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
163,225 82,582
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
127,630 69,948
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
109,601 52,360
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
72,807 64,667
Nas is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Illmatic, Life Is Good, Untitled Nas album

5
100,356 44,252
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
74,521 49,976
Snoop Dogg is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Doggystyle, Tha Doggfather, Tha Last Meal

7
70,785 40,268
Dr. Dre is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
The Chronic, 2001, Nuthin' but a 'G' Thang / Let Me Ride

8
65,356 68,373
Jay-Z is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Watch the Throne, The Black Album, Reasonable Doubt

9
73,775 50,681
Ice Cube is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted, The Predator, Death Certificate

10
61,378 53,693
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
49,604 37,785
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
50,578 36,390
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
44,720 38,470
André 3000 is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Royal Flush, Class of 3000: Music Volume One, DoYaThing

14
37,300 48,544
Rakim is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
The 18th Letter, The Archive: Live, Lost & Found

15
56,733 30,351
J. Cole is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Born Sinner, The Warm Up, Friday Night Lights

16
51,412 30,832
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
34,194 35,983
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
31,406 32,746
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
27,326 31,209
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
28,932 31,505
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
19,766 14,685
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
21,591 27,541
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
24,011 26,486
T.I. is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
King, Urban Legend, Trap Muzik

24
22,110 30,702
Mos Def is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Black on Both Sides, True Magic, The New Danger

25
39,363 21,339
Drake is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Subhan Sheikh added Take Care, Nothing Was the Same, Thank Me Later

26
26,656 15,522
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
28,789 17,883
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
20,055 21,831
Ghostface Killah is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Ironman, Supreme Clientele, Fishscale

29
21,498 15,386
Wiz Khalifa is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Rolling Papers, O.N.I.F.C., Deal or No Deal

30
28,290 17,843
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
20,380 13,956
Kid Cudi is listed (or ranked) 31 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

32
19,844 18,411
Tech N9ne is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Everready, Anghellic, Absolute Power

33
17,658 28,007
KRS-One is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Hip Hop Lives, Return of the Boom Bap, Criminal Minded

34
2,980 1,425
Joyner Lucas is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time

35
21,819 12,433
Donald Glover is listed (or ranked) 35 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

36
18,354 15,990
The Game is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
The Documentary, Doctor's Advocate, Jesus Piece

37
17,575 15,564
Nate Dogg is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Fendarr added Music & Me, Welcome To The Dogg House, G-Funk Classics

38
17,436 24,970
Common is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Resurrection, Be, Like Water for Chocolate

39
18,323 23,380
Big L is listed (or ranked) 39 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

40
15,500 19,643
Redman is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Muddy Waters, Whut? Thee Album, Doc's da Name 2000

41
11,991 7,044
2 Chainz is listed (or ranked) 41 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

42
14,768 6,265
Travis Scott is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Owl Pharaoh

43
15,872 18,419
Lauryn Hill is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, MTV Unplugged 2.0, Ms. Hill

44
16,131 11,929
Tyler, the Creator is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Goblin, Bastard, Wolf

45
15,499 20,178
Big Pun is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Capital Punishment, Yeeeah Baby, Endangered Species

46
18,592 7,482
XXXTentacion is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
1519232093569 added

47
13,125 10,526
Schoolboy Q is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Setbacks, ScHoolboy Q, Oxymoron

48
12,986 8,893
Joey Badass is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
Summer Knights, 1999, Big Dusty

49
13,569 11,593
Mobb Deep is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
scruffenstein added The Infamous, Blood Money, The Infamous Mobb Deep

50
12,350 17,497
Slick Rick is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Rappers of All Time
The Great Adventures of Slick Rick, The Art of Storytelling, The Ruler's Back