#HipHop101 Mixtape Etiquette for the new artist

mixtape

It’s been awhile since I’ve posted in the HipHop101 section, but what I’m going to talk about is really going to be able to help some people who listen. Although I am an artist, my first love in music has always been the business side as far as marketing, management, and promotion. One of my favorite things to do behind the scenes is organize collaborative Mixtape or Album projects which requires you to work with and organize a lot of different people that do a lot of different things. You have artists, producers, DJ’s, record labels, managers, graphic artists, bloggers, promoters, etc who can all be involved with this kind of project. It can be extremely difficult sometimes when you are dealing with so many different people and personalities but no matter how difficult it can be, I personally find that the finished project always ends up being worth it and whatever or whoever the difficulty was, you learn from it and move forward so that you can make each project better than the next.

With that being said, what I want to address is the Etiquette of Artists. I am very aware that we live in a day and age of social media and we are living in a generation of selfish people. Be that as it may, I am going to explain to you the honorable way to conduct yourself and you can choose to ignore it or pay attention. I am going to tell you the truth about somethings and it might hurt your feelings, but you will be alright if you can get out of your emotions and listen to the logic because this is after all business regardless of what you see portrayed on television or social media.

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  • YOU ARE NOT FAMOUS. Unless you are cashing million dollar checks, have hundreds of thousands of dollars in endorsements, have gold or platinum records, or have been recognized as one of the greats for your well seasoned and decorated music contributions? SIT DOWN. Relax. you don’t deserve to be disrespected, but you better stay humble. If you are unreasonably a jerk, nobody is going to want to work with you and eventually you will end up biting every hand that tried to help you get fed and burn down all the bridges extended to you. Unless you are an outstanding artist, producer, graphic artist, DJ, blogger, promoter, manager, and record label all in one? You will eventually need the help of other people so it’s best to conduct yourself as a professional. In my opinion I don’t understand how people can say they want music to be their full-time job so they don’t have to do anything else but they’ll behave like professionals for their job at the gas station and act like they have no manners or common sense when it comes to conducting themselves as an entrepreneur (which is technically what you are as an independent artist).
  • Value an invitation. There is a lot of work that goes into a collaborative project. Far too many times people undervalue the time and work that’s put in to a collaborative project especially if all they did was submit a song. This is no way means the creative process and recording is under valued, but the point I am trying to make is a collaborative release has many components to it and if you are invited onto a collaborative project (especially one being presented by an artist, group, or label that holds weight under their name or brand) there are a few things you can easily do that show you appreciate the opportunity of exposure and free promotion.  The LEAST you can do is share the project and support it especially if you were invited on. Even if you pay for a slot, what was the point of purchasing your exposure opportunity if you don’t even support it? If you are invited onto a project, turn in your music in a timely manner. Nobody should have to chase you down to give you an opportunity. If you want to be taken serious as an artist? Be professional. Nobody is going to keep calling, texting, inboxing, or emailing you in order to put your music on a project that’s overall cost isn’t coming out of your budget. What all of us as artists need to remember is that there are millions of us. Sometimes it’s not even natural talent that help people move forward in this very competitive business, it’s things like honoring your word, professionalism, and integrity.  For me personally? I will help a less talented artist who is a good person ten times over breaking my neck for someone who is super talented but a headache to work with.
  • Label your tracks properly.  When you are submitting a song, nine times out of ten whoever is collecting the music is slammed with emails. Make sure you do your part to cut down on the instance of error and costly mistakes. Your email should come with the MP3 of the song, Artist name, track name, and producer name. One thing that happens far too often is people do not label their tracks properly and then expect everyone to stop what they’re doing to correct spelling errors, add something or delete something. Once things like promotion is started or track lists have been designed and released it is far too time consuming and costly to make changes and frankly, unless the error was a track by a heavy hitter? Chances are you’re going to have to deal with the error and move on. It’s happened to all of us at one time or another and nobody died because of it.

 

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For those of you who may be very new, there is a difference between a Mixtape and Collaborative Album.  A Mixtape can be done by an individual (normally a collection of their music they are putting out for free in order to generate a buzz before an album comes out, a free project an individual releases in order to start building a fan base, a free collaborative project from a group/label/ DJ that showcases a collection of artists / producers. The key word though is FREE. The only time there is ever a charge for a Mixtape is if hard copies are pressed up then you are paying for the actual hard disk and shipping, not the actual music. Artists can be invited on by a DJ/Group/ Label or slots are sometimes available for a fee. Purchasing a slot would be something you charge to your promotional budget and you should only purchase slots on Mixtapes that target the fan base you want, and or are hosted/produced by a reputable organization/DJ/Label/Group. I say that because I can’t even count the number of times a no-name brand or group has slid in my inbox trying to sell me a Mixtape slot for hundreds of dollars. No thanks. If you are debating on purchasing a slot, google the other Mixtapes they’ve done. Combine all the numbers from all of the sites you see it posted on and decide if the slot fee is worth that investment for the level of exposure you find. ( Side note: Any slot fee over $100-$150 you should look for downloads and plays of ten thousand or more but BE CAREFUL…. some of those “downloads” aren’t organic, meaning they could have been purchased. So the best way to make sure it’s legit is see if the project comes up on multiple sites and check all of the stats before making your decision.

A Collaborative Album is actually for sale. Normally a collab album will have one producer and feature many artists on their beats, or put out by a label/group and showcasing their artists and producers. On this kind of album purchase you can expect all original tracks.

I hope some if not all of this was helpful or enlightening. One more helpful tip until the next time… if you are an artist and consider the music industry your ideal profession? Do some research about the “business” you say you’re in. There’s a lot of “artists” that don’t even own the name they’re making beats or recording songs with, and there’s a lot of producers selling beats they don’t technically own although they made them.

That’s all for now! Be blessed –

Q

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Happy New Year 2018

There are two things that everyone has. #Purpose and #Potential. It’s those same two things far too many people leave this earth without ever tapping in to or maximizing. Laziness, pity parties, lack of motivation, sense of entitlement, and distorted views of work ethic play a major part in that but at the end of the day? YOU and YOU alone are the only person responsible for what you do with your purpose and potential. Many people wait on the big things they know #God is capable of blessing them with but how can He entrust you with a business if you can’t manage a budget? Why do you deserve millions and you can’t manage a tax return? How do you deserve to be a “boss” and you don’t even show up on time? So instead of “New Year, New Me” how about this year, you maximize what you’ve been sitting on this entire time?

#QTPQuote #QueenTheProphet #TuesdayMotivation #HappyNewYear #SoulFood

#WednesdayWisdom 

‪You can’t use “God not stopping me” as an excuse for something you knew you shouldn’t do but did anyway. There’s ALWAYS a way of escape. Using it is entirely up to you. ‬Every single time I ignored that? I was sorry. I don’t know about you, but I can’t afford any avoidable setbacks at this point in my life. 🤷🏻‍♀️
“No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.”

‭‭I Corinthians‬ ‭10:13‬ ‭

The real world VS. The internet 

I realize that I frequently make references to this subject matter in my posts, but with each post it doesn’t become less relevant.  Here’s the way I see it, even if just one person reads it and it helps them focus on the things that truly matter in real life like their family, relationships, hopes, dreams, and goals? It was well worth it. 

The internet is a tool and too many people have allowed it to become the dictator of their reality. Too many people are starved for real human to human interaction and many don’t even know how to communicate socially face to face without discussing the internet. When was the last time you had a personal conversation and absolutely no references were made to some sort of online activity? Have you been to a store lately? Most cashiers have their phone in their hand. Most people can’t even enjoy a social gathering without checking their phone. 

What’s more disturbing is that there is crisis everywhere in the world and people forget about disaster as soon as a new post flies through their feed. People (human beings) are lost, sick, struggling, and hurting all over the planet and most people are too busy posting their comments about it instead of actually getting involved or at least trying to be an agent of change. If you found yourself in the middle of a crisis or you have loved ones that are,  I’m sure you appreciate the people who have decided to put down their phones long enough to get involved. 

You are not “woke”, a revolutionary or any other sort of agent of change if all you do is fall into the peanut gallery comment section of the internet. Stop allowing yourself to be so self absorbed and distracted. Get involved, do something that matters, & enjoy your real life. 

Are you too distracted? 

Asking yourself if you’re distracted seems like a silly question because I think most people would agree that in this day, we are all distracted to a certain degree. It’s still a question worth asking because sometimes you have absolutely no idea just how distracted you are until your assessment of it can be objective. 

Today marks the end of my 3-month reprioritizing of social media. For the last 90-days, I have stayed off social media from 7am-7pm daily. At first? I couldn’t wait until 7pm rolled around and honestly after the 3rd week of being off for 12-hrs a day? I started to go days then weeks without checking it at all. 

Social media is a useful tool. For those of us that use it for business purposes, sometimes it’s necessary. However, a tool is all that it is. Most people have no clue how much real life they are missing being sucked into the internet on a daily basis. They have no idea what’s going on in the world, the only information they know or can recall for basic conversation is something they saw in a post and that is sickening. People have full blown family discussions about what someone’s posting and “posts” have manifested into the core of real life drama for most people. 

Most people have completely lost the ability to think for themselves and most of what they do is dictated by what they’re feeding themselves with on a daily basis from the internet. What you spend most of your time doing? Is exactly what you’ll become. If you don’t believe me, challenge yourself to stay off social media for at least 30-days during the hours you’d normally be on. You’ll see. Refocus. Reproritize. Your future self will thank you. 

Back 2 School Bash! Free School Supplies! #Bridgeport #CT 

People of God: Hold your position 

This has been in my heart to speak for a few days.  

People of God: 

Don’t give up. Don’t quit. Hold your position, it’s coming. 

May the grace of of lord and savior Jesus Christ be with you always. Amen. 

Are you still standing? 

It’s not over for you. If you are still standing? Whatever attempted to take you out failed and it failed because you’re not finished. It doesn’t matter what it looks like, feels like, or what any doctor has reported. If God be for you? Who then can be against you? The testing & trails of God’s people is to help everyone else see the difference between the wheat and the weeds. Pay attention.  How you act during a non ideal circumstance speaks volumes to onlookers. 

Hell Razah @realhellrazah presents #GGO Family Tree (updated 4/25/17) 

Most current version!

QueenTheProphet.com

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Hell Razah Music, Inc.
President: Chron “Hell Razah” Smith
Vice President: Scripture

Hell Razah Music, Inc. Artist Roster: (GGO Ghetto Govt Officialz)
Hell Razah @heavenrazah
Yung Razah @yung_razah
Automatik Greatness @automatik7
Scripture @scriptureggo

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Kenyattah Black @blackkenyattah

Rico Deniro @iamricodeniro
Ace Jimenez @chosenkingz

Hell Razah Music, Inc. In-House Production:
Dr. G (UK) @drgproductionz drgbeats.com (Executive Officer)
Ark of the Covenant Productions (GGO CT)
St. Peter (GGO CANADA)
Sneak Vandel (GGO/ZUBulliez) @sneakvandel
Miverson Beats (GGO RI)
Hell Razah Music, Inc. Official DJ’s

Admiral DJ Yello (Wu-Tang DJ Collation)

DJ FLIPCYIDE (Wu-Tang DJ Collation)

DJ Fiyaa

DJ Kenni Starr

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Culture Freedom culturefreedom_artwork@yahoo.com (Executive Officer)

Jason Warner
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Alex Schnaible (Follow Me Design)
Hell Razah Music, Inc. Film Production:
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Hell Razah Music, Inc. Video Production: 

Nick Ruiz
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Many are called, few chosen

#WednesdayWisdom 

Lots of people can do things and lots do them well. Being able to do something, even exceptionally well still doesn’t mean God called you to do it. So that ends with you spinning your wheels so to speak and running around the same mountains over and over again. However when you get yourself aligned with His purpose and plans for your life? No weapon formed against you shall prosper and no devil in hell can stop you. MANY are called, FEW are chosen. We are chosen by the way we respond to the call. “For many are called, but few are chosen.” Matthew‬ ‭22:14‬ ‭NKJV‬‬