On the degree-of-difficulty spectrum, nobody would ever place songwriting next to, say, brain surgery—except, perhaps, those who have actually stared at a blank sheet of paper while their inner voice screamed, “Now, write a hit song!” Fact is, for many artists, the songwriting process—from lyrics and harmonies to melodies and chord progressions—is the epitome of agonizing. That’s why it’s often referred to as the art of songwriting. And why artists like Jackson Browne are held in such high regard by their peers.

For more than half a century, Browne has penned one thoughtful and memorable song after another, both for himself and others. In addition to his own deep catalog that includes “Running on Empty,” “Doctor My Eyes,” “Lawyers in Love” and “Tender Is the Night”—all Top 25 hits on the Billboard charts—Browne has written tunes for such contemporaries as Linda Ronstadt, Gregg Allman and the Eagles, among many others. Just how prolific has Browne been as a singer/songwriter? He’s been inducted into both the Rock and Roll and Songwriters Halls of Fame, and. In 2015, he was named the 37th greatest songwriter by Rolling Stone. Pretty impressive accolades … even if he can’t do brain surgery. –Matt Jacob

The Smith Center for the Performing Arts, 8 p.m. July 13, starting at $40 plus tax and fee. 702.749.2000