Rockin' Robin Roberts, Lyricist Extraordinaire

"GMA" co-anchor tries her hand at one of her alternate careers: lyricist.

ByTamara Duricka and Lee Ferran via via logo
October 22, 2008, 6:40 PM

Oct. 23, 2008 — -- "Good Morning America's" Robin Roberts watched with reverence when Sam Champion sat in the judge's chair earlier this week, and experienced mild terror when Chris Cuomo went to work with the scissors as a hairdresser yesterday.

This morning, it was her turn to try out one of the alternate careers suggested by the Ultimate Job Match test she and the rest of the "GMA" team took last week. The test determined she could be a composer, lyricist, comedian or drama coach, and, feeling the rhythm, Robin chose lyricist.

When Robin got to thinking about how music had gotten her through different periods of her life -- the good and the bad -- one name stood out in her mind: singer/songwriter India Arie.

So Arie stopped by the studio to help Robin bring out the lyricist inside. What they came up with was memorable.

Early in the morning, it's the start of a new day.

New hopes, new dreams, new ways.

I open up my eyes and I open up my mind and

I wonder how life will surprise me today.

I wonder how life will surprise me today.

New hopes, new dreams, new ways.

"You don't have to do the whole thing to be a lyricist," Arie said. "Just contribute."

Arie shared tips on how to write a chorus versus the rest of a song.

"There are two things that happened -- the commercial part and the fine arts part," she said. "The chorus is the part the average person will be able to say, sing and remember."

But before she could finish the thought, Arie broke into a song she wrote about breast cancer.

"It's really all about expressing ideas, and every songwriter doesn't have to be a singer," she said. "And if you write books and you speak everyday and you can speak in a rhyme, you can write a song."

There is no set way to start writing, she said.

"Sometimes I have a concept first, and then sometimes I have a title or a melody. Most of the time I start out with an intention -- what I want to say. It's really not what I want to say to other people, but what I want to say to me."

Another important thing to keep in mind, Arie said, is that there are "no rules" to creating a commercial hit.

"My momma said there are no rules -- as long as you end right, you got it," she said.

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