Writing a Hip Hop Song: Title & Content

 

Title and Content when writing a Hip Hop Song  is  more complex than you think. In your terms these could have many varieties of expression depending on the artist. With this post I hope to discuss my view on these structures of a song that I have found success in. All with hope that you can apply it to your own writing style.

The Title

Sometimes rather than not my artistic process starts with a title.   As a hip hop artist and a writer my background comes from an educational process. In it, the title sets the baseline for the song or story.

However, in Hip Hop the title doesn’t necessarily have to  foreshadow to the content of the song.

For example, in my single “RULES 2 EARN” though the title seems to elude to a general concept it isn’t some numbered checklist. It was actually about the conflict I face on the pathway to learn rules to get me to a point of success.

This can happen many times in songwriting. Though it is possible to be that rigid, the title is simply to keep you focused on the main theme(s) as you begin to write.

The Content

There are numerous writing styles & structures that are given to a piece of work by artists. But the key to writing a hip hop song is knowing how long a measure or “bar” is in your own term of lyrical writing. Just knowing this unlocks a world of content because you then know exactly where to condition your delivery on a beat.

Start by testing 1 bar to a beat to check its alignment to the music. If this works, then write the next bar the exact same length as the previous one. Making sure the rhyme scheme you are using is intact at the end depending on the rhyme scheme. I choose to first write out every other bar in an A,B structure. Then when I have the main message I want to convey, I then write out each succeeding bar.

Example: (1st Writing) using (Lyrics from RULES 2 EARN)

A: So many Lessons Though I’m Stressing To Live

B:

A: Taught Lessons Which Few Take To Heart 

B:

Example: (2nd Writing)(Lyrics from RULES 2 EARN)

A: So many Lesson Though I’m Stressin To Live

B: Little To My Name With So Much To Give

A: Taught Lessons Which Few Take To Heart

B: From The Start I’d Be 10 Worlds Apart

See what I did? It takes years of work to master the areas of hip hop. Hopefully you too can use this to feel more comfortable making content that is expressive, rhythmic and sensible.

-DEMPT-

Listen to Rules To Earn Below, now available on many media outlets.

RULES2EARN w lettering

 


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