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I have a question about rap and creativity
Old 23rd August 2019
  #1
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I have a question about rap and creativity

What makes a creatively engineered rap song? Or should we just bite off everyone that does it better? Is creativity shunned? Are creatives suppressed? Is what we hear on the radio the cream de la cream of production and engineering? Can a engineer even be creative?
Old 23rd August 2019
  #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chauncey View Post
What makes a creatively engineered rap song? Or should we just bite off everyone that does it better? Is creativity shunned? Are creatives suppressed? Is what we hear on the radio the cream de la cream of production and engineering? Can a engineer even be creative?
Yes . Of course . There is always room for new creativity. I am a little familiar with philosophy of creativity and huge fan of all types of hip hop and r&b. I'll try to answer your question.

If you think of creativity as generating new ideas or new things people haven't heard before and are suprized by.

You can do combinational ... Where you take different creative ideas and combine them to make something new. Most of us do that. For example, you can do things like combine house, disco, funk and hip hop to create a new tune or beat.

You can do exploratory where you try to create a new sound by sticking to the conventions and stylistic elements of a type of music but use them in a totally different way. So for example, the Roots are a good example. They take stylistic elements of hip hop but present it in a totally different way. No more 808s or a turn tables and a microphone .. it's a full on band performance with real instruments that it's like they time warped from the Apollo theatre of the 60s but they are still playing modern black music and are playing hip hop.


You can also do transformational. That's usually the hardest to do and not easy to be successful at. It's where you are challenging and testing the limits of the style and genre by pushing at the boundaries of the main stylistic elements that make up the music genre. Ornette Coleman , Thelonious Monk and those types of people did that to jazz. I don't really know of who does it in modern hip hop. I saw ThunderCat a few years ago . I thought he did transformational stuff. It's usually pretty out there music but very cool stuff. I think some of the bigger artists do it as well sometimes because they are so famous and they have the fan base to support them and they can afford to fail of it fails.
Old 28th August 2019
  #3
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i guess but i am starting to loathe creativity. the creative are the last to get on. as someone that is HIGHLY creative i havent got a major placement yet
Old 29th August 2019
  #4
Quote:
Is what we hear on the radio the cream de la cream of production and engineering?
Hell to the no!!
Quote:
Can a engineer even be creative?
Yes and no, it all depends on the role of the engineer.

For instance:
1.) An engineer that is recording is suppose to capture the sound of what the artist is recording to the best of their abilities. so the engineer can be creative in mic placements, room placements and his signal chain, but the sound will be mostly defined by the artist.

2.) An engineer that is mixing, may have more flexibility to be creative, depending on the producer and how much he trust the engineer. Sometimes the engineer just does what the producer tells him to do and sometimes the engineer has freedom to create
Old 29th August 2019
  #5
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Because simply being HIGHLY creative isn't going to be enough to convince people to trust you with the work that they highly value.

From the perspective of an artist and/or a producer; Their main concern isn't how creative you can be, but whether they can trust you to understand the type of moment that their music is trying to create, and whether you will be able to elevate the sound of the mix while at the same time respecting their creative vision and staying true to that moment.

Part of being a great mixing engineer is being humble about the things that you can do and make the mixing session be about giving the artist what you think they want... not what you personally think they "should" want. Taking certain creative liberties with someone else's work should only be done if it's a change that will get that artist closer to where they've expressed wanting to be at with their song, otherwise you may find yourself overstepping boundaries that should be respected. On the other hand, if they give you the creative green light, then it's a different story.

So in essence, this job isn't about serving your own creative desires; it's about being able to serve the creative desires of each and every client, and having your success at serving their needs and wants be what drives the business you conduct, and having that be what opens a lot of different doors for you as a working professional so you can someday reach the level you aspire to and work with some major artists.
Old 31st August 2019
  #6
SFB
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If you want to make money your marketing and promotion skills need to be highly creative. Not your art.
Old 5th September 2019
  #7
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Yeah dude creativity is always appreciated but to those who are creative we will savor it even more, yet be more critical about it at the same time. If you have your own vibe present in everything you do vocally and lyrically, while working with someone who is producing in a unique way.. that's what stands out from the rest, in my opinion. Honestly the best creativity is utilizing every sound you've been inspired by and taking the library of everything you've listened to since you were a kid and letting that color who you are as an artist. It's like having your own DNA dude, nobody else can have the exact same blue print of inspiration and past listening history. Plus the highs and lows, personality traits, psychological issues, etc; all that works to your advantage when you create anything hence why most artists are insane haha. I don't think i'd ever be able to name one single song as an "ideal" but I could identify the components in a bunch of songs that make them "brilliant" but that would still be limited to my own perspective of "ideal". Give me an example, what song do you feel has everything a person could want and is what you'd wanna aim for? There's no right answer really to your question, because everyone is going to hear things differently and consider different aspects of production strong or weak. In terms of radio hits, you won't find much creativity there, it's literally an algorithm that almost all labels follow which is why most hip hop on the radio sounds similar production wise. I noticed a lot of Artists no longer have their original producers once signed to major. Usually their former producers don't want other people/whoever the label also assigns f****** with their tracks. Cause once they're done with it, it's like some watered down version of what they originally produced and none of us would want our production to go out that way. It's like 50 different people pissing on your oil painting and then trying to show it at a museum. I feel like the abstract, experimental components that are used in a lot of UK dnb & house music are insanely underrated and under used in hip hop today and are essential to giving a song more depth and individuality. Supreme Cuts is a straight fire example of the experimental more underground type of sound that makes people stand out. I know I hit on a lot of angles with this I dunno if that's what you were looking for but I got a weird scattered mind.
Old 7th September 2019
  #8
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Want to make money? Copy the hits and spend all your time marketing.

Want to have fun? Be creative and just make what you enjoy.

Want to make money AND have fun? Marry a Senators daughter... (AKA its who you know)
Old 10th September 2019
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SFB View Post
If you want to make money your marketing and promotion skills need to be highly creative. Not your art.
what tips would you have for someone releasing a single independently in these times?
Old 10th September 2019
  #10
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by chauncey View Post
[see below]
What makes a creatively engineered rap song?
I couldn't say.

To be honest, my [rap] preference leans toward the Paula Abdul [Straight Up, Cold Hearted] kind of mix between melody and quasi-rap. . .likely 'bubble gum' by the standards of most others. But they also came with compelling video - which should be instructive.

Or should we just bite off everyone that does it better?
Well, what do you want out of life?

I might suggest you look at the work of Seth Godin [Smallest Viable Audience] and other creative thinkers who seem to get the changes the Internet has brought to how this kind of thing plays out. . .and the value you can create for those you seek to serve.

Is creativity shunned?
Some yes, some no. Advice: What should you care? Most people are not going to like you - nor your creativity. But carry on to keep improving your craft. Pursue your aspirations. Put in the work consistently, daily, over time, over years. Follow your heart.

Are creatives suppressed?
Of course. But YOU are suppressed only if you let yourself be [at least so where I live]. That doesn't mean you can manipulate others into 'un-suppressing' you. It means you always have choices.

There is a scene from City Slickers where Curly is holding up one of his fingers and saying: 'Life is about this: One thing.' Crystal's character asks what that one thing is? To which Curly replies: That's what you have to figure out.

More advice: Find out what that one thing is for you.

Is what we hear on the radio the cream de la cream of production and engineering?
As with most anything commercial, there is a need to get stuff done and out the door. . .rather than to get it 'perfect'. But money does indeed buy 'talent', so it is wrong to 'think of it all as a bunch of [****]'.

Perhaps 98% of the music I've head on the radio throughout my life, I would classify as 'not good' - I wouldn't mostly blame that on production and engineering, though.

Can a engineer even be creative?
Yes absolutely, if that is the choice they make in what kind of clients they choose to serve! Many here are far more qualified than me to address the history and nuances.

It is a long time since I was a working pro musician; but I was always very appreciative of a creative engineer. Now, as I'm making an effort to get back into music [composition], I have to wear both hats and see countless creative choices [of major consequence] on the engineering side.


Wising you remarkable success in your journey,

Ray H.
Old 11th September 2019
  #11
Quote:
Originally Posted by chauncey View Post
What makes a creatively engineered rap song? Or should we just bite off everyone that does it better? Is creativity shunned? Are creatives suppressed? Is what we hear on the radio the cream de la cream of production and engineering? Can a engineer even be creative?
That was more than one question.
Old 11th September 2019
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Realigion View Post
what tips would you have for someone releasing a single independently in these times?
What position is that person in with their career as an artist currently? That will make all the difference in deciding what needs to be done to make the most out of releasing a single.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chauncey View Post
What makes a creatively engineered rap song? Or should we just bite off everyone that does it better? Is creativity shunned? Are creatives suppressed? Is what we hear on the radio the cream de la cream of production and engineering? Can a engineer even be creative?
Of course. A while ago I decided to put a limit on this on myself because I was constantly finding myself re-mixing and re-mixing the same song. There are a lot of ways to create a good mix and all of them are good.
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