Using the word “swagger”

It’s “swag” or nothing, and even “swag” can’t be pulled off by every rapper in every situation. It’s not a science, and there is still no clear set of rules regarding the word “swag”. Sometimes it just doesn’t work out, and you know it when you hear it. The phrase “swagged the fuck out”, however, seems to work well in any context in early 2011 (even for non-rappers) so feel free to use that one nonchalantly, e.g., “This baby shower is swagged the fuck out” or “That man working at the poultry stand is swagged the fuck out”. You get the idea.

Creating a dance to go with their song

This is the equivalent of infomercials that showcase a low quality product and then say, “But wait! There’s more!” only to pair this product with another, even cheaper item (usually something along the lines of a tongue scraper or a lint brush), creating the illusion of value to gullible home shoppers. Also, I don’t get choreography. I dance like this.

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Announcing mixtapes or albums that never drop

I know you’re all thinking Detox, but it looks like that is actually going to happen. Still, there are countless project announcements like I Can’t Feel My Face, Born To Lose Built to Win, that T-Wayne album, and LupE.N.D that had fans all excited for no reason. I understand that sometimes there are label issues and other things that pop up, but how about you just keep it to yourself until it’s definite? There are plenty of things that I think about doing, but I don’t go around and tell everyone, “Guys, early next year I’m going to finally get that awesome pet dolphin that we were talking about that one time at the bar!”

Going to jail

This is a problem not with rappers, but with our legal system. It’s fucking 2011, how about we grow up and realize that some rappers will do drugs, have guns, and partake in violence? A majority of us seem to be fine with this as we sing along to our favorite songs, but once it overlaps into “real life” we get all worked up and start dishing out jail sentences? C’mon, man. I know, I know, but c’moooooooon.

Engaging in Twitter beefs

We don’t encourage drama, but if you’re going to do it, do it through your music, or keep it private. Not going to sit here and try to defend diss songs (they’re awesome), but we’ve enjoyed some classic tracks birthed from feuds between rappers. It’s much harder to take you seriously when @LilGrl1992 and @FlowerPcker15 are retweeting you.

Claiming they ran drug cartels when they really were selling dime bags

This can be solved so easily. If you’re considering a career in rap, SELL MORE DRUGS before you’re famous! It’s called planning ahead, you crumbs. Or, crazy concept, maybe you could just think of something else to rap about, like… uhhh, I’m at a loss. Probably you should just sell more drugs, I guess.

Making their rap moniker impossible to decipher

No matter how good your music is, you’re making it very difficult for yourself to become popular by recording under the name Lil’ 1OO% Dop3Ne$s$ aka Sovpreem C@pit@L.

Trying to sing when they have horrible voices

The beat is knocking, verse one is murder, then the chorus comes in and dude’s voice is cracking and bouncing all over the place, leaving you not only disappointed, but actually feeling embarrassed for his friends, who you know listened to the song first and had to white lie on some “Sounds really good, Lil’ 100% Dop3Ne$s$”.

Pretending to play instruments

You know how embarrassing it is to watch old white people imitate rappers, flailing their arms around and saying stuff like “Yo! yo! yo!”? It’s kind of the same feeling to see rappers imitating instrumentalists. They stand on stage with a guitar strapped around their shoulder like some fashion accessory that automatically makes them badass. It’s cool that they want to try, but they should really gain some skills before taking it to the stage.

Making Movie/TV Show inspired mixtapes

Are you that uninspired? Not to say that every movie or TV show inspired/referencing mixtape is bad. Mixtape About Nothing and More About Nothing are great, The Cleveland Show was good, and American Gangster was not bad, but it’s gotten out of control, and honestly, think about how ridiculous it is if we turned the tables. You think any movies or TV shows are going to be inspired by rappers? Ugh, clearly didn’t think this one through. Scratch this one. 9 Things rappers need to quit.

Got any other things that rappers need to quit? Hit the comments section.

Thanks to Green for the idea and for helping out with this article.