and Variation, Jeremy, Martin, and Mahea discuss “Songs About Science.”


Themes and Variation S2E04: “Cathartic Songs” (with Lana Cenčić)

In the “Cathartic Songs” podcast episode, Mahea, Jeremy, and guest Lana Cenčić discuss tracks by Baby Huey, Michael Jackson, and Simon Dawes.