Ugly God is a rapper, Internet personality and record producer from Houston, Texas. Ugly God first reached his claim to fame in 2015 when he released the viral sensations ‘I Beat My Meat’ & ‘Water’ via his SoundCloud account.

Ugly God is a pure Internet rapper that has capitalized off of meme culture. The Houston rapper created a formula around producing popular memes the same way a traditional rapper would create a formula around a popular song.

This play on human nature is noteworthy because Ugly God used Hip Hop to create a culture around ongoing memes. By definition, a meme is the transfer of knowledge or information from one person to another.

A meme — according to — its definition is designed to go viral. Ugly God was one of the first rappers to perfect a craft around getting attention, standing out and reaching fans.

Ugly God truly embraced Internet subcultures and the inclusiveness that comes with creating memes. Today, Hip Hop and the meme culture remain intertwined. Memes live off of the bizarre, funny and catchy.

“I think it was me making these lizard videos. I used to make videos of me grabbing lizards and putting them on my nose. And that was so viral. For the longest time, I was just gaining and gaining followers just off that. And then they realized I made music. Viral music, just like those videos. And everything clicked.”

Ugly God for Complex

Check out Ugly God’s viral video ‘Water’ below.

Meme culture has helped many artists to gain traction and enter into the limelight. Artists such as Drake, Future, Migos and 21 Savage have all benefited from viral memes.

A great example is Drake’s ‘Hotline Bling’ video, which was tailored made for meme culture and currently has 1.6 Billion views on YouTube. Meme culture has continuously provided Hip Hop with a fail-safe recipe that works.

With the rise of music streaming and social media, every artist recognizes the significance of being active on social media. Memes go beyond just reaching new fans — by definition — it’s the transference of information or knowledge that produces a certain result.

With content and music becoming an infinite source of entertainment, people need a reason to check out new music. This play on human nature goes beyond Instagram & Twitter because it’s much easier to embrace music when it’s a part of a subculture, trendy and funny.

Ugly God has committed this whole concept to his overall brand. A brand that is centered around going viral, tailor-made to spread on the Internet and has created a character around his music.

This is a great strategy to deploy if you don’t have a team around you. Because you can effectively spread your message through memes. Ugly God has perfected a natural sense for shock value, the rapper has also ran two of Instagram’s top meme pages.

Memes are a great way for artists to re-purpose content that they already know is popular. It provides a sense of inclusiveness and easy-access because anyone with a phone or computer can make/share a meme.

It takes away from the cliquey nature of being a music fan and adds to the identity of the artists. Meme culture has created an environment where people on the Internet can discover artists just by being at the top of someone’s else mind.

Through ‘Social Engineering’ this play on human nature is transferred to other content formats as well. For example, when Ugly God was featured on the popular YouTube reaction channel ‘CUFBOYS’, he in return sampled mommacuf’s reaction on ‘The Booty Tape’.

Which prompted people to search for the actual video and gave him access to the channel’s far-reaching fan base. Check out the video below.

Given the right content and infrastructure, producing memes to promote your music can be a good path to take. It all depends on branding, scalability and ease-of-access. Like anything viral, the Internet moves at it’s own pace and going viral isn’t a force that can be controlled measured and improved.

Like anything concerning human nature, the people will always choose.

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Entrepreneur based in Minneapolis, MN. I write about Music, Inspiration, Economics & Business. Website: & Newsletter:

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