If it’s ever possible for a particular genre of music to suffer from over-crowding and extreme high population density, Hip-hop or more specifically, Rap would be dying out by now. Got so many rappers in the game that if i should, like MCA suggested in “Too many rappers” (Beastie Boys ft NAS), charge a tax for every weak rap I’ve had to listen to, I’ll be pretty high on Forbes’ billionaire list right now. It almost seems like when any aspiring Nigerian musician finds out he can rhyme or speak at a speed of 3 words per second, he feels he’s automatically qualified to be a rapper.
At this stage, I’ll like to say this article isn’t meant to discourage or dissuade anyone out there who’s genuinely interested in Rap. Nah, the aim of this write-up is to serve as your sounding board as you look into the mirror and critically assess your strengths and weaknesses. Why am I a rapper? Is hip-hop the only genre of music I excel in? What about RnB, Rock, Blues, Jazz or coming closer to home, Fuji, Apala e.t.c. or even music comedy like Emma Oh My God (I love that guy)? Have you tried out any or all of this and discovered they’re not meant for you?
Rapping isn’t easy. It’s a broad highway filled with plenty of road kills, boldly decorated with skeletons of artistes who died trying and aesthetically lined with graves of wasted talents. If you think it’s all about rhymes, go be a poet and If you think it’s all about flow and audibility, go be an orator, why? ‘Cos rapping is more than all that. It’s more than the glamour, stage presence, frenzied movements, applause-worthy orations e.t.c. that you see rap stars exhibit now and again. Rapping is hard work. It’s a setting in which only the strong survives. Rapping is Life.
Rapping is not something you just decide to do without being sure that you’re talented enough. Like Terry tha rapman said “no be beans to dey rap” (it isn’t easy to rap). You might be average in rapping but outstanding in dance/comedy. I’ve heard both Kaffy and Basketmouth rap and I was surprised at how good they were. They must have sat down at some point in their life and said “Okay, I’m a good rapper but I’m a better dancer/comedian, so I’ll leave rap and focus on that”. And it’s working for them today.
To cut the long story short, all I’m saying is, before you pull out all stops and dive headfirst into the crowded pool of rap/hip-hop. Make sure, it’s the right step for you. A lot of artistes have made this mistake in the past and while few were able to realize their error and steer their ship in the right direction, most weren’t so lucky. The responsibility of stopping this dangerous trend falls squarely on you and I. Whether you’re an established artiste, music fiend, hip-hop head, upcoming artiste or whatever else you are, let’s spread the word.
Music is extremely wide and full of interesting prospects/genres. Rap/Hip-hop isn’t the only one that puts food on the table. Let’s change the mindset of our upcoming artistes and we’re all be good for it. And if you are the upcoming hip-hop artiste, aspiring rapper or budding musician, never forget to ask yourself, WHY RAP?
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