Hip Hop Artists The Best '80s Rappers  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
36.5k votes 5.9k voters 298.9k views 68 items

These are the best 80s Rappers as voted on by you, the 80s rap fans. 80s hip hop, or "old school" hip hop obviously plays a huge role in where rap is today. The "scene" wouldn't exist without these artists. These are the best rappers that basically defined hip hop culture and brought rap to the forefront of the music industry.

Make sure to vote up your favorite 80s rappers and see if they can take the top spot and vote down any rappers from the 80s that you think might be getting a little too much credit. If you think any important, game changing, genre defying and defining old school rappers are missing from this list, add them!
list ordered by

1
1,857 420
Run–D.M.C. is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Raising Hell, Run-D.M.C., King of Rock

2
2,210 604
N.W.A is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Straight Outta Compton, Niggaz4Life, Greatest Hits

3
1,419 463
Public Enemy is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back, Fear of a Black Planet, Apocalypse 91… The Enemy Strikes Black

4
1,570 460
LL Cool J is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Radio, Mama Said Knock You Out, Mr. Smith

5
1,398 419
Beastie Boys is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Paul's Boutique, Licensed to Ill, Check Your Head

6
1,410 410
Eric B. & Rakim is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Paid in Full, Let the Rhythm Hit ’em, Don’t Sweat the Technique

7
946 441
Ice-T is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Power, O.G. Original Gangster, Home Invasion

8
971 413
Big Daddy Kane is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Long Live the Kane, It's a Big Daddy Thing, Daddy's Home

9
1,004 268
Eazy-E is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
but chickens double d added Eazy-Duz-It, It’s On (Dr. Dre) 187um Killa, Eternal E

10
935 314
Grandmaster Flash and the Furi... is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
The Message, The Message, The Adventures Of Grandmaster Flash

11
905 283
Slick Rick is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
The Great Adventures of Slick Rick, The Art of Storytelling, The Ruler's Back

12
853 329
Salt-N-Pepa is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Very Necessary, Hot, Cool & Vicious

13
745 358
The Sugarhill Gang is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Rapper's Delight, Sugarhill Gang, Jump on It!

14
689 312
Heavy D is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Vibes, Waterbed Hev, Heavy

15
243 19
Ice Cube is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
IsaiahPittman added AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted, The Predator, Death Certificate

16
582 191
KRS-One is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Hip Hop Lives, Return of the Boom Bap, Criminal Minded

17
656 334
Too $hort is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Life Is... Too $hort, Born to Mack, Gettin’ It (album number ten)

18
646 265
DJ Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prin... is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
He’s the DJ, I’m the Rapper, Homebase

19
635 408
MC Hammer is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Please Hammer Don't Hurt 'Em, Let’s Get It Started, Too Legit to Quit

20
541 285
EPMD is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Strictly Business, Business Never Personal, Unfinished Business

21
490 335
Tone-Lōc is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Lōc-ed After Dark, Cool Hand Lōc, Wild Thing

22
352 177
Geto Boys is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
We Can't Be Stopped, The Foundation, The Resurrection

23
440 285
Whodini is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Escape, Back in Black, Funky Beat: The Best of Whodini

24
377 166
De La Soul is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
3 Feet High and Rising, De La Soul Is Dead, Buhloone Mindstate

25
477 254
MC Lyte is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Lyte as a Rock, Seven & Seven, Act Like You Know

26
410 282
Afrika Bambaataa is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Afrika Shox, Planet Rock: The Album, World Destruction

27
279 171
Kurtis Blow is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Claire Jones-Hughes added Kurtis Blow, The Best of Kurtis Blow, America

28
204 28
Dr. Dre is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
IsaiahPittman added The Chronic, 2001, Nuthin' but a 'G' Thang / Let Me Ride

29
321 166
Boogie Down Productions is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Criminal Minded, By All Means Necessary, Ghetto Music: The Blueprint of Hip Hop

30
331 141
Sir Mix-a-Lot is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
David Toulson added Swass, Baby Got Back, Mack Daddy

31
283 114
Doug E. Fresh is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
David Toulson added Doin' What I Gotta Do, The World's Greatest Entertainer, Play

32
273 277
3rd Bass is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Derelicts of Dialect, The Cactus Album, Dust To Dust

33
274 134
Biz Markie is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
aja-craig added Goin' Off, The Biz Never Sleeps, Weekend Warrior

34
172 74
Kool Moe Dee is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
MC Diet Pepsi added How Ya Like Me Now, Kool Moe Dee, Funke Funke Wisdom

35
106 22
tribe called quest is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
eduardorobinson added tribe called quest

36
192 269
Kool DJ Herc is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best '80s Rappers

37
157 74
Gang Starr is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Vitor Santos added Hard to Earn, Daily Operation, Moment of Truth

38
174 91
Fat Boys is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Californiaadam added On and On, Coming Back Hard Again, Crushin'

39
149 72
Kid 'n' Play is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
2 Hype, Face the Nation, Kid ’n Play’s Funhouse

40
165 285
Raheem is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
The Invincible, The Vigilante, Can't Get No Tighter

41
108 142
Jungle Brothers is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
MC Diet Pepsi added Straight Out the Jungle, Done by the Forces of Nature, Raw Deluxe

42
164 96
Kool G Rap is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
RichardBeecher added Road to the Riches, Wanted: Dead or Alive, Live and Let Die

43
221 150
Rob Base is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
David Toulson added The Incredible Base

44
180 311
J. J. Fad is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Supersonic, Not Just a Fad, Way Out

45
190 146
Jay-Z is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
7976264 added Watch the Throne, The Black Album, Reasonable Doubt

46
150 115
Kris Kross is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
Totally Krossed Out, Young, Rich & Dangerous

47
57 22
2 Live Crew is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
johnstonismyname added As Clean as They Wanna Be, Banned in the U.S.A., Goes to the Movies: Decade of Hits

48
38 9
Nas is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
chgamingthing added Illmatic, Life Is Good, Untitled Nas album

49
38 29
Special Ed is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
eduardorobinson added Youngest in Charge, Revelations, Legal

50
41 35
E-40 is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best '80s Rappers
johnstonismyname added In a Major Way, Grit & Grind, My Ghetto Report Card