The Toronto Songwriters Association is a non-profit, cooperative group dedicated to furthering the joy and craft of songwriting. Membership is free and open to singer-songwriters in the greater Toronto area who can compose, sing, and play their own songs.
Membership is based on participation. TSA members are songwriters who attend meetings, present original songs, participate in helpful discussions about other members’ songs, play at TSA gigs, and take an active role in the affairs and future plans of the TSA.
The TSA originated with a group of songwriters who met at a Humber College songwriting workshop. Informal extra-curricular gatherings gradually became more regular in frequency and format. New members joined via word-of-mouth, ads placed in local arts publications, etc. We founded the TSA in the fall of 2004 and officially launched it at a songwriters’ evening in December of that year.
We created the TSA website in 2006. The website was redesigned as a WordPress site in 2012.
TSA meetings are friendly gatherings where songwriters present and critique new songs in a respectful, supportive, patient and open-minded atmosphere. The goal is always to develop songwriting. We encourage members to attend meetings whether or not they have a new song to present that month. At the end of each meeting, we adopt an assignment for writing the next month’s new song. Though the assignment is optional and members are free to present any new work they wish, some of our most memorable songs have come from monthly assignments. It’s a simple format that seems to work. Our members consistently report that they are able to write more and better songs after joining the TSA.
Members vary in age, songwriting experience, musical skill and style. At our meetings and public shows you will hear anything from pop and rock, to folk, cabaret or art song. The TSA does not promote any particular method or model of songwriting; we draw on the best traditions and rely on our members’ diverse experience. Our members decide for themselves what to write about, how and why to write, and what to do with their songs. As a collective, we offer support and encouragement for our members’ independent songwriting activities through interaction and exchange within a community of songwriters.