Are there benefits to freestyle rapping?
Freestyle is a style of improvisation with or without instrumental beats, where lyrics are recited without a particular subject, structure. The lyrics are made on the spot, with no previous memorization. It’s similar to other improvisational music, such as jazz where a lead instrumentalist acts as an improviser with a supporting band providing a beat. Improv/freestyles are improvised this way.
In the book How to Rap, Big Daddy Kane and Myka 9 note that initially a freestyle was a spit on no particular subject — Big Daddy Kane said,”in the’80s when we mentioned we composed a freestyle rap, which meant it was a rhyme that you wrote that was free of style… it is essentially a rhyme just bragging about yourself.” Divine Styler says:”at the school I come from, freestyling was a non-conceptual composed rhyme… and now they call freestyling off the top of the head, so the age I come from it’s a lot different”. Kool Moe Dee also refers to the 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 rather called”coming off the top 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 said,”that’s what a freestyle is” and Kool Moe Dee refers to it as”true” freestyle, and”the real old-school freestyle”. Kool Moe Dee indicates that Kool G Rap’s track’Men At Work’ is an”excellent example” of authentic freestyle, along with Rakim’s”Lyrics of Fury”.
Many rappers learn to rap through improvised freestyling, and by making freestyling into a conversation or a rhyming game which they play frequently as a way to practice, as explained in the book How to Rap. Reasons for freestyling include amusement, as a therapeutic activity, to discover different methods of rapping, promoting oneself, raising flexibility, or as a religious activity. Improvised freestyling can also be utilized in live performances, to do things like giving something extra to the crowd and to cover up mistakes. So as to show that a freestyle is being made up on the spot (as opposed to 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.
How do I freestyle rap if I am not very good at rhyming words?
Freestyles are performed a cappella, over beatboxing (as seen in Freestyle), or over instrumental versions of songs. Many artists base their freestyle in their current situation or psychological condition, but have a ready supply of ready lyrics and rhyme patterns they could use as filler. Freestyling can also be utilised as a songwriting method for albums or mixtapes.
How do I come up with new material to rap about?
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, every competitor’s goal is to”diss” their opponent through clever 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 during a freestyle battle, because it shows the rapper to be incapable of”spitting” spur-of-the-moment lyrics. A live audience is key, as a big part of”winning” a struggle is how an audience reacts to every rapper. Appointed judges may be used in formal competitions, but in most cases the rapper who receives the largest audience response is viewed as the victor.
What can I do if words aren’t coming when the beat turns on?
These days, with the growth of leagues such as King of the Dot and Ultimate Rap League, most conflicts are composed with some freestyling incorporated into the verses. This allows for more complex rhymes and insults.
Battles can take place anywhere: informally on street corners, on stage at a concert, at a college, or at event specifically meant for combating (like Scribble Jam or the Blaze Battle).
As a rapper, do I need to freestyle?
A cypher or cipher is a casual 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 creates around freestyle battles, comprising spectators and onlookers. This group serves partly to promote competition and partly to boost the communal aspect of rap battles. The cipher is famous 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 way for messages about hip hop styles and knowledge to be dispersed, through word-of-mouth and encouraging trends in different battles.