Five Questions with Dan Roam


2 min read   |   Thursday January 14, 2021

Welcome to the first in my “Five Questions” blog posts. In order to demonstrate the power of using songwriting to explore ideas and enhance innovation, I’ve put together a five-question interview that I’ve sent out to some of my previous workshop attendees.

First on the list is my friend and international best-selling author of The Back of the Napkin, Dan Roam.

What was your biggest concern/fear prior to the songwriting workshop?
I was worried that, having never written a song and being a terrible singer, I would embarrass myself in front of a group of people I didn’t know. As it turned out, at every moment of Cliff’s thoughtful program, I was inspired, had a wonderful time and felt increasingly confident – both as a songwriter and as an innovator.

2) Can you describe how it felt to write your first song?
As a member of our impromptu songwriting team, and under the generous guidance of Cliff’s step-by-step instruction, it felt fabulous to discover that we could actually craft a real song. I loved every minute of it.

3) What was the experience of hearing the music added to your lyrics?
In a word: magic. AND there are two parts to this magic:

First, I’d never realized how easy it is to remember a long string of words and ideas when they are set to music. I need to find a way to use this truth in structuring and remembering my own best thoughts.

Second, Cliff really is a magician; his ability to instantly add a legit Motown back to our lyrics and then sing it PERFECTLY the first time is mind-blowing.

4) How did songwriting make you think differently about your chosen topic?
Thinking through a somewhat painful topic (in this case, our endless life of remote meetings) using music made it seem not only less sad, but made me think about the topic from an optimistic side – and see rays of light ahead that I had not detected before. When we sang our song, I felt hopeful in a way I haven’t felt in a long time.

5) What is one of the things from the workshop that you’d most like to share with someone else?
Good innovation comes from creativity, and nothing exposes your hidden creativity muscle faster and more vibrantly than making music.

Find out more about Cliff’s creativity & innovation workshops for business teams.

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