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Personal Or General? Specific Or Broad?

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Hey everyone, I have a bit of a discussion question.

Before I begin I'd like to say that what I am going to try to say is EXTREMELY hard to describe, so this might be a bit confusing, please ask questions if I don't do a satisfactory job explaining it.

So the Question I ask is whether or not you think it is better to write very personal music, or write music that is very general, making a broader, perhaps completely impersonal, statement?

For example, (and forgive me if you are not familiar with indie rock or any of it's more famous works) Neutral Milk Hotel's In the Aeroplane Over the Sea is an album whose lyrics are generally about very broad subjects that are not really about personal problems, but rather wider subjects such as general human qualities or real events. Conversely, an album like Arcade Fire's Funeral is more specifically themed, mainly dealing with the songwriter Win Butler's Emotions or personal problems.

The difference between these two albums to me, is that the former type more interests me and invokes thought, whereas the latter type is one I simply relate to. Initially I would enjoy the more relateable album more, but as my life goes on I might change, and relate to that album less and less, but I would still retain as much interest in the former type of album.

So really what I;m trying to say is that I enjoy personal albums more, but I enjoy impersonal ones longer, and my question is which lyrical style you prefer or which you think is better to write?

Once again I apologize if I didn't convey the information very well, so please ask questions, I hope this is a good discussion!

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It just really depends on what's on my mind lately. When I was with my ex fiance, my songs were, for the most part, upbeat. See, at that time, I was an instrumental artist. But the emotions I was feeling was somewhat reflected in the titles. But even still, the songs on my first record, unintentionally, reflected...a kind of upbeat feeling. Even the intense emotional songs were subconsciously played in an upbeat mood.

However, we broke up this January, instrumental work was not enough. I had to start writing and singing...just to get it all out. I had NEVER sang before, but I just had to to get things off my chest. At first, it was covers that kind of felt like I was feeling. At the time, I was filled with anger and questions. And the covers I started singing (which will probably never release, because I didn't know how to sing yet) reflected that. Possession by Sarah McLaughlin Black by Pearl Jam, Case of You by Joni Mitchell, and even originals of mine like the one called Bitch...all of these reflected what I was feeling.

Now that the fire has died down, and I'm recording my full length album, things are still on the more hurtful subjects. And it's been remarkably theraputic. This next album...oh boy is it gonna be a doozy. Not only is it my first release foray into singing, but the lyrical content...I think it's relateable, and the few who listen to it (I have almost no fanbase lol) will be able to identify with it. I've never written anything so real before. And if my ex hears it...oh boy lol.

Getting back on track here, oddly enough, it's only after I've suffered this huge loss and heartbreak, have I really been able to really...write. Lyrics and emotions just flow out of me...sometimes instrumental songs are enough, sometimes I need to sing it. I really enjoy listening to my own work, and honestly, some of the stuff inspired by recent events, is my favorite things I've ever done. I did a song called "Maybe Christmas"...it's simple, understated, loose in structure, but gosh, it feels so real to me you know? And I hope, if and when people hear it, it maybe helps them if they're going through something similar. My whole message with the next record is to target those who went through what I went through, and I wanna reach out and tell them it's okay...

IDK, I guess I went of on a f*cking tangent there huh? Um, tl;dr version, I find more enjoyment out of listening, writing and recording more personal songs. lol

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In my opinion...both! Take Plush by Stone Temple Pilots for example. He wrote the song referencing both a news article and his own personal experience. I think that you can pull your own personal experience and feeling into a song, but keep it "mystical" enough that it is not just the same thing everyone has said over and over again about love and heartache. Sufjan Stevens also does this well with his states projects. He mixes historical facts with his own personal experiences.

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