If you are reading this, chances are, you are either a rapper, or aspiring to become one.
A lot of people make the mistake of thinking that rapping is easy (which it is not). The flow and rhythm involved in rapping can take years to master, and that too if you have the aptitude or the talent for it.
Nevertheless, these are 5 tips every aspiring rapper should keep in mind:
1. Become acquainted with all rap styles: East Coast, West Coast, South. Listen carefully to rappers from with different styles and note their rhythm, flow and lyrical structures. A good ear for different rap styles is probably the number one thing you can have to be a good rapper, and will eventually help you create your own individual style.
2. Invest in a dictionary. While this may not sound very “hip hop”, but a strong vocabulary can really set you apart from dozens of other aspiring rappers. If you don’t know a word, look it up, and learn to use it in appropriate situations. Cleverly rhymed words that depart from the norm are the best weapons in the arsenal of any rapper.
3. Don’t be very strict about your song structure. You don’t have to start from verse to chorus to verse and so on. Experiment with different writing styles, and let the tune come to you naturally in whatever order it appears. If you get the chorus before the verse, or the outro before the chorus, don’t worry about it; the song structure can always be modified and tweaked later on.
4. Record yourself rapping as often as you can. This is the best form of feedback you can get. How you sound in person may be very different from what you sound like in your records.
5. Practice your timing. Rap is all about rhythm, flow and timing. Note how rappers like Eminem will accentuate the lyric at the end of a beat. Little tricks like this make all the difference and really sets you apart from the crowd. Get a few beats (or make your own) and practice rapping to it using any random words that pop into your mind (it doesn’t have to sound good or professional), varying your timing to see what sounds the best.