THE COUNTRY SONGWRITING MANUAL - Interactive Zoom Class with #1 Nashville Writer Rick Beresford - Additional Saturday Song Critiques + Weekly Sundays - SUMMER/FALL Special; Open First Class On-Demand; Next Critique Weekend: July 27-28!

This popular zoom songwriting class RETURNS SUMMER 2024 + FALL 2024, online live over zoom and on-demand only, with monthly meetings over the summer and then weekly in the Fall. It all starts with an open meeting on which you can watch on-demand where Rick Beresford lays out THE COUNTRY SONGWRITING MANUAL!

Tuition is reduced for those who missed the first song critique weekend opportunity.

Special Summer Schedule:

  • On-Demand Lecture + Assignment: What makes a hit country song?
  • 7/27-28 Critiques / Hit Song Breakdowns + Assignment
  • 8/24-25 Critiques / Hit Song Breakdowns + Assignment

  • Fall Weekly class starts in Sunday 9/15, 1pm PT/3pm CT/ 4pm ET!

FALL 2024: 8 weekly Sunday 1-3pm PT classes and 6 optional/additional Saturday 1pm PDT song critiques, starting SUNDAY 9/15/24. That's up to 14 meetings total with #1 writer Rick Beresford!

This class blends Volume 1's concepts and tools with the professional song analysis and song critique of Volume 2 and includes regular song feedback and additional (optional) weekly small-group consultations with Rick Beresford.

We are excited for the experience, value, amount of drafts you will receive personal feedback on, and the number of songs you'll complete, all under the mentorship of #1 writer Rick Beresford. 

  • Class 1 and part of Class 2 are all about concepts and content, laying out "The Country Songwriting Manual"
  • Classes 2-8 are all about applying the manual: hit country song analysis and class song feedback sessions
  • Rick offers additional optional song feedback sessions for 6 Saturday between weeks 2-8, privately and in small groups, also 1-3pm PT
  • this means you have up to 14 class meetings with Rick(!), with full archives and all handouts at a private site for your review

If you can write a good country song, you can write a good song. Who better to study with than a #1 hit Nashville songwriter and BMI Award Winner who has spent the past 25 years teaching songwriters, at Nashville's Belmont University and at the Songschool at The Kerrville Folk Festival.

The Songwriting School was proud to welcome Nashville's Rick Beresford to teach the first installment of this country songwriting craft and business series: The Country Songwriting Manual, Volume 1 online over Zoom fully interactive and on-demand. And we are excited to welcome him back to teach again in 2022!

"Teaching is my soul path," Rick intones, and you believe him the animated second he starts talking about working with fellow songwriters. He notched hits himself with the legends (George Jones, Don Williams, The Everly Brothers, Brenda Lee...), and many of his students are among the day's top writers on Music Row (like Jon Nite, with 8 #1s in the past five years). Rick has developed what he calls "The Songwriting Manual" after a lifetime writing and teaching other writers. We are proud to offer a series of courses where he aims that considerable knowledge of lyric, melody, structure, and strategy at the art and craft of Country songwriting.

Rick Beresford did a Zoom conversation  with The Roots songwriting instructor Rob Seals all about the craft of songwriting. WATCH HERE.

  • Who: for people who already write songs and want to learn to write stronger songs or who specifically are interested in Country songwriting. This is not a beginning songwriting class, but if you have completed songs previously you are eligible.
  • What: fully interactive Zoom class with #1 writer Rick Beresford. Each class will involve presentation, discussion, song examples and analysis, assignments and exercises, and the opportunity for feedback on your work from Rick. All class materials will be privately archived for your review, and if you must miss class in real time you can still submit song assignments and watch the video archives
  • When: Sundays 1-3pm PST (that's 3p Central, 4pm Eastern, 9pm in London(!), etc.) for 8 weeks
  • Where: wherever YOU are, on Zoom. 
  • How Many: In order to give each student the attention she or he deserves and will desire, we are limiting the class to 12 songwriters.
  • If you are unable to take a Sunday class and are interested in the course, please let us know: 818-848-7664 or email info at the songwriting school dot com.
  • What is the difference between Volume I and Volume II? Volume I lays out the manual. Volume 2 applies it. We are combining them for a high input, high output experience.


Do I have to play an instrument to take this class?

No! Lyric & melody is the song, and while he will talk a bit about chords and chord progressions, your awareness of such concepts will equip you with a vocabulary to better collaborate with players and producers. If you do play instruments, you will get more writerly tools for your own music.

Do I have to read music to take this class? 

No! Rick doesn't in fact, so he does not teach in a way that requires reading. He will get you to use your ear to understand the musical concepts of class and make use of them in the songs you write. A theory background is not required though it's always helpful in constructing strong chord progressions and compelling harmony/melody relationships. 

What if I mainly want to be a lyricist?

This will be a great class for you. And when topics turn to melody writing, you become a stronger lyricist the more you understand how melody truly works. You may find co-writers in the class. 

To grow as a lyricist, we recommend in conjunction with the class Platinum songwriter Mark Winkler's Writing Commercial Hit Lyrics class--also over Zoom this Fall (

I'm not really into Country music. What is in this class for me?

Nashville has the highest standards for song craft in the world. Learn to write a strong country song and you can write in any genre. If you are checking the credits of your favorite pop writers, many of them also write in Nashville. We hope this class will expand your horizons and remind you that you are a songwriter, no matter the genre.

Does the class get into the business of Country Music, song pitching, etc?

There will be some talk of professional co-writing in Nashville and how to be a professional country writer, but this round of class is all about the craft. There will not be a publisher pitch session in this round of class, but we will offer future such sessions, as we have in the past.

Oh man, I think I have more questions!

Great! Let's have a human answer them. Send your questions here or call 818-848-7664.

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