hip hop artists The Greatest Rappers of All Time  

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List Rules Only individual rappers, not rap groups or collectives.

Finally, a definitive list of the best rappers of all time, ranked by fans all over the world. From the early '80s to present day, this list counts down rap's best lyricists and game changers in history. Lil' Wayne, Method Man, Jay-Z, Eminem, Andre 3000, and T.I are among the artists that appear on this amazing countdown. Rappers from all cities, both genders, and all races are all vying to be crowned the greatest rapper ever.

What makes a rapper great? There are a number of differing definitions and philosophies. Rapper J. Cole (who finds himself on the Ultimate List below) cites consistency as the most important attribute, and says it's important to look both for the big humorous "punch" lines as well as the underlying message of the rapper's songs. Nas (another MC featured on the list) focuses as well on the meaning of the songs, as well as the scale and ambition of the rapper's narratives and storytelling. (He has also gone on the record as saying that there is no such thing as the "best rapper" or "Greatest of All Time" - often abbreviated as G.O.A.T.)

Numerous different skills and attributes all must come together to make a truly legendary MC. Obviously, a rapper must display a sense of rhythm and an ability to compliment the beat in unpredictable and exciting ways. A gift for lyricism and vocabulary is similarly essential - you can have the flow of the century, but if the words don't come together to tell a compelling story or present a unique point of view, it's still not going to translate into a great hip-hop song. But of course there's also an intangible element that elevates some rappers into the ranks of the greatest of all time. Who are these rappers who stand heads above the competition? You tell us, by voting for your favorites below or making your own list of Top Rappers.

1
+ - 55,386 28,051
Eminem is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Eminem United States of America

The Greatest White Rappers of All Time The Best German Beers

2
+ - 43,527 23,706
Tupac Shakur is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
TuPac United States of America

3
+ - 39,243 18,540
The Notorious B.I.G. is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
The Notorious B.I.G. United States of America

4
+ - 29,444 18,145
Nas is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Nas United States of America

5
+ - 24,963 16,180
Ice Cube is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Ice Cube United States of America

6
+ - 21,306 24,060
Jay-Z is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Jay-Z United States of America

7
+ - 23,588 16,290
Snoop Dogg is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Snoop Dogg United States of America

8
+ - 24,826 15,623
Dr. Dre is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Dr. Dre United States of America

9
+ - 27,608 15,752
Kendrick Lamar is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Kendrick Lamar United States of America

10
+ - 17,989 14,805
Rakim is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Rakim United States of America

11
+ - 17,509 11,706
André 3000 is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
André 3000 United States of America

12
+ - 16,706 12,117
Eazy-E is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Eazy-E United States of America

13
+ - 18,575 20,524
Kanye West is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Kanye West United States of America

14
+ - 15,244 13,183
50 Cent is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
50 Cent United States of America

15
+ - 13,807 11,014
DMX is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
DMX United States of America

The Best Rappers of the 2000s 16 Songs That Don't Mean What You Think They Do

16
+ - 11,737 10,117
Busta Rhymes is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Busta Rhymes United States of America

17
+ - 13,217 9,529
J. Cole is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
J. Cole United States of America, Germany

18
+ - 11,453 8,851
Method Man is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Method Man United States of America

19
+ - 10,404 9,748
Mos Def is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Mos Def United States of America

20
+ - 9,363 9,331
KRS-One is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
KRS-One United States of America

21
+ - 10,504 9,241
Ludacris is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Ludacris United States of America

22
+ - 8,610 8,234
Common is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Common United States of America

23
+ - 8,981 9,021
LL Cool J is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
LL Cool J United States of America

24
+ - 9,536 10,811
Lil Wayne is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Lil Wayne United States of America

25
+ - 8,782 7,275
Big L is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time

26
+ - 9,012 8,732
T.I. is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
T.I. United States of America

27
+ - 7,652 6,634
Ghostface Killah is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Ghostface Killah United States of America

28
+ - 7,258 6,177
Redman is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Redman United States of America

29
+ - 7,333 6,297
Big Pun is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Big Pun United States of America

The Rappers with the Dirtiest Rhymes The Most Demeaning Expectations of Women

30
+ - 6,129 5,612
Lauryn Hill is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Lauryn Hill United States of America

31
+ - 5,824 6,000
Slick Rick is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Slick Rick United States of America, United Kingdom

32
+ - 6,616 4,538
Nate Dogg is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Nate Dogg United States of America

33
+ - 6,982 5,092
Aaron Dontez Yates is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Tech N9ne United States of America

34
+ - 5,649 5,318
Raekwon is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Raekwon United States of America

35
+ - 5,890 5,782
Big Daddy Kane is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Big Daddy Kane United States of America

36
+ - 6,216 5,821
Scarface is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Scarface United States of America

37
+ - 5,482 5,002
Ol' Dirty Bastard is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Ol' Dirty Bastard United States of America

38
+ - 6,029 4,647
Jayceon Terrell Taylor is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
The Game United States of America

39
+ - 5,550 6,199
Lupe Fiasco is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Lupe Fiasco United States of America

40
+ - 4,295 2,840
Logic is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time

41
+ - 4,261 3,028
Chance The Rapper is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Chance the Rapper United States of America

42
+ - 4,576 4,903
Talib Kweli is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Talib Kweli United States of America

43
+ - 4,768 4,477
RZA is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
RZA United States of America

The Worst Rappers of All Time The Best PS3 RPGs of All Time

44
+ - 4,608 3,471
Ranker Video v

45
+ - 4,651 4,656
GZA is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
GZA United States of America

46
+ - 4,189 3,215
Mobb Deep is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time

47
+ - 3,996 4,066
Q-Tip is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Q-Tip United States of America

48
+ - 3,801 3,490
Ice-T is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Ice-T United States of America

49
+ - 4,299 2,630
Easy E is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time

50
+ - 4,063 4,121
Immortal Technique is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Immortal Technique United States of America