A lyricist writes the words for the music. The lyrics are set to music that is written either by the lyricist or by a music composer. Sometimes the music is written before the lyrics, and sometimes the lyrics are completed before the music is written.
There are three types of lyric writers:
1) A person who only writes the words is a lyricsist
2) A person who writes the lyrics and the music is a songwriter
3) A person who writes the lyrics to opera music is a librettist
Lyrics writers enjoy creative writing, poetry and music. Successful writers like Oscar Hammerstein II (Sound of Music, Oklahoma, and the The King and I) work very hard to make their words interesting and memorable.
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