Who doesn’t know the forefathers of rap music? Am sure you’ve heard, if you don’t know, of rappers like 2Pac and Notorious B.I.G. These, and many others, did a good job in preparing the way for the modern rap music artists. The rap music genre has undergone through several landslides as it evolved. As a result, so many artists have been interested in venturing into rap music industry. New rappers emerge, they blast hits, and then they disappear suddenly into an unknown wilderness. However, there are several rappers who will always remain on top despite the emergence of all these new rappers. Below is a detailed list of those top 10 best rappers of all time.
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10. 50 Cent
The name 50 Cent is the stage name, but his real and official name is Curtis James Jackson III. He is a very successful rapper born in Queen, New York in the year 1975. He is part of the hip hop group G-Unit. 50 Cent has proved to be an immortal character because he has passed through so many tribulations. For instance, he was shot with 9 bullets in 2000 but still pushed his way through that trouble. With the help of Dr. Dre and Eminem, he released his albums Massacre and Get Rich or Die Tryin’ after that bad incident. These two albums made him one of the best modern hit rappers. 50 Cent has released several other albums and mixtapes, e.g. I Self Destruct, Street King Immortal, etc. He is also a king of singles and collabos.
His birth name is Brad Terrence Jordan. He was born in Houston, Texas on the 9th day of November, 1970. Other than Scarface, his other stage name is Face Job. He got his name from a 1983 film by the name Scarface. He is a rapper of all time. He began his career in 1987 and later released his debut album, Mr. Scarface Is Black, in 1991. He has succeeded in his career and so far he has released 10+ albums. Scarface has done several collabos with top notch artists like Eminem, Drake, John Legend, and others.
Rakim, together with Eric B, constitutes the ‘golden age of hip hop’. His real name is William Michael Griffin Jr. He was born in Long Island, New York on 28th January, 1968. Rakim has always been announced in the lists of greatest artists of all time. Similarly, his albums, e.g. Paid In Full, still top the lists of the greatest hit albums of all time. Rakim started by releasing 4 albums with his counterpart Eric B. He later followed the releases with other 4 solo albums. He has comfortably secured a No. 8 in my list of top 10 best rappers of all time.
7. Kanye West
Sincerely speaking, who doesn’t know Kanye West? He has been the latest buzz in the hip hop industry, probably because of his latest release Yeezus. I believe Kanye West will continue being the most talked about rapper over several years to come. He was born in Atlanta, Georgia in the year 1977. He became popular when he was featured in Jay-Z’s album Blueprint. He released his first album, College Dropout, in 2004. Since then, Kanye has grown into a recognized rapper, songwriter, and producer. Since his first debut album, he has won 22 Grammy awards. He has also become the best selling rapper of all time by making 30 million digital record sales. He definitely deserves to be in this list.
Jay-Z is his common stage name, but his real name is Shawn Corey Carter. He was born on December 4th, 1969 in Brooklyn, New York. In fact, he is one of the oldest rap moguls who are still alive and popular. He started his career in 1996 and released his debut album Reasonable Doubt the same year. He has been awarded with 17 Grammy awards. Additionally, he has made over 75 million sales of his digital records. The album that initiated his popularity was the Blueprint album of 2001.
5. Dr. Dre
The real name for Dr. Dre is Andre Romelle Young. He was born in 1965 in Campton, California. He is one of the most successful rappers, alongside Jay-Z and few others, who also embrace entrepreneurship. His entrepreneurial dreams influenced him to become the founder and CEO of Aftermath Entertainment and Beats Electronics. He has released 8 solo albums and he is also a king of collabos. His albums, e.g. Detox album, have earned him 5 Grammy awards.
Nas is a great rapper, songwriter, and actor. He was born in New York City on 14th September, 1973. His real name is Nasir bin Olu Dara Jones. In his career, he has released over 13 albums and has made a worldwide sale of over 25 million digital records. Alongside Jay-Z and Kanye West, Nas has the most no. 1 Billboard albums. He is really a talented rapper of all time.
Eminem is a born 1972 at St. Joseph, Missouri. His birth name is Marshall Bruce Mathers III. Eminem is one of the best selling rappers of the new millennium. So far, he has sold more than 220 million records worldwide. His hip hop career has been commercially successful and enjoyable as well. Eminem has gone through a tough time during his early ages, as portrayed by the kind of lyrics he has been writing. He was once labeled the ‘King of Hip Hop’ by the Rolling Stone Magazine.
2. Notorious B.I.G
Notorious B.I.G, a.k.a Biggie, was born in New York on the 21st day of May, 1972. His real name is Christopher George Latore Wallace. Unfortunately, Biggie died on 9th March, 1997. Even though he died too young in his career, he is part of those rappers who gave shape to the hip hop industry. His last album Life after Death was released shortly after his death. This album became a Diamond in 2000. His discography has so far sold over 20 million digital records. There’s no hip hop fan isn’t impressed by Biggie’s rap music.
Tupac Shakur, a.k.a 2Pac, is yet another rapper who died too young. He was born in Manhattan, New York on 16th June, 1971. He was an active rapper for 8 years before meeting his unfortunate death. He was only 25 years when he was shot dead in a gang fight. He is remembered as one of the artists who shaped the hip hop industry. Every hip hop fan can testify that Tupac was a lyrics genius. He has been and will remain to be the greatest rapper of all time. Tupac is the most influential rapper of all time. His albums have sold over 70 million records worldwide. His most selling album is All Eyes on Me album.