Writing guidelines

We need your effort and dedication to style all the lyrics properly to keep quality in the formatting and grammar of the lyrics so it’ll be easy for other users to synchronize them in time with music.

How to transcribe

Transcribe all lyrics, even when a section is repeated

All the sung or spoken lyrics should be transcribed, even if a line or group of lines are repeated several times in the song lyrics, type out all of them.

The lyrics will be synced in time to the music by other users, so don’t use multipliers (X4) in order to help them with the line by line synchronization.

Wrong

Wait for me to come home (X4)

Good

Wait for me to come home
Wait for me to come home
Wait for me to come home
Wait for me to come home

Transcribe the lyrical audio content only

Only if clearly and strongly differentiated from normal pronunciation, for example adding additional "beats/syllables" to the word. ex: "You-oo-oo-ou","B-b-b-b-bad"

All not spoken part (eg. "Ohh", "Ahaaha", "NaNaNa") should be kept only if essential part of the lyrics:

Good

Oh, I'm in love with your body
Oh-i-oh-i-oh-i-oh-i
Oh, I'm in love with your body
Oh-i-oh-i-oh-i-oh-i.

Avoid comments like "intro", "verse", "bridge", "chorus", "outro", "spoken", etc should be replaced with an empty row.

Wrong

[Chorus]
When you feel my heat, look into my eyes
It's where my demons hide, it's where my demons hide

Good

When you feel my heat, look into my eyes
It's where my demons hide, it's where my demons hide

The names of performers inside the lyrics should be avoided/removed, even when indicating a specific portion sung by the artist.

Wrong

[Intro: Justin Bieber]
Come and move that in my direction
So thankful for that, it's such a blessin', yeah

Good

Come and move that in my direction
So thankful for that, it's such a blessin', yeah

Don't transcribe every ad-lib but only it is really necessary.

Good

Raindrop (drip), drop top (drop top)
Smokin' on cookie in the hotbox (cookie)
Fuckin' on your bitch she a thot, thot (thot)
Cookin' up dope in the crockpot (pot)

Primary vocals are focus and secondary lyrics should be in parenthesis

Secondary/Background vocals should be transcribed only when they add value to the "story" of the song and enclosed in parenthesis:

  • <b>Not</b> if merely echoing primary lyrics;
  • <b>Not</b> if just a portion of preceding or subsequent primary lyrics;
  • <b>Not</b> if just a sound effect or other non-vocal sound;
Good

What are you doin' to me? (Hey)
What are you doin', huh? (What are you doin', love?)
What are you doin' to me?
What are you doin', huh? (Yeah, you just want attention)
What are you doin' to me? (I knew from the start)
What are you doin' huh? (You're just making sure I'm never gettin' over you)

Enclose Backup or Secondary lyrics in (parenthesis) with the only exception being the secondary voice at the beginning of the lyrics. Only in this case, don’t enclose the sentence in parenthesis:

Wrong

(O U T K A S T)
Live from the centre of the Earth
Seven light years below sea level we go

Good

O U T K A S T
Live from the centre of the Earth
Seven light years below sea level we go

Featured Artist vocals should not be in parenthesis at any time.

Avoid comments like "Intro", "Chorus", "Spoken", Artist names and so on
Transcribe lyrics in their native scripts

Lyrics are expected to be transcribed in their native scripts (e.g. Russian songs are expected to be written in Cyrillic alphabet).
To help people who cannot read the original scripts, the romanized version of Japanese, Korean, Chinese lyrics, is available as translation inside the translations list.

Good - Hangul (Original)

문을 박차면 모두 날 바라봄
굳이 애써 노력 안 해도
모든 남자들은 코피가 팡팡팡

Wrong - Romanization

muneul bakchamyeon modu nal barabom
gudi aesseo noryeok an haedo
modeun namjadeureun kopiga pangpangpang

How to format lyrics

Break transcriptions up into individual lines
Capitalize first letter of every line

The first letter of each line should be capitalized to improve readability of the lyrics and keep a standard formatting.

Good

Despacito
Quiero respirar tu cuello despacito
Deja que te diga cosas al oído
Para que te acuerdes si no estás conmigo
Despacito

Separate sections with double breaks

Break down sections with double line break.

Wrong

I tried so hard and got so far
But in the end, it doesn't even matter
I had to fall to lose it all
But in the end it doesn't even matter
One thing, I don't know why
It doesn't even matter how hard you try
Keep that in mind, I designed this rhyme to remind myself how

Good

I tried so hard and got so far
But in the end, it doesn't even matter
I had to fall to lose it all
But in the end it doesn't even matter

One thing, I don't know why
It doesn't even matter how hard you try
Keep that in mind, I designed this rhyme to remind myself how

Do not capitalize each word or use uppercase in all sentence
No line-end punctuation

Only question marks and exclamation marks should be used at the end of a line – no commas or periods. Commas can be used within the lyric line, if necessary, but not at the end of a line.

Wrong

[Intro: Justin Bieber]
Come and move that in my direction,
So thankful for that, it's such a blessin', yeah.

Good

Come and move that in my direction
So thankful for that, it's such a blessin', yeah

Always write contractions using apostrophe (')

When using contractions to shorten a word, by removing one letter or more, substitute an apostrophe in the same spot.

  • ballin', not ballin (contraction of "balling")
  • 'til, not til (contraction of "until")
  • 'em, not em (contraction of "them")
  • 'cause not cause
  • don't, not dont
Use a single hyphen (-) or ellipsis (...) if it is sung an unfinished word/sentence

For example:

Good

‘Cause I got you, you, oh
You, I got you, I got you
‘Cause I got you, you, oh
You, I got you, I got y...
I Got You by Bebe Rexha

Good

A ella le gus-
A ella le gus-
A ella le gus-

Use standardized spellings for rap songs

Below is a list of common American slang word and phrases and how to spell them.

Specific cases accepted for rap songs:

  • Tryna (Trying to)
  • 'Til (until)
  • 'Cause (because)
  • Finna (I’m fixing to)
  • I'ma (I am going to)
  • Turnt (Turn up)
  • gon' (going to)
  • outta ('out of')
  • e'ry (every)
  • nah mean (know what I mean?)
  • lil' (unless a proper name)
  • Cuz (when referring to a cousin, or brother, friend, comrade, etc and NOT abbreviated "because")
  • Ya (should be used when in place of “You”)
  • Yah (should be used when in place of “Yeah/Yes”)
  • ‘bout (about)
  • y’all (you al)
  • yo’ (your)
  • gotta (got to)
  • wanna (want to)
  • gonna (going to')

Below some French-specific Conventions:

  • Contractions:
    • Outside of rap, contractions should be kept to a minimum and only when prevalent in audio.
      Examples:J’suis, L’keuf, Qu’tu viennes
  • French punctuation rules should be respected:
    • One space after single punctuation signs:
      Example:Je viens, Je pars
    • One space before and after double punctuation signs:
      Example:Je viens, Je pars
  • Diacritics should be implements in all cases, even capital letters:
    • Wrong: A Demain
    • Good: À demain
    • Wrong: Ca
    • Good: Ça
Capitalize Proper names (e.g. persons, places, gods)

Proper names such of persons, divinity, places, cities, brands or certain special things should be capitalized.

Good

[Intro: Justin Bieber]
Come and move that in my direction,
So thankful for that, it's such a blessin', yeah.

Numbers as words except for content listed here
  • From 1 to 10, numbers should be written out: one, two, three, etc...
  • Above 10, numbers should be written numerically: 11, 12, 13, etc...
  • If there are too many numbers in a line, write numbers numerically
Good

1,2,3,1,2,3, drink
1,2,3,1,2,3, drink

  • Times of day:
    • Use numerals when exact times are emphasized: 9:30 a.m.
    • Use lowercase a.m. (ante meridiem) and p.m. (post meridiem)
    • Spell out words/phrases that do not include actual numbers: half past, quarter of, midnight, noon
    • Dates should be written as numbers instead eg. 1987
    • Decades should be written like this: '60s