The only music that stirs our hearts with awe and connects on a deeper level is hip-hop music. hip hop music has evolved over the years.it has given rise to a lot of sub-genre as well.no matter which culture you belong to you would have come across hip-hop in one form or another.the first beat I ever made was a hip-hop beat as well. the joy I had on my face when I made that first beat was just incomparable.in this article, I am going to guide you guy how to build your own minimalistic setup. let’s get started.
There are two types of approach you can take while you are looking into a setup for hip-hop music production,
If you are someone who isn’t familiar with piano and you don’t have any plans learning piano then this is the approach for you.the setup is simple in this case because we wouldn’t be investing in midi keyboards.we will invest in midi controller pads.assuming that you have a laptop to work with let’s look at the components to put together a setup for hip-hop music production.
Midi contollers are nothing but midi triggering machines that can trigger samples and play them back in real time they can also record these samples in the DAW.the avantage of buing a mid controller instead of a midi keyboard is that you can play it as like a drum pad.
There are a lot of companies that are making these so-called midi controllers.
These bad boys are differentiated based on the number of pads they have as well as the capability to control samplers.
Don’t worry too much about the functionalities at first take a big deep dive because we all have to start somewhere.
The one that I recommend is Ableton live push 2 among all others is because of the value that comes along with it. Ableton live push 2 comes with the standard Ableton Daw.when you compare the same value to other software companies you don’t get these at all.
These are external sound cards used to reduce the load on the laptop sound card which is actually not meant for making music but for listening to music.
Audio interfaces also convert the analog forms of audio into digital form. audio interfaces come in different forms and different input-output configurations.sometimes its overwhelming to see our inspirations using these fancy audio interfaces .its important to understand that that’s not where they started.
If you are interested in learning more about audio interfaces and want to check all other options that you have you can check our guide in this page.
The reason I am not going deep into digital audio workstations is because of the fact that we covered this with the midi controller segment.
If you feel like fl studio is simpler and easy to start then you can start with that as well. sometimes the nuances that are available or even the features that you have in each one of them might overwhelm.
let’s look at the other approach of putting together a minimalistic setup.
Midi based setup.
This setup is for people who have experience in piano or a bit of music theory background.we will be using a midi keyboard instead of a midi controller.this is setup is a bit expensive when compared to the previous setup. Assuming that you have a laptop at hand.lets look at the components of this setup.
The midi keyboard is going to be an integral part of this setup.you can use a 32 key midi keyboard to start with since we are talking about minimalistic setups for hip-hop music production.
These 25/32 key midi keyboards wil be easy to be moved and are good for travel.
This is an absolute necessity to any hip-hop music production setup that most people don’t consider first and when they see their computer going insane that’s when they realize oh Gawd we should have bought an audio interface.
You can always start with a 100$ keyboard and then raise the bar as you start to gain experience and outgrow the gear.
The audio interfaces available in todays world are very diverse in terms of inputs,outputs and other functionalities that comes along with it.
The audio interface that I recommend is Native instruments complete audio 2.
it has an amazingly sleek design with incredible functionalities.
Investing in a strong digital audio workstation is a must as its an one time investment that is going to last forever.
A lot of people start with fl studio some even move to Ableton or studio-one.some start with pro tools.in reality, it doesn’t matter at all.the people who are strongly opinionated that this is the best software are people who don’t really enjoy music production. I say this because when you enjoy doing something it’s the process that should excite you not the gear.
I have been using Ableton livefor a while now and in my opinion, it’s best for hip-hop music production.
Final verdict :
Yes starting hip-hop music production is cool.even if you don’t have enough money to invest start with what you have.the old keyboard that you have its good enough to start with.
I started by selling my old workstation psr-s550.it was a hard decision to make at that time but it was the best investment ever that provides for my family.
Certain things that you have to keep in mind are that the gear doesn’t matter at the start because the first few years are all about getting better at the techniques of music production.
Its your journey don’t compare it with others .
we all come through struggles enjoy the process and crush it.
The order you should be investing in should be starting with a laptop, midi keyboard and then on an audio interface.
Maslin JE is a Music Producer/Composer Who has been working in the Music Industry for over 10 years. Having an evolution from being a church keyboardist to becoming a full-time entrepreneur he has gained an abundance of experience in music production and entrepreneurship.