Being creative is all about…well… creating! And when that moment of inspiration strikes you it’s important to take full advantage of it! In this article, I will share with you 5 free tools that can improve a rappers workflow so that you can focus on getting your ideas down as quickly and efficiently as possible. So without further ado let’s get straight to it!
Top 5 Free Tools To Improve A Rappers Workflow – 2020 UPDATE
When that moment of inspiration hits you to start jotting down your rhymes but you don’t even have a beat to write to instead of fumbling through dozens of beats and risking your moment of inspiration just load up Metronomer.
Metronomer is a very simple but powerful tool. Basically it’s just a metronome that you can access via a website. You simply put your desired tempo (BPM) in, click start and now you have a click track to write to which will ensure you’re writing on beat. This will eliminate you having to fit your lyrics to an instrumental later on once you find the perfect beat to match your lyrics. What’s also cool is that later when you’re shopping for beats online you can actually search for beats based on their tempo aka BPM (beats per minute).
Also, keep in mind that picking the right tempo that matches your style is very important as it can dramatically influence the way you flow to the song. Make sure you jot down the tempo you are writing to in Metronomer and take advantage of their download feature which allows you to download an mp3 file of your click track to the tempo that you select! Pretty cool huh?
You will want to keep the time set to 4/4 which is the standard time signature for pretty much all the music we listen to. It basically just means that there are 4 beats per bar. Also, you select through a few variations of sounds that are played for your click track in case you find the default sound annoying. And the number of beats that you select at the bottom of Metronomer will determine how long the click track will be that you download. The fewer beats the shorter the click track will be.
If you’re wondering what the big TAP button is it’s basically a button you can click to the beat of another instrumental if you’re unsure of what it’s tempo is. To learn more about tempo and why it’s so important to check out my lesson on Detecting Tempo.
Let’s face it, as rappers we’ve all gotten stuck on lines before when we’re trying to come up with our next line to complete our complex rhyme scheme. Instead of killing unnecessary time why not utilize a rhyming dictionary to get your wheels turning quickly again? If you are unfamiliar with how a rhyming dictionary works you simply input the word or words you’re trying to rhyme with and it will provide you with a list of words that rhyme with it.
RhymeWave is by far the best Rhyming Dictionary ever created for rappers and as I write this, it’s totally free! You can start using it right now via their website. Be sure to bookmark it because you will likely be using it a lot! If you wish to learn more about RhymeWave be sure to check out my tutorial on RhymeWave which also includes a really awesome conversation that I had with its creator Jon Clark.
3. Bar Sheets
Bar Sheets are basically a specially formatted document that I created to help rappers structure their lyrics better. It helps rappers keep count of their bars, accurately document how they’re flowing to the track by lining up their syllables within the beats of each bar, as well as keep track of their placement of rhyme schemes. I like to think of Bar Sheets as an organization tool for rap lyrics. This will prevent you from coming back to your lyrics later on and forgetting how your lyrics fit the beat.
If you would like to see these bar sheets in action check out my lesson on How To Use Bar Sheets and if you would like your own copy of the bar sheets you will receive them immediately after signing up to my newsletter which is also free!
4. Studio One Prime
Studio One by PreSonus is a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) that has become an industry standard and it’s a BEAST! And they offer a free version of Studio One called “prime” which is easily the best free DAW you can get your hands on!
I recommend every rapper to use a DAW for songwriting to be as productive and creative as possible. If you wish to see some live examples of how a DAW can help you be sure to watch my lesson on the 5 Reasons Why You Should Be Using A DAW To Write Your Songs.
I recommend PreSonus Prime because it does everything you will need! Plus it’s beautiful, free, and it will work on both Mac and Windows!
In short, Evernote is a cloud-based word processor that is perfect for rappers writing rhymes along with any other creative ideas one may have. If you’re at the grocery store and out of nowhere an awesome hook drops into your brain you can quickly record your vocals within Evernote.
If you’re going to the studio you can rest assured that all of your lyrics are safely on file within Evernote in case you need them. And with Evernote being cloud based it will synchronize with all the devices you have it installed on so you can jump from one device to another and not miss a “beat”!
You can also collaborate on songwriting with other rappers by sharing your Evernote documents and even chat live with them via a messenger built into the program.
This is really just scratching the service with all that Evernote is capable of doing. If you would like to learn more about why I consider Evernote to be a songwriter’s best friend check out my article about it here.
6. Audio Keychain
Another tool I’ve been using a lot as of recent is called “Audio Keychain“. In short Audio Keychain is a website that allows you to upload a song or instrumental and it will tell you the tempo as well as the key that the song is in!
This is a big deal if you’re struggling to figure out the tempo of a song so that you can properly align it to the grid of your DAW. But in addition to this, if you’re wanting to do any type of singing, I recommend using some type of AutoTune plugin because it will help you dial in your melodies faster and help you train the pitch of your voice. But in order for AutoTune to work, you have to tell it the key that the song is in, and that’s where Audio Keychain saves the day!
If you’re looking for a free AutoTune that is compatible for both Mac and Windows then be sure to check out Graillon 2 by Auburn Sounds.
How Did I Do?
Did you find this article helpful? Have a question or comment? I’d love to hear from you so make sure you drop your 2 cents in the comments section below!
A free DAW? What?!
Yes sir! It’s crazy! You can’t beat FREE!! 🙂 Thanks for checking out my article Mike!
Thankyou sir ❤.No questions and No complaints .
I’m already using 2 of the 5. Will definitely start using metronomer, audio sauna and the bar sheets. Thanks for the great advice!
Hey Mikee, thanks for checking out my article. Glad to hear you was already using the rhyming dictionary and Evernote. I hope that you find the other 3 tools useful as well. Thanks for reading and commenting! 🙂
Thanks a million for your tips Cole.
My pleasure Kevin! I’m glad you enjoyed my article! Much respect! 🙂
Here’s my first comment after subscribing. I love Evernote, too! All the tools here are awesome, especially the online rhyme dictionaries. Keep it up, brother. BTW, I’m 31, so I think we’re from the same “era” of music, although from your About Me section, you may be slightly older…
I’m also a fellow brother in Christ! You’re truly encouraging and I hope you continue to grow and spread your work in the most positive way possible!
Thank you bro,
Thanks for being a subscriber! I’m really glad to hear that you’re enjoying my content as well as the tools I’ve recommended in this article! Thanks so much for your encouragement and positive feedback! I look forward to staying connected with you and sharing much more awesome content with you moving forward! 🙂
These have helped a lot thank you
My pleasure! I’m glad these tools are helping you out and thanks so much for the positive feedback on my article! 🙂 – Cole Mize
I signed up for your email but didnt receive the bar sheet.
Hey Patrik shoot me an e-mail if you haven’t already with the e-mail you used when signing up and i’ll get you taken care of. Thanks and I apologize for any inconvenience 🙂 – Cole Mize
First time here, came across this website on Google. Cole.. What an amazing site! I’m just starting to write a few songs and I love it. Your pointers helped immediately, thanks for being passionate and upbeat 🙂
Hey LJ I’m glad that you found me and most importantly have been helped by my content. Thanks so much for the positive feedback and I’m wishing you best on your songwriting! Much respect! 🙂 – Cole Mize
Hey whatsup Cole, i recently invested in the presonus audiobox itwo studio recording kit, and sad to say, it does not work with my computer’s Operating system. Yeah super depressing. But we are planning on getting an Asus, (gaming labtop) so we will be good. But until then i would like to play around with our Presonus, do you think it would work with the AudioSauna free DAW? And if so, how? Thanks for all the fantastic info bro, you are doing a fantastic job!
I’m sorry to hear that Jr Jones. Are you running a Chrome OS? I know it works with both windows and mac. Well if it’s not working on your OS it’s likely you won’t be able to use third part software such as Audio Sauna because it’s relying on your properly installed soundcard on your computer. Is the Audio Box being detected on your computer for Studio One just isn’t working? If this is the case then it’s possible that Audio Sauna would work for you as long as it can see your Audio Interface (Audio Box). – Cole
Man, you leave us wanting more. At the end I thought to myself “Damn, it’s over?” Just love the knowledge in this site, cant believe you are giving it away for free! Thanks for sharing your knowledge man, I dont know what I would have done without all of this.
Thanks Curran that truly means a lot bro! I’m really glad to hear that my content has been so helpful to you! That’s what it’s all about right there! Thanks for all the love and support and keep up the hard work bro! 🙂 – Cole Mize
Free tools you say…
Got evernote the first vid you recommended it, and the others will follow shortly ?
Gotta love free right? lol! Man I love Evernote! I still use it every single day! Glad you enjoyed this article! 🙂 – Cole Mize
Don’t know if you’ll see this but can you start a series teaching us how to use audio sauna?Specifically with regards to hip-hop. It could range from the very basics, to loading beats onto to it and messing around to make a song, to making your own beats from scratch, to finding and recording samples etc. I saw that on the making a song live series, you could segregate parts of the track for hooks, verse outro etc. and I feel if we could learn how to pull all those gimmicks you did on that series, on audiosauna might give us freebie rappers an advantage. Just a thought, hopefully, it will blossom into a series,or an article. Anything helps
Thanks for the recommendation. For now I’m trying to keep most of my content strictly about techniques concerning How To Rap. I actually don’t use Audio Suana but do recommend it to people needing a free DAW.
I will be making videos in the future sharing techniques on how do things like, organize a session, detect tempo, key of song, how to copy and paste hooks, align the track to the grid etc.. but the way I teach it will be universal so that you could apply these techniques to any DAW that you’re using.
Thanks again for the recommendation. I really do appreciate it! – Cole Mize
Cole you are the truth bruhdah!
Thanks Jeffery! You’re tha best brudah! lol! Much respect! ✌️? – Cole Mize
Awesome Content…Thanks Brother Cole!!!
My pleasure Royce! I’m really glad it was helpful! Thanks for reading and commenting! Much respect bro! ✌️? – Cole Mize
Awsome, so helpful
Baddest bro in town. I really need your help am a complete begginer so I really need your guidance.i never write a song but am looking forward to write it.from today I consider as my teacher.respect bro
Man just read your ebook and have been reading the articles you sent out in the mailing list. I have to say, it has been by far the most helpful thing I’ve found online to take me to that next level. I can’t thank you enough, much love! ~DonE DieR
This has helped me, I usually went to rhyme one, I’m definitely going to check out rhymewave, also I’ll have to check out studio one, lately I’ve been on luna and protools
Hey, Cole Mize Great stuff thx!
Colemize is droppin Gold, and I’m catchin on to the flow.Peace 🙂