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How to Make a Rap Video24:13 with Mr Bingo
Mr Bingo talks about how to make a rap song, and a rap video for Kickstarter
[MUSIC] 0:04 Thanks for inviting me. 0:08 So yeah, it's a bit weird being the, I've never been a first speaker before. 0:10 It's kind of daunting. 0:13 I've only had three hours of sleep as well. 0:15 Not because I'm really kind of rock and roll. 0:16 I just couldn't sleep. 0:18 So bear with me. 0:19 It might be a little bit shaky, but 0:20 we're trying to, I think this is the first talk I've ever done sober as well. 0:21 So that's, it might be better. 0:25 It might be worse. 0:26 I don't know. 0:27 I feel a bit like this actually when I woke up this morning. 0:28 >> [LAUGH] >> This is sort of how I feel now. 0:32 So a little introduction to me for people that don't know what I do. 0:36 I send people offensive post cards. 0:40 In 1989 I went to school dressed a girl who's a cross dresser. 0:43 I sometimes draw just hair without the other bits. 0:46 I sometimes draw wallpaper, 0:50 which has really weird things going on the middle of it. 0:53 >> [LAUGH] >> I think I'm the only person in 0:55 the world that's actually being paid on Christmas Day to tell 0:58 five people to fuck off by telephone. 1:02 So, it's quite niche, some of the stuff I do. 1:07 I sometimes just draw pictures, 1:09 illustrations that appear in places like New Yorker. 1:10 I collect self defense books for women. 1:13 I sometimes animate dogs on skateboards. 1:16 I like drawing people on trains. 1:21 I like it when people match objects. 1:23 I really like that. 1:25 I like it when animals invade pictures. 1:28 I collect postcards. 1:34 I collect postcards with just one person in. 1:37 I've got 80 of these. 1:40 Sometimes when I'm in the news, I'm the only fun news that happens that day. 1:44 That's a lot of sad news. 1:51 So, what am I here today to talk to you about? 1:53 [MUSIC] 1:56 How to make a rap video. 2:11 That's the title of my talk. 2:13 So this is some work that I do called hate mail, 2:17 where people pay me to send them offensive postcards. 2:19 I haven't got time to explain it to you today, but 2:23 that's all I'm gonna say about it. 2:25 So I'm doing a book of this. 2:27 This is the front cover of the book. 2:29 This is a sort of mockup, but I decided to self-publish the book and 2:30 do it through Kickstarter. 2:34 And so that's why I made a rap video. 2:36 So I did a Kickstarter campaign. 2:40 Normally Kickstarter videos look like this. 2:43 You've kinda of got like a sorta of weird person 2:45 just in their bedroom being filmed on a shitty little laptop, 2:48 just sorta mumbling into the screen, begging people to support their project. 2:52 I decided I didn't want to do this cuz it's not the best way to get 2:57 people pledging. 3:00 I thought it would be good to do a rap video. 3:00 [MUSIC] And 3:04 the first thing I did was start listening to lots of different bits of music, and 3:04 I found this particular beat that I really liked, and I thought I need to use this, 3:08 but I don't want to steal it, because hopefully it's gonna get lots of views. 3:11 So I contacted the guy. 3:16 He's got Eli Sostre. 3:17 He's a producer in Brooklyn. 3:19 I found his email address on the internet, and I emailed him and 3:20 said, can I borrow your beat for my Kickstarter video, and he said yeah, sure. 3:22 And it's amazing. 3:27 So he sent me the track. 3:28 And then I spent, actually by the way, when I said my talk is called how to 3:29 make a rap video, it's kind of really the title is how to write a rap song, and 3:32 make a rap video for a Kickstarter. 3:36 But I thought how to make a rap video sounded better. 3:38 So he sent me the track. 3:40 And then I thought, what am I gonna rap about? 3:43 I need to, my rap needs to be about the project. 3:44 It needs to be about who am I. 3:47 It need to be about post and royal mail, cuz this is what hate mail is all about. 3:48 It needs to tell the story and the history. 3:53 It needs to talk about a Kickstarter, how the book's gonna be amazing and 3:55 how we're kinda appealing for money and please back my project. 3:59 All these kind of things had to go into the lyrics. 4:02 So I then spent two weeks basically, oh sorry. 4:05 Are there any rappers in the audience? 4:09 Okay that's good, because that means whatever I tell you, 4:12 you'll all just think is the truth. 4:15 So, cuz I am a rapper. 4:17 And so, if you are a rapper, this is sort of your weapon. 4:20 This is really important. 4:25 When soldier have guns, rappers have rhyming dictionaries. 4:27 This is really important, and it's a very useful tool. 4:30 So I travel around with this in my bag at all times. 4:33 And, rapping style and flow as well are important. 4:36 There's lots of different ways of rapping. 4:41 And I've been studying it for many years. 4:43 And I wanted my flow to be quite complex. 4:45 I didn't want it to be kind of, I didn't want it to sort of be 4:47 like the old school raps, of like the late 70s. 4:51 Hey, I'm a hybrid on the stage. 4:55 I made a little book, you can open the page. 4:57 I wanted it to be more complicated and more sort of modern. 5:00 And so I started writing down all these rhymes. 5:04 Just words that I wanted to talk about, and 5:07 then finding other words that rhymed with them. 5:08 So it's kind of like service, I hate mail service, to serve this. 5:10 Deserve this, surplus, and writing all these lists of words and 5:14 then putting them into raps. 5:17 I spent ages doing this. 5:18 So I opened a service to serve this demand for 5:20 self-harming humans who felt they deserve this. 5:23 My surplus of postcards, serving these worthless humans waiting by the letterbox, 5:25 getting more nervous. 5:30 And I spent ages doing this. 5:32 Basically sitting in pubs and cafes and just wherever with my laptop. 5:34 Just writing. 5:38 And I'd have two screens open. 5:39 The one on the left was my rough edit of the final rap and 5:40 the one on the right was just a sketch rap, I like to call it. 5:44 Where I literally wrote thousands and 5:48 thousands of different raps and then tried to put them all in together. 5:50 And so much stuff got left out. 5:53 This is all the raps that didn't get used. 5:55 And there was some quite good stuff in there as well, 5:58 which I'm kind of sad that didn't make it like this. 6:01 Yo my pen's full of anthrax, I'm sadder than Anne Franks Diary, 6:05 I might be under enquiry. 6:09 The feds trying to wire me, I'm almost at the priory, I'm so fucked, 6:10 even ISIS might hire me. 6:15 That didn't make it in. 6:17 But this all did make it in. >> [APPLAUSE] 6:19 >> Oh, thank you. 6:22 Yeah, so, I printed out the lyrics and 6:24 I just then spent a lot of time learning them off by heart. 6:27 And then I had to record the rap. 6:31 And I wanted to do it properly, I wanted to do everything properly with this. 6:33 And this is Hugh Stevens, he's a Radio One DJ. 6:37 BBC Radio six. 6:40 He's a Welsh DJ. 6:42 And I met him at Latitude Festival a couple of years ago while I was 6:42 taking a tour. 6:45 And so I contacted him and said you know like sound people. 6:47 Can you hook me up with someone? 6:51 And through a series of emails and messages he managed to 6:52 find me a recording studio in someone's house which I got really cheap. 6:54 So I went around and I walked in with the lyric sheets and 6:57 the backing track and then three and 7:01 a half hours later walked out with a rap single which was pretty exciting. 7:03 And I was listening to it on the tube train on the way home, 7:07 just kind of grinning. 7:09 And no one else knew I was listening to my own song. 7:10 So, on to the rap video. 7:14 If you're going to make a rap video, you need to find a film crew obviously. 7:15 I was very lucky that I know these guys. 7:19 They're called Oldie. 7:21 You should look their work up. 7:21 They're amazing. 7:23 So this is Rex and Luke, and 7:23 they're friends, but they agreed to do it for a really small budget. 7:25 So we had really amazing equipment, really amazing directors. 7:30 We also got loads of other people involved, so 7:34 this is sort of the film crew on the day, some friends, a focus puller. 7:36 He's like a proper job. 7:41 And then I got people from Twitter. 7:44 I just put it out there and said, does anyone want to help as a runner? 7:47 We're making a rap video. 7:50 I managed to get quite a few people to help out on the day from Twitter, 7:50 which was amazing. 7:54 Locations are important. 7:56 So, I spent a lot of time cycling around East London, literally cycling up and 7:58 down every street and just looking and thinking, what's gonna be right? 8:03 I want it to be kind of grimy and point of cliche rap video. 8:05 And so, you can see, these are all of, this is my first draft of locations, 8:08 then we had to edit it down. 8:13 You know just, there's a post box in the video and it was so 8:16 important that it was the right post box. 8:19 This is my short list of post boxes around London and they're all good for 8:20 different reasons. 8:24 And then this is the final location shot list which we did. 8:25 So we had a day to shoot it and we had to try to fit this all in. 8:29 And then some of the locations came from other people so 8:34 the film crew, they actually work in studios in here. 8:36 So this is sort of like our faux council estate 8:39 bit of the video to make it look kind of real and edgy. 8:43 But actually it's just full of middle class hipsters doing creative work. 8:46 And then I met this guy as well. 8:51 So I have to work in a gallery in East London and 8:53 it's a graffiti artist called Alst works there, and 8:56 I was telling him about my rap video and I was playing him the rap. 9:00 And he said he knew this spot that could have been perfect and 9:02 it was basically a huge graph yard which is unused. 9:05 And the only people that use it are basically graph writers and 9:08 people that do heroin I think. 9:11 And so he said I'll tell you what. 9:14 We can film that and I can write a big piece all the wall and put your name up. 9:16 And I said that's amazing. 9:20 Just a real stroke of luck so we went down. 9:21 This is me, Joey, Rex, and Luke, the film crew doing a recky, 9:24 checking out the space. 9:29 And then this is on the actual day of the shoot he got there four hours before 9:32 everyone and wrote this huge bingo on the wall, which is very exciting. 9:35 There's a lot of photos on the internet of children holding cats. 9:41 I don't know if you, who looks at stock photography? 9:44 Yeah, and I come across this a lot. 9:47 I don't understand why there's so many photos of children and 9:49 cats because the cat's always sad and the child is always happy. 9:52 There's so many of these photos and it's always the same story. 9:55 I just don't know why people keep doing this. 9:58 There's so many of them. 10:01 Thousands. 10:02 And yeah. 10:03 I just think it needs to stop. 10:04 He doesn't love her. 10:08 >> [LAUGH] >> Outfits are important in rap. 10:09 Who knows who this is? 10:14 Grand Master Flash and the Furious Five from 1978. 10:18 So this is what hip hop used to look like when it started it was more exciting. 10:22 And, big costumes and stuff. 10:25 It's changed over the years. 10:28 I wanted to reference a few of the sort of things in hip hop. 10:29 So I've made this t-shirt with my own face on it, because a lot of sort of like rap 10:32 stuff is about having a big ego and being just massive and so. 10:36 I did that. 10:41 It backfired a bit because I got this t-shirt put in with my own face in it and 10:42 it appeared on the video and I got a lot of messages on the Internet saying 10:45 where did you get the David Cameron t-shirt. 10:48 >> [LAUGH] >> And they weren't even taking the piss. 10:50 They actually just thought I had a t-shirt with David Cameron on, but 10:53 it was my face, yeah. 10:56 [SOUND] 10:57 [MUSIC] 11:02 Okay, that was meant to be a film of a thing growing towards the screen. 11:08 And it's funny but it didn't work. 11:11 I want to suggest to the postman in the video. 11:13 Actually dressing as a postman is illegal in the U.K. I didn't realize this. 11:17 [LAUGH] It's really interesting to find out. 11:21 So it was really difficult to get. 11:22 I thought I'd just go on eBay and type in postman outfit and buy it all but 11:25 it's not available. 11:28 It's highly illegal so I had to get the high-vis jacket and 11:29 the shorts off a postman called Kev in Lancashire so big up Kev. 11:32 And in the bag I managed to buy, oh sorry, 11:37 borrow from a designer in London who had it. 11:41 So all highly illegal. 11:43 Squad, it's important when you're making a hip hop video to have a crew behind you. 11:46 There's many different words for this. 11:51 Squad, crew, roadmen, posse. 11:53 And this is my, sort of, mood board for what I wanted it to look like. 11:56 This is what I wanted my rap video to look like. 12:01 And I thought who am I gonna use to be these people? 12:03 And I thought if I used my own friends, it's probably gonna look like this. 12:05 So I needed a sort of element of realness, 12:13 I needed urban, true urban people, to make the video more real. 12:16 So first of all I did this. 12:21 I put this on the Internet, do you wanna be in a rap video? 12:22 And people sent me photos of themselves, but they weren't right cuz 12:27 generally a lot of people that are kind of into my work look a lot like me. 12:31 And they weren't right so I had to think of another route to go down. 12:36 I went to Westfield Shopping Center in Stratford in East London because 12:43 I see a lot of these people here. 12:47 There's a lot of these kind of moody kind of 12:49 aggy little groups of youths walking around. 12:52 And I thought it would be perfect if I could just get a few of them and 12:55 pay them to be in the background of my video. 12:57 And so I pretended to be a street caster. 12:59 And I thought this would work. 13:01 I kind of went in there confidently with a clipboard and 13:03 I went up to this group of girls who were probably about 15 or so. 13:06 Really like kind of aggressive youth girls and 13:09 said, hi I'm a casting director for a rap video. 13:12 Do you wanna be in it? 13:15 And they said who's the rapper? 13:16 And I went, oh it's an up and coming artist, yeah. 13:20 And then one of them said, what channel is it gonna appear on? 13:23 And I was out of my depth here. 13:27 They were talking about different urban YouTube channels, 13:28 and I didn't have the knowledge to back all this stuff up. 13:31 And they could see I was kind of fumbling, and then one of them just looked at me and 13:33 went, is you a pedophile? 13:36 >> [LAUGH] >> And I was dressed a bit like I am now. 13:37 And I looked at myself and I look back at the moment. 13:41 No I'm not a pedophile. 13:43 And then they just went we've gotta go now and walked off. 13:45 And I spent the rest of the day walking around Westfield Shopping Center with 13:48 a clipboard staring at children, just following them. 13:52 And trying to approach them but not quite plucking up the guts to do it. 13:55 And so this, I had to cancel that one as well. 13:59 And then in the end, I remember that I had seen this rapper called DC Scribbly, 14:03 he's 17 years old, he's at school and 14:06 I saw him in this open mic thing in Cinemark or Rich Mix in East London. 14:08 And I thought, I'm just going to contact him, because he's perfect and 14:12 he is a rapper, and see if he wants to bring his mates along. 14:15 And so I offered him some money and he said, yes, he'd do it. 14:18 And so it was perfect. 14:22 And so we got him and all his mates in the background of the video. 14:23 And it just made it so much better for that shot. 14:25 Some of these are actually my real friends, but 14:27 we kind of mixed it all up together. 14:29 Yeah, so I hired extras to make myself cool. 14:32 Props are important in a rap video. 14:36 I wanted to have a Boris bike in there. 14:39 I don't know why, I just really love Boris bikes. 14:40 I use them quite a lot, and I thought it would would be nice to have one in there. 14:42 I kind of lowered the seat to make it a bit more urban. 14:44 >> [LAUGH] >> The post props is a bit where I 14:47 post a letter into a post box. 14:50 And so, I thought, we need to have lots of there. 14:52 So there's lots of kind of prep, writing these things out and having back ups. 14:54 A fuck it list is important. 14:59 In the lyrics is a bit where I talk about having a fuck it list and 15:02 so I made one, which I hold up in the video. 15:05 And, of course, vintage postcards, because hate mail is all about postcards. 15:08 And for me, this was pure art when I had these guys waving 15:13 vintage postcards in front of a camera. 15:17 It was just a magical moment. 15:19 Shooting the video we did in one day. 15:23 So it was very stressful. 15:25 Months leading up to it I was worried all the time about whether I'd be able to 15:26 perform, would everyone turn up, would it go wrong, 15:29 what was the weather gonna be like and stuff like that. 15:31 How are we doing for time? 15:33 Where does it say? 15:35 Oh, cool. 15:36 Okay. 15:37 So, this is us shooting on the day. 15:39 And we had a really sort of complicated shot list, so 15:42 we had all the locations written out. 15:46 And then we broke the rap down to different sections and 15:47 we had bits that we definitely wanted to nail in certain locations. 15:50 And then other bits we just did over and over again. 15:53 So every kind of line and lyric was probably done about four or 15:55 five times in different locations, so if we mucked a bit up, or it didn't look good 15:59 somewhere we could, well I say we, they could edit it all together at the end. 16:03 There'd always be a good bit of everything. 16:08 And so this is us filming, I learned a lot about filming I had never done anything 16:10 like this before it was really interesting seeing how they work. 16:14 They're super professional, every kind of bit we did we measured 16:16 the steps then went back and marked the start position and 16:21 then rehearsed and practiced and then shot it and then did it again. 16:25 And he's using this crazy heavy rig. 16:29 I can't remember what it's called. 16:32 But I think it's called a steady cam and it's super heavy. 16:33 And you can only film on it for about a minute or so. 16:37 And then it becomes too heavy and you have to lift it off and put it on a stand. 16:39 So, there's a lot of, kind of, constraints involved, but it looks great. 16:43 They also had some ideas that they brought to the day, 16:49 like they made this little table, this glass table. 16:52 So we had a shot where the pint gets put down on it being filmed from underneath, 16:54 which is quite nice. 16:58 Dancing with Cats is one of my favorite books, actually. 17:00 What I really like about Dancing with Cats is it just 17:02 does exactly what it says on the cover. 17:05 It doesn't disappoint, it's just people dancing with cats. 17:07 It's really nice. >> [LAUGH] 17:09 >> There was some ad-libbing on the day. 17:15 You know, you plan all this stuff, you think you found everything, but 17:19 then actually a lot of it just gets made up on the days. 17:22 So funny stuff just happens, or you see stuff. 17:24 So, this is my friend James and he was just kind of hanging around in 17:27 the background, and we suddenly feel, oh we're doing a scene in the pub. 17:30 Let's have him, he can be the bar man. 17:32 So he had a little cameo appearance to the bar man which he loved. 17:34 This is the bit where I'm standing on one of those street signs. 17:38 And it's got a thing at the bottom for tying bikes to. 17:41 And I just kind of climbed up on it and started mucking about and 17:44 we put that in the video. 17:47 And then some of the people that turned up brought these smoke flares. 17:48 But didn't tell me cuz they knew I'd be a bit weird about it, 17:53 so I'm not sure about that. 17:56 And so they just let them off as a surprise as we were shooting. 17:58 And that turned out to be quite nice as well and gave it kind of a cliche hip hop, 18:01 pop video smokey look. 18:05 This is a big I really liked this is in Wick in East London and 18:08 I found this huge ART graffiti on the wall. 18:11 And so we've gotta do a shot in front of that. 18:13 It's just really nice. 18:15 And when we turned up in the day there's this trolley on the right. 18:16 Weird trampy trolley full of old clothes so we decided to keep that in the video. 18:20 And even to sort of interact with it you know and have it as part of the video. 18:24 It doesn't really make sense but it's fun. 18:28 And these tires were a really nice part as well. 18:30 It was a really lovely like a beautiful set background. 18:33 And again it just feels right for some reason. 18:36 Like a pile of tires feels very hip hop. 18:38 And that was something that I didn't see originally. 18:40 We just saw it on the day, and did a nice little shot there. 18:42 It pissed it down with rain at one point, which was really scary. 18:47 It was just before we were doing the final scene with all the people in. 18:50 You can see here, I'm kind of pissed off and nervous, but 18:53 it passed in the end, and we managed to get over. 18:57 It could have gone really wrong at this point, and 19:01 that's the kind of stuff you just can't control when you're shooting outside. 19:03 And there's the edit. 19:06 I didn't have any part of this. 19:07 I wanted Rex and Luke to do it themselves because they're professionals and 19:09 I didn't want to get involved and 19:11 kind of start directing because I just wanted it to be their thing at this point. 19:13 This is the amount of actual footage shot, and this is the length of the final film. 19:17 It also looks a bit like a robot penis. 19:21 Sorry, I said no penis gags, didn't I? 19:27 Sorry. 19:29 This is editing a film. 19:32 I don't know exactly what this stuff means. 19:34 I asked them to send me a screenshot of it, but 19:36 I think this is sound this green bit. 19:37 And then the blue bits are all bits of film, and 19:39 you can see they're kinda overlapping lots of them, and 19:42 then obviously choosing the bits that work the most. 19:44 And that's about as complex as I'm going to get on that one. 19:47 And there's lots of really nice little things that they put in there that which I 19:51 didn't even know about. 19:54 So that I was drinking a pint at 10 in the morning in the pub just to kind of give it 19:54 the right look but I didn't actually wanna get drunk cuz I needed to do all my lyrics 19:58 for the rest of the day so I spat the beer back out, didn't know the camera 20:02 was rolling and they actually put that bit into the final film, it's really funny. 20:06 And this as well, it was just pouring with rain, and 20:12 we got one of the runners to just hold this kind of colorful umbrella over me and 20:15 it just looks stupid, but they put that in as well. 20:20 So yeah, that's how to make a rap video. 20:24 So who wants to see the rap video? 20:25 >> [APPLAUSE] >> I'm sure some of you have probably seen 20:28 it already. 20:31 [MUSIC] 20:32 I had an epiphany to send a stranger something rude. 21:14 I made an offer to abuse via the postal system, and 21:17 soon enough they were queueing up for me to dis them. 21:20 Yeah, what? 21:24 I opened the service to surf this. 21:26 [MUSIC] 21:29 Hate braille. 22:14 Hate braille. 22:15 Hate braille. 22:15 Hate braille. 22:16 Yeah. The first burnt 22:18 document that hate mails inception. 22:19 But this one is more of a definitive collection. 22:21 Perfection. 22:24 A carefully curated selection and you vote to get it made. 22:24 A bit like an election. 22:28 Cuff bound foil blocking. 22:30 [MUSIC] 22:31 I'm just an artist trying my hardest to pass this test to reach a big target, 22:54 the vastness keeping me awake in the darkness, 23:00 regardless I'm risking it and taking my chances. 23:03 Yeah, so what I'm yearning is that this mad cash that we're earning can 23:06 convert the pages turning and the world keeps learning that I. 23:11 [MUSIC] 23:15 When I say this book could be bigger than the mother fucking Bible. 23:30 [MUSIC] 23:33 >> [APPLAUSE] 23:46 >> That's a rap video. 23:55 If anyone needs to take any notes, 23:57 this is a summary of all the points I've just made. 23:59 Cheers. 24:02 >> [APPLAUSE] 24:03
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