This article is for those of you, who are still developing their rapping skills. Still experimenting with rhyme schemes, content matter and different instrumentals.
You’re probably motivated by the sole motive of becoming better at rapping, so you can one day have music that can be heard by the the people. Let me show you the way, with which you can be sure that you’re on the right road to achieving this dream.
Philosophy behind the Methods
I will present you with a number of methods which will ensure your improvement in rapping, but before I do this, I feel it’s only right to give you the overall philosophy behind those methods, not to sound smart, but so you can create your own methods deriving from it.
The truth is that you are what you do and if you want to become a better rapper, you should dedicate a big chunk of your day to the improvement of your rap skills. You’re in the building stage right now, you don’t need to wait for the inspiration to hit you and then write rhymes.
Not feeling like writing lyrics is not an excuse right now. You either want to get better or you don’t. If you do, you have to be willing to show your desire by incorporating the following methods in your daily routine.
1. Promise that you will write one song per day
I would repeat that this is for those of you, who have the burning desire to improve their rapping. If you’re busy, make time. This is very important. Writing and recording one full song per day is the keystone of your improvement.
Go on youtube, search for a cool beat, download it, think of your structure, write your lyrics and chorus, record it at home and then listen to it and look for mistakes.
This is the best way with which you will improve your skills, guaranteed.
If you don’t have a microphone, for god sakes buy one, you can find cheap microphones for 20 bucks or less. You won’t show these songs to anybody, they are strictly for you, they are training songs.
I guarantee that you will improve your delivery over time.
Motivate yourself, you have to do the song. This is something that just should be done. It might be hard in the beginning, but you will get used to it and writing that song will eventually become the highlight of your day.
Here are 3 Little Known Ways to Supercharge Your Rhyming Skills
Rapping, as a music platform and an art form, is really complex. If a person dives into all of the details and all of the little things that make up the whole, he might get lost. Researching and learning all the details, makes you divert your focus from the most important aspect of rapping-the actual rhymes.
Some might find it weird, but once you start with the different rhyme schemes and the delivery patterns and the argument structures, you forget about the actual rhymes. Can you rhyme? How many rhyme words do you know for carrot? What about telescope? What about colonoscopy?
That’s what I mean. The art of rhyming is sometimes forgotten, when you get to the more advanced echelons of rap music.
Always Try to Spy With Your Little Eye
You have to make sure that you keep it on your watch. You have to practice rhyming constantly, because once you stop, the rhyme words stop popping up too. How do you do it though?
Well, I recently realized that my rhyming library has lost some books and I invented a few games, which I started playing a while back. Games, which work out my rhyming skills. Games, that help me add more rhymes to my arsenal. Let me share some of them with you.
The Walking Rapper
The first game I invented for myself was the “Walking Rapper”. I’m quite busy these days and I find myself constantly walking from one place to the other. What I thought was that I can use this time for something productive. No need to look at girls all the time! So, the game is-everything you see-you rhyme.
You see an ass, you start it in your head-bass, grass, nas, blast, class, mass. Okay, you can’t do anymore? Fine, what do you see next? A car? Car-bar, scar, star, tar, far, tzar. You get the game?
It’s something so productive, because I go where I have to go and while I’m walking there, I’m polishing up my rhyming skills always thinking of new rhyme words. Keeping those rhymes in my head makes it really easy when I sit down and actually write a quatrain. They just pop out.
Weird Rhyme of the Day
Next thing I like doing is just to open up a dictionary and see a weird looking word. Something weird, like “parachute”. I pick out words, which have a strange and uncommon syllable formation. Something weird in other words. Once I pick it, I try thinking of rhymes for it. I do that every morning and I think of rhymes whenever I get the chance throughout my day.
I call it “Weird Rhyme of the Day”. I always have one. This boosts my creativity when it comes to imagining words in my head and matching the ones, which rhyme. So, you might include this in your daily regime too. It’s super easy and it always keeps you on that rhyming track.
For example, I open up my dictionary in the morning and I see “parachute”. Then I go off and do what I have to do. The first chance I have some spare time, I remember the “Weird Rhyme of the Day” and start thinking of rhymes for it. “Parachute, nada food, gotta loot, bought a boot, saw a flood” and so on. You know what I mean?
The next game I invented was “The Train”. It’s pretty much the same techniques, but what you gotta do is think of words that can rhyme right next to each other and make sense. For example “bill”. Okay- Bill, steal or kill, whatever you feel, you’d still have my seal, you can chill, that’s real.
You get what I mean? You pick a word and just rain a train on it. Once you get good with the small words, try some of the “constitution/pollution/solution/revolution type of words. It get’s real deep.
So yes, that’s the three games I’m currently playing and my rhyming is getting back to my old gold glory days. They work! How do you keep your rhyming dictionary? What is your way of getting more rhymes? Tell me about it. If you have a different game, I’d be happy to try it!
2. Start listening to music from another angle
You’re probably listening to your favorite rappers right now, with the motive of enjoying their music, not thinking about anything and just vibing to their melody. If you’re dedicated to become better everyday, you have to listen to music from a different prospective. Don’t listen, STUDY.
Study his rhyme schemes, maybe you can incorporate something in your lyrics. Study his content matter. Why did he say that? What does it mean? What effect does it have on the audience? Can I use a similar technique?
Study his delivery.
Study the way he performs the song, his breath breaks, his vocal tonality and so on. Be a student of rap, not a consumer. You’re a rapper now, cross the river bank and come on our side.
Learn Rapping From Your Favorite Rapper?
Perhaps you want to rap like Nas. Maybe, you’d like to replicate some feature from Eminem’s flow. Regardless of your favorite rapper, this part will show you how to analyze and replicate someone’s flow and rapping technique in 3 easy steps.
The first step is to analyze the way, your favorite rapper is writing his verses. You’d want to analyze his rhyme schemes and breath break patterns, so you could then use them in your own songs.
The most effective way to do this, is to:
- Take a sheet of paper-you could use a text file on your computer as well, depending on your preferences.
- Write down one of the verses in a standard bar structure-Listen to the song and write down one of the verses. Write it down in the standard structure, which is a bar per line. This way, you’ll find it easier and simpler to analyze.
- Analyze what you see-Look at the lyrics and focus on the rhyming structure. Forget about the actual content. Concentrate on the rhyme schemes and how did he write it down. What is the science behind them. Try to imagine that you’ve written those rhyme schemes. How did you do it? Note down your insights on a separate piece of paper.
- Practice-Knowledge is useless, unless it’s put to practice. Try to write something with the new rhyme schemes you just learnt. Use the knowledge right away and engrave the technique into your skill set.
The next thing you’d want to take into account is the delivery methods of your favorite rapper. How is he delivering his lyrics? You should focus on:
- Intonations-Notice how is he actually rapping. Where is he stressing, where is he prolonging, where is he shortening. Where is he raising his voice, where is he lowering it. How does he do it?
- Replicate-The best way to learn his intonations is to try it yourself. Listen to one of his rhyme schemes and attempt to deliver it the same way that he did. Use the same intonation and voice that he used.
It might feel strange in the beginning, but you’ll eventually figure his style out. Choose the feature you like the most and put it in your own pot of delivery skills.
This is the hardest part, since you need to know how to interpret someone’s words. Most rappers use punchlines nowadays, since they’re powerful and easily remembered.
In order to decipher a punchline, go beyond the words and dig deep, all the way to the root of what’s being said. The meaning of the punchline will lead you to the actual feeling or status, the rapper wants to portray.
Once you figure out what is he trying to portray and express, you can then understand his choice of using the specific punchline.
3. Analyze the lyrics of your favorite songs
Have you seen our lyrics analyzer section? What about our How to Rap Like: section? I think you should. We’re extracting the lyrics from a song and then we analyze its rhyme schemes. This is a habit which you should create for yourselves.
Whenever you have time, or you don’t feel like writing lyrics, don’t just waste your time doing nothing man, time is priceless.Turn this into an opportunity, where you can learn something new.
Analyze the lyrics and incorporate what you like in your writings, enriching them with different styles. The style of a rapper is nothing more than a mix of the styles of other rappers plus a touch of innovation.
On the other hand, you could revise your own lyrics and update them.
I will show you a technique, which can be used to polish up your rhyming skills. It’s very difficult to write great bars, right from the start.
You have to think about content, you have to give it a flow, you have to think of your rhyme schemes and so on. This chips away your mental space and at the end, your bars do not look that special, when you know you can do better.
What you can do is to first write your quatrain in a regular manner.
Write it like you’re always writing it. However, after you have the bars right in front of you, start improving them.
What I mean by that is, start thinking of better ways to say something. Maybe you weren’t as clear as you should’ve been and people would find it hard to understand what you meant? Well fix that.
You have the bar right in front of you, so you can visually see your corrections. Change words, improve expressions.
Pimp up your rhymes
Can you add an internal in the middle of your bar?
Can you make that single rhyme, a compound one? Can you hook three words at a time? Pimp up your bars by improving the already written rhyme schemes.
At the end of the day, this will give you the more advanced version of your lyrics. The improved version. Do that and after you’ve done improving your quatrain, compare the “before/after” state of your bars. I’m sure you’ll see the difference.
You can do that for a quatrain, you can do that for a whole song. It’s just different when you revise something and do things one by one and not everything at once. Your brain can focus solely on the rhyme, or solely on the content. Do you understand?
So, feel free to try this technique for polishing up your lyrics. Through the years, I’ve found that it’s been vital for my song creation process. Perhaps, it could benefit you too.
4. Motivation is vital
There will be days where you won’t feel like writing. There will be days when you don’t feel like having anything to do with rap music, but you know what?
You gave yourself a promise that you will become better at rapping everyday. That you wont give up until you reach the success you strive for. So you really HAVE to do it, it’s that simple.
Only suckers and losers give up man. Only weak people don’t do what they have to do. You won’t feel like writing in the beginning, but once you get into it properly, you will forget about everything and just let your creativity flow.
Make rapping and creating songs your entertainment for each day.
We recently received the following question from one of our readers:
“I like rapping, but I don’t know what to rap about! Nothing that interesting happens in my life guys, the only interesting thing is my blistered foot! Please help!”
Rap is an art form
As such, it can be used for various purposes. If you find it hard to talk about the current events in your life, you might want to talk about your history or your future.
Reveal your past to the audience and watch how they begin to connect with you.
Talking about your past builds your public character and uncovers your secrets. Fans feel they’re closer to you, once they know what you’ve been through. Great examples of this are Eminem and 50 Cent.
There are many things about your past that you can write about, such as:
- Tell us about your upbringing
- Funny stories
- The events which shapes you as a person
- The mistakes you’ve made and the lessons you’ve learnt
- The people life presented to you and their influence on you
- The environment in which you grew up and its effect on your outlook on life
On the other hand, you may want to talk about the future.
- Show them your ambition and strive.
- Share your vision about yourself with the listener.
- Tell them your plan, this gets some of them to identify with you as well.
- Use “IF” statements. They are the type when you say “if this happens, I’ll do that.”.
-They’re a great medium, via which you can show character traits.
You can also delve into your imagination and write abstract songs, that present the listener with an idea, a message.
You put a mask and different clothes, personify the main character of your fantasy. Just like an actor, you expose his every fear and twisted ideal. This is a great way to transfer your listener into another world, a different reality.
Rapping for the Moment
Nevertheless, there is always something worth writing about, when you’re talking about the present.
You might think that your life is boring, but it’s really you who feel bored. Just open your eyes and pay attention to what you’re feeling throughout the day.
If you’re sitting in front of the computer all day, you can make a song about:
- The websites you visit
- The things you’ve seen today
- How is the internet affecting you
- Do you like this lifestyle
- How to change this way of living
- Your relationships with your friends
There is always something to write about. Keep an open mind and you’ll never miss those moments, that are worthy for a song.
5. No Magic Pills Available People
I’m sorry if you expected this article to give you a fast and easy way to become the next Big L, but it just doesn’t work that way.
What you get is what you put into. After reading this article, don’t just scroll down looking for other articles. Get a piece of paper, a pen and decide how will you incorporate those principles in your daily regime.
How are you going to fit them into your busy day schedule? Make your rap improvement methods a daily habit and success will eventually come to you. The questions is just when.