Hip Hop Artists 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 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
152,502 78,457
Eminem is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Eminem The Marshall Mathers LP, The Slim Shady LP, The Eminem Show

2
119,653 67,146
Tupac Shakur is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Tupac All Eyez on Me, Me Against the World, The Don Killuminati: The 7 Day Theory

3
103,462 50,067
The Notorious B.I.G. is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
The Notorious B.I.G. Ready to Die, Life After Death, Born Again

4
69,025 61,533
Nas is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Nas Illmatic, Life Is Good, Untitled Nas album

5
95,304 41,508
Kendrick Lamar is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Kendrick Lamar good kid, m.A.A.d city, Section.80

6
61,750 65,725
Jay-Z is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Jay-Z Watch the Throne, The Black Album, Reasonable Doubt

7
70,149 48,810
Ice Cube is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Ice Cube AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted, The Predator, Death Certificate

8
70,962 47,143
Snoop Dogg is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Snoop Dogg Doggystyle, Tha Doggfather, Tha Last Meal

9
66,784 38,354
Dr. Dre is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Dr. Dre The Chronic, 2001, Nuthin' but a 'G' Thang / Let Me Ride

10
58,359 50,052
Kanye West is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Kanye West My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, Late Registration, The College Dropout

11
47,929 34,372
Eazy-E is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Eazy-E Eazy-Duz-It, It’s On (Dr. Dre) 187um Killa, Eternal E

12
46,346 35,689
50 Cent is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
50 Cent Get Rich or Die Tryin', Get Rich or Die Tryin' / The Massacre, Street King Immortal

13
42,377 36,757
André 3000 is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
André 3000 Royal Flush, Class of 3000: Music Volume One, DoYaThing

14
35,468 46,721
Rakim is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Rakim The 18th Letter, The Archive: Live, Lost & Found

15
47,866 28,959
Lil Wayne is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Lil Wayne Tha Carter III, Tha Carter II, Tha Carter

16
53,499 28,785
J. Cole is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
J. Cole Born Sinner, The Warm Up, Friday Night Lights

17
32,572 34,338
DMX is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
DMX It's Dark and Hell Is Hot, Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood

18
29,948 31,176
Busta Rhymes is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Busta Rhymes When Disaster Strikes…, The Big Bang, The Coming

19
27,738 29,680
Ludacris is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Ludacris Theater of the Mind, Word of Mouf, Back For the First Time

20
26,055 29,801
Method Man is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Method Man Tical, 4:21... The Day After, The Riddler

21
20,513 26,223
LL Cool J is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
LL Cool J Radio, Mama Said Knock You Out, Mr. Smith

22
36,968 18,837
Drake is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Subhan Sheikh added Drake Take Care, Nothing Was the Same, Thank Me Later

23
25,050 14,053
ASAP Rocky is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
ASAP Rocky Long.Live.A$AP, Live. Love. ASAP, No Rest for the Wicked

24
27,359 16,281
Chance The Rapper is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
dylansher added Chance the Rapper Acid Rap, Confident, Songs from Scratch: Paranoia

25
21,275 29,495
Mos Def is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Mos Def Black on Both Sides, True Magic, The New Danger

26
23,040 25,174
T.I. is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
T.I. King, Urban Legend, Trap Muzik

27
18,439 13,151
Big Sean is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Big Sean Finally Famous, Hall of Fame, Finally Famous Vol. 3: Big

28
19,315 12,820
Kid Cudi is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Kid Cudi Man on the Moon: The End of Day, Indicud, Man on the Moon II: The Legend of Mr. Rager

29
20,174 14,102
Wiz Khalifa is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Wiz Khalifa Rolling Papers, O.N.I.F.C., Deal or No Deal

30
18,981 20,843
Ghostface Killah is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Ghostface Killah Ironman, Supreme Clientele, Fishscale

31
26,278 16,560
Logic is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Logic Young Sinatra: Welcome to Forever, Young Sinatra (Undeniable), Young Sinatra

32
20,305 11,410
Donald Glover is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
JustinK.Day added Childish Gambino Because the Internet, Utterances of the Heart, Love Letter in an Unbreakable Bottle

33
17,032 27,041
KRS-One is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
KRS-One Hip Hop Lives, Return of the Boom Bap, Criminal Minded

34
16,875 24,036
Common is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Common Resurrection, Be, Like Water for Chocolate

35
17,585 22,533
Big L is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Big L The Big Picture, Lifestylez ov da Poor & Dangerous, Children of the Corn: The Collector's Edition

36
18,844 17,432
Tech N9ne is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Tech N9ne Everready, Anghellic, Absolute Power

37
17,378 15,154
The Game is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
The Game The Documentary, Doctor's Advocate, Jesus Piece

38
13,379 5,173
Travis Scott is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Travis Scott Owl Pharaoh

39
15,207 10,889
Tyler, the Creator is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Tyler, the Creator Goblin, Bastard, Wolf

40
16,605 14,870
Nate Dogg is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Fendarr added Nate Dogg Music & Me, Welcome To The Dogg House, G-Funk Classics

41
16,341 5,939
XXXTentacion is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
1519232093569 added XXXTentacion

42
15,061 17,656
Lauryn Hill is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Lauryn Hill The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, MTV Unplugged 2.0, Ms. Hill

43
14,827 18,898
Redman is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Redman Muddy Waters, Whut? Thee Album, Doc's da Name 2000

44
14,845 19,412
Big Pun is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Big Pun Capital Punishment, Yeeeah Baby, Endangered Species

45
12,576 9,843
Schoolboy Q is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Schoolboy Q Setbacks, ScHoolboy Q, Oxymoron

46
11,257 6,180
2 Chainz is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
malmrphy added 2 Chainz B.O.A.T.S. II: Me Time, Beez in the Trap, T.R.U. REALigion

47
12,238 8,270
Joey Badass is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Joey Badass Summer Knights, 1999, Big Dusty

48
11,859 16,880
Slick Rick is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Slick Rick The Great Adventures of Slick Rick, The Art of Storytelling, The Ruler's Back

49
11,796 15,849
Scarface is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Scarface The Diary, The Fix, Mr. Scarface Is Back

50
12,707 11,136
Mobb Deep is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
scruffenstein added Mobb Deep The Infamous, Blood Money, The Infamous Mobb Deep