Rappers The Greatest Rappers of All Time  

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Originally by Ranker Community
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List Rules Only individual rappers, not rap groups or collectives.

Ranker Video Greatest Rappers of All Time

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 top hip-hop 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 of all time.

list ordered by

1
167,612 84,645
Eminem is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
The Marshall Mathers LP, The Slim Shady LP, The Eminem Show

2
131,189 71,198
Tupac Shakur is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
All Eyez on Me, Me Against the World, The Don Killuminati: The 7 Day Theory

3
112,394 53,386
The Notorious B.I.G. is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Ready to Die, Life After Death, Born Again

4
74,565 66,043
Nas is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Illmatic, Life Is Good, Untitled Nas album

5
102,624 45,468
Kendrick Lamar is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
good kid, m.A.A.d city, Section.80

6
72,535 41,315
Dr. Dre is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
The Chronic, 2001, Nuthin' but a 'G' Thang / Let Me Ride

7
76,083 51,152
Snoop Dogg is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Doggystyle, Tha Doggfather, Tha Last Meal

8
75,412 51,550
Ice Cube is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted, The Predator, Death Certificate

9
66,985 69,440
Jay-Z is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Watch the Throne, The Black Album, Reasonable Doubt

10
62,764 55,238
Kanye West is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, Late Registration, The College Dropout

11
51,035 38,734
50 Cent is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Get Rich or Die Tryin', Get Rich or Die Tryin' / The Massacre, Street King Immortal

12
51,798 37,242
Eazy-E is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Eazy-Duz-It, It’s On (Dr. Dre) 187um Killa, Eternal E

13
58,220 31,176
J. Cole is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Born Sinner, The Warm Up, Friday Night Lights

14
45,772 39,250
André 3000 is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Royal Flush, Class of 3000: Music Volume One, DoYaThing

15
38,184 49,274
Rakim is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
The 18th Letter, The Archive: Live, Lost & Found

16
52,913 31,632
Lil Wayne is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Tha Carter III, Tha Carter II, Tha Carter

17
34,908 36,730
DMX is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
It's Dark and Hell Is Hot, Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood

18
32,030 33,455
Busta Rhymes is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
When Disaster Strikes…, The Big Bang, The Coming

19
27,877 31,856
Method Man is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Tical, 4:21... The Day After, The Riddler

20
29,440 32,367
Ludacris is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Theater of the Mind, Word of Mouf, Back For the First Time

21
20,343 15,502
Big Sean is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Finally Famous, Hall of Fame, Finally Famous Vol. 3: Big

22
22,063 28,147
LL Cool J is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Radio, Mama Said Knock You Out, Mr. Smith

23
24,418 27,182
T.I. is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
King, Urban Legend, Trap Muzik

24
40,438 22,565
Drake is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Subhan Sheikh added Take Care, Nothing Was the Same, Thank Me Later

25
22,486 31,271
Mos Def is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Black on Both Sides, True Magic, The New Danger

26
27,464 16,152
ASAP Rocky is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Long.Live.A$AP, Live. Love. ASAP, No Rest for the Wicked

27
29,468 18,533
Chance The Rapper is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
dylansher added Acid Rap, Confident, Songs from Scratch: Paranoia

28
22,141 16,042
Wiz Khalifa is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Rolling Papers, O.N.I.F.C., Deal or No Deal

29
20,528 22,275
Ghostface Killah is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Ironman, Supreme Clientele, Fishscale

30
29,177 18,529
Logic is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Young Sinatra: Welcome to Forever, Young Sinatra (Undeniable), Young Sinatra

31
15,497 6,774
Travis Scott is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Owl Pharaoh

32
20,879 14,444
Kid Cudi is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Man on the Moon: The End of Day, Indicud, Man on the Moon II: The Legend of Mr. Rager

33
22,496 12,885
Donald Glover is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
JustinK.Day added Because the Internet, Utterances of the Heart, Love Letter in an Unbreakable Bottle

34
18,794 16,384
The Game is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
The Documentary, Doctor's Advocate, Jesus Piece

35
20,284 18,904
Tech N9ne is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Everready, Anghellic, Absolute Power

36
3,840 1,905
Joyner Lucas is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time

37
17,981 28,422
KRS-One is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Hip Hop Lives, Return of the Boom Bap, Criminal Minded

38
18,028 15,886
Nate Dogg is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Fendarr added Music & Me, Welcome To The Dogg House, G-Funk Classics

39
17,695 25,347
Common is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Resurrection, Be, Like Water for Chocolate

40
18,698 23,726
Big L is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
The Big Picture, Lifestylez ov da Poor & Dangerous, Children of the Corn: The Collector's Edition

41
15,766 19,991
Redman is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Muddy Waters, Whut? Thee Album, Doc's da Name 2000

42
12,310 7,494
2 Chainz is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
malmrphy added B.O.A.T.S. II: Me Time, Beez in the Trap, T.R.U. REALigion

43
19,677 8,269
XXXTentacion is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
1519232093569 added

44
16,240 18,757
Lauryn Hill is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, MTV Unplugged 2.0, Ms. Hill

45
16,572 12,354
Tyler, the Creator is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Goblin, Bastard, Wolf

46
15,805 20,514
Big Pun is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Capital Punishment, Yeeeah Baby, Endangered Species

47
13,356 9,162
Joey Badass is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Summer Knights, 1999, Big Dusty

48
13,366 10,840
Schoolboy Q is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Setbacks, ScHoolboy Q, Oxymoron

49
7,331 6,883
Royce da 5'9
Rock City, Street Hop, Death Is Certain

50
13,998 11,793
Mobb Deep is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
scruffenstein added The Infamous, Blood Money, The Infamous Mobb Deep