Rap Beats Guide for 2017

rap beats guide

 

Intel about rap beats, rhymes and stylez for MC’s, rappers, poets, lyricists and all who interested! Will be frequently updated. Here we go!

Free or Paid?

paid vs free beatsYou probably wondered: – “If there are free beats available, why should I ever pay for such product?”. Well, free options is always good, especially for folks who low on budget. But if you can buy your own rap instrumental – don’t hesitate to do so, and here is why: Statistics say that there is 1 paid download against 30 free downloads. What that mean is: free beats create more competition for you. While only 1 person will be rocking unique beat – 30 others will try to step up in the game with overused free beat. Imagine a label guy who is browsing through same demos everyday and stumble upon something unique. Of course you can have your own style of rhyming which could skyrocket you to the top, but why risk it with free beats?

Another example when free beats could be harmful for your craft: Not Cleared Samples. Usually when I make rap beats – I use samples. If I did not cleared the sample – I release it as free because of copyright issues it could bring. Thats why theres non-profit notification on my free beats page. Never use free beats in commercial projects.

Lease | Exclusive

If you even once searched for paid rap instrumental – you probably noticed that there are options available before purchase. Usually Lease and Exclusive to chose from. Quick pros and cons of both:

Lease:

  • Very affordable
  • Fast delivery
  • Limited use
  • Average quality

Exclusive:

  • Best quality
  • Unlimited use
  • Expensive in most cases, but not at minds.cool 😉
  • Delivery time

Also various “lease plus” options could be available which is good because you have more choice. But it’s all based on two Lease and Exclusive. Don’t rush buying exclusive if you are not sure if it will go smoothly with your rhyming. But don’t hesitate do buy it right after the moment you know you can make a hit to it.

Hot Beats

Another fact I’d like to cover is about popular rap beats, catching my clue? Talking about “trap” production here. As I write this article – market is overloaded with this type of stuff. The official reasons of such overloading remain unknown. Thoughts on subject:

  1. Music production gear is so available right now, you can install software on your computer and start experimenting with music in no time. While you read this article there are about 3 new “producers” poppin’ their accounts on social networks!
  2. Instead of actually experimenting and inventing something new and unique – folks competing in creating trap tunes. But why? – Green. Thing started as hardcore but turned into something like pop. Shit was marketed so damn well – folks started believing it’s some kind of industry standard. It’s not.

Before falling under influence of “hot beats” ask yourself one question: – If there are 100 people in room but only 1 with unusual look. Which one you’ll remember? Now imagine your EP or album being dropped to stores and it filled with type of production which is overused… I guess it will just sit there without any attention.

Don’t be fooled by media who suggest you to stick to “popular” style. Don’t be fooled by image. All that luxury lifestyle, cars, cash, clubs. It’s only image, created to get you on hook. Know that.

Advice section

Don’t think that beat is all that matters. It’s not.

If you want to have fun: grab mic, record some bars on classic beat, give strong shoutouts to your homies and you are good! But if you seek commercial success – don’t think that it will be easy. If you are independent artist – reaching audience will take a lot of time and money. You’ll have to do marketing and self promotion. Sign to label and they’ll do it for you but also squeeze all juice from you as well.

In conclusion, consider checking these tips:

No Rush

If you are new artist – don’t start your career from recording whole album. Start with one song and try to get maximum exposure for it. Build audience. Once people listen to your song – you’ll get your first feedback. Then do another song. Then EP. After you’ll get exposure out there – start planning album release.

Go unique

Use uncommon or mixed type of production in your releases. This will increase attractiveness and potential feedback in form of purchases of your music. By uncommon I also mean rap beats presented on minds.cool 😉

Experiment

Try different styles of rhyming and don’t fear going non-mainstream way. Most successful rappers once started as hardcore or with original style and they stick to it nowadays cause listeners got hooked and considered such experiments dope. You create history when going own way. Just don’t go pop once you chose hardcore.

Raw

If you lack funds for professional high quality studio recording – don’t worry. Old school rappers started their craft in basement and albums they did were made platinum. Hip hop is not about high quality recordings. It can be raw and it should be like that and it seems like in 2017 most rappers forgot about it, so you can profit from it. Your rhymes matter! If you grabbed solid and unique rap beats and dropped sick rhymes on ’em, even if it was made in cellar – you will succeed!

Promote

Don’t think that uploading your album to soundcloud or sites like that will provide huge exposure for your music. Without good promotion you wont get noticed by potential listeners! Make sure that majority of your facebook friends shared your recently posted music. Write to various groups across social networks who represent your genre, make them post your album so you get more exposure. Remember that the more effort you put in exposing your music – more feedback you will get. Also good thing will be – send your demo to labels based on your genre, they could be interested in promoting your craft but pay attention since they will take a percentage from sales for such services.

Go Big

Ever heard about big sites such as spotify, itunes, google play etc. they provide huge possibilities for exposing your music. But how to got your music there? – Here is a little secret info:

Not only labels can upload music to this giants. You can be 100% independent and still get your music on these and lots of similar websites. To do so you should use aggregator site. One I can recommend is CDBABY. The thing about it is for small fee they will provide you with interface which will allow you to upload your whole album or single to biggest music stores to be available for purchase by millions of listeners. But main thing is you still need to work hard to provide lots of exposure for listeners so they can check your music and like it and pay for it!

GOOD LUCK!

 

Cheap Exclusive Beats

Cheap Exclusive Beats

Cheap Exclusive Beats?

Expensive Beats? Let’s break it down!

Some cats nowadays think with whatever part of their body instead of brain. Don’t be like them. Don’t be too fast judging! When you see cheap exclusive beats price tag – check the product quality first! Then say what you gotta say.

There are different price variations on rap beats market, some dudes charge up to $1000 for exclusive beat, some go full retard and sell 10 beats for $1… They have their reasons for doing that. Here is some intel:

Reasons

Cheap Exclusive BeatsWhen producer put $1000 price tag on his production then probably he is already a big shot in the industry and purchasing his production will mean that you’ll have top grade product. Combine it with same level rhymes and you could end up like GZA. Why GZA? By the time I was writing this – I was listening to Words From The Genius album by Genius/GZA which was produced by Easy Mo Bee, legendary producer who is still rocking SP1200 sampler… and the reason I telling you this is that Easy Mo Bee actually charged around $1000 for each beat on that album and got around 10k for all production for that joint (one of my favorite btw!) I learned that from one of his interviews. Mo Bee was legendary enough to charge that price and that joint considered classic.

Jokers

Now there are dudes with their sites who charge about $1k for rap beats which they consider “hot”. Nuff Said. Just add HOT to one of your tags, name your so called production “lil whatever type beat” and wait for someone to buy it. I feel sorry for whoever actually bought it.

Also there “producers” who make wack trap beats. Really how can someone be serious about their hip-hop when they make only that ind of stuff, not original at all just copycats and there are tons of them all over intenetz.

minds.cool

Now there is minds.cool joint. Where you can dig beats and drop your lyrics. Just check it 😀

Exclusive hip-hop beats

 

Why Classic Rap Beats?

Talk about classic rap beats!

Is it really better to rhyme to classic beats? Lets find out!

If  you break it down to trends – you’ll see that the picture is very clear. Most rappers nowadays go trendy and prefer rap beats that titled [insert modern trendy rapper name here] type beats. Before you do so – ask yourself: – Do I really wanna sound like everybody else nowadays or do I want to stand out from the crowd? If you think that pop beats will get you somewhere – that’ll be junk yard. Why I’m so sure about it? Pop stuff works always one way, and that way is: You get picked by some businessman involved in media and he makes money on you. Your music could be total trash but money is everything in pop game and you’ll get boosted if your trash looks promising. Congratz you just become another project, main objective of which is: gather as much money for businessman and silently go down afterwards. Some people really interested to take part in this!

 

Good rhymes compared with classic beat is a step to success!

classic rap beatsRhymes are crucial. But choice of music is also very important. Picking a beat that similar to what most artists pick nowadays will put you nowhere. Market is overloaded with same type of production and it is hard to believe that future generations will remember this kind of music how 80’s and 90’s generation remember Golden Era days. So why waste good rhymes? Pick an uncommon beat and rock that sh*t homie! Doing so – will definitely put you in winning position due to originality.

Now about classic beats. Here you can find various combinations of beats and rap instrumentals, from chill soulful beats to dark and aggressive instrumentals. Free or Exclusive – choice is yours!

Of course you chose which way to go. Pop or underground. Shaky or rock solid. All that matters is how you see your craft.

 

Keywords: rap beats guide, rap instrumentals, classic rap beats.

Software VS Hardware

Rap Beats - authentic sound.

Wuzzup! Talking ’bout hip-hop rap beats production here!

If you, fellow visitor, looking for dope authentic hip-hop rap beats – proceed to the beats pagee!

For producers seeking information. I got something for you.

This “something” is comparable review of two different workflows:

First workflow is strictly software which include things like computer, DAW and various plugins and samples. Very good option if you are broke student, have nothing except computer with internet access, pair of headphones and willing to do something with music. It takes little effort to setup workflow like this, you just download your DAW, grab some plugins, open “how to” video on youtube and you are ready to produce your first masterpiece… Joke! You’ll need to spend a few hours just to setup the daw and figure out basics of how to use couple of buttons inside it. But if you eager to produce music – you will figure it out. The more time you spent on it – the better your skills will be. You’ll know how to create that special sound you looking for etc. Until one day…

Hip-hop rap beats made with mpc1000The day you understand that music instruments on your screen is no longer an option. You’ll seek for something new. A sampler, keyboard or maybe guitar or bass.

Second workflow I want to talk about is about hardware and real instruments. After I listened to some raw demo mixtapes I decided to give hardware a shot. And don’t regret it. The workflow which you get while rocking MPC, turntable, keyboards and guitars – is more pleasant. Not for all I guess, cause many producers stick to ONLY software even after trying hardware setups for a while. But in my case that was a blast! From time I figured out how to use MPC – I use DAW only to record full track to export it into mp3 after all work done on MPC. Some people say that MPC functionality is limited and thats true. But thats what keeping producer more interested in how to make that tune dope while you locked in limited functionality. Not to mention better sound which comes out of professional equipment such as MPC.

The choice is always yours

Stick with computer or use audio hardware. Cons of computer software workflow is that it will never sound as good as audio hardware sounds. And problem of hardware users is that hardware usually very expensive and you’ll spend quite a budget to please your addiction haha!

 

TYPES

Various Rap Beats

Types Of Beats & Variations

There are different types of purchase you can make while digging rap beats.

First, lets break it down, what types of purchase you will encounter.

Lease

Most affordable and simple solution. Good if you are short on budget. Good if you don’t want any changes to the beat. Good if you wanna try it before buying exclusive rights for it.

License which comes with this type of purchase is for 1 year only, it means: Starting from point when you paid for the instrumental – You have number of uses. Use it in promo/demo/mixtape/radio/live performance and you can sell it wherever you want. But after uses expire – you will have to renew your lease. Keep in mind that after you bought lease – beat stays available for other artists. If someone will buy exclusive rights for it – they will have the right to put your track offline from any source after your lease is gone. That’s the con. So I highly suggest you DO NOT use this kind of purchase in your LP. For album you should only prepare beats for which you have exclusive rights.

Various Lease +

Same options as LEASE but with benefits for which you pay a little extra.

 

Exclusive

Once again, this is the purchase which makes you THE BOSS. By owning exclusive you have the right to do whatever you want with the track. Sell it, stream it, perform live with it. If you happen to find same beat in someone else work – you have the right to take it offline from any source after their lease is gone.

Also by purchasing exclusive – you get highest quality original files.


!minds.cool sound profiles

There are four different sound profiles presented:

S/PDIF 

Clean digital signal from MPC straight to computer. Zero damage done to audio in process of recording. Usually -6dB. Files like these are ready to be tweaked by sound engineers.

ANALOG

Signal recorded from analog out of MPC to analog in of the computer. A little peaking can occur which ends in slightly harsh sound compared to clean digital sound.

TAPE

Signal recorded from MPC analog OUT to vintage tape deck analog IN on Type 1 cassette. Then rewinded and recorded from tape deck analog out to computer analog in. Got that true vintage sound in process.

TAPE BOOSTED

Sick. Signal recorded from MPC analog OUT to tape deck analog IN on Type 1 cassette. Then I rewind the cassette. And then magic happen, as I record beat to the computer through MPC master channel, tweaking it. As rewinded beat from cassette playing, sound goes from tape deck analog out to MPC analog in, then it converts with DAC and gets boosted by compressor and EQ, then it goes to computer already converted to digital format by MPC itself and computers mission is to save wav file.

It’s up to you which type of signal is best for you! Back to digging beats ->

 

 

HIFI VS LOFI

Lease Beats In HIFI Or LOFI Format

Yo! Beats & Instrumentals seekers!

Todays article is about hiphop instrumentals and exclusive rap beats, or to be clear – about two versions in which beat can be recorded.

Recently I bought myself a very rare tape deck and even wrote an article about it called Mind The Hiss. A few days ago I was wondered, how people react to music recorded through such a vintage device?

And I came up with idea of an experiment. I made neutral sounding beat (not too dark, not too funky) and recorder it in two ways.

AKAI MPC 1000 REAR BACK1st way of recording was “ALL DIGITAL”, method based on recording audio track directly from MPC S/PDIF digital OUT port to digital IN into computer. It requires special digital cable which provides the most clear signal you can get through cable. It mean you get your audio track recorded to WAV format with zero hiss and zero damage or artifacts which can be added when recording through ANALOG cables, especially cheap ones. The result is: track was recorded very clear, all frequencies were bumping just like they bump on MPC, though signal were a little bit quiet so I just turned the volume up and saved it.

2nd way of recording was “OLD SCHOOL”, as I recorded same beat on a cassette with my vintage tape deck. Rewind the tape back, hooked analog audio cables from deck to computer and recorded same beat from tape to WAV. Volume levels were just the same as they was compared to “all digital” version of the beat.

Saved the whole thing to mp3 and uploaded it to social network.

Experiment

Here is where my experiment took place. Audio track which has two parts, first part was all digital version, second part was recorded from tape. It was sent to various people from my friends list, all different tastes and [email protected] They were asked which part of beat were more pleasant to their ear. End here is results:

Most people said that 2nd part which is TAPE part was more pleasant to their ear. No wonder I only make friends with old school heads haha!!! But without any jokes – people who liked 2nd part of beat mostly listen to underground music. Different genres tho, but still underground mostly.

As for the first part of the beat which is “ALL DIGITAL” – a lot of people spoke for it too, and as it comes down to genres of music they listen to is that it mostly popular music.

So what information I got from this small experiment? People who stand for popular music – their ear automatically reject degraded audio such as recorded from tape (in this case). And people who mostly listen to underground stuff didn’t care about hi-fi at all. They enjoy tape sound, background noise, hiss etc. as far as music bumpin’

So, according to your audience you can predict which type of music they will enjoy better.

Feel free to ask any questions here. Peace!

Mind The Hiss

Rap Beats Recorded With Vintage Tape Deck

Yo Yo! Oldschool heads, beats and instrumentals diggers!

This article is about my love for oldschool.

mixtapeFor some time I was wondered: – How can I achieve a true classic beat like the ones I hear in golden era masterpieces. Some suggested various plugins and other digital shit and when I tried them – first thing that came to mind: this may sound oldschool, but its FAKE. Word “fake” can hurt your eyes when you’ll see it in this article, but thats how it is for me tho. At first, I don’t want to offend anyone.

If you reading this and slowly getting mad – relax. If you are producer or beatmaker who enjoy making music with computer and various DAW and VST and all that digital stuff – chill the fuck out. You do your thing and I’ll do mine.

Prehistory

Rap Beats @ MINDS.COOL CLASSIC BEAT STOREAt first I was into digital stuff myself. Started with famous Fruity Loops software and had a blast with it. After that was Logic and I liked it as well. Thanks to wise guys on the web – I dig some info about AKAI MPC devices, saw lots of videos and read many articles about it. And I decided to give it a shot.

It took some time before I found the device that was supposed to do the job – it was MPC1000. Fully standalone music production center. Why standalone? – Because when I started digging for hardware to make beats I was sure that whole process need to be made outside computer, in as many ways as possible.

Some say going fully standalone is crazy, because with MPC only you are limited to things such as small amount of FX, small user interface, polyphony and so on, but, thats the beauty of it!

Somehow when I’m limited to MPC interface and lacks of FX and other shit – I’m more creative and I like process way more than if Ill be doing same things on computer. I liked that stuff a lot. Needless to say that after purchasing MPC I mostly make exclusive beats with It only and just record them to computer via analog in/out.

At some point I was wondered once again. How can I add even more oldschool spirit in this. And solution came to mind:

TAPES!

I started digging for tape decks and found one in pretty good shape in my area. It was 1978 Technics 673 hi end tape deck. In late 70s when this deck came out – you probably needed to be Rockfeller to purchase one. But now, I just wonder what gems you can find for a decent price.

So I got 4 different cassettes with it and good analog audio cable to cut the unnecessary noise. With all that I went to recording.

Here is the very first beat that was recorded straight outta MPC to cassette and then digitised on computer:

As you can hear – it contains hiss and some crackle noise. Yes, they can be reproduced with computer software very closely. But getting this very sound with oldschool gear has the right spirit. And I need this spirit when it comes to making beats.

If any of you interested in getting your tracks sound this way – you can always send me message within purchase and ask if I can get your vocals recorded with beat on a tape and then digitise it. Or maybe just send you cassette. All of this can be arranged and Ill be glad to help.

Peace ya’ll!

P.S. Of course you cant walk away from computers. You need them. But producing with less interaction with one brings lots of fun.

Block Party

MC & DJ Block Party

Yo! Beats and instrumentals diggers!

I was wondered – do you still rock block parties or all you do now is stay in line to fancy clubs?

block party beats & instrumentalsIf you attended a real block party even once – you probably know whats up. For those who don’t know: Block party is an act when you grab your sound system which can contain various items depends on what time you addicted to, oldschool heads grab turntables and speakers, those ones who like portability – could’ve grabbed only boombox, newschool dudes grab laptop and portable dj controller, or even only laptop (which is not cool! haha), you call your friends, take your equipment and step out of your apartment to the street to blast the music as loud as possible and have a good time and have fun and all of that (until some of the neighbours call the cops).

The beauty of block party in my opinion is that its strictly DIY thing. Its about having fun, not “showing off” as some of you might think.

Now what I see today is that most people go to clubs.

To me, clubs is commercial thing which main objective is to bring money to their owners. Most of the times you wouldn’t see hardcore underground artists there, because their rhymes will probably make you embarrassed and none of the managers would like to invite them to perform. Stuff you most likely going to encounter in clubs is commercial music, drugs and shit.

If you want to have some really fun times I highly suggest you to learn about block parties and make one yourself. You will see the difference between fake club atmosphere and rock solid block party immediately!

Take whatever gear you got, even if its only a smartphone. Get a pair of really loud speakers, invite an MC (suggest him to dig some exclusive beats) and go rock on the street. And remember one more thing: block party has the spirit of hiphop!

Sampling FEAR NOT

Sampler For Classic Rap Beats SP 1200

Yo! Today we talk about sampling – ancient technique which comes in handy while making dope rap beats.

And also we discuss modern teenagers fear of being caught while rapping to sampled music. Stay tuned!

For those who don’t know – sampling is an act when music producer take small (large, in some cases) part from any other musical piece to use it in his own work.

Some people hate on sampling, but they don’t know whats up. Hip-hop based on this technique of creating music and you simply cant beat it with synths, pianos and all that custom s**t!

GZA/Genius Wu Tang HiphopNow what I want to talk about is – does sampling really a legal thing? Well, from some point of view its basically stealing (starts evil laugh). If you are an artist well known worldwide and been caught with that sample ripped off from some other musicians work – boy you might have problems. Another situation here – you browsing for “cheap exclusive beats” or “buy exclusive beats” hoping for a good deal. And found good old sampled hiphop instrumentals. You should not worry because of reasons:

1) Nobody gonna chase you for nothing, if you are not making millions of bucks with your music then law sharks probably will have zero interest in opening a case against you for sampled tune you rap to.

2) Even if some of them will get really bored and will open a case – all they can get is a look at my middle finger, because you simply cant tell which tune was sampled (talking about COOL MIND production).

Must not forget how hiphop music originated. It was all about sampling and scratching and chopping and cutting! Nowadays most producers trying hard to create something new, as a result – hiphop culture starting to look like big pile of s**t.  I think that the power of samples is what hiphop really needs today.

Lease VS Exclusive

Buying Rap Beats & Instrumentals Guide

When you wander around web in search of rap instrumental – you will find tons of websites on which you can make a purchase of a beat you liked.  Usually there are two options when it comes to buying rap beats – lease and exclusive, now let’s break em down ->

Lease

Quick and affordable option, you pay small amount of money and get access to audio file, usually average quality file, mp3 in most cases but could be even uncompressed wav file which is better because audio stored in this format sound better than mp3. Main thing that you should know about lease is that even if you paid for it – it’s not 100% yours. Original creator of the beat still holding all rights for that track and you should consider these details when using leased beats in commercial releases. For example: if you purchased lease for beat, recorded rhymes over it and released it on iTunes as single – after lease term is over – legal owner aka creator of the beat can put pressure on you and even remove your work from iTunes if he wanted to do so. To avoid situation like this you should consider buying exclusive for instrumentals that you want to use in your commercial projects.

Exclusive

This one may be expensive but it will save you money in a long run if you are planning to release your work on major retail stores like iTunes, Google Play etc. Buying exclusive rights for rap instrumental that you will use in commercial project is a smart move. Once you bought exclusive it means that you are legal owner of that audio file. One thing you should be certain – that only cleared samples were used in instrumental. If it’s clear – you are all set to rock that beat and should not worry about any lawsuits in future.

Article about clearing samples coming soon 😉