The Art of Using Repetition in a Chorus


As a songwriter, one of the most important aspects of writing a great song is crafting a memorable chorus. And one of the keys to crafting a memorable chorus is the use of repetition.

Why Repetition is Important in a Chorus

Repetition is a powerful tool in songwriting because it helps to cement the chorus in the listener’s mind. When listeners hear a repeated hook or phrase, it becomes easier for them to remember the song and sing along.

But repetition is more than just a tool for memorization. It also creates a sense of familiarity and comfort for the listener. When they hear a repeated phrase, it provides a sense of security and anticipation, almost like a musical hug.

How to Use Repetition Effectively

Of course, just repeating a phrase over and over again isn’t going to make for a great chorus. The key is to use repetition in a way that is both catchy and meaningful.

One effective technique is to vary the melody slightly with each repetition. This can be as simple as changing the note or adding a riff, but it can make a big impact on the overall catchiness of the chorus.

Another technique is to vary the lyrics slightly with each repetition. This can help to build anticipation for the next line and keep the listener engaged with the song.

But perhaps the most important aspect of using repetition effectively is using it strategically. Not every line in the chorus needs to be repeated, and the repetition should be used to emphasize the most important and memorable lines.

Examples of Repetition in Popular Songs

  • “I Will Always Love You” by Whitney Houston: The phrase “I will always love you” is repeated throughout the chorus, each time with a slightly different melody.
  • “Don’t Stop Believin’” by Journey: The line “Don’t stop believin’” is repeated throughout the chorus, with the melody and lyrics staying consistent each time.
  • “Hey Jude” by The Beatles: The phrase “Hey Jude” is repeated throughout the chorus, with the melody and lyrics changing slightly each time.


The art of using repetition in a chorus is a powerful tool in songwriting. When used effectively, repetition can create a memorable and catchy chorus that stays with the listener long after the song is over. By varying the melody, lyrics, and strategic use of repetition, songwriters can create a chorus that is both meaningful and memorable.