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🎹 Charlie Puth’s secret to writing endless hits

and how to unlock insane creativity

Charlie Puth has received 56 awards and nominations for his songs over the last 8 years.

He went from posting songs like this on YouTube 13 years ago…

…to writing songs for the big leagues like:

  • Justin Bieber

  • Pit Bull

  • Maroon 5

  • John Legend

  • Katy Perry

Aside from having perfect pitch and his sweet music-mixing skills, the true secret to his success is revealed in the first 1.2 seconds of most of his TikToks.

He’ll start with something like:

  • “What if there was a song that started like [insert random clicky mouth noises]

  • then went like BWAWAWA…BWAWAWA…

  • it’s missing something… what if I used a sound like.. smacks a lamp… no… hits a door… no… flips a light switch… perfect!”

Before you know it, he’s taken these random noises, transposed them, tuned them down, sung a few lines, and you hear the beginnings of a masterpiece hit song.

Like when he made a full song live on the Tonight Show out of a spoon and mug.

But did you catch it?

He always starts with “What if?”.

Then he gives himself permission to follow the (seemingly) dumb ideas that come to mind.

His openness to running with whatever crazy idea pops in his head gives him the creative freedom to find the ideas that really do work.

A lot of his stuff gets scrapped.

But that doesn’t matter, cause in the end it’s the dumb ideas that lead him to the truly brilliant ones.

Next time you’re tempted to shoot down your own or someone else’s ideas, ask yourself - what if this did work?

Resist the urge to shoot it down.

Tell yourself you’re just playing pretend.

Have fun with it.

Let the dumb ideas live… even for a little bit.

See where “What if?” can take you.

To live a creative life, we must lose our fear of being wrong.

Joseph Chilton Pearce

Her (singing): I’m a bum I’m a bum I’m a bum I’m a buuuum!

Me: are you… singing… that you’re a bum…?

Her: yup!

Thanks for reading!

- Kody

P.S. Lesser known song that’s been one of my faves for like 15 years. Recommend listening with headphones and volume up 😄