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I Want To Be a Hip-Hop Star
Today, Hip-Hop rules the world. It’s the dominant musical genre, produces a wide swath of America’s celebrities, and is used in everything from film soundtracks to selling soap on TV. To think just a few short decades ago, Hip-Hop and rap were viewed as a non-commercial and niche thing, it’s almost mind-boggling. Today it’s a literal multi-billion dollar industry. Because of this wild success many young people dream of becoming a Hip-Hop star. It’s a career that facilitates multiple avenues. It’s a calling for some people. It presents a way to become a part of history. It’s seen as a way to lift yourself out of poverty and also to make a name for yourself that will be remembered. And loved. Hip-Hop culture has a very tangible sense of it’s past. It respects those that came before and it celebrates them. But the question is how do you bridge the gap. It’s one thing to want to be a rapper or a Hip-Hop producer. It’s something completely different to put the pieces of that machine together. How do you figure out how to build yourself a career in an industry where everything seems to be intangible? Easy. Make yourself undeniable. You need to start making work. Produce your own work, rap on other people’s songs, build yourself a network.
How to Start a Rapping CareerThere’s a key attribute that all successful creative people share. It’s hustle. They all have an entrepreneurial streak. They’re all self-starters. They’re all people who get up in the morning hungry to make things and find a way to get them in front of people. The world of music is just like any business that revolves around industry connections… it’s all about who you know. It’s all about how wide your network is. It’s all about the value that you bring to the table. If you’re the type of person who can teach themselves to do anything then you better get started now. That’s the way to go. You need to start watching YouTube tutorials and learn how to take your recording and songwriting skills to the next level. Because, when you’re starting out, no one is going to be in you. You Have to believe in yourself. You have to make the music you think needs to be in the world. If you’re not someone who’s an autodidact, going to a trade or technical school can help. You can get the skills you need and develop your voice. However, there are even better ways of getting your feet wet. Most hip-hop artists produce their own music, so the more you can learn about producing and beat making, the better. A great way to do that is simply to find a mentor, someone already working in the industry who is willing to train you in the art of hip-hop production, and hopefully teach you some things about the music business, as well. Another thing you need to learn is how to promote yourself and your music.
Learn About Producing Hip HopMost indie acts today built their followings on the Internet, so the more you can learn about getting your music posted online and using your social networks to build interest, the more likely you are to gain the interest of a record label down the road. Again, it helps to have some sort of mentor, someone who has traveled this path before you. So to sum up, really you need three things in place to become a hip-hop star:
- You need talent and skill—a working knowledge of music. (Hopefully you’ve already spent years developing these skills.)
- You need a working knowledge of music production and some experience in a recording studio.
- You need to market yourself—to find your audience, typically through the Internet.