When you start writing your first lyrics in order to become a rapper, you have the ambition to be like your favorite artists and idols and accomplish all those things that they have accomplished. The biggest obstacle in your path is the lack of money, to help you make an initial investment in order to boost your career.
One of the best ways to kickstart your career, is to invest in improving your lyric and rap skills. The How To Rap, Freestyle, And Make Your Own Songs program, is an excellent course that will allow you to practice and improve your rap and songwriting abilities, especially if you are at the early stages of becoming a rapper.
This is a common fact, because most people start rapping while they are at a very young age with no income and experience. One other categories of people that start rapping are those from lower financial levels, that see the rap game as a gateway out of poverty.
Both categories are very usual not only considering rap and hip hop music, but for the rest of the music genres as well. The music industry is a very promising field, and there are countless examples of artists that built their careers and incomes this way.
When you are about to start as a rapper on a limited budget, I recommend looking for a recording bundle which consists of all the basic equipment you are going to need, such as a microphone, an audio interface and a set of headphones.
My top choice would be the PreSonus AudioBox 96 Studio USB 2.0 Recording Bundle, which comes at an extremelly affordable price.
If you have a little more money to spend, I highly suggest that you go for the Focusrite Recording Bundle which you can check here.
How to become a rapper with no money
Starting without money at all is difficult and you need to invest lots of time in order to achieve satisfactory results. Below, we have compiled a list of steps beginner could take, in order to become rapper without investing money.
Talent and skills
The first to becoming a rapper whether you have money or not, is to be sure that you have the talent and skills required to make it in the music industry.
You can showcase some of your verses to your friends and ask for their opinion, or attend freestyle battles and open-mic event in order to get a first idea. You can find out if you have the appropriate skills required by the reactions of the audience.
Try to write some complete songs and do not focus only on individual verses. It is a very different thing trying to structure a complete song with two verses, hook, bridges, introduction and outro than writing random verses.
Record the songs you write as demo versions and let your friends or people of your environment to listen to them and tell you what they think. You can download instrumental versions from beats that established rap artists have used, in order to test your lyrics.
Make sure that you practice constantly to improve your style and the techniques you apply to your lyrics. Being just good is not enough. You need to find the weak spots of your verses and apply changes to improve them.
Collaborate with other artists and work with them. Ideally, you should look for more experienced rappers than you in order to benefit from their knowledge and experience. Make sure that you pay attention to the way they work, listen to their advice and apply it to your music.
Plan your goals
In order to be able to become a rapper and achieve success, you need to be focused on your goals. You have to create a schedule and stick to it. When you have no money, time is the best thing you can invest in your music, and it is strongly advised that you invest as much as possible.
You should consider practicing your verses every day. Perform them loud so that you can get familiar with presenting them to other people, and learn how to control your voice. Over time, you will learn how to be more expressive and persuade your audience.
Create a routine. You should try different hours of writing lyrics or performing your rap verses and find out which hours work best for you. For example, if you are a morning person and you find it easier to write lyrics early in the morning, you should adjust your schedule according to that.
Whenever you acquire some amount of money, you should invest it back to your music. Start saving money, no matter how small the amount, so that you can buy a microphone, studio monitors or whatever it is that you need in order to practice better.
Plan small goals and try to achieve them one by one. Don’t focus on the bigger ones yet. Achieving great success in a saturated music industry is a struggle, and you need to work hard in order to succeed.
Find free beats
Starting out with no money, you will not be able to purchase quality beats. This is why you need to work with friends of yours that make beats no matter the quality.
Ask from your friends that make beats if they want to give you some beats to practice or record your first songs. Try to acquire many beats with different styles and structures, so that you can practice different methods of writing lyrics.
You don’t have to look for the best-quality beats yet. Now you need to focus on writing the best lyrics you can, and challenging yourself to improve those that you have already created. Ask them to participate in your creation and work together on structuring them.
You can also download and use instrumentals from established artists as stated above, but original beats that no one else has already used will help you evolve your own style. Make a list of the beats that inspire you to write lyrics the most, and keep your mind for those that do not.
Being able to understand which types of beats suit you best will be very beneficial both for you and the music producer, because It will help you understand how different styles of lyrics apply on different styles of beats.
Given that you are on a tight budget, below we have compiled a list with the most essential recording equipment you will need in order to start recording your songs. Keep in mind, they come in very affordable prices, especially considering their high quality. Here we go:
- Microphone: Audio-Technica AT2020 Cardioid Condenser Microphone
- Audio Interface: Focusrite Scarlett Solo (2nd Gen) USB Audio Interface
- Studio Monitors: Edifier R1280T Powered Bookshelf Studio Monitors
- Headphones: COWIN E7 Pro Active Noise Cancelling Headphones
- Microphone Isolation Shield: Monoprice Microphone Isolation Shield
If on the other hand you have no money at all to invest in order to build your own studio or start recording in a professional studio, you should make connections with producers and sound engineers and start spending time in their studios in order to get familiar with the studio environment.
You can offer your help in exchange for them letting you to work in their space. Offer to help them redecorate or lift the equipment that they make want to move around. Make sure that you pay attention to how they work. Having some general knowledge around studio equipment is never a bad thing.
You could also start taking notes on how they use their equipment, or how they mix and master the songs. This could prove very helpful when you build your own home studio. It can also enhance your perspective about how to make a recording.
If you have the ability, ask the sound engineers if you can make rehearsals for free or even record a demo of your songs when they have time. Do not ask them to edit or mix your songs when you don’t have money to offer, because these processes take time and require lots of effort on their behalf, and this is their job.
Start networking and make connections with other artists that use the studio too. Take part into discussions and mention your queries concerning music. When able, showcase your verses or entire songs. It is always the right moment to show what you can do.
Participate in local concerts
Reach out to local artists and live managers, and ask them if you can play at their concerts as an opening act or guest appearance. When starting, you can suggest that you do not take any money so that your proposition seems more appealing to them.
Your purpose is to present your verses and lyrics to the audiences that these artists gather. Make sure that you approach artists that organize relevant festivals or gigs to your genre, so that you can promote your music to the right audience.
Start talking with the people that came to the concert, introduce yourself and give your demo CDs to those interested. Try to interact with the audience and ask them about their honest opinion. Pay attention to their expectations and music needs so that you can provide them in the future.
Network with other artists that may be part of the concert line-up and start discussing with them. Try to find ones that are willing to work with you so that you can gain more experience. If they are on tour or they are planning one, ask them if they would be interested in adding you to the support line-up.
This would be an excellent opportunity for you to gain live performance experience, find out how it works being on a tour and playing in a certain amount of concerts in a row.
Make music videos
Videos play an important role when it comes to music. People tend to engage more with artists they can recognize, and this why you need to find ways to make your first videos for free.
To start with, you could ask from a friend of yours that owns a decent camera if he could help you shoot a video. It doesn’t have to be a professional one, but you need to be careful with the shots so that it looks half decent.
You can find a nice place to make it work and it is suggested that you take the shots during the daylight, as you will not have any money to rent professional lightning. Guide him through the process and take some simple shots that you will be able to turn into a music video.
What is more you can find a more professional video production team that are just starting their own business, and offer to help them with their work in exchange for them helping you make music videos. You can help them with their equipment, find customers for them or provide them with places to shoot their videos.
In exchange, you can ask them if they can turn some of your songs into music videos. Tell them about your ideas and discuss the process. This way you can benefit from this process.
They start gaining experience on creating music videos for artists, and they can use your videos to enrich their portfolio. You can use their creativity and make music videos for your songs for free, considering that you do not have any money to invest.
Gather a team
You can gather a team of your closest friends and people that believe in your music and want to help, in order to spread the word about your music. This is a type of free advertisement, and you could not imagine how fast news travel between people.
Make sure that you provide your friends with your songs so that they can burn them into CDs or put them into flash drivers and share them with other people. They can also share your music videos or songs through social media.
Social media are very powerful when it comes to advertising your music. You could share your video with a hundred people, and they could share it with their friends. Imagine what you could achieve if you had five or ten people sharing your music with their friends. Your music could spread much faster.
Supply your friends with photos of you recording or working on your songs so that they share them in their social profiles. Ask them to share your official music page with other people and ask them if they have any connections with managers or venue owners so that you can book your gigs.
Although advertisement is expensive, promoting yourself can be done for free.
Use your own or your friends’ internet connection to establish a social media presence. Make sure that you create a profile for every social platform available such as Facebook, Youtube, Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, Google Plus and Tumbler.
Upload your music on all music platforms such as iTunes, Soundcloud, Bandcamp and CD Baby. Make it available for sale and try to drive traffic to those platforms in order to start generating some initial income no matter how low.
Talk with local TV and radio show hosts. Ask them if they could take an interview from you so that you can talk about your music. Make them listen to your songs and watch your music videos so that they can see that you have your music available.
To sum up, you should benefit from every opportunity that is presented to you for free in order to make your music and your name recognizable by the people.
Do not hesitate to ask people to help you or give you the opportunity to promote yourself. Many of these people will reject your proposition, but there are always those that are looking to promote newcomers in the music industry.
You can see that there are several ways to become a rapper without investing money.
Apply them to your music and follow your dreams!