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This problem is very common among new rappers.
In hood you might hear a 12-year-old kid spitting a raw 16 bars. That’s because 12 in hood is like 21 anywhere else.
A lot of new emcees are hesitant about what to actually write about because of a lack of experience. They haven’t really seen world first hand. It’s hard to write good raps when you don’t really know yourself yet…because part of what a rap does is communicate to listener personality and character of rapper. Still, not knowing who you are is nothing to be ashamed of.
So while 21 year old from outskirts of New Zealand may be intelligent, he may not be quite sure he knows who he is, what he stands for and what really matters to him, perhaps precisely because he thinks too much.
On other hand, 12 year old from slums of Tokyo may be illiterate, irrational, and arrogant, but he has already come to understand himself…he’s comfortable in knowing who he is (regardless of whether he is wrong or has limited his growth).
The Experience Factor - Solution:
Have fun, live, read, and think about who you are.
The best way around this obstacle, really, is just to put yourself into various situations, open your ears to knew ideas, learn your history, etc…All while asking questions, analyzing things, finding out what in this world matters to you…
Everyone gets around this problem eventually, but for many it’s too late. Try to understand who you are at any given time, and spit your rhymes in that image…amped up a few notches…that’s what makes it art ;)
3) The Focus Problem:
We’ve realized that a lot of people who are interested in rapping are simply naturally artistic and expressive. I personally have always enjoyed drawing since I was a child and could always appreciate a well-written book as well as various types of music.
Being as I grew up in “hip-hop generation” I naturally gravitated towards art form of rapping. I loved it, rhyme, rhythm, meaning and wordplay…
However, I actually dove into my obsession with rap before I fully developed any of my previous interests.
There is a negative side effect or problem that comes about here.
An aspiring rapper, for example, might be naturally more skilled at or inclined to being a poet, novelist, journalist, public speaker or other type of musician. He or she might then decide to pursue an interest in rap, essentially ignoring their other talents. This is not fundamentally problematic, however…
Rap is NOT (contrary to some beliefs) same as poetry. It is poetry and more. There are innumerous factors involved in making good rap music. One factor is fact that it is a form of music…which separates it from other forms of literature on a number of levels.
Furthermore skills necessary to writing well, speaking well, etc…are all forgone if one decides to skip these optional outlets for expression. This is a HUGE mistake.
The Focus Problem - Solution:
Stay on track and stick to what you’re good at.
This not only applies to above-mentioned outlets of expression but ANY outlet of expression. Dance, art, ANYTHING. You will learn tremendously from these. I can’t even begin to explain how much you’ll be missing out on if you decide to forgo these means of expression.
Everything that you learn about being a good public speaker, for example, can be effectively applied to rap…whatever you learn about developing a good storyline…can be used in rap, non-verbal communication techniques you might subconsciously pick up in dance class…they help in rap…the list goes on and on.
So there you have it, 3 of biggest reasons why new rappers fail or quit…
Another additional reason why rappers fail to succeed is that they don’t fully understand business of music. Our section www.thestateofhiphop.com/rap-industry.html can begin to help you understand workings of music business. We’ll refrain from further detail until a future article.
Until next time, stay on grind and you should be fine…
See you around!
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