One of the top 5 most ridiculous questions asked of any songwriter is, “What’s more important - music or lyrics?"
If one would really think about what they are asking, they just wouldn't. The answer of course, is 'neither and both.' It depends on so many variables that one simply could not exist without the other.
This is the question that I am most frequently asked when I sit on panels at music conferences, and I used to dread it. That is, until I saw the movie “Music and Lyrics’ written by Marc Lawrence, and starring Drew Barrymore and Hugh Grant. This movie is a spot-on about the act of co-writing.Drew (Lyrics) adamantly explains to Hugh (Music) why words prevail.
Now when I'm asked this question (after having seen the film a dozen or more times), I answer using the following quote:
“Lyrics are important. They're just not as important as melody.”
Drew quips back:
”I really don't think you get it. A melody is like seeing someone for the first time. The physical attraction. Sex .But then, as you get to know the person, that's the lyrics. Their story. Who they are underneath.
It's the combination of the two that makes it magic."