Friday, September 08, 2006

Tips for Working with MCs and Vocals

1. make sure the MCs have thoroughly rehearsed prior to coming over to record. They should have their rhymes written and rehearsed and ready to record. It's soooo much quicker if the MC has their rhymes locked down before they get to the studio.

2. assuming the MC has rehearsed and is ready to record - try and record their full verse/song in 2 or 3 takes (preferably two), then choose the best one. I've been in studios and seen MCs take 20, 30 and even 50 takes for a verse and in most cases the quality of the recording gets WORSE not BETTER with each take as the MC gets more frustrated, tired, anxious, bored etc. Instead, get them ready to record, record 2 or 3 takes, listen to them and use the best one as the main vocal track

3. double ubs/backing vocals - recording a double up track (or tracks) that emphasises certain lines/rhymes and covers up for small errors/inconsistencies is usually a good idea. When doing it though, try and get the double ups EXACTLY on time/in line with the main vocal track so that it achieves it's purpose but isn't too obvious. You can also add add libs as well but in general, keep them to a minimum (check out Jim Jones/Dip Set for some good use AND some overuse of add libs).

4. use a "popper stopper". Yes, you can make a popper stopper out of a coat hanger and pantyhose but in my opinion just spend the $20 and buy one from your local music store.

5. learn your recording software and use it to enhance the recording process. Here's an example of how top audio engineer use Pro Tools to help the recording process;

"For working hip hop-style, Pro Tools is, Douglass admits, “a godsend. When they're writing on the spot, it really helps that when I punch in, it's nondestructive. I can move things around later or put EQ on a tiny part to make it match up. Or take pops: It's easy to go to the exact part of a word, put in a filter or EQ out below 100 [Hz], then fade in on the word instead of having a sharp attack.”

my tips are still only scratching the surface on this topic so any experienced cats who have any input - please do so

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Make Your Own Beats, Instrumentals, Tracks, and Demo CDs

(Very cool article, I posted it in all my blogs)

Make Your Own Beats, Instrumentals, Tracks, and Demo CDs
By: Matthew Keith

Many people are making an excellent living selling thier samples, tracks, and cd's, on the Internet and off, even if they're not with a major record label. Just look around on the Internet. People are paying $30 to $60 for small beat and and sound packages, $50 to $100 for small loopsets and beatsets, $100 to $300 for Instrumentals, $100's to $1,000's for complete tracks and samples, and for the few lucky ones like Jay-Z and J D... "Money aint a Thing"! They sell millions of their cd's. There are thousands of people and even companies looking for new music everyday! Let them hear yours!

Whether you dream of Making It Big in the Music Industry, or are just interested in making some extra cash doing what you love, this article is for you. You will see the resources you need to make your own beats, loops, instrumentals, finished tracks, and complete demo cd's. You will also see the resources you need to make money doing it. With that being said, let's get to the part you are waiting for...

Part I: Make Your Own Beats, Instrumentals, Samples, Loops, Tracks, and Complete Demo CDs...

To do this, you will need a few things. First you will need recording studio software. Recording studio software is nothing more than a program that allows you to mix beats, melodies, chords, samples and loops to make your own customized instrumentals and tracks. They also allow you to record yourself as you sing or rap to your track and to make a copy of your tracks to cd.

You can find this type of software all over the Internet. Just do a search for "make your own beats" or "recording studio software". As you search, you will notice that on average, this type of software will run you between $50 and $200. Don't Buy Them (you'll see why shortly)! Now you're going to need beats, melodies, chords, samples, and loops to customize with your recording studio software, aka: soundsets and loopsets. Again, just do a search for "beats" or "loops". They usually come in packages of about 200 soundsets for $30 and 300 loopsets for $60, or 600 soundsets for $75 and 900 loopsets for $150. Don't Buy Them Either!

Alright, so at the minimum, $140 gets you the low-end studio software, 200 soundsets, and 300 loopsets... or if you want a little better quality studio software and more soundsets and loopsets, you can spend about $425 for high-end studio software, 600 soundsets, and 900 loopsets. That's everything you need to make your own beats, instrumentals, samples, loops, tracks, and complete demo cd's. But why did I say Don't Buy Them?

Because you can get it all, the studio software and over 1,100 soundsets and loopsets for under 30 bucks with Hip Hop Starz Record Producer and Mixer Studio (see "about the author" at the bottom of this article). This is an unheard of price for everything you need, and it is of such good quality, I have dedicated an entire page of my Snoop Dogg website to it. It is loaded with many features you will find on the high-end software selling for $100 or more. Also, they are currently holding a Win A Record Contract Contest with Doug E Fresh. Use the software and enter to win!

So now you know how to make your own beats, instrumentals, samples, loops, tracks, and even complete demo cd's, and this brings us to our next part...

Part II: Make Money Doing It...

There are many, many ways to make money with your own music. The first thing you need to do, though, is break it down into pieces, or components we will call them.

There are 4 key components to any track, or song. You have soundsets, which are nothing more than beats, sounds, scratches, etc. You have loopsets, which are your soundsets when put together in a loop. You have instrumentals, which are completed tracks with no voice or lyrics. Finally, you have completed tracks, which are basically just instrumentals that include lyrics.

When you look at music from this angle, broken down into components, you will start to see many ways to make money with your own. Like I mentioned at the beginning of this report, people are not only paying for completed tracks, they are also paying for the components individually. If you can create you own, good components, people will buy them.

Again, search the Internet for these components. Doing so will not only show you how much you can sell your components for, but also where you can sell them. As long as people are listening to music, there will always be a demand for it, and I can't see people stopping anytime soon.

If you are interested in learning how to make money with your own beats in more detail, I recommend you check out Bob Bakers website (see "about the author" at the bottom of this article). Bob Baker is a writer, indie musician and former music magazine editor who is dedicated to showing musicians of all kinds how to get exposure, connect with fans, sell more CDs and increase their incomes through their artistic passions. He is also the author of the Guerilla Music Marketing Handbook, as seen in the major motion picture The School of Rock ... and in VIBE, Music Connection, Electronic Musician and American Songwriter magazines. This is the guy you should listen to. Here are some of the things you will find at his website...

- 197 Promotion Tips, Tricks, and Resources for Independent Musicians.

- 101 places to submit press releases, get reviewed, uncover PR connections and promote your music on the Internet. Supplies the exact website and email addresses for submitting your music news.

- The 29 most important elements in creating sizzling music publicity materials. Make sure your media kit gets noticed by editors, writers, booking agents, program directors, and other industry people.

- 50 ways to promote and sell your music on the Internet.

- And more, including his coveted Guerilla Music Marketing Handbook.

I hope this report has proved useful to you and I wish you all the best as you learn how to make your own beats, tracks, and even complete demo cd's.

Article Source:

Matthew Keith is the webmaster of and a huge music enthusiast. He has spent the past 3 years searching for the most affordable ways for ordinary people to make their own music and make money doing so. The only two resources he recommends for this can be found at You have permission to publish this article electronically or in print, free of charge, as long as the bylines are included. A courtesy copy of your publication would be appreciated.

Hub hip-hop producers to Battle for exposure

These days, rap producers such as Philly’s Scott Storch and New Jersey’s Just Blaze get as many props (and make as much cash) as the artists who rhyme over their beats.

Boston beat-maker Hector Solana (who records under the name Big Hek) thinks it’s time for New England to yield hip-hop’s next superproducer. Along with partners at Dorchester’s On Topp music shop and Dark Figures Productions, he’ll host Sunday’s second Boston Beat Battle at the Paradise to help funnel worthy Beantown instrumentalists into the rap industry pipeline.

“In the last couple of years, hip-hop has been producer-driven,” Solana said by phone from On Topp. “Right now you have major labels giving producers deals instead of rappers. The beat battle is our way of giving local producers an avenue to be heard by massive crowds and people who can help their careers.”

In the head-to-head battle, beat-makers face off in three elimination rounds. In the Headbanger Round producers each get 2 minutes to showcase a medley of their best tracks. In the Remix Round competitors unveil original remixes of well-known a cappella riffs (i.e., Jay-Z’s verse from Mariah Carey’s “Heartbreaker”). In the final On the Spot Round, the remaining two contestants get 20 minutes each to compose original beats.

“Some people might be scared to battle, but they’re really all winners,” Solana said.

Sunday’s contestants (Decap, Peter Beats, J Hunt, DC the Midi Alien, Scotty B, M.O., Yomo and Young Cee) were chosen from 65 hopefuls who submitted demo tapes. They’ll be battling before a panel of notable judges, including Boston hip-hop hero Edo G. and New York mixtape rapper Gracy, as well as hosting DJ On&On and guest performer Dre Robinson.

The Boston champion will get even closer to the action - a chance to rub shoulders with major-label representatives at next month’s Dynamic Producer Conference in New York. In October, he’ll return to New York to battle in the International Producers Association (IPA) competition.

“Bringing the winner to other battles is the first way that we think outside of Boston,” Solana said. “I got started battling in New York, and it’s a lot easier to get recognition there - that’s where the money is.”

Following a 2002 win at Brooklyn’s battle, Solana and his partners, Max Moise and John Burns, linked with HBO, which hired them to produce for their Blaze Magazine MC battle. Connections made through BanginBeats also led to work for ESPN2’s sneaker-culture show “It’s the Shoes.”

“All of Boston hip-hop is looking for a bigger stage right now, and we want the producers to get more exposure, too,” Solana said. “Rappers and artists come and go, but great producers like Dr. Dre and Scott Storch have lasted.”

Boston Beat Battle, with DJ On&On and Dre Robinson, Sunday night at the Paradise. Tickets: $20; 617-562-8800 or

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Some Interesting Blogs:

Here are some blogs that I found that have interesting info and news about rap, hip hop and the world of hip hop culture. Look below>>>>

The Rap Up

What in the Wide, Wide World of Sports?


The Low End Theory: January 2006

The Low End Theory: May 2005

Jee Juh Holds Down SoundClick

Jee Juh Productions, (Rap Instrumentals and Hip Hop Beats) holds down the number one spot for "The Best Unsigned Bands Top List" and "Beats and Instrumentals Charts". Check it out at

Extremely low prices on all rap beats

Well, we decided to lower all the prices on our beats and instrumentals. Jee Juh Beats Sept. 5th Now we are just waiting to see what is going to happen. Hopefully we will sell out all of our music and then come in with some new rap beats and hip hop instrumentals straight from the oven. Project X coming soon...