Every time I rap in the shower I’m really good, but when it comes to writing, my mind is blank. How do I improve my writing skills?
Freestyle is a style of improvisation with or without instrumental beats, in which lyrics are recited without a specific subject, structure. The lyrics are made on the spot, with no previous memorization. It is similar to other improvisational music, such as jazz where a lead instrumentalist acts as an improviser with a supporting band giving a beat. Improv/freestyles are improvised this way.
In the publication How to Rap, Big Daddy Kane and Myka 9 note that initially a freestyle was a spit on no specific topic — Big Daddy Kane said,”from the’80s when we mentioned we wrote a freestyle rap, which meant it was a rhyme that you wrote that was free of style… it’s basically a rhyme just bragging about yourself.” Divine Styler states:”in the school I come from, freestyling was a non-conceptual written rhyme… and they call freestyling off the top of the mind, so the age I come from it’s a lot different”. Kool Moe Dee also refers to this earlier definition in his book.
How do I come up with new material to rap about?
In old school hip-hop, Kool Moe Dee claimed that improvisational rapping was instead called”coming off the surface of the mind” and Big Daddy Kane said,”off-the-top-of-the-head [rapping], we just called that’off the dome’ — when you don’t write it and [you] say whatever comes to mind”.
Referring to the earlier definition (a written rhyme on non-specific subject matter) Big Daddy Kane stated,”that’s what a freestyle is” and Kool Moe Dee refers to it as”true” freestyle, and”the true old-school freestyle”. Kool Moe Dee suggests that Kool G Rap’s track’Men At Work’ is an”excellent example” of authentic freestyle, together with Rakim’s”Lyrics of Fury”.
Many rappers learn how to rap through improvised freestyling, and by making freestyling into a dialogue or a rhyming game which they play frequently as a way to practice, as explained in the publication How to Rap. Reasons for freestyling include entertainment, as a therapeutic action, to discover unique methods of rapping, promoting oneself, increasing versatility, or as a spiritual activity. Improvised freestyling can also be used in live performances, to do things like giving something extra to the audience and also to cover up mistakes. So as to show that a freestyle has been made up on the place (rather than something pre-written or memorized), rappers will frequently refer to places and objects in their immediate setting, or will take suggestions on what to rhyme about.
I’ve just started rapping and I sound terrible. Can I still become a good rapper?
Freestyles are performed a cappella, over beatboxing (as seen in Freestyle), or over instrumental versions of songs. Many artists base their freestyle on their present situation or mental state, but have a ready supply of ready lyrics and rhyme patterns they can use as filler. Freestyling can also be used as a songwriting way of albums or mixtapes.
How do I freestyle rap if I am not very good at rhyming words?
A freestyle battle is a competition in which two or more rappers compete or”battle” each other using improvised lyrics. It is a prominent part of contemporary hip hop culture, with precursors in poetic battles over the millennia in genres as diverse as Japanese haikai and Norse flyting. In a freestyle battle, each competitor’s goal is to”diss” their opponent through smart lyrics and wordplay, with heavy emphasis being placed upon the rapper’s improvisational ability. Many conflicts also include metaphorically violent imagery, complementing the”combating” atmosphere. It is deemed dishonorable or black to recite pre-written or memorized raps through a freestyle battle, because it reveals the rapper to be incapable of”spitting” spur-of-the-moment lyrics. A live audience is key, as a big part of”winning” a battle is how an audience responds to each rapper. Appointed judges may be used in formal competitions, but in most cases the rapper who receives the biggest audience response is seen as the victor.
What can I do if words aren’t coming when the beat turns on?
In modern times, with the rise of leagues like King of the Dot and Ultimate Rap League, most conflicts are composed with some freestyling incorporated into the verses. This allows for more intricate rhymes and insults.
Battles can take place anywhere: informally on street corners, on stage at a concert, in a school, or at event specifically meant for combating (like Scribble Jam or the Blaze Battle).
Are there benefits to freestyle rapping?
A cypher or cipher is an informal gathering of rappers, beatboxers, and/or breakdancers in a circle, in order to jam musically together. The term has also in recent years come to mean the audience which forms around freestyle battles, consisting of spectators and onlookers. This group serves partly to promote competition and partly to enhance the communal aspect of rap battles. The cipher is known for”breaking or making reputations in the hip hop community; if you are able to step into the cipher and tell your story, demonstrating your uniqueness, you are more accepted”. ] These groups also serve as a means for messages about hip hop styles and knowledge to be dispersed, through word-of-mouth and encouraging trends in different battles.