Music
4.0k voters

The Most Respected Rappers, Ranked

Updated January 25, 2021 54.8k votes 4.0k voters 24.0k views190 items

When it comes to the rap game, it's all about respect. In other words, a rapper's career will only go so far if they aren't respectable. Not only that, but they need to respected by their peers—not just the fans. Take some of the best rappers of all time, for instance. You got Tupac, Notorious B.I.G., Dr. Dre, Lil Wayne, Snoop Dogg, and so on. Some of rap's best artists have plenty of respect attached to their names, and that's why they remain as some of the industry's greatest years after the midst of their careers. 

So, of all the respectable rappers out there, which artists have the best reputations? And as fans, who makes the list of rappers you respect most? Kanye West? Kendrick Lamar? Of course, you have all your female rap artists, too—and they should be included on any such list. There's a great deal of hip-hop artists, but only some have the top street cred and it's up to you to decide who deserves the most respect—at least for this list of rappers with the best reputations. 

 Peep the extensive list below and vote up the rappers you think are most respectable. You can also vote down artists, as well as add the ones you think deserve some serious credit. 

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  • Eminem1
    2,110
    773

    Eminem

    The Marshall Mathers LP, The Slim Shady LP

    Genres (Music)Hip hop

    Marshall Bruce Mathers III (born October 17, 1972), known professionally as Eminem (; often...  more

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  • Tupac Shakur2
    1,874
    478

    Tupac Shakur

    All Eyez on Me, Me Against the World

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Political hip hop, Gangsta rap, West Coast hip hop

    Tupac Amaru Shakur ( TOO-pahk shə-KOOR; born Lesane Parish Crooks, June 16, 1971 – September...  more

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  • Dr. Dre3
    1,403
    589

    Dr. Dre

    The Chronic, 2001

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Rap music, Gangsta rap, G-funk, West Coast hip hop

    Andre Romelle Young (born February 18, 1965), known professionally as Dr. Dre, is an American...  more

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  • The Notorious B.I.G.4
    1,246
    377

    The Notorious B.I.G.

    Ready to Die, Life After Death

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Hardcore hip hop, East Coast hip hop, Gangsta rap, Mafioso rap

    Christopher George Latore Wallace (May 21, 1972 – March 9, 1997), known professionally as The...  more

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  • Snoop Dogg5
    1,173
    588

    Snoop Dogg

    Doggystyle, Tha Doggfather

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Pop music, Gangsta rap, G-funk, Reggae

    Calvin Cordozar Broadus Jr. (born October 20, 1971), known professionally as Snoop Dogg, is an...  more

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  • Ice Cube6
    1,047
    400

    Ice Cube

    AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted, The Predator

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Alternative hip hop, Political hip hop, Hardcore hip hop, Gangsta rap

    O'Shea Jackson (born June 15, 1969), known professionally as Ice Cube, is an American rapper,...  more

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  • Kendrick Lamar7
    1,264
    678

    Kendrick Lamar

    good kid, m.A.A.d city

    Genres (Music)Hip hop

    Kendrick Lamar Duckworth (born June 17, 1987) is an American rapper, songwriter, and record...  more

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  • Nas8
    1,028
    394

    Nas

    Illmatic, Life Is Good

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Alternative hip hop, East Coast hip hop

    Nasir bin Olu Dara Jones, better known as Nas, is an American rapper, songwriter, record...  more

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  • 50 Cent9
    932
    573

    50 Cent

    Get Rich or Die Tryin', Get Rich or Die Tryin' / The Massacre

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Gangsta rap

    Curtis James Jackson III (born July 6, 1975), known professionally as 50 Cent, is an American...  more

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  • Eazy-E10
    632
    319

    Eazy-E

    Eazy-Duz-It, It’s On (Dr. Dre) 187um Killa

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Old-school hip hop, Gangsta rap, G-funk, West Coast hip hop

    Eric Lynn Wright (September 7, 1964 – March 26, 1995), known professionally as Eazy-E, was an...  more

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    #17 of 152 The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 40#13 of 104 The Best '80s Rappers

  • André 300011
    600
    311

    André 3000

    Royal Flush, Class of 3000: Music Volume One

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Alternative hip hop, Rock music, Electronic music, Rhythm and blues

    André Lauren Benjamin (born May 27, 1975), better known by his stage name André 3000 (formerly...  more

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    The Best Songs Feat. Andre 3000#2 of 189 The Best Rappers From Atlanta

  • Rakim12
    480
    278

    Rakim

    The 18th Letter, The Archive: Live

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Hardcore hip hop, East Coast hip hop

    William Michael Griffin Jr. (born January 28, 1968), better known by his stage name Rakim, is...  more

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    #37 of 119 Rappers with the Best Voices, Ranked#3 of 41 The Very Best Muslim Rappers

  • Scarface13
    302
    125

    Scarface

    The Diary, The Fix

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Horrorcore, Gangsta rap, Mafioso rap, Southern hip hop

    Brad Terrence Jordan (born November 9, 1970), better known by his stage name Scarface, is an...  more

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    #1 of 24 Houston Gangsta Rappers List#1 of 71 The Best Houston Rappers

  • J. Cole14
    704
    391

    J. Cole

    2014 Forest Hills Drive, Born Sinner

    Genres (Music)Hip Hop

    Jermaine Lamarr Cole (born January 28, 1985) is an American rapper, singer, songwriter, and...  more

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  • Ice-T15
    349
    155

    Ice-T

    Power, O.G. Original Gangster

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Hardcore hip hop, Rock music, Gangsta rap, Heavy metal

    Tracy Lauren Marrow (born February 16, 1958), better known by his stage name Ice-T, is an...  more

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  • DMX16
    527
    372

    DMX

    It's Dark and Hell Is Hot, Flesh of My Flesh

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Horrorcore, Hardcore hip hop, Christian hip hop, East Coast hip hop

    Earl Simmons (born December 18, 1970), known professionally as DMX, is an American rapper and...  more

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  • Jay-Z17
    618
    376

    Jay-Z

    Watch the Throne, The Black Album

    Genres (Music)Hip hop

    Shawn Corey Carter (born December 4, 1969), known professionally as Jay-Z (stylized as JAY-Z),...  more

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  • Busta Rhymes18
    381
    253

    Busta Rhymes

    When Disaster Strikes…, The Big Bang

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Ragga, Dancehall, Hardcore hip hop, Pop music

    Trevor George Smith Jr. (born May 20, 1972), known professionally as Busta Rhymes, is an...  more

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    The Best Songs Feat. Busta Rhymes#17 of 236 The Best New York Rappers

  • Method Man19
    393
    246

    Method Man

    Tical, 4:21... The Day After

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Hardcore hip hop, East Coast hip hop

    Clifford M. Smith Jr. (born March 2, 1971), better known by his stage name Method Man, is an...  more

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  • Nate Dogg20
    362
    264

    Nate Dogg

    Music & Me, Welcome To The Dogg House

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Pop music, Neo soul, Gangsta rap, G-funk

    Nathaniel Dwayne Hale (August 19, 1969 – March 15, 2011), known professionally as Nate Dogg,...  more

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  • Royce da 5'9"21
    435
    383

    Royce da 5'9"

    Rock City, Street Hop

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Hardcore hip hop, Midwest hip hop, Detroit hip hop

    Ryan Daniel Montgomery (born July 5, 1977), better known by his stage name Royce da 5'9", is...  more

    More 

    #548 of 816 These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time#321 of 583 The Greatest Entertainers of All Time

  • Tech N9ne22
    401
    355

    Tech N9ne

    Everready, Anghellic

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Horrorcore, Hardcore hip hop, Midwest hip hop, Gangsta rap

    Aaron Dontez Yates (born November 8, 1971), better known by his stage name Tech N9ne...  more

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  • Ghostface Killah23
    256
    206

    Ghostface Killah

    Ironman, Supreme Clientele

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Hardcore hip hop, East Coast hip hop, Gangsta rap, Contemporary R&B

    Dennis Coles (born May 9, 1970), better known by his stage name Ghostface Killah, is an...  more

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  • Proof24
    345
    315

    Proof

    Searching for Jerry Garcia, Grown Man Shit

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Midwest hip hop

    DeShaun Dupree Holton (October 2, 1973 – April 11, 2006), known professionally as Proof, was...  more

    More 

    #387 of 525 Which Artist Would You Bring Back From The Dead To Write One More Song?#7 of 200 The Best Underground Rappers

  • Prodigy25
    168
    89

    Prodigy

    H.N.I.C., Return of the Mac

    Genres (Music)Hip hop music, Hardcore hip hop, East Coast hip hop, Gangsta rap

    Albert Johnson (November 2, 1974 – June 20, 2017), better known by his stage name Prodigy, was...  more

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