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Vibe and MySpace team up for online rap battle

Vibe magazine, MySpace, and KickApps are combining forces online to discover the next great rapper.

Can the combined power of Vibe magazine, MySpace, and KickApps' social multimedia platform uncover the next great MC? That's the plan, and they're all hoping three is the magic number.

Vibe Verses 3, an online rap battle that lets aspiring MCs upload videos of themselves spitting rhymes, launches today.

The viral contest, promoted on both Vibe.com and MySpace, is using KickApps video widgets to let rappers and their fans embed the clips in MySpace profiles and other Web pages.

Participants in the contest select from one of 23 beats, then make a video of themselves performing their own lyrics to the track. MySpace users and members of the Vibe online community can then vote on each video; the number of votes determines the finalists.

Wyclef Jean of the Fugees picks the overall winner of the contest on November 30, and he has a personal stake in his selection. The winner of Vibe Verses 3 will be the opening act for Wyclef on December 4 in Los Angeles. The contest winner will also get a full-page ad in Vibe magazine.

According to the press release, more than 1,000 videos have been uploaded since May as part of the three Vibe Verses contests.

Submitting your own video for the contest is free, but you'll need to join the Vibe Rap Battle community to upload your video. You can listen to all 23 backbeats here and get instructions on how to participate here.

One quick tip: use the right microphone for the job. Say yes to a handheld condenser mic, and take a pass on those skinny wand-shaped mics that Bob Barker used to use.