Dear Rapper #4 Dont let the bloggers run you
So yeah, fresh off my birthday…I had many convos with many deep thinkers in various types of “cyphers” and I feel like sharing a little insight with the masses.
The blog game got you rappers caught up…lets start at the beginning.
Rappers need(crave) exposure….enter a new blog site that has hundreds of comments on each post, it looks like the sterling opportunity to get your new song heard and make some new fans. So you search the blog, find who the authors are and you craft a friendly email that basically says, “Put me on this blog please”. You wait for a response, and you play it from there.
This blog you submitted to, has more established artists in their posts and you really want to be mentioned with that company, you also hope to skim off some of the fans and get some of that interest and revenue coming your way…what do you do? You craft another email, more professional in press release format, for some blog love and you wait and see if your music surfaces on the site.
That blog site you love and the bloggers whom you have come to worship and mention in the comments you strain to leave( and pray they dont get moderated because they include a link to your soundclick page) have now added sponsorship…their site is looking major and you really want in, so not only do you check back 500 times a day to see if they posted your joint, you are now enamored in the glamour of it all.
Not only have you demoted yourself from artist to “Aspiring artist” by whoring your integrity out, you have also catapulted the blog writer from random internet dude to a “Rap God” whose approval you require to have some sort of relevance within the community that surrounds the site.
You need to navigate this shit bruh. Lets understand the machine.
You’re favorite blog will post a rapper whom you honestly dont personally like, but you see the hoard of comments they have so you not only download their song, but you become an evangelist for that guy, in hopes to affiliate yourself and be in the loop…in other words you dont want to be classified as a hater.
Thats an oxymoron…the blog writers are the biggest haters. These guys have taken a position of disdain for artist trying to establish themselves and advertise music. They refer to you guys as “rapsters”. I recently read one write up from a very smug blogger who described his visit to FatBeats as a journey into “a festival of super hungry corny rapsters who will do anything to give you their mixtape and network.” He goes on to clown the guys who have cameras trying to film the event, and says they are basically amateurs and a waste of space.
If someone feels that way about you, why in the hell would you even campaign for their support or friendship.
If you view the comments sections of these blogs on a strictly shallow level, you may see 100 comments here, 50 comments there and think, “Wow, this particular artist must be very popular.” Should you have the guts to click and read the comments you will see that of the 100 comments there are 40 people putting the artist down in an insulting way, 20 comments that have nothing to do with anything, 15 comments dissing certain people who commented, 15 people advertising their own shit and 10 comments actually showing fan support.
That makes those 100 comments seem alot less valuable now in the grand scheme, dont you think?
Now lets duplicate this experience across the web…
If you have ever noticed, the commercial blog sites mirror one another. Almost identical posts with a sprinkle of in house posts and a dash of “Im cool with this rapper” posts. You are on the outside looking in…but what do you want to be? Do you want to be a “Rapster” kissing the ass of each blogger or do you want to establish yourself?
Think deeply about this before you attend these bloggers events and before you lobby for their support and especially before you base your own success around if these people “notice you” and mention you.
In the end, you may gain a little exposure before your post is pushed out of public view and lost forever to the archives, but you dont win…the blogger wins.
Your clicks and retweets bring them traffic which they gain payment from due to them having sponsors…and every song you download from the artists they toss at you makes them money. Those download sites they use to “leak” songs to the consumer actually pays the host for the traffic. So, not only are you making stars out of people who probably would get no respect from any real rap dude, you are making them rich and feeding their ego at the same time. Doesn’t make sense, the artist is supposed to shine. Because he is the one with the talent.
So basically what Im saying is…WE NEED TO TAKE OUR POWER BACK.
Stop hating…get involved. Advertise yourself, learn the business yourself, support yourself and cater to the people who actually like your music. The rest of the shallow blogg-ites will join your following when they catch on…which is usually late. You just need the courage to hang around and keep making quality music until it happens. These blog cats are cornballs…the cool ones will not make you grovel at their feet to support your music. If you make good songs, people with good taste should support it. If these clowns are posting music that you know sucks and getting paid to perpetuate that cycle, the last thing they need is for you to kiss their ass and inflate their unnecessary ego…
By the way, writing is an art…these guys have bad grammar and dont even know how to evaluate talent. In all actuality they are the amateurs and they need to be put in their place, which is what I make sure to do…often.
In closing, all i can say is: Stand on your own two..and be you.
“Out of place amongst the hipsters and the bloggers/ but Im in the same places with the hipsters and the bloggers.” – (c) Ben Famous