Songwriting Dreams


It’s 6:30AM and I just jumped a few feet out of bed. For some reason a few days a week vivid nightmares pry my eyes open. The dreams don’t bother me. In fact, I’m amazed how clear and wild they are. Last night’s dream started with a Depeche Mode concert and ended with giant scorpions making incredible screeching sounds attacking people. I know it sounds stupid but trust me it was real enough at 6:29AM.

The interesting part is for most of the dream Depeche Mode were singing new songs. Songs that only exist in that dream last night. With every waking moment they are fading quickly from my memory but I am sure I heard at least three full tunes. I remember the themes were about love and the usual DM musings. The songs were very good and I was excited to hear them. I guess since my own mind was creating them it knew how to make the songs exactly how I personally would like them. The tragedy is I can’t recreate any of what I remember.

Once every year or so I dream I am making my own songs. I create perfect pieces with lush melodies, incredible lyrics and spot on pitch. Maybe someday there will be dream catchers that save to SoundCloud or something. I’d even be happy with the screeching scorpion sounds. Until then sweet dreams…

Do you ever dream you are creating music?

photo credit: just.Luc

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Oliver Chesler

"Hello my name is Oliver and I'm going to tell you a story." I have been recording music since 1989 under the name The Horrorist. I have released over 60 singles and 4 full length albums. To hear my music please go to:

10 thoughts on “Songwriting Dreams”

  1. ‘dream catcher straight to soundcloud’, now that would be a wonderful idea. i dream songs a lot, and i’ve been doing it a long time. unfortunately, i did not have my edirol recorder close by last night, and i’m pretty sure i lost something worth keeping.

  2. i have dreamed several times that i can sing awesome vocal harmonies in a huge, reverberant space. something like a huge cathedral where the tones echo nearly endlessly and the notes overlap each other.. it always makes me want to record a vocal-only ambient album (which i might do if i could actually sing!)

  3. I have no formal musical training or theory, yet I am always amazed at my subconscious brain’s ability to generate deeply complex, harmonically rich music in realtime (dreamtime). I then find frustration in the fact that my rigid conscious brain has difficulty in tapping into that reservoir of effortless creativity that I know is there! I too have fantasized about being able to record those dreams, something like in the movie Strange Days comes to my mind.

  4. When I was in high school, I had a dream that I say down and listened to a new New Order album. It was brilliant from start to finish. And it was all gone by the time I was awake enough to try and recreate what was in my dream with my synth.

  5. I too would like the direct dream to Soundcloud invention to come out soon. I’ve made at least one full song that i really liked while dreaming, and when I woke up I didn’t remember anything about the song other than that it was a song i’ve never heard before and it sounded great.

  6. I don’t remember having dreamed making music, but I have dreamed films – I still have the outline of a whole Pixar-style film about dinosaurs that my dreaming self went to watch at a cinema one time. I *day-dream* music, other peoples’ mostly, all the time tho’…

  7. yes this happens to me a lot. when i was playing guitar i’d see a band in concert and they’d be playing amazing songs, which i’d realise upon waking were my own.
    it happens less with electronic music but the more i write, the more it happens- i’ll be at a party and a DJ will be playing some great track. i am trying to figure out a way to take advantage of this phenomenon.

    so far dragging myself out of bed and getting to the computer works ok, but i think a small recorder next to the bed is even better

  8. I was just thinking about this thread again because last night I had another one of these vivid songwriting dreams. It’s crazy because if I can create such great things in my dream… hmm.

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