I love HipHop.
I love what I do.
I love the fact that right now, the spectrum of HipHop is almost endless in terms of styles and energy.

The amount of styles and flavours that are coming out of the UK is truly amazing and something that the artists and DJ’s that came before us always wanted to see happening. Despite the way things are moving, there are a few people that still dont get how the game works, and its actually very simple, the same as it ever was.


That’s it. That simple. Give them what they want, not what you want to give them, or what you think they should have.

*Right now, we’re still in a recession. Don’t believe what they put on the news, just as Elections are approaching. People are still broke and struggling.
*People want to escape from everyday BS more than ever before.
*People want to party harder than ever before.
*People want to press rewind on that favourite Itunes playlist.
*People actually want to buy your hit, your body of work, your T-shirt, your concert ticket more than ever before.

Q: Why are the Black Eyed Peas the biggest selling HipHop group in the world right now?
A: Its because they make the biggest club records conceivable.

Q: Why is Jay-z the biggest MC in the game right now?
A: Its because he made one of the most accessible albums of his career.

Q: Why is Dizzee Rascal independent and just turned Platinum [300,000 albums sold]?
A: Part of It, is because he makes music for the clubs the festivals, the tours. He road tests singles on his tours for a year before they even get serviced to DJs.

Q: Why are Chipmunk, Tinchy Stryder, N-Dubz, and Tinie Tempah getting no.1′s and Gold albums?
A: It’s because they have truly clocked the formula, clocked the business, and know how to apply it.

Q: What do all of these artists have in common?
A: They give the people what they want. Its that simple.

As an artist you have to regulate:
The net
The airwaves
The stage
The clubs.

I don’t know of any artist who managed to get throughout without having regulated 1 or 2 of these areas if not all of them. If you’re not doing it in any of these areas, get the pad and pen out, go back to the drawing board, it has to come from YOU!. No one else.

Don’t blame DJ’s, Journalists, Bloggers, or anyone else. Dont moan, it just means you haven’t come up with that fire yet despite what your girl, mum, or best friends tell you. Dont listen to these people. They’ll tell you what you want to hear, but tell you the truth a year later after everything has effed up.
Best to get feedback from the most objective people in your circle.

It is easier than ever before to be heard, but the quality threshold has been stepped up a lot more than what it was. Free mixtapes are now much better than most albums, which is good for the fans and the artist. The fans get the best material possible. The artists exceed their creative limits.

Its crazy that the newer artists are way more hungry, and understand the business better than ever before, but the older artists that have never really put in a 1000% to their craft or their fans are the first to bitch and moan, point the finger at everyone else except themselves.

I’m willing (as are most other DJs) to back anyone who is positive and making moves for their own advancement, their people or the culture, and making good music.


is half assed.
trying to make a career at the expense of others.
a part time artist [used to rap, gave up, but now is back in it after seeing whats going on in the charts]
putting out weak music.
giving out demos on Tescos CDRs.
giving out demos on Tescos CDRs wrapped in newspaper.
trying to get attention by talking shit about me on Twitter.
sending out tracks on 160kbps Mp3s.
gets offended if I dont recognise them from Channel AKA
gets offended if I don’t recognise them from Twitter [it happens!]
can’t hold a mic properly on stage.
forgets their lyrics during a 2 track performance.
Dissses anyone I work with.
Insinuates that I don’t support them, but doesn’t listen to my show, so they don’t actually know whether they got played or not, even though other people on their team know.
Doesn’t master their music.
Doesn’t record their vocals loud enough.
blames Grime for the demise of UK HipHop.
thinks Grime is something totally different to UK HipHop, so they dont have to step up their flows.
thinks the industry is holding them back.
doesnt understand that the industry constantly wants the next one to come through.
doesnt understand that daytime radio only plays hits.
haven’t invested in their own studio equipment, but blazes 24/7.
doesn’t abuse the net and the platforms available.
doesn’t make Good Music.

……..I really can’t help you.

33 thoughts on “JUST TO BE CLEAR….

    • Nah bro, unless you fall under the ‘For Anyone who’ section. you shouldn’t be offended.

      You dont give out demos in newspaper do you lol?

  1. Brov you have a lot of knowledge and experience behind you, you should write more about this subject I think. “How to make it in the music industry” should be the title to your article.

    I read you blog almost every day and think its definitely one of the best because of your experiences you involve in it. Make an ebook!

  2. Sem, Its so good that someone like you can spell it out for artists tryna make it the half arsed way. Unfortunately those artists will probably not read this, and even if they do, they wont realise your talking about them! They will still send the same half arsed track that isnt labelled properly or mastered professionally. And then get pissed off when you dont reply to them, and if you do give them constructive critisism, not listen.

    Even if you dont like the big commercial hits i.e BEP, anyone with half a brain should understand WHY its a big hit.

    Keep talking the truth, hopefully some of it will get through.

  3. I totally appreciate and am grateful for your direction and what your saying about working the industry effectively etc, but those bad qualities, half hearted efforts are also an effect of the recession therefore at one point you actually contradict yourself.

    I’ve been that artist trying to record music after working a strenuous twelve hour day and industry mans wondering why theres a lack of energy ‘fire’ in your voice/music. Surely the business also needs to show understanding !! to artists situations, look for potential !! and
    build an artist or they could also let talent pass them… I’m sorry, give us a break mate.

    Also, I’ve almost finished recording a demo. The sound isn’t very good thats because I’m a singer and not a sound man, apologies in advance on my DIY effort but I’m also writing 10,000 word dissertation so I can’t focus fully on music at the moment but wanted to give a taste of my music. Respect . Love you !! mwuah

    • Drake dropped the ‘So Far Gone’ mixtape 12 months ago.

      It’s better than 99% of albums that were released in 2009.
      It gets played on radio stations across the world, played in clubs.
      It was the catalyst for his career, got him signed.
      Downloaded 10 million times, and sold 500,000 copies.

      It was made on a budget of $400 (

  4. You know what, I’m usually a silent observer on your blog but you are so on point I feel compelled to comment. Like someone said, it’s a shame that the majority of people who need this advice won’t actually read it. Post of 2010 so far, Austin.

  5. Preach Semtex Preach.
    After 8 years working in music I got so tired of the idiocy that exists within the UK music scene.
    Can I just add two things
    1) signing doesn’t mean you have ‘made it’
    2) If you don’t have a follow up to your underground hit (or if it sounds like your first one) GIVE UP

  6. very true. im glad to have read this fam, keep doing your thing playboy. my name is Wes, im from Los Angeles
    keep a look out for me and my crew hybridXL, were gettin it in over here.

  7. Sem, I love your blog dude and love what you have to say and agree with your post EXCEPT i’m a bit suprised you said “Give the people what they want” yes, this is true however thats not always the correct case isit? like me, i know your a big Kanye West fan, and we all know Love Lockdown/808s and Heartbreak album isnt what the people wanted was it? However he felt that what they should hear, and we grew to like it, at first we was like whoa, but if we always got what we ‘wanted to hear’ we woulda missed out on a new form of music really creative. courtesy of Mr. West. Anyways just a thought. Keep blogging.

  8. I’ve been an avid listenener/follower of you for a while know and i have to say this is on of the best things you’ve posted.

    1. It shows how passionate/ knowedgable /understanding you are of the game
    2. everything you said right there is true and can be backed up if u follow any one of the main or up and coming artist history.

    Keep it going Chris T

  9. this is bullshit, you basically telling people to sell out and make garbage music just because thats what the kids want at this time, your telling artsits to not make the music they like and be a REAL artist , but yet just to jump on the bandwagon to what is popular with the kids at the time.

    what is to blame is djs like yourself that only play waht you think the people want, gone are the days of djs really supporting what they like. I hope you realise what your saying here cos you are part of the problem NOT the solution. You are part of the killing of hip hop culture for this bubblegum bullshit which occurs both sides of the pond. Well done it amazes me on the attitude of some of these people

  10. Oi Fassy. Read it again.

    I’m saying give your fans what they want, and handle your business. Be the best that you can be.

    Whats wrong with that? As an artist you owe it to your fans and supporters.

    I said, I love the fact that the spectrum of Hip-Hop is so wide.
    I never said you have to make a certain kind of music.

    Im saying, don’t come in the game half assed, you waste everyones time.

    If your not half assed, you shouldn’t be offended by the post.
    Your actually part of the problem.

    Stay hiding behind an anonymous screen name.

  11. I was taught on my management course that if you come with a problem, you should always come with a solution.

    So, you’re going on the assumption that people know what a master recording is and how to sing effectively through a microphone, etc, etc. Maybe one xtra now has a responsiblity to cover these like they’ve done successfully with other music industry topics.

    Its good that you’re attempting to raise the standards but you could be further instrumental in doing so.


  12. There are so many resources online. Books available, and industry people online, there’s really no excuse.

    Any footballer learns how the game works, their craft inside out, the great ones before them, what made them tick, how they use different techniques, what it took for them to be a champion, etc.

    Its the same if you’re a musician. If your making music you should know that music needs to be mixed and mastered. Its the basics of recording.

    The responsibility doesn’t fall on anyone else. It falls on the individual.

    You dont rely on a TV station to to show you how to be a pro-footballer.

    Your right, come with a solution. If you don’t know ask someone or read a book.

    Its what every other succesful artist has done.

    No excuses.

  13. Ok then thanks for that.

    Like I’ve said already I’m in the middle of a degree would be nice if you took on board what I have said also, shows you’re listening for ideas.

    Take it easy

  14. Youve opened my eyes bright man… I thought I was doing everything, but im not… Back to the drawing board… Check me out tho Sem, I’m doing alot :) Interviews with Kano, Chase and Status, Live footage of my self alongside Grooverider, High Contrast and more on the blog… TheArtistEnvy.Wordpress.com… Big up man!

  15. This site appears to get a good ammount associated with guests. How can you promote this? It offers a good personal perspective upon issues. I guess having some thing traditional or even significant to speak about is an essential factor.

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