I was probably 13-years old when I first heard the song on the radio, I Need Love, by LL Cool J. I liked the beat and melody, but I did not, initially, pay much attention to the words. It was not until I heard some guys in my class rap the lyrics that I felt compelled to learn the lyrics. Once I cared, I really listened.
I’d rewind it, over and over, until I had all the lyrics written down in my notebook. Then, I would practice it, over and over, until I knew the song by heart. By heart. My commitment to the task was about more than a song. It was about the feelings and emotions it conveyed. I have continued to use that listen-well-and-write-it-down process over the years. Go here to read more.