To figure out the top hip hop artists of all time, you have to take into consideration all four elements of the hip hope genre. These elements are rapping, MC’ing, break dancing, and graffiti art. But R&B is also considered a part of the genre. Now, not every artists on this list can bust a move or tag a wall and make it look like art, but they can out-rap and out-MC any other artist out there. Let’s take a look at the top ten hip hop artists of all time.
Number Ten: A$AP Rocky
This talented rapper bust onto the hip hop scene in 2011 with a mixtape and has been making hits ever since. It’s not hard to see why he makes this list as one of the best artists currently making music in the hip hop genre.
Number Nine: Busta Rhymes
With his unprecedented delivery speed of his raps, Busta Rhymes solidified himself as one of the greats by being unlike any other hip hop artist. He MC’s, he raps, and he’s been featured more times than anyone can count.
Number Eight: Talib Kweli
An unknown to some but adored by others, Talib Kweli is best known for his work with another rapper on this list, Mos Def. However, Kweli is talented in his own right and has produced some impressive rap tracks.
Number Seven: Lupe Fiasco
Initially, Lupe was a hater of hip hop. That all changed when he got his very own rap career and thank god he did. Where would we be without some of his top tracks like “The Show Goes On” and “Daydreamin’?”
Number Six: Big L
One of the greatest hip hop artists ever, Big L is still unknown to many hip hop fans since his life was tragically cut short just as his career was getting started. Despite his small body of work, it’s the quality that counts.
Number Five: Lil Wayne
Sadly, Weezy has sipped a little too much of his purple drank and his abilities as a rapper have taken a hit, but that doesn’t discount his reign as the king of rap throughout the mid- to late 2000s and even early on in the second decade of the 2000s. I guarantee you could name at least ten of this rapper’s songs off the top of your head right now.
Number Four: Mos Def
Best known now for his roles in various TV shows and movies, Mos Def was once a member of the infamous Black Star group. His talent as both a rapper, producer, and lyricist is not forgotten.
Number Three: Andre 3000
The better half of Outkast, Andre 3000 was weird in the best way. His individuality and creativity, as well as his lyrical abilities, cemented his place as one of the ultimate hip hop artists ever.
Number Two: Nas
You can’t come close to reaching Nas’ talent as a rapper or lyricist. Unlike most other rappers in the game, Nas has been able to achieve an entire career of success in the hip hop industry and is still going strong.
Number One: The Greatest Of All Hip Hop Artists, Dr. Dre
When it comes to hip hop, it doesn’t get much better than Dr. Dre. He can do it all: MC, rap, produce, mentor. Thanks to Dre, numerous artists were able to enhance their own rapping skills or land a top track thanks to the beat he created. The world of hip hop would be much different without the help of Dre.
There you have it. The ultimate list of the top ten hip hop artists of all time. Update your music library with some classic hits from these hip hop artists and you’ll be happy you did.