In the competitive hip hop game, sending a music producer your mixtape can be your best chance of getting into the limelight as a professional artist. But before you throw together a sampling of your best beats and tracks and email the file to your producers of choice, you need to stop and think about the opportunity here. This is your chance to make a name for yourself and put your best foot forward. Every year, thousands of talented rap artists are thwarted by their own devices by creating low-quality mixtapes that end up lining a studio’s trash cans. If you plan to be a serious rap artist, then you need to take your mixtape and your image seriously. Read on to learn the most common mistakes made by rookies in the industry and how you can avoid them.
One of the most common mistakes that new emcees make is to put too many or not enough tracks on their samples. Including too many tracks says to producers that you don’t know how to edit. On the other hand, using too few tracks indicates a limited range. Shoot for the middle ground when arranging your tracks. Use the songs that reflect your overall style, tone and ability, and limit them to an appropriate number. You may only have 30 seconds to impress a producer, so start with your most impressive track and follow it up with some complementary singles that keep the momentum going.
In the pre-digital days, making a mixtape was a labor of love, and producers were less likely to fault people who didn’t have professional equipment to remaster and mix their samples. Today, there’s no excuse for poor sound quality. As Stef from Rainbow Music puts it, “You don’t have to spend a fortune having your songs remastered, but you should invest in quality engineering software and use it appropriately. If you can, you should consider utilizing the skills of a professional music engineer. With thousands of samples bombarding the music industry on a daily basis, you need to present a sharp, clearly edited and remastered mixtape to stand out from the crowd.”