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The Best British Rappers of All Time

Updated 10 May 2020 60.3k votes 8.4k voters 273.2k views62 items

List RulesFamous hip hop artists hailing from the UK

Update: Dive into the best new hip hop with our list of 2020's top rap songs.

Are you off your trolley for British Hip Hop? Barmy! Because this is a list of the best British rappers that emerged from the 1970s to the 2000s, with subgenres ranging from British Grime, British Trip Hop, Brithop, and Gangsta Rap. 

British rap is just British rap artists rapping lyrics over mixed and scratched beats, but a distinct culture and attitude come from this particular music genre. In the UK, this style arose from two distinctly different areas – the U.S. hip hop scene of the late 70s/early 80s, and “dub/toasting,” which was introduced to the UK by Jamaican immigrants as early as the 1960s.  

Despite its controversial entrance into the british music scene, British hip hop became popular through such outlets as pirate radio, mix tapes and speciality record shops. By the 90s, rappers from the UK had developed a distinct style with cities such Bristol, Nottingham, Leeds, and Manchester, all sporting their own unique sound and style.  

Many of these British rappers are some of the best the world has to offer, and should definitely be known on a global scale. So who are some of your favorite British hip hop artists? Which London rappers define English rap? Who are the best british rappers, white or black?

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