Berkley, CA rapper/singer Rexx Life Raj released one of the highlight tracks of the week with introspective, soulful single Cleanse. With his straightforward, open brand of lyricism, and chill beat selection, the new offering is another gem in the ever-deepening discography of one of the game’s most versatile talents.
But it was the words that Raj offered to up-and-coming artists that might be the most special aspect of the release. The Empire artist took to Instagram to share some insights on his recording process. Thoughts that indie artists should take special note of.
“this is literally where i recorded Cleanse .. noise outside, the homies downstairs, using a JBL speaker we bought from up the block, at a random bnb in London. i’ve been telling y’all for years that professional studios are overrated and overpriced .. invest in yourself by buying a little set-up and learning how to track vocals .. instead of spending a few hundred on a studio session just get an airbnb somewhere tucked and create.
the set-up in this picture is my mac, an Apollo Twin (around $700 but honestly you can get an Apollo Solo for around $400 and you’ll be straight.), Shure SM7B microphone ($400 but it’s what Michael Jackson used so it doesn’t matter), and some whatever headphones from guitar center ($50).. i track in Logic X ($200) POST PRODUCTION IS WHERE THE MAGIC HAPPENS.. that’s where i brought @reecebeats and the choir in after i knew the record would make the project. get all of your rough ideas out in spaces like this, pick the best ones, then bring to to life in post. stop overthinking your art. create and keep creating. good things will happen.”
Raj’s words carry a powerful message for independent or aspiring musicians. It emphasizes the idea that one doesn’t need fancy, expensive studios to create remarkable music. Instead, investing in a simple setup and learning the art of recording vocals can open all the necessary creative doors. The essence lies in embracing your surroundings, whether it’s a random Airbnb, a friend’s place, or your own home, and letting the magic happen there.
Don’t be confined by traditional norms or limited resources. Let your art flow freely, capturing raw ideas in unconventional spaces, and if you’re going to invest, spend your money on post-production.
This is a call to stop overthinking and start creating fearlessly. Trust in your talent, experiment, and keep pushing the boundaries. Embrace the power of DIY, because it’s in these unassuming spaces that your unique voice can find its perfect resonance. By doing so, you’ll meet your true potential head-on, bringing artistic vision to life, and dropping music with true impact.
Rexx Life Raj amplified the drop with a dope acoustic version of the track on YouTube.