November 6 2015

StrongWriter On the Radio: (Episode 57) “Shelly Peiken – What a Girl Writes”

“I wanna thank you, Shelly Peiken, for giving me some great insight on songwriting.”  This is what I said to my very special guest after shaking off the nervousness of interviewing a truly creative professional songwriter.  As you will sense from the conversation, Shelly has a warm and calm demeanor, and definitely has a passion for creating songs, often with a partner (“I like the company.”)  She had some helpful things to say about getting writer’s block out of your system, and advice on how to help creative ideas flow more freely.  She and I briefly reviewed her four biggest songs, as I am sure she’s done so many times.  But it was fun to hear about how, in the 1980’s, she went about submitting her material to a major recording artist, and how one of those songs got onto a debut album, which soared to triple platinum status.  Please enjoy the program, and don’t miss the conclusion in the following episode!  ~ Dean

Featured Guest:   Shelly Peiken

Shelly Peiken is a multi-platinum Grammy nominated songwriter who is best known for her #1 hits “What a Girl Wants” and “Come On Over Baby”. She earned a Grammy nomination for the song “Bitch” recorded by Meredith Brooks. She’s had hundreds of songs placed on albums, and in TV and film.

Her “Serial Songwriter” Facebook page has become a forum for all things songwriting and ideas about navigating a changing music business as a creative person and parent.

In June of 2014 Shelly was invited to blog for The Huffington Post. She is well known in the music industry as mentor, panelist, consultant and guest speaker.

Shelly is a New Yorker at heart who enjoys her life in Los Angeles with her husband, composer Adam Gorgoni and their daughter, Layla.


I’ve always been inspired by the place within that’s in a continual state of pursuit; a search for something different, something better, or what might have been …while still feeling that if given the choice, I wouldn’t trade my world for any other. Life isn’t perfect. But some days it’s filled with so much joy it seems as perfect as perfect can be. Still, that state comes and goes. It’s from that divine discontent songs can’t help but emerge.

Visit Shelly Peiken’s website:

Special thanks to Shelly Peiken for the use of her images and music.
© 2015 Shelly Peiken – All Rights Reserved

Shelly Peiken’s book
Confessions Of a Serial Songwriter
is available for pre-order now at her website!!

Shelly Peiken 008 Pre Order book

SHELLY PEIKEN: Confessions Of a Serial Songwriter

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DEAN OLSON is a songwriter and executive producer of the weekly radio show "StrongWriter On the Radio." The popular program airs Fridays on Amazing Men Of Power and Music Day (AWOP / Raven International Network)