In today’s article, we’ll break down three key things that you’ll need to give up to become a rapper.
As somebody who has not only performed in over 15 countries just from my rapping alone, but also has personally coached over 1,000 rappers over the course of the last six years…
I hope that this article will not only serve to guide AWAY from habits that might hurt your chances at becoming a rapper…
…But also will help to inspire you to keep going if you’ve started and already removed these things from your life.
1) Rapping Weekly (As Opposed To Rapping Daily)
What I mean here is that you should be rapping a little bit every single day as opposed to what most rappers do…
…Which is “fit rap into their schedule”.
The big mindset shift I want you to take after watching this video is that “rapping” and practice “rapping” does not always have to take the form of “sitting down undisturbed to write a full song of rap”.
There are many different wordplay drills and punchline games you can play even while doing other things.
One of my favorite games to play to practice rap even when I have a tight schedule is what I like to call “The Rhyme Game”.
The Rhyme Game
The Rhyme Game is where you see something in front of you… and without worrying about a beat or “sounding dope”… you list four or five things that rhyme with it OUT LOUD.
The only real rules are you have to push yourself to think quickly so that you are practicing thinking of rhymes faster than normal…
Try to have the rhymes connected in some sort of understandable sentence…
…AND you have to say it out loud so that you are practicing DELIVERING rhymes as opposed to just thinking them.
This game is often best practiced WITH other people because then when you run out of rhymes, they can pick up where you left of and they might present some rhymes you didn’t even THINK of…
…Which can help you remember more and more original rhymes with the help of others…
But it’s a game that you can do on your own while working on other things or even just cleaning up your rhyme.
So, as a quick example…
Let’s say you are cleaning up your rhyme and you see a basketball laying in the corner.
You start the Rhyme Game by saying “basketball” out loud.
After you’ve said “basketball”… think quickly of words that rhyme with it.
“Your girl wants me to TAP IT RAW…
But I let my thing fill up HALF HER JAW
Like she swallowed too much APPLE SAUCE”
Rhymes with “basketball”
Become A Rapper Jim Jones
Ballin’ like Jim Jones
After you’ve run through a few rhymes with basketball… maybe you look and see your closet in your eyeline.
You ain’t good at rap STOP IT
Even you grabbing a mic is paid for my OPTICS
Like taking a DROP KICK”
Rhymes with “closet”
And so on.
This is just one example of a word game that you can practice daily no matter what so that you avoid only rapping once a week as opposed to once a day.
Now this game is based on the ability to freestyle or spontaneously rhyme, which is a big part of thinking rhymes faster.
If you’re interested in improving your freestyles, For a link to one of our courses which will help you learn how to master the art of freestyle rap in two weeks, click HERE.
2) Writing Raps Without Choruses
This is something that we’re all guilty of.
If you’ve ever heard the expression that a rapper “can definitely spit… BUT HE CAN’T WRITE A SONG TO SAVE HIS LIFE”…
It’s usually due to the fact that he hasn’t spent much time practicing how to write a catchy chorus… or writing choruses in general.
The most important mindset behind writing choruses is to understand that is truly the part that MOST people are going to REMEMBER about the song.
You cannot forget that the average music listener consumes their favorite tracks in “song” format, which means that they prefer to have YOU as the songwriter make it easy on them by having a section of the song which is easy to remember.
My biggest go-to tips for rappers when starting to write choruses are:
A) Keep each line of rap to 5-10 words
Where as on the verse, you might have extremely complex rhyme schemes and word choice, the chorus should usually be limited to just a few words per line of rap to help keep it memorable and easy to say.
B) Sum up the “emotion” of the song
No matter what the song is about, lyrically (and sonically) the chorus should FEEL emotionally like it’s telling the whole story of the song in a few seconds.
So, if it’s meant to be an uplifting song, you can have a simple chorus of just a few words per line… that is delivered in an enthusiastic manner… such as “Touch The Sky” by Kanye West or “Lose Yourself” by Eminem.
Re-listen to those songs. Notice how when the chorus lands it feels emotionally like we’re meant to be uplifted?
That’s because the chorus lyrically and sonically matches the uplifting nature of the track.
Become A Rapper Method Man
Switch the flow like Method Man
C) Noticeable Change In Flow From The Verse
When I say flow, I meant the rhythm of the words you’re delivering.
In addition to keep the chorus simple and emotionally relevant, make sure that the rhythm of your words, your “flow”, is noticeably different from the verse.
This will help the listener to subconsciously know that THIS is a separate part of the song that they’re meant to follow along to.
If you follow these three rules when starting to write your choruses, you should be well on your way to making more catchy music.
For even more tips on song structure and chorus writing, be sure to pick up that free chorus we mentioned at the top by clicking HERE.
Become A Rapper Diddy
Invest in your career
3) Avoiding Investing In Your Career
Look, if you want to match the quality and experience level of great rappers, you’re going to have match the quality of their recording and performance experience level as well.
This doesn’t mean you have to go to Guitar Center TOMORROW and spend $50,000 on a studio, but it DOES mean you have to get into the habit of investing your money, time, and energy at some point.
If your goal is to simply get good enough perform a rap or freestyle around your friends, you might not have to worry about this…
…But if you want to have full, luscious songs that a DJ could play at a party or could even get you signed…
You’ll have to invest some dough.
If you’re brand new you don’t need anything more than recording software, a mic, a computer, and a semi-decent space to record.
We’ve included a super affordable studio guide in another free course (you can get it by clicking HERE) which will help tell you what to buy on the cheap…
…But no matter what you can’t get into the habit of trying to cheat the culture by never having any quality recordings if you’re trying to make it big in rap.
Just like there are experienced rappers, there are experienced listeners, and they will notice the difference of a well-recorded or well-performed rap in a SECOND.
In addition to having a recording set-up, invest your energy in getting some performance experience under your belt.
That doesn’t mean you have to hound down booking agents for a tour. Even just rapping EVERY single time you are asked, or rapping for a few minutes EVERY time you are at a social gathering can REALLY help quiet your nerves and help you can experience with rapping in public.
A little bit of investment goes a long way.
Let’s review the three things you need to give up to become a rapper that we discussed today:
1) Rapping Weekly (As Opposed To Rapping Daily)
You can practice rapping in many different ways than just sitting down to write a full song. Practice word games such as “The Rhyme Game” discussed above.
2) Writing Raps Without Choruses
Don’t become one of those rappers who is “good, but can’t write a song to save his life”. Practice writing hooks with each rap.
3) Noticeable Change In Flow From The Verse
Make it easy on the listener by having a nice rhythmic change in your words during the chorus (to keep it emotionally separate from the verse).
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Which of the three things do you want to give up first to become a rapper?
–Drew Morisey, @drewmorisey on Instagram and Twitter