Lyrics are what make or break a song. It is what helps you create that authentic connection with your crowd. The words you write are the steak in the four course meal. What really helps give the song you’re writing some direction is knowing whose point of view the song is coming from. From this, you can write the verses that best expresses the way you or this person feels. There are 4 different types.
First person to another
By far, this is the most popular style of song to write in. Just take a look at the Billboard charts and you’ll see a lot of effective examples that utilize this type of point of view. Bruno Mars When I Was Your Man, Selena Gomez, Come & Get It, Justin Timberlake’s Mirror. A lot of rap songs are from this point of view as well. Mostly toward haters and doubters and hoes, but you get the point. It’s really effective because the audience will fill in their own meaning for whoever you’re writing about it, allowing them to really make a connection. Some of the love songs written in this style are either about success stories or unrequited love. Kendrick Lamar’s “Sing About Me, Im Dying Of Thirst” is a really moving example of this. Eminem’s “Stan” is another,
First person about another person
You ever vent to your friends about someone you’re crushing on. That’s what this style of writing does. It’s like you’re telling your best friend about someone else. And it’s very cathartic. A lot of Weezer songs are in this style. “No One Else” “Butterfly”. Drake’s “HYFR” is also another good example.
In first person, plural together
Now this style stresses the “we” part of where the emotions are coming from. A lot of duets are written with this style. Pink’s song with Nate Ruess, Just Give Me A Reason, Rihanna’s duet with Mikky Ekko, Stay. A lot of hip hop posse cuts are written with “the clique” in mind too. Rick Ross’s Stay Schemin comes to mind. Some other hip hop examples are SugarHillGang’s “Rapper’s Delight” and Atmosphere’s “Crewed Up”.
Third person narrative
With this style, you’re expressing “she did this or this happened to him.” It takes a lot of storytelling discipline to write verses from this point of view. You’ll be using a lot of “he, she” pronouns. I like to pretend that Im telling my friends about a certain event. Again, just do your best to make the song sound like you’re having a conversation. There’s a ton of Beatles songs that use the the third person narrative. Ob la di, Eleanor Rigby, etc. Lil Wayne’s Love Me. Slick Rick’s Children Story.
One of the most important things to keep in mind when writing lyrics is to be straightforward and honest. Get right to the point and be genuine about it. Remember where you, or your characters are coming from. From the very first word, make sure everyone stays in line with their emotions. Always review your work.
Come up with a list of songs that coming from each point of view. Examine what makes you like the song.