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What makes a good rapper? Condenser Microphones
Old 27th December 2010
Gear Nut

it comes down to "what is rap" no?...its all perception, i have a perception of what is good for me to spit, but i also appreciate other levels of music that is considered "rap" or "hip hop" or any of the sub genres....for me i like to tell my stories, my stories are true and from the heart, my soul bleeds into my lyrics , and with my for me sometimes i may use the same word to to rhyme IF it fits the the theme and keeps the story going, BUT i wont rhyme something just for the sake of rhyming...and from my listening experience so many of the wordplay/rhyme combos have been over done, not just in the and not just in the whips, bling and bitches sector a time where most things have really already been done there doesnt seem to be alot of room to innovate just for the sake of innovation factor these days...or maybe those are just my limiting beliefs....i posted this on here before but, i make music for myself, i enjoy i listening/feeling/looking at my creation, it would just be a bonus if someone else was feeling my vibe, i do think the uniqueness lies within my life experiences, no amount of money can by the life ive lived and keep striving for and pushing my limits and true life potential.....THIS is what i feel makes me a "good rapper" for what i think makes other good rappers.....its a little of this and a little of that if i feel i feel it, and if i don't i don't.
Old 27th December 2010
Gear Addict
PeeWeeGee's Avatar

Originally Posted by BringItBack View Post
Hunger, Energy, Mic technique, Cadence, smooth execution/delivery, conveying emotion/vibe, knowing when to spit uphill/downhill are probably the best signs of a good MC.

A good sounding room and headphone mix along with some quality lyrics should seal the deal.

The lyrics and track are more important than one might think for most performers. I've seen average MCs jump a few notches up performance-wise when they really took pride in their lyrics or felt they had to step it up to take advantage of a track/opportunity.
Originally Posted by 0t0b0t View Post
Flow, content, voice, delivery, stage presence.
Originally Posted by Seventh Knight View Post
Okay...I'ma jump into this for a sec...LOL

Disclaimer: I'm not getting into a "hip hop emcee" vs "rapper" debate here. Also, as usual, what I'm saying is just my opinion. As with anything...take with a grain of salt...or with some pepper, some other seasonings and start cooking with it.

One way is to institute (or reestablish) The "CLAMP" Method. This was the method in which artists (especially hip hop) used "back in the day."






There are very few that could and do pull all of the whole method off nowadays. It's mainly because of labels, artists, and fans. Why I do I say this? Because there's always a label somewhere that will sign an artist anytime and a fan that will buy or listen to an artist all the time. With that, it means that there's an audience everywhere. Why do Katz that have little or no lyrical skillz get the record deal, sell a good amount of media, and have lots of fans? Yes the labels and their machine play a big part in all of this but there's a another key element: USP Unique Selling Proposition.

To explain...

Concept: Any serious Hip Hop (or any other music genere but lets stay on topic) should understand their own concept of their artist name, persona, and media they're pushing on everyone. The "USP" deals directly with "Concept." What does your artist name mean? Does it stand out? Does it make people curious? Is it marketable? Does it sell you before you sell yourself? Not dissing anyone but you've got a lot of artists that have "Young" or "Yung" in front of their name and for what? I knew one of those types (note I've met some that are off the chain) during a concert and a member of the audience asked them what their name meant. He said, "I just like having that 'Yung' in front of my name cause I think it's cool." The same person asked me about my name and I go through my usual and prepared response, "Sevens in The Bible mean 'completion' but it's also the most powerful number. In some circles, it means 'food' as well. A 'Knight' is a chosen warrior chosen by a King to do great works on the battlefield for the kingdom for the king's glory. I was chosen by 'The King of Kings' to do great works on this battlefield we call 'Earth' for God's Glory. Plus, it's a cool name because it's unique." At that point, everytime the fan is like, "Mayne that's cool!" or more but the main thing is that the I gave the fan more about me than the other artist and that gave me more face time with the fan. Now, they can't wait till the album (Yeah I said, "Album") drops because they already have an idea of what I'm about before they hear any more music from me!

Lyrcism: How intricate and challenging are your lyrics? How do they affect the masses? Just putting "cat" with "hat" does not make a's how one can put em together to influence the masses in a positive way. It's more than just shinin on a hook or a few bars here and there. Can you talk about more than just the grils, sex, money, thuggin, jewels, and cars? Can you talk political, topical, social, or intellectual? Are you versatile or just one dimensional? Can your lyrics actually carry the whole song!

Attitude: Ever been to a concert or open mic and you've got a bunch of Katz on stage with their hands cupped over the mic yelling, the crowd moving, and nobody understood what the whole song was about? Yeah...I know. A lot of Katz can develop an attitude very easy. However...does it go with your persona as an artist? Are you hardcore, lyrical, gangsta, political, pimp, hustler, lover, intellectual...or are you a combination of things? How does your "attitude" affect and/or influence the crowd and fans?

Music: We all know banging tracks can make almost any artist shine even if they have little or no lyrical skillz or talent. However, does the music flow with the words and make an actual song? Or is it just a track that's empty? Does it sound like it was a rushed remake of another song? Does it sound like it's just thrown together...or does it have that "ish" that you love the vocal and instrumental versions?

Performance: Okay...almost anyone can get up and grab a mic and do see it all the time at karaoke places. You also see it at open mics and on American Idol. However...just because one can entertain their friends don't mean that they can entertain a crowd. Try entertaining people that could care less who you are, what your name is, what gear and accessories you have on, and how banging your track is. You gotta work just to make one head nod much less 10, 100, 1000 or more. That's a whole different story. Who is your target audience? Are you performing at a church, rec center, or club? What type of club is it? Do your songs match with the crowd your performing for? Are you laid back, hyped up, or in between? Every artist is different...but very few take the time to figure these things out. I've been there...performing with one mic in my hand and a mic point right into a little bitty boombox because I didn't know that the church I was performing for didn't have a good sound system. By that time, it's too late to just leave. Since then, I'll either check out the venue well in advance or if it's somewhere I have to drive a good distance but not long enough to have to spend the night somewhere then I'll get there at least a couple of hours early so I'll know what I'm working with.

Just my two cents!

Dig into what these dudes said and you're 99% of the way home. They've covered all the bases of BASIC emceeing. They just forgot that one little element called LUCK.

There is something to be said about TIMING that causing an emcee to shine during their ascent to prominence. I can't put my finger on it, but it's there. For example, Drake could have never competed in the era of Rakim and Big Daddy Kane. Kool Moe Dee would be out of place now. You get the picture.

There are other factors that I think are a factor, but they lean toward the metaphysical and would (probably) be ill-received in the HH forum.
Old 27th December 2010
Lives for gear
RTR's Avatar
Originally Posted by quadrafunk View Post
The rapper has to have energy and delivery. I know a lot of guys that can write amazing rhymes that sound horrible when they try to spit it over the beat. Reason being, the vocal is not harmonizing or carrying any melody with any other instrument in the arrangement. For this reason, you've got to be able to fit those words inside the beat.

The vibe of the artist will help it blend with the track. Otherwise, it just sits on the beat. A good flow keeps the song moving. This is important because often times the track isn't changing all that much musically.

A good rapper can actually write verses that relate to the hook. Sounds simple but a lot guys just don't get it.
so true and it really sucks that you are considered great if you can relate the verse to the hook...Ummm,,,thats what the damn verse is for...crazy what the public will fall for!!
Old 10th January 2011
Gear Nut

I found out myself what makes a good rapper(IMO) and yes u guys did point out a lot of great things! but to summarize...

If u can rap good without a mic then u can rap.
Old 10th January 2011
Gear Nut

Originally Posted by Mr.Cheese View Post
Wiz Khalifa is a joke and sucks at rapping. His music lacks depth, realism, maturity and essence.

It's the same cookie cutter bull**** rappers all over the country are trying to emulate.

He covers his entire body in ink and raps about smoking weed cause that's all he knows how to do.

But you're right - he's a good rapper
LOL u serioous??? hes one of the greatest. PERIOD i dont care what u say if u been listening to him since his first mixtape u know how hard hes going and he changed hip hop for good. Kush and orange juice was just straight classic. This is my first rude comment but **** u hater .

*Awaiting more hater responses*
Old 10th January 2011
Gear Maniac

(((pigment concentration per million X 1.005 + (sneaker value)^(number of visible abs)) / (years spent in highschool))^ (number of flesh wounds from gangbangin X 1.05)) + (skill X (0.025) + talent x (0.016))

not sure if this is still up to date but i'm sure the coefficients are still quite close.
Old 10th January 2011
Lives for gear

Originally Posted by Mr.Cheese View Post
Clown of the year award goes to MG_BEATS.

LOL "Kush" and "Orange Juice" are his classics, huh?

Sounds like he packed a lot of wisdom in those tracks.
this isn't mgthefuture back with a new account is it?
Old 10th January 2011
Gear Head

While I acknowledge the formula for a successful rapper today, my definition of a good emcee doesn't match the popular ingredients.

A 'good' rapper today will not push the boundary's of what is atypical and accepted. He will follow the recipe and add a dollop of his own flavor, which is typically no more than his natural voice....which requires no ingenuity to create. He will not break molds or innovate.

A GREAT rapper, will look at the level of talent expected by hip hop fans, and raise the bar in a given niche, OR, bring a brand new style to the table, or both. Drake for instance has brought a new voice which melds with his unique atmospheric production, and lyrically, he is pooing on mainstream hip hop today. His conceptual choices may not be the freshest, but he elaborates on them with new angles. I am by no means a big fan of Drake...but he is the best in the limelight right now.

Then you have heads like Jay Electronica who have no reputable hook game, is self admittedly weird, and refuses to conform in the least. He is probably doomed. But he is top 5 to me, because doing something new and innovative is far more valuable to any art form than going with whats cool. His concepts, production choices, flow and rhymes are all marks of a true artist.

Bottom line....To be a good rapper, be original.
Old 11th January 2011
Gear Maniac
good musik's Avatar

You have to know the history of rap to know what is a "good rapper". Everybody has their own opinion of what is good. You have to listen to when it first started to what it is now, and decide what you like. This is a very opinionated question. I would say great wordplay, lyrics, and voice plays the biggest part in my eyes.
Old 11th January 2011
Lives for gear
Marshall Oliver's Avatar

What makes a good rapper?

Old 11th January 2011
Lives for gear

the answer resides within the question...
Old 11th January 2011
Maybe this guy makes a good rapper...

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