No Yo

Figure out what word or phrase you repeat constantly while you freestyle. It might help to get a friend to listen to you and tell you what it is. Now try to freestyle without using it. Not so easy!

This will expand your word repertoire. Everyone has one or several of these words; we like to call them fluff words. We use them to add style, or to fill out syllables in our flow. We call this practice “No Yo” because of how much we use the word “Yo” when we freestyle. Changing these can sometimes make a big difference to your sound or style, even if it’s something simple like switching out “Yo” for “Hey!” Some MCs will get on the mic and nervously pretend to check if the mic is on with “One-two, one-two, yeah, check check, yo yo.” Assume the mic is on. Start freestyling! You can pick anything you see and comment on it, once you start the ball rolling, it will usually keep going.