Rap music being what it is today, what good rapper would dare sing “Fie on thee!” Rap was once a polite verbal exchange between performers and bands. “Believe it or not, rap music once had no foul language.” says DJ, musician and music producer Freddy Fresh. “Rap began as lyrical poetry, full of rhythm, wit and synthesis.” He would know, as a well-recognized expert on the history and culture of rap. Fresh, who is also an electronic music teacher and founder of an independent record label, heads up Freddy Fresh Music, LLC. This music distribution and production company discovers and rediscovers music of all genres on various media. Freddy Fresh Music, LLC has an archived collection of rare vinyl LPs and MPs. “If you must have them for your rare music collection, you’ve come to the right place,” Fresh says.

Photo Credit: Bruno Vincent/Getty Images

Photo Credit: Bruno Vincent/Getty Images

Freddy Fresh
Landfill Records
1222 University Ave.
Saint Paul, MN 55104
(651) 410-0009

Listen to the music mixes of Freddy Fresh. They are mesmerizing, not to mention mind blowing. From Minnesota to Moscow, Fresh has booked music productions and DJ sessions that cover all event types. The founder of Howlin’ Records, Fresh is the author of two reference books on rap music. “Freddy Fresh Presents The Rap Records,” in two editions, are bestsellers. The first edition is a sellout, the second edition an expansion. These books detail the history of independent rap music production around the world. They have been acclaimed as the world’s only guide to rap artists and their independent recording labels. Fresh’s advice to music lovers in search of what’s new — “Surf, search and you will find,” he says. Here are a few ways to scout out the next Justin Bieber, Adele or Taylor Swift or discover new genres of roots music.

Download From Good Music Sites

As a DJ, Fresh knows what the top music sites are: Mixcloud, Soundcloud, Soundwave, Spotify, MP3Box, Bandcamp and iHeart Radio are his picks. “Radio stations and DJs use these sites,” he says. Bandcamp jumps with new music from artists around the world. It’s one of the best sites for discovering upcoming music performers. Many emerging countries are turning out lots of talent.

(credit: aaron tam/AFP/Getty Images)

(credit: aaron tam/AFP/Getty Images)

Look For Buzz On Social Media And YouTube 

Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube always have something to say about music events. Twitter is one of the best sources for breaking news about music. Fresh notes, “Once word gets out about a hot, upcoming artist or a new release from a favorite (performer), everything goes viral.” YouTube, which has leveraged many fledgling bands and artists into the music spotlight, is still a great way to see and hear them before shelling out for a concert ticket. “Today, image is just as important as the person’s talent,” Fresh points out. “Our visually oriented culture is obsessed with image.”

Tune In To Radio Stations And Broadcast Music Channels

Plug in or tune into radio stations, internet music, podcast music networks and TV music channels that give earplay to new artists and new releases. Stations that have a broad range of music mixes have diverse listeners. Some of the most popular radio stations can be found (naturally) in Twin Cities. Certainly any music fan is familiar with these stations. One can even discover free online radio through app or conventional web downloads.

Related: Best Music Producers In Minnesota

Photo Credit: Thinkstock.com

Photo Credit: Thinkstock.com

Spend An Evening At A Music Café Or Club

One might have to do the nightly pub crawl to get to the music. However, the dive (divey bar) is where many bands and musicians got their start. (Lady Gaga is among the famous who ascended from dive bar to stardom.) Places such as Minnesota Music Café have weaned many recording artists off independent record labels and nurtured them to the music capitals of the world. But don’t label this music café as a dive bar. Minnesota Music Café is where to enjoy exceptional food as the music is cooking!

Share The Latest Music News With Your Face-To-Face Network Of Friends

Nothing can replace word of mouth, even in the digital age of music. Twitter, Facebook and the whole shebang of social media can reveal only so much about what’s new or grabbing attention. Sharing music breakthroughs with your offline inner circle of best friends, cube mates and close acquaintances is kind of like a social introduction. The best way to discover new music is still through friends whom you consider family.

Related: Best Record Stores In Minneapolis

Linda Cameron has written home design, home improvement and lifestyle articles for The Boston Globe and City Shopper Magazine. She has related interests in the building industry, travel, real estate and financing. She is a contributor to Examiner, House Spot, Techsling and Behance, covering topics on career, people, businesses, education and technology.