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Is there such thing as subtractive rhymes for these words?

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  • Is there such thing as subtractive rhymes for these words?

    Hey guys!

    Been thinking a lot about creating more lyrical possiblities. I've been experimenting more with family rhymes, additive and subtractive rhymes lately, and refraining from using too many perfect rhymes.

    When I say subtractive rhyme, I mean things like.. 'meet' -> 'see', etc..

    Seems like these types of rhymes are pretty straightforward for words that use pure vowels. But I noticed that some words have ending consonants that alter the main vowel of the word.

    For example: Wing, There and Feel.

    So do you think it's possible to make subtractive rhymes from words like these? Or maybe isolate the main vowel and find rhymes other than perfect rhymes for them?

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  • #2

    It's not something I think about, as I'm a perfect-rhyme guy.  Not that I always use perfect rhyme, but if I'm going to work at something, it's going to be to get a good rhyme.  The times I use slant rhyme (which I think refers to any non-perfect rhyme, but there's a lot of new vocab for me in the OP), it comes completely naturally and is undeniable.  

    For a word like "Wing", you might use a "-in" word (twin, within, begin).

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    • #3

      davie wrote:

      Hey guys!

      Been thinking a lot about creating more lyrical possiblities. I've been experimenting more with family rhymes, additive and subtractive rhymes lately, and refraining from using too many perfect rhymes.

      When I say subtractive rhyme, I mean things like.. 'meet' -> 'see', etc..

      Seems like these types of rhymes are pretty straightforward for words that use pure vowels. But I noticed that some words have ending consonants that alter the main vowel of the word.

      For example: Wing, There and Feel.

      So do you think it's possible to make subtractive rhymes from words like these? Or maybe isolate the main vowel and find rhymes other than perfect rhymes for them?


      Here's the thing, if two or more words don't make a perfect rhyme it's not really a rhyme at all.

      What you're calling subtractive rhymes are pairs of words with the same vowel sound but a different consonant or no consonant. That's technically known as assonance.

      I find that when one attempts to rhyme a word that has an open vowel sound that a word that ends with a consonant (what you're calling a "subtractive" rhyme) it usually doesn't click as well as if you're using similar (if not exact) consonant sounds like pairing a D with a T sound or an F with an S sound.

      What I personally find appealing about restricting myself to perfect rhymes is that there are a number of stock words that make up the same number of stock rhymes. Sticking to the perfect rhyme scheme forces me to think outside the box and write more creatively with fewer stock words and phrases.

      At least that's whay I like to think.

      I don't know if this helps or not, but that's how I see it.

      “Good Vibrations” was probably a good record but who's to know? You had to play it about 90 bloody times to even hear what they were singing about. What’s next? Rock opera? —Pete Townshend, Melody Maker Interview, 1966.

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      • Paul.M.
        Paul.M. commented
        Editing a comment



        Here's the thing, if two or more words don't make a perfect rhyme it's not really a rhyme at all.

        What you're calling subtractive rhymes are pairs of words with the same vowel sound but a different consonant or no consonant. That's technically known as assonance.


        There plenty of rhymes that are not perfect rhymes. The most advanced rhyming dictionary that I know of can find 30 different rhymes including additive rhymes, family rhymes and light rhymes. It also offers an intelligent rhyme that allows you to go from a perfect rhyme to a number of slant rhymes by lowering the similarity in sound:

        http://www.rhymegenie.com

        I don't see substractive rhymes in the list but given that substractive rhymes do not offer a satisfying resolution I would not recommend using them over family rhymes.


    • #4

      I love expanding my rhyme pool through additive, subtractive and family rhymes. It keeps things fresh and true to your intent. Read the article below copied from Berklee's songwriting site from one of Pat Psttison's students.

      Note the expanded definitions of rhyme types below...

      ------------

      Oh, the horror of coming to the end of a line and knowing we
      __________
      Ain't no sacrilege to call Elvis king
      Dad is great and all but he never could sing -
      Jesus

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      • LCK
        LCK commented
        Editing a comment

        Lee Knight wrote:

        Note the expanded [diluted] definitions of rhyme types below...

        ------------

        there are five rhyme types. [not really, there's only type of rhyme, all the rest are really only various degrees of non-rhymes] ...

        rhymes like

    • #5
      I'm in agreement with Blue here. I use whatever works. "Works" as in the real sense of tried and tested in real world conditions. I don't care for restrictions, those either mentioned by the quote I posted or by LCK, but I do embrace all the potential and exciting possibility both points of view bring.
      __________
      Ain't no sacrilege to call Elvis king
      Dad is great and all but he never could sing -
      Jesus

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      • LCK
        LCK commented
        Editing a comment

        Lee Knight wrote: I don't care for restrictions...

        While I partially agree with that sentiment, when you're working in any art form there are, by nature, certain restrictions. Melody, harmony, tempo, they all have inherent restrictions.The Tierney Sutton Band do a song in 33/16 time. It probably wouldn't make for a good pop song -- certainly not a dance song -- but you never know. But is doing that a matter of avoiding restrictions or putting insane restrictions on how you have to play that kind of tune?

        Language has grammatical restrictions. You could write a song using nothing but nonsense syllables*, for example but, generally speaking, people like words they can sing along with, relate to, and understand. There's also a part of the brain that gives you a buzz when patterns are discovered. The stronger the connection between the two pieces of the pattern (i.e., the closer two words rhyme), the bigger the buzz. Meaning trumps rhyme, yes. But don't forget that spike of dopamine.

        There's another side to that of course, which is predictabliity. So it's a really a matter of creating somewhat surprising and unexpected effects that also fit the pattern as tightly as the pieces of a jigsaw puzzle. That's why I think lines like that one from The Band Perry's "Better Dig Two" are so satisfying.

        But maybe that's just me...

        *


    • #6
      Excellent post, very well said, Lee.
      __________
      Ain't no sacrilege to call Elvis king
      Dad is great and all but he never could sing -
      Jesus

      Comment


      • #7

        davie wrote:use pure vowels. But I noticed that some words have ending consonants that alter the main vowel of the word.

        For example: Wing, There and Feel.


        So do you think it's possible to make subtractive rhymes from words like these? Or maybe isolate the main vowel and find rhymes other than perfect rhymes for them?




         


        You know Davie, it took me till now to understand your question. I thought you were comparing wing, there and feel. But i get it now, they are all separate examples of vowel sounds that change due to the ending consonant.


         


        But I'd say that differently. "ing" is a sound unto itself. You can't really isolate that "i". And the soft middle "e" in "there"? Why bother? It's so subtle to be ineffective in my mind. 


         


        But the "ee" in Feel? I'd have no issue rhyming "feel" with "see", given the right location and context. 

        __________
        Ain't no sacrilege to call Elvis king
        Dad is great and all but he never could sing -
        Jesus

        Comment


        • rhino55
          rhino55 commented
          Editing a comment
          For me it either rhymes or it doesn't. The types of rhymes that are referred to in the op work really well within the same line and can sometimes work at the ends of lines if you don't have a set rhyme scheme you are trying to fit them into (think bridge).

          I would be reluctant to use this type of rhyme in a chorus or at the end of stanza. That's not to say that others don't do it to great effect. It just doesn't work for me.

      • #8

        Thanks but weighing in, guys. Though I kinda hate how a lot of my songwriting threads always end up in heated debates and whatnot. lol.. .png" alt=":smileyindifferent:" title="Smiley Indifferent" /> (don't worry, more threads to come!!)

        No one actually tried to answer my main question aside from Lee and Chicken Monkey. Lee also read the same book that I've been reading by Pat Pattison, so Lee knows exactly what I'm referring to. Though they're not "official" terminologies, I'm sure Pattison also uses those terms (family, addictive, subtractive, etc) to help get the point across to his Berklee music students. In a sense, I think those types of "rhymes" are essentially what LCK referred to as "assonances". I've heard plenty of good songs that utilize them, so wouldn't discount their usefulness.

        Also, I have nothing against perfect rhymes either as long as they're not overused and the song's context keeps them fresh. I find that perfect rhymes are great, especially if the songwriter crafts them so that the rhymes aren't obvious, or writes lines that divert your attention away from the rhyme. So those are great creative aspects that I notice in perfect rhymes. And like I mentioned earlier, I like exploring new possibilities, because to be honest, as artists, we have to. I find that these 'assonance'-type rhymes make songs exciting as well, because they keep you on your toes; they're unexpected, which grabs my attention, but they still sound "like a rhyme".

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        • rhino55
          rhino55 commented
          Editing a comment

          davie wrote:

          No one actually tried to answer my main question aside from Lee and Chicken Monkey. 


           

          Yes I did.  I just don't think you liked the answer.

          In an attempt to answer it more directly, I don't consider them to be rhymes, but if you are willing to change the rules of what constitutes a rhyme, then yes, you can call it whatever kind of rhyme you want.

           


        • LCK
          LCK commented
          Editing a comment

          davie wrote:

          Also, I have nothing against perfect rhymes


          Really? You have nothing against perfect rhymes?

          What a relief. :emoticon-char-017:


        • nat whilk II
          nat whilk II commented
          Editing a comment

          firestarter Davie said:

          Though I kinda hate how a lot of my songwriting threads always end up in heated debates and whatnot. lol.. :smileyindifferent:.png" border="0" /> (don't worry, more threads to come!!)

          No one actually tried to answer my main question aside from......

           

            

          The debates here seem to me to be quite sincere and respectful.  Compared to so many other forums, downright exemplary I think.  So no problems there - sometimes even a little more friction and sparks between colleagues is a good thing.

           

          But I do admit, confess, and hereby register myself as an incurable thread derailer.  My mind, the wandering, wondering old turtle that it is, seems unlikely to change at this late date.  My apologies...I will try to refrain, but as Yoda has taught us all, trying is usually just another way of doing nothing about it..png" alt=":smileyhappy:" title="Smiley Happy" />

           

          nat whilk ii


      • #9

        I can't remember the last time I figured out a rhyme scheme of one of my songs. It typically only happens when I'm really stumped.


        I try a line and it works or it doesn't. I'm usually not thinking about rhyme. I'm just trying out lines. If I've got three lines I like, I'll go through them trying out whatever I think of for the next line. Of course, I usually have some sense of the rhyme I'm trying for, but it tends to be below outright consciousness.

        .

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        • LCK
          LCK commented
          Editing a comment

          blue2blue wrote:

          I can't remember the last time I figured out a rhyme scheme of one of my songs.


          I know what you mean. But how long have you been writing songs?

           


      • #10
        Nice post Leonard. Actually, I'm in agreement with everyone here. Learn the rules, play by those rules you learn so you learn them well, and learn to break them as well and study what works and what doesn't. Don't be afraid to not pay attention to any of it and spill it out on the page. If you need something you can always refer to the rules and find what has worked for others historically.

        Because of this thread I went and looked at a lot of Bob Dylan lyrics. He's pretty amazing if you don't know that already. :-) It's interesting to see the traditional songs he picks are very creative and very nontraditional rhymes. And you can see that in his writing as well. So rather than me trying to make any point I'll step back and suggest if you're curious to take a look at those lyrics and how he rhymes. LCK pointed it out first and it is very fascinating.
        __________
        Ain't no sacrilege to call Elvis king
        Dad is great and all but he never could sing -
        Jesus

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        • oldgitplayer
          oldgitplayer commented
          Editing a comment

          Most posters seem to be talking about the RULES. Rooles, schmooles.

          If you need rules, then they are rules - otherwise there are only conventions.

          If I was writing a song for Sinatra, I'd be thinking conventionally - i.e. rules - but if I were writing for the majority of other artists whose world and music are generally unconventional, I wouldn't be binding myself to  songwriting conventions.

          My toolshed has different kinds of saws in it too.....png" alt=":smileyhappy:" title="Smiley Happy" />













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