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Jay Soul's "RapReviews: The Album" - A New Concept For 2010
Posted by Steve Juon at Tuesday, November 10th, 2009 at 12:00AM :: Email this article :: Print this article

Jay Soul has a new concept for 2010 he wants to lay on the readers of!

RapReviews: The Album
by Jesal 'Jay Soul' Padania

Oh yeah, it's on!!

You read that correctly. RapReviews is going to curate an actual living, breathing ALBUM. Who are the artists that will be featured on it? Well, YOU, of course… This really is history in the making!

So let's start from scratch. I had the idea six months ago on a crazy night when I couldn't sleep til 9am the next morning. We have such talented artists that get reviewed, not to mention a huge readership that are artists/producers themselves, struggling for a break. For example, I voted Grip Grand's "Brokelore" album of the year in 2008 – yet 99% of you would never of heard of him. If he were to put a track on our album, it would be exposed to a huge potential audience, one that he richly deserves. That in turn would build interest for his own catalogue. Or if you are an up and coming MC without a deal, but you have a few fantastic tracks that you want to get out into the community, this could be your ideal starting point.

The main thing to realise here is that RR will attempt to curate a real album, not a mixtape. In other words, as Executive Producer, it is my duty to help choose (with the RR staff) and sequence a well-balanced wonder album with brilliant lyrics, banging beats and a variety of topics/themes. That means, for example: that head nod boom bap shit; socially conscious records; club bangers; incredible concepts; heart-wrenching emotional shit; lyrical genius… All kinds of tracks, as we are all multi-faceted actual people.

What are the rules of eligibility? Well, the artist sends us the track. That could be any artist, at any level, ANYWHERE in the world. So whether you're from the US or UK, Jamaica or Japan, South America or South Africa, you are eligible. Whether you are completely unsigned, on a small label, on your OWN label, or on a major, you are eligible. Group? Solo? Doesn't matter – you are eligible.

However, your song, on the other hand, faces stricter regulations. Get this straight, it must be COMPLETELY devoid and free of ANY samples. NO SAMPLES. So your lyrics must be original. Your chorus must be original. Your instrumental must be 100% original. Why? Well, the reasons are twofold. Firstly, it is much easier to put together an album which has completely original music, from a legal standpoint in particular. Second of all, trust in your own ability to CREATE beautiful music, not just sample some other musician. There is a lot to be said about crafting your own 100% original beats.

How about the selection process? Well, you send us your track – NOT your whole album, only your absolute best SONG – via email and we root through them all, separating the average from the good, the good from the great. After the cut off point, we whittle them down to a manageable list. Finally, the RR staff will debate over who they think should get on the album. But understand this now, it had better be fantastic. If you think your shit is "pretty good" don't hit and hope. Only the strongest will survive!

So put your money where your mouth is. Send in your absolute best track, or go and create one from scratch right now. You never know, you could make it onto the RapReviews Album and it could be the start of something big. The song itself should be mixed, mastered and ready to go straight onto the album – however, we are willing to consider very special circumstances, like if you are a ridiculously talented kid with NO money. Otherwise, you should be ready to roll (though we may request the original WAV files if we feel it needs remastering).

Regardless of anything else, the aim here is to create a great album for people to really LISTEN to on repeat. Not a mixtape, not a compilation… an album – one that, if dropped through our letterbox would receive at least a 9 out of 10. Don't get it twisted – this is first and foremost an ARTISTIC move, not a commercial one – you can't bribe us, no payolas, free gifts are futile... We all bitch about the greed of major labels and focus group-driven music-by-numbers – to that end, we will initially be making it available as a FREE download.

Send your track to Jay Soul once you are ready.

The cut-off date for sending in tracks is simple – you have until the end of this decade. In other words, the 31st December 2009, and as soon as that clock strikes midnight, the sending in phase is over, and the selection process begins. You will all, of course, be in the know as the process switches stages, with regular updates on the progress. So spread the word... "RapReviews: The Album" is real, and it will be coming out in 2010. Get busy.

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