A fundamental I stand by is making sure the environment you write in is set. There can’t be any distractions. Having Sportscenter on may have been fine when you we’re doing some homework or talking to a friend on the phone, but it’s not for writing top of the line lyrics. Most of the time I’m juggling a ton of different words in my head and if there’s a bunch of unrelated, random words coming in at the same time, it’s going to really mess up my rhythm. You can’t concentrate effectively on two things at once, especially when one of those things is hard enough with all of your concentration. Intricate Hip Hop is no joke. It’s not something you can casually do. You got to go all in with it.


“This cocky talker he foster the broadest precocity”

I wouldn’t of been able to come up with a bar like that if I had other things going on around me. You got to separate writing from everything else. Partying, friends, TV, texts, emails, even this years NBA Finals I had to put on hold to finish up a verse (Although we all knew who was going to win anyway).

However, I wouldn’t recommend complete silence either. Have some subtle white noise in the background, like a quite fan. As far as the instrumental is concerned, it’s largely up to you. Sometimes I have it playing when I’m writing and sometimes I don’t. I of course, listen to the instrumental before I start writing, but once I get a feel for it, I don’t really need it playing in the background.

For writing hooks though, I would recommend leaving it on. It’s much more important to sort of ‘feel’ a hook and almost let the music guide the words. Verses are more just straight hardcore lyricism.

Writing rhymes is a very personal thing. There’s no one right way to go about it. Even here at PW, we all have our own unique styles to writing. It’s definitely more of an art than a science but that’s part of what makes it so enjoyable. Knowing you can’t really master or perfect it, 100%. I know two other PW Writers that disagree with just about everything in this post, so just experiment and see what works for you.

-PW Writer 5

Also check out:

The most important number in Hip Hop
Ghostwriting in Hip Hop

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  1. Patton Reply

    Yeah it’s weird how hooks sound better with less lyricism

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