Fetty Wap’s “Trap Queen” is the new song everyone is talking about. I’ll explain why the song blew up, and how YOU can do the same with your own music, without the need for a big budget or label.
TL;DR: If you don’t like reading, you won’t get the info you need to actually blow up as a rapper/singer. Your choice.
“Trap Queen” is the new song everyone is talking about. Except it’s not really new. It came out in August 2014, but didn’t actually start going viral until January this year. Just like Bobby Shmurda, O.T. Genasis, and Dej Loaf, they were unknown rappers who blew up and became famous with 1 hit song.
A lot of people think that hits just happen, and that artists who get famous just got lucky. I’m here to tell you that there’s reasons why a song becomes a hit. Even most artists themselves don’t know this, as they usually make hits by accident. I’ll explain why Trap Queen (and other songs) blew up, and how YOU can do the same with your own music, without the need for a big budget or label.
1. His Unique Selling Point (USP)
Part of blowing us is having something that’s unique and throws people off. There are so many established artists. What are YOU going to do that gets people interested? “Hot N*gga” had 2 things that made it unique. The first was the Shmoney Dance which everyone loved, and the second was the mysterious cap that was thrown in the music video and supposedly never landed. Fetty Wap’s USP is his missing eye. He only has one eye, which is very apparent to anyone who watches the music video. This gets listeners more interested in the video, which leads me to the next point.
2. Something that grabs attention and causes debate
This point is really similar to the last point, but also kind of builds on the last point. In the “Trap Queen” music video, there is a random guy at the end giving shoutouts etc. This was heavily discussed in the comment section of the video, and it helped the track go viral. Why? Because it got people talking about the track. It threw people off and caused a debate. People were curious about some guy who’s supposedly a mixture of DJ Khaled/Suge Knight/Birdman is on this track.
Think about Bobby Shmurda’s cap again. There were vines just dedicated to the missing hat; it caused people to talk about it, thus making the song more popular.
It’s not just about the song, but it’s about the artist as well. Since nobody knows about you, you’re basically a new artist in their eyes. We already have artists, so why should they f*ck with you? Because you’re different. Well you should be. Fetty Wap is different because he’s got one eye. All the speculation on how he lost his eye (got shot/stabbed etc.) is what gets people interested. All the speculation on whether Dej Loaf is a lesbian, or whether Young Thug is gay just makes these artists more popular. There’s power in the people, and if the people are talking about you, they will eventually listen to your music and talk about that, and your songs are going to benefit immensely from that.
So if you wanna blow up, think about what YOU can bring to the table that’s different from what anyone’s seen. Something that gets people interested in you and your music video.
3. Your song being shared and embraced by influencers
I know I said that having a hit is not about luck. But there is some luck when it comes to influencers. An influencer is basically someone that has a huge fan base, and can get them interested in your product. So when Kanye West meets Fetty Wap, and he says “Trap Queen” is his favourite song right now, what do you think is gonna happen? Kanye West is an established artist, now all his fans are going to hear about Fetty Wap, all the news sites are going to talk about how Kanye West loves “Trap Queen”, meaning everyone’s going to listen to this track. The more influencers that jump on board, the quicker your song will blow up. Think of the Shmoney Dance, loads of artists like Rihanna were Shmoney Dancing on their Instagram pages, which ended up getting more people interested in the song itself. Fetty Wap and Bobby Shmurda have both performed their songs on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. This exposes their music to a new audience, helping their virality.
Known rappers jumping on remixes will also help promote your song. There were “Hot N*gga”/”Try Me” and “Trap Queen” remixes. If your favourite artists are remixing a song, it gets other people to discover you as an artist. Remember how Chief Keef blew up? It was by being on the “I Don’t Like” remix with Kanye West/Pusha T/Big Sean/Jadakiss. Now Drake has jumped on one of Fetty Wap’s songs “My Way”, which means Drake fans are going to discover Fetty Wap, and check out his other songs, such as “Trap Queen”.
Doing a lot of interviews (Hot 97/The Breakfast Club) will also get people to know more about you and your brand, which gets people interested in your music.
All this being said, to get influencers to support you, your song will already need to have some buzz already. Influencers don’t search YouTube for videos with only 2 views.
4. Your song being shared and embraced by fans
Being shared by fans is also very important. I mentioned influencers earlier, but 1000s of regular people sharing your work is also very important to helping your video go viral. But how do you get them to share? Can you see your song being used as a vine? If so, you’re on the right track. Remember hearing “Bitch U Guessed It” in vines? Remember hearing “I’m In Love With The Coco” in vines? Remember the Shmoney Dancing vines? Remember Harlem Shake on YouTube? This goes back the first point I mentioned earlier. If there’s something cool and unique about your song, people will make their own videos about it and share it. The song “Harlem Shake” came out in 2012. But it did not go viral until 2013, because that was when people started making and sharing their own versions on YouTube.
5. The song has some mainstream quality
This is very important. Earlier I mentioned Bobby Shmurda and Fetty Wap performing their songs on the tonight show, a show mainly watched by white people. Trap Queen is currently #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 charts. I’m going to be blunt: For a song to get that popular, white people need to like it. Certain songs that go viral in the black community never really pass a certain number of views/plays. Think about it, over 75% of Americans are white. Over 85% of people from the UK are white. So how do you expect your song to be a major hit if most white people your age wouldn’t listen to it? They make up most of the country.
“Trap Queen” is about finding love, which a lot of people can relate to, allowing it to climb up to #2 on the charts.
“Hot N*gga” has very little mainstream qualities as he’s talking about shooting n*ggas, which is not mainstream as people can’t relate to that. So how did the song made it to #6 on the charts? Because of the Shmoney Dance. The dance was so unique and cool that it was able to attract mainstream attention. Without the Shmoney Dance, it would have been much harder for that song to blow up.
“Coco” was not intended to be a mainstream song, he’s talking about being in love with drugs. But because people interpreted Coco as chocolate, it accidentally became mainstream, and was able to make it into the top 20 of the charts. They even made him make a new music video that had no cocaine in it, so it could go on TV and become even more mainstream. Going back to my fourth point, everyone was making funny vines about Coco, using Coco Pops and other jokes, because ‘chocolate’ is something that everyone enjoys.
This is something you really need to consider when planning your viral video.
6. The music video is dope
This really doesn’t need to be a separate point, because it just steps on all the other points, but I will say this: you NEED a music video, no exceptions. How many unknown artists actually go viral on just a song with no video? That’s right.
The video needs to be high quality, and follow the rules of all the other points. Just remember, the video IS the song. People will always hear the song and remember watching the video before. Remember “Gangnam Style”?
7. The song and beat are actually good and catchy
You may be wondering why this is the last point, and not at the top. Since I license my beats to rappers, I always search for and listen to the artists that jump on my beats. A lot of them are really good songs, but they don’t have a lot of views/plays, because that’s not all that matters. You have to follow the other points I mentioned earlier.
That being said, “Trap Queen” is a hot track. “Hot Nigga”, “Try Me”, and “CoCo” were all dope tracks. So make sure your track is dope.
Obviously having a good song means you need to have a sick beat. I can’t tell you how many times people have loved songs without even listening to the lyrics while saying the beat is sick. This means your beat has to be a banger. Luckily, I know a place where you can get banging beats (click here).
So there you have it, the steps you need to create your video and get 50,000,000+ views. Most of it is not luck, except for the third point I mentioned. So there’s no excuse to not start planning your next viral hit from NOW. You could be the next Fetty Wap/Dej Loaf/Bobby Shmurda/OG Maco to blow up out of nowhere. If this helped you, make sure to share this to other people who may benefit from this info! Also check out our beats below.
Most rappers just go on Google, and find a list of record label contacts (like this one) and start contacting record labels to try and get signed. Now this is not effective, mainly because a lot of rappers don’t understand how to contact these labels properly. I’m going to reveal 4 useful tips on how to contact record labels properly:
Number 1: Make sure your tracks
are hot stand out!
It’s important to make sure your tracks are hot, but remember, there are 1000s of rappers just like you who want record deals. A&Rs have to listen to 1000s of songs, so if your song sounds like any other song, why would they chose you? You have to make sure you stand out.
To stand out, you have to go for high quality beats that are unique, to make yourself stand out. You can get these kinds of beats here. Also, you need to make sure your lyrics are on point. No mistakes, unique flow, anything to show your talent while making you stand out. A catchy hook is very important, as hooks are what get people attached to a song, although not all tracks need a hook. A good-looking music video can also help.
Number 2: Don’t be disappointed if a label doesn’t contact you back.
As I said before, they have 1000s of rappers to listen to, so chances are you’re not going to get a deal on the first try. The most important thing you have to know is that failure comes before success, and you shouldn’t let one rejection stop you from achieving your dream. Make sure you keep contacting labels the right way, and eventually you could get some responses.
Also, you want to make sure that you didn’t give them a reason to ignore you. Did your beats sound professional? Where your vocals clear, or where you using a cheap microphone? It’s best to find your mistakes so you can correct them before sending your next demo to record labels. If you can’t record on your own, it’s best to pay for a studio session, at a studio in your area. If you’re really serious, you should also get professional mixing and mastering done for your tracks.
Number 3: Make sure you send your demo to a lot of labels, including Indie labels.
As I mentioned earlier, most people do not get signed on their first try, so approaching more labels increases your chances of getting signed. Most rappers just want to target the big labels, and when they fail, they give up. The trick is that they leave out the Independent labels, thinking they’re less important. However, a lot of these Indie labels are being supported by major labels, making them just as important. The moral here is that you don’t want to ignore any option. Give both options equal priority, as it increases your chances of getting noticed.
Number 4: Practice makes perfect.
This one is self-explanatory. Don’t expect to get better if you’re not writing raps everyday! You have to be obsessed with your dream, because it’s only the people who want it the most that make it.