Famous singers that put pen to paper as a songwriter

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Music is celebrated everyday. From streaming tracks and tuning into the radio, to attending concerts and awarding the very best, musicians have made their mark on society. But, some of them don’t just sing, they write too. After all, there’s a lot more to music than what we hear. Let’s take a look at some of the famous singers that put pen to paper and have used their words to progress their career.

Lady Gaga

Lady Gaga rose to prominence in 2008 with her debut album, The Fame, which included popular tracks Just Dance and Poker Face. But, before Lady Gaga became famous for her own music and unique performances, she worked behind the scenes as a songwriter. 

Five years prior to fame, Gaga studied music at the Collaborative Arts Project 21, a music school at New York University (NYU)’s Tisch School of the Arts. There, she grew as a songwriter and went on to work as an apprentice songwriter at Famous Music Publishing. Thanks to her experience, she was offered a media publishing deal with Sony/ATV and began to write songs for notable artists including Britney Spears, Fergie, and the Pussycat Dolls.

Bruno Mars

Just two years after Lady Gaga gained global popularity, Bruno Mars entered the industry with his debut album Doo-Wops & Hooligans where his song Just The Way You Are gained a lot of attention. Bruno Mars didn’t always work solo though, and had previously performed in a band called Sex Panther. Before becoming a solo artist, Bruno Mars was regarded as a music producer and wrote songs for artists including Alexandra Burke, Adam Levine, and Flo Rida.  

Bruno Mars had the support of many within the industry to help him get to where he is today, including record producer Steven Lindsey who mentored the Treasure singer and taught him how to write pop music. Much like many new artists, Bruno Mars’ journey was a challenging ride, but thanks to the support from the industry, songwriters have access to resources to help them thrive. Aspiring artists looking to brush up their skills can access a free songwriting template to download so that they get the best out of their writing. Much like the musicians we know and love today, new artists can learn all about music theory and composition to create unique and emotive songs for others to love.


Australian born musician, Sia, has a slightly different story to tell to Lady Gaga and Bruno Mars. Having released her debut album in 1997, Sia provided backing vocals for several English bands, including Zero 7, who she toured with, and went onto release more studio albums. 

Some 10-15 years later, Sia retired as a recording artist and began her journey as a songwriter. By this point, Sia already had some experience in songwriting, having previously worked with Christina Aguilera to co-write songs for her album, Bionic, as well as the soundtrack for the film Burlesque, Bound to You. She went onto write songs for artists like Beyonce, Rihanna, and Kylie Monogue but some of her most famous songs include David Guetta’s Titanium, and Flo Rida’ Wild Ones.

Each of these three artists demonstrate that a career in music can be varied, and for songwriters, it can lead to producing work for famous artists or releasing music of their own.