There’s a fear of the cliché. When writing music, the worry of perhaps writing something written before – whether done consciously or not – can be paralyzing. But why?
Here’s a wonderful work by Willie Nelson where the lyrics seem to be a series of simple phrases and commonly used statements. But the key is that he seems to know and feel where those phrases come from.
Commonly used words, phrases, sentences, notes, etc – are common for a reason. There is something shared between people in those expressions. Somewhere in there is a touch upon the human condition.
When used cheaply, as a way to bring attention to oneself, for example, or for reasons other than the pursuit of depths of communication found in art, then these phrases feel trite. But, when called upon by a wish to express this human condition, a commonly used phrase is still imbued with the emotion that originally birthed its soul.