how to create a unique rap style

How To Create A Unique Rap Style

A common question I constantly get asked from up and coming artists who are learning how to rap is “how can I create my own unique rap style?”. Β This is actually a really good question and you may find my answer quite shocking at first but before you discredit what i’m about to say please hear me out.

If you’re wanting to create and cultivate your own sound you need to first accept the fact that you’re not original. I know this can be an offensive notion to entertain and I myself am not excluded in that regard. But before I’m bombarded with 4 letter objections allow me to elaborate.

how to create a unique rap style

The Explanation

If you are rapping, that in and of itself is not original. Now if you happened to be the first person to ever rap you indeed would be original. The definition of the word original is “present or existing from the beginning; first or earliest”. Β Now the reason I point this out is because often times we as artists feel like it’s wrong to study others rappers flow.Β And believe it or not this mindset hinders our growth as rappers.

Back In The Day

If you listen to some of the first rap songs ever released commercially and compare their rapping skills to modern day rappers that you consider to be skilled then it’s obvious that rappers have gotten better at rapping. But how so? Well for those who we’re some of the first rappers, they we’re truly original which also means they had no other rappers to learn from. They didn’t have nearly 40 years of rap music to reference to like we have today.

The Beginning Of An Evolution

But what began to happen is more rappers started popping up that we’re inspired by previous rappers. So they instinctively learned from them and tried to add their own twist to it. This began the evolution of rap music and it has been evolving up until this day.

How many times have you heard rappers share who their musical influences were? These are rappers that came before them that they are giving credit to that inspired their own unique sound. What rappers and overall musicians “in other genres” at large do you enjoy? Do you know why you like them so much? Become a student of those artists and study their techniques such as flow, delivery, rhyme schemes etc.. And take some of the techniques you’ve learned from them and mix them all together like gumbo and see what you come up with. Most likely it will be unique!

Don’t Be Trendy

The bottom line is we all have unique tastes and styles. No one else has your thumb print. You are already unique so don’t worry about trying to be trendy, be a trend setter, be yourself! Some people may not understand you at first but that’s okay, some people are just a day late and a dollar short and even if they never love your music that’s okay because you can’t be everything to everyone anyways. Study the music that moves and inspires you and you will begin to develop your own unique rap style.

  • So true.. Another great article πŸ™‚ And you’re right. Everybody got their inspiration from somewhere. Otherwise they wouldn’t be rappin. We all heard and loved Pac & Biggie. But Eminem, Ace Hood & Ludacris are my TOP Favorite US rappers. By studdying their rhymes, raw attitude and the way they can paint a picture with very few words, makes me wonna study the way they put their words together, and the way they deliver the words on track. We are all students. Even if we Master something, we still need to learn some more otherwise we stand still πŸ˜‰

    • Hey Artur,

      I’m glad that you enjoyed this article! Thanks so much for taking the time to comment and let me know you had stopped by. You are spot on as well! So much can be learned simply by observing and then applying what we learned from our observation. And you hit the nail on the head! We should never stop learning and should always remain students regardless of how much information we obtain. Keeping that mindset will not only keep you sharp and forever progressing but it will also help keep you level headed and humble πŸ™‚ Loved your comment bro! Thanks for the support! Keep up the great work on your end and I will do the same on mine! Take care! Sincerely, Cole Mize

      • Is it even possible to create flows that haven’t been used, just feeling it’s pointless if I’m studying someone else’s flow to learn just to whined up using the same flow, there arent many variants

        • Hey Josiah, There’s no way to know for sure if someone has already used a particular flow. Don’t worry about that because there’s nothing new under the sun. You’re also going to rhyme words that have already been rhymed a thousand times before as well so don’t get caught up in trying to be “unique” just strive to make the music you want to hear. – Cole Mize

  • My million dollars on this one, love it.
    Have a question though, if one become a student of different teachers, won’t one be kind of confused? I mean each rapper has his/her style, if we get to learn styles of different rappers, which do we focus on?
    Can punchlines, puns, metaphors, similes, onomatopoeia all work well on the same rap song?

    Best Regards,

    • Hey Ree, glad you enjoyed this article and good question! Yes you will be very confused IF you have the mindset when learning from whomever that their method is the only way to do it. Keep in mind that there is no one way you must do it. There are no rules there are only techniques. Learn as many techniques as possible but when you go to work on music approach it freely and use the techniques that you’ve learned as tools and your emotions and feeling as your guide. And yes they all can work in the same rap song as long as you pull them off well. Thanks for reading and commenting!


      Cole Mize

    • I don’t have any content specifically on writing hooks ye however you may enjoying my article on and I will be covering writing in much more detail in the future but at the moment i’m mainly focusing on cadence and rhythm since these are the first areas most rappers have difficulty with.

  • Wow i love this article. I actually spend most of my time trying to learn from other sources on the net. But am so so influenced by this. All i want now is to know how to arrange my lines literally to be able to paint a picture. I will be greatfull if you have any ideas.

    • I’m really glad to hear that you found my article to be helpful! That’s what it’s all about! For more ideas and information on painting pictures with words make sure you download my free eBook The #1 Fundamental To Rapping as well as my article on how to write a rap song which I think will give you some really good ideas from a song writing perspective. I hope this helps and if you have any more questions let me know! πŸ™‚

  • Thanks for sharing that we have to go back to why we rap. For me it is to carry the message of recovery from addiction. It’s a perfect medium to dig in and use just a few words to get to your ‘Real’… I love limericks as a starting off. I am still to discover my musicality but I am loving the beat… So in due course it will all come together. The good news is I am having fun and enjoying the journey of finding Penny in the genre of rap.
    Cheers, Cole
    I appreciate your wisdom

    • My pleasure Penny! I love your outlook on the positive ways you can use rap as a medium of self expression which isn’t only therapeutic for yourself but is also helpful to others as well. Keep exploring and experimenting and most importantly having fun! I’m wishing you the best on your musical journey and thanks so much for your kind words! πŸ™‚ – Cole Mize

  • A great article Mize and its what I wanna know at the moment because the industry is filled with rappers with diverse styles of rapping so it becoming tough for us as new comers to record and release our music and I don’t know if I should mix Trap or classic style of rapping or I should go with one.

    • Thanks Trigga! I appreciate the positive feedback on this article and I’m glad you found it to be helpful! Honestly I would play around with mixing all of your different musical styles and influences together and figure out a way to make them work and put your own twist to it. Think of it as being a mad scientist in the lab trying to concoct a new recipe by building off of preexisting ones. Keep up the hard work and thanks again for the support! πŸ™‚ – Cole Mize

  • This is why Necro is one of my top inspirations, he brought me back to rap when I stopped caring for it because all I heard was garbage on the radio and tv. I was looking up music from the movie scarface and I checked if anyone made songs/remixes on it. Then I found Necro’s push it to the limit, and then I realized I should’ve been listening to underground rap. This led me to others like immortal technique. Forget commercial rap, mainstream rap for real.
    Thanks cole, a great reminder to let you know all music has influences.

    • Hey Tony you hit the nail on the head! Find what inspires you and learn from it to make you better. I’m glad you enjoyed this article and found it to be helpful! Keep up the hard work and thanks for the comment I really do appreciate it! Much respect! πŸ™‚ – Cole Mize

  • I’m a up and coming artist and I’m still trying to find my sound. This article helped me out to get back on track with my music. Keep making articles, you never know who you’ll inspire. You’ll hear about me one day
    – JA

    • Thanks for the positive feedback JA! I’m really glad that you have been finding my content to be helpful! Keep up the hard work and I’m wishing you best in all that you do! Much respect! πŸ™‚ – Cole Mize

  • Since it is crucial that any artist looking to develop themselves receive feedback, do you think you could check out my soundcloud account to pull out aspects (in the sense of lyrics) that can be improved upon? it would be greatly appreciated if you are able to!

    • Hey Zaire, I totally agree that receiving helpful feedback is crucial in improving and sharpening your skills. If you would like me to review one of your songs make sure that you check out my music review service. And if you have any questions please let me know. Thanks! πŸ™‚ – Cole Mize

  • cole i have a problem when i freestyle without writing down the lines i get blank,but when i freestyle on a paper i don`t stuck

  • Great article. I already know how to rhyme very well. I have songs out and even won contests to perform again. However Cole, what really frustrates me is that I sound different in every song. l am trying to find my natural flow instead of switching it up on every song. I have been to told I sound like Wiz, 21 Sav, J Cole, Fabulous, and 2 Chains. It doesn’t feel authentic at all. I am also having a hard time trying to choose what type of rap I want to do. I have done trap style, lyrical music, and I also really wanna get into Pop rap more. I love the creativity and culture of rap music too much and I believe that’s my blessing and curse. Thank you for letting me vent.

    • Osmin,
      Hey, it’s a great article and I know I have a long way to go in finding my own rhythm. The worst and best constructive criticism I received was from my brother in law (ironic, because the your comment has the same first name as him, but goes by the stage name 2Gross). Anyways, like the article touched on how hindsight is “20/20”; I thought I was original, but to him I sounded like Eminem (which was the first rapper I could actually fully understand his lyrics, and until I listened to ‘The Way I Am’ in 10th Grade; I had never heard a full rap song and understood the entirety of any rap song). Not only that, but I recently looked at a few lines of one I started a year ago, practically. I took my “objective hat”, put it on and recited what I wrote. Since a year had passed, it sound fresh to me and very reminiscent of Tech9ne…oh Lord. I’ve realized all my lines have deep influences I can’t change; my blessing and curse. If I could only ad my own twist, I would have no problem sounding like any other artist, but even though it strokes my ego to know I can chop like them whilst at the same time my “writers block” remains when I try to create an own original flow. With my life so busy right now it’s hard to get any music done. Even if I fail though to create a unique sound, I’ll still “compose art like the flow of Mozart” hahah. Even if it means piggy backing what has worked. They say copying is the most genuine form of admiration and that’s where I’m at; also, on top of dumbing down my vocabulary, so my lyrics can be better understood by a wider audience rather than a selective demographic with a more intuitive and vibrant lexicon(; lol

      P.S. – Good luck on your journey, Bro (Eric) & never cease to release a masterpiece! *copywriter*

  • I only have one problem when I rap: I sound identical to Eminem. Most people love it, but it’s not an original sound, so thats what I’m trying to change. I want LMH to be an original sound, and maybe a well known name someday. My goal is to get better at rap, and bring lyrical rap back into a world of mumblers.

    • Yo my advice to that (because I’ve encountered the same problem) is just to branch out, Also understand that you’re making progress utilizing the skills and key points that made that man the legend he is today. But he’s one of many, study bro, Embrace some different styles even if you’re not 100% impressed with it yourself consider the size of the audience that thinks differently and why! $$$

  • Yo thanks a lot for the help! Honestly this advice is underrated, and anyone who is interested in becoming an artist in the future or currently needs to read this. Facts?

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