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Effective Ways to Make Rap Beats With FL Studio

Updated on August 19, 2016

Fruity loops studio is a wonderful application for digital music production however many people who are new to producing beats of any kind often get discouraged or confused because they are overwhelmed by all the available features within the software itself, well today I am going to run over some quick and easy strategies that you can use to learn how to make rap beats with FL studio right now!

The hands on approach is often the best way to learn and while I would strongly encourage further study and reading into beat making, the best way to show yourself you can do something is often to dive right in and do it, so without any further delay, let us begin…

Step One: First you must decide on the style of beats you are going to create, you need to have a clear idea in mind of what kind of genre you are going to be composing for because once you do, other things such as the tempo, instrumental choices and similar nuances fall into place very easily.

To help make your decisions, consider the following points:

  • What is the message I am trying to convey?

  • What do I want the mood of the song to be?

  • What sounds compliment my message/mood?

Step Two: Load up fruity loops studio and click on the “view” menu, take the time to set up all your various program windows in a way that will allow you to easily switch and bounce between them as when you start your composition this will allow you to focus and “get in the zone” without having to worry about bringing up windows and changing screens.

If you have a midi keyboard, make sure that you connect it to your computer, if you don’t, make sure that you become familiar with the hotkeys on your keyboard that work with the “piano roll” function.

Step Three: Locate the music samples menu within the program and browse around for hip hop/rap instruments that you think will suite your particular composition, you can hear a demonstration of what a instrument sounds like by right clicking on it…

When selecting instruments for your composition, make sure you think about whether they are suitable to the particular mood or message you are trying to express, for example, if you were writing a piece about an aggressive gangster in a night club then it might not be the best choice to use a church organ and a choir, you could of course, but a logical instrument selection will serve to enhance your music.

Some tried and true instrument selections for those who make rap beats with fl studio are:

  • Hi hats.

  • Crisp Clap.

  • Vintage kick drums.

  • Bass guitar.

  • Synthesizer.

Step Four: Once you have your instruments selected, upload any and all samples that you want to include in your composition, you will want to make sure you load them up in your “piano roll” as this will allow you to create your melodies and beats much easier…

When writing your melodies remember that sometimes “less is more” because if add to much sound to a composition it can at times become overwhelming and make it difficult for the listener to understand, try and search for a middle ground or at the very least ensure that all your sounds complement each other.

Be creative and let your imagination fuel your creativity, the best way to learn to make rap beats with FL studio is to dive right in and start creating music, even if you only create a few bars of music, it’s a learning process and in time once you have come to understand the way the software works you will be able to produce killer beats much faster…

Adopt using this kind of software with the same attitude that you would to learning how to play a traditional instrument, if you put in the sufficient amount of practice and take the time to become familiar with the layout of the software and what all the individual functions do it will give you more freedom to create the music that you envision in your mind.

Storytelling Through Music

While most music is created for the purpose of entertainment, there is another kind that specifically focuses on storytelling through music which almost takes on a life of its own because it’s a very unique art form…

Of course we have all heard music in our lives that has lyrical meaning, but the art form of storytelling through music while manifesting itself in many interesting ways consistently strives to focus on combining the atmosphere and dynamics of the instrumental portion of the music with the poetic phrasings of the lyrics to stimulate visualization of the story being told and a sense of progression either through one track or across an entire album.

Storytelling through music is by no means new of course, in fact although sometimes abstract in nature nearly all classical music compositions of the past and present focus themselves around a theme or story in some way, shape or form...

Unfortunately with the rise of pop culture in the 21st century we have seen a decline of storytelling through music in the mainstream media and while there are multiple factors that one could attribute this to, its rather hard to go into without treading on some toes and because it’s not my intention to offend anyone I shall simply say, its primarily due to the corporations in the music industry that the art of storytelling through music has suffered its decline in recent years.

However not all hope is lost because although storytelling through music has declined in the mainstream media, the alternative genres of the music industry have not only taken and used the concept, they are pushing it in an entirely new exciting direction by combining elements of new genres such as heavy metal with old genres such as classical music to create powerful atmospheric stories told in a very artistic way…

One of the masters of storytelling through music in the alternative music scene at the moment in my opinion is a band called rhapsody of fire because they focus specifically on creating what they call “score metal” and have created an entire fantasy world of their own for them to create stories about and it truly is something quite unique.

Storytelling through music is of course not limited to any specific genre or sound but because the nature of this unique art form is combining instrumental and lyrical content to convey a specific story it does seem that the more complex music genres are more accommodating to it because they offer more tonal diversity in terms of sound, which is necessary for storytelling through music…

In my humble opinion I feel that music in many ways is actually the perfect vehicle for telling a story because if done correctly you are able to communicate ideas and themes on many different levels because of the way storytelling through music requires the instrumental portion of the composition and the lyrical portion to be complimentary of each other to convey the story correctly…

Making Hip Hop Beats

Learning how to make hip hop beats on FL studio should be approached with the same level of diligence and focus that you would give to anything else in life, because for the modern day musician in any genre it is fast becoming the case that the software you are required to use will be the platform through which all your creativity is expressed.

Even if you are not using live instruments or midi keyboards, it is absolutely essential that you become familiar with the individual nuances of your chosen software, because not only will this dramatically speed up the time it takes you to learn how to make hip hop beats on fl studio, but It will give you a solid foundation for you to build upon when you decide to branch out into other beat maker programs to add to your arsenal of creativity…

Software Education: whether you’re learning how to produce hip hop beats on fruity loops or any other beat maker software one of the most important things you can do if you’re ready to take your music production seriously is to become familiar with the software, even if you don’t understand everything straight away that’s alright, because the process of learning about the software at the very least builds awareness that will help you later on down the track...

Top Five Tips For Software Education:

  1. Read the software’s instruction manual.

  2. Search for tutorials on you tube.

  3. Join and participate in software relevant forums.

  4. Network with others who use the same software.

  5. Review all the basics at least once a month; trust me it will pay off.

Constructing a Solid Beat: The backbone of any decent hip hop song is its beat, so in order to learn how to make hip hop beats on fl studio it helps to have a solid understanding how to do this, if you adopt the principles and theories in the steps im about to show you then you will be well on your way to creating killer beats…

Step One: The first thing you’re going to want to do is construct the base melody of the composition, essentially these are the simple repetitive series of notes that construct the primary beats, this is something that you’re going to want to experiment around with at length because as stated, it’s going to be the backbone of your composition.

The following instruments work well when composing hip hop music:

  • Guitar.

  • Violin.

  • Wind Instruments.

  • Piano.

  • Synthesizers.

Step Two: Be sure to use any enhancing effects that you think might make the dynamics of your composition more interesting, things like fade ins/outs, reverb and subtle background loops can work wonders for adding dynamic diversification and add a whole new level of interest to your music.

Become familiar with what instruments work harmoniously together and try to select instruments that have natural harmony, an example of this is the violin and piano, these instruments work well together whereas say an electric guitar and a trumpet, might not work as effectively, listen to some mainstream hip hop music and take note of the kind of instruments that they use.

Step Three: Spend the proper amount of time working on your drum beat, it may seem like a simple thing but don’t under estimate its importance, if you take notice to people who are dancing around to a composition in a night club or venue, you will realize straight away that they are in fact moving to the drum beat, not the melody, with this in mind, its important that you put the right amount of effort in when creating your beat.

Make sure that your drum beat is consistent and syncopated so that it is easy to understand, whilst keeping it simple, you can add interest and flare by doing things like speeding up certain parts of it every few bars to change the dynamics and give the piece flow.

As you can see learning how to make hip hop beats on fl studio can become a complex task, but before you become disillusioned with the amount of effort that is required to start producing at a professional level, remember this…

The music is in your mind, and not the software, the purpose of becoming familiar with the software and learning about composition techniques is only to get your music out of your head, and into the sequencer, never turn your music production into a chore, love it, embrace it and constantly experiment with new ways to compose to express your creativity.


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