Rap is one of the best expressive genres of music that flourished during the 80s and 90s and is still very popular. So, what makes rap music so captivating? Is it the real-life struggles and stories that are conveyed through it or the artists who bring life and soul to the words? Well it’s much more. Let’s talk about the best rappers who got us hooked to rap music.
Marshall Bruce Mathers III, known as Eminem, is the synonym of rap for most people. The struggles of his life, family issues, addiction, recovery, and everything in between are portrayed in his songs of unparalleled wordplay and that’s why we love the ‘Rap God’. Must listen- Lose Yourself.
Rapper Nasir Jones, stage name Nas, is one of the most significant contributor of rap music. His first album, Illmatic is critically acclaimed and is one of the greatest hip hop albums of all time. His songs tell a story and he is best known for his powerful lyrics. Must listen- N.Y. State of Mind.
Tupac Shakur, popularly known as 2pac/Tupac, lived a short but very successful life. He is considered a pioneer for singing about social issues like inequality and racism, deviating from the then popular gangsta rap. Five albums released after his death are certified platinum. Must listen- Dear Mama.
- Ice Cube
Ice Cube, real name O’Shea Jackson Sr. also belonged to the NWA group. His solo albums AmeriKKKa’s Most Wanted, and Death Sentence are certified platinum. Along with being a successful rapper, he has also made his mark in movies, over 50 in count. Must listen- a large selection of Death Certificate.
- Notorious Big
Notorious Big is the stage name of Christopher Wallace, who also goes by the name of Biggie Smalls. And he truly was a biggie in the world of rap. His debut album Ready to Die made him extremely popular and Life After Death was a certified Diamond. Need I say more? Must listen- Juicy.
William Griffin Jr, changed name, Rakim Allah went against the tide of high energy rap and developed his own easy breezy style in the 80s. Not only that, he brought multisyllabic rhymes into the picture. His unique take towards rap music made him an idol for many. Must listen- Follow the leader.
- Jay- Z
Shawn Carter, a.k.a Jay-Z is the consistent player in the rap world. He has grown substantially from 90s gangsta rap to influential lyrics. Proof? He has won 22 Grammy Awards and he is the first rapper to be included into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. Must listen- rather sing his peppy songs on a karaoke mic.
Andre Young, stage name Dr.Dre was a part of popular rap group NWA, who first started gangsta rap. He brought exceptional talent to the rap world like Eminem, 50 Cent, Kendrick Lamar etc. The song let me ride, from his first album got him a Grammy and made his mark as a rapper. Must listen- Still D.R.E.
- Kendrick Lamar
Kendrick Lamar is the new generation of rap, taking inspiration from great rappers like Tupac and Notorious BIG. His album, To Pimp a Butterfly bagged the Grammy for Best Rap Album. He aces the art of storytelling with his lyrics. Must listen- m.A.A.d city.
- Snoop Dogg
Calvin Broadus Jr. a.k.a Snoop Dogg is considered the king of freestyle rap because his rap style has a laidback quality with smooth flow and these qualities are unmatched. The flow and simplicity of his songs makes you wanna lay back, close eyes and enjoy the beat. See for yourself- listen to Gin and Juice.
In the end, it’s all about good music folks.