By Shana LiVIGNI
“For years, I’ve been joking with Emily, my teenager, about some of her music. The lyrics of some songs are just atrocious and the music is derivative and repetitive with little melody,” La Crescenta resident Claudette Moody said. “Now don’t get me wrong. I like good rock ‘n roll, soul music and even clever rap. I hate misogyny and derogatory language.”
Moody joked with her daughter about the lyrics that repeat over and over in the current music scene. “I can write better than that,” she told herself and her daughter. Although Moody comes from a very artistic family – her sister is a published poet – she was always the methodical and cerebral one. “I’ve worked with politicians, legislation and was a registered lobbyist,” Moody explained. “I currently work for an engineering firm doing strategy and policy work for them and outreach to elected officials and agencies.”
As a programmer and scheduler, she never had the inclination to do creative writing. Last February, however, she took a chance and in a leap of faith attempted to write “better than that.” With the support of 16-year-old Emily, she began writing lyrics on her Blackberry whenever those inspirational ideas came to her.
Emily said that she was absolutely confident that her mommy could do it. “My mom is very talented at writing and she’s very smart. I look at all her lyrics and I love reading them,” claimed Emily. “I give her my input. My mom would say, ‘Maybe this artist could do this song’ and I’d say, ‘Oh yeah, I think so.’ Or I would say, ‘I really like this one and I think it would do very well in this contest.’”
Emily is an artistic student at Los Angeles County High School for Arts (LACHSA) where she pursues her love of acting. Her goal is to get a solid theatrical foundation and eventually make her way into television and film acting.
Moody is very proud of her daughter, and of herself. “In May, I mustered up the courage to send some of the lyrics to songwriting contests. In June, The Song of the Year Contest sponsored by VH1 listed me as a ‘promising writer.’
“I learned, too, that I was the top monthly finalist for the ‘July Song of the Year’ contest, and that one of my songs will be forwarded to interested producers and others in the industry.”
Moody recently received word that three of her songs reached the semi-finals at the UK Songwriting Contest and will learn more details in the coming weeks. She currently has an impressive personal repertoire of over 60 song lyrics…so far!