So, Technically, Who is the Best Rapper of All Time?

Posted in: Hip Hop by Simon Belmont on April 25th, 2009 | 15 Comments

With all the talk of Lil Wayne being the best rapper alive it brings up a question who really is the best rapper?

Remember when Jay-z was considered the best rapper alive? Time has been kind to Jay-z and his career being as popular and productive as ever but in recent years his title has been passed to Lil Wayne. Not everybody agrees but then again everyone is never going to agree on the same thing but technically who really is the best rapper ever? A name that comes to mind is the legendary Rakim with classics like The Ledge, Check Out My Melody, and Paid in Full Rakim’s amazing flow, lyrics and delivery make Rakim almost definitely can be considered top 5 dead or alive but his absence from Hip-Hop lately makes him very overlooked when it comes to considering the top hip-hop artist’s. Rakim’s protege Nas has longevity over Rakim and a very similar style to Rakim. Nas’s consistent presence and recent signing with Def-Jam could make you wonder if Nas has surpassed his mentor. Nas emerged the victor in the Jay-z and Nas beef seemingly making it so that technically Jay-z could not be considered the best rapper ever. No Doubt Jay-z is much more successful then Nas but if we were to judge the best rapper on financial success then couldn’t Diddy and Jermaine Dupri be considered the best? 

  

So what would make the best rapper ever? If you were to judge them based on originality you could argue Eminem takes the crown with songs like Guilty Conscious, Stan, and Cleaning Out My Closet, but on the other hand Outkast is one of the most original Hip-Hop acts of all time always offering something different. If we were to judge on beats and production you have a much larger cast of artist to choose from ranging from Gangstarr to Lil Brother to Kanye West but mostly artist are judged on there lyrical ability. Jay-z is the complete package he has flow he changes with the times and he has a resume to back it up however he lacks the lyrics of some of his colleagues such as Nas,Eminem, and Common. Most of the more lyrical artist are not well rounded while they have the lines to go bar for bar with most rappers they lack the flow, originality and consistency. Perhaps one of the most well loved artist in Hip-Hop Tupac could be the greatest ever with his though provoking songs and meaningful lyrics however some may argue his flow was not the best ever. Notorious B.I.G. lacked the content of Tupac but had a better flow. Some of the more popular artist such as Young Jeezy, Rick Ross and Lil Wayne lack originality and lyrics but have more and constant material as appose to more lyrical artist such as Talib Kweli and Mos Def. So who could really fit the mold? Jadakiss has punchlines, Nas has lyrical content,Jay-Z has flow,Eminem has originality,Lil Wayne has material,Kanye West has production but none of them are perfect so what do u guys think technically taking all of these factors into account who could be the best rapper? Can there be a best? Lil Wayne says he’s the best because he’s a competitor and considers himself the best at his craft. Is he? Its up to the people to decide cause after all like Tupac said “at the end of the day were all entertainers” and entertainers are for the peoples entertainment.

                

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15 Responses to “So, Technically, Who is the Best Rapper of All Time?”
  • Queens Bridge April 26th, 2009 at 2:14 am

    Yo Nas all day how are you gonna say eminem could be considerd the best?

  • Simon Belmont April 26th, 2009 at 11:31 am

    It’s all about opinion beside your name is Queens bridge so who else would you say was your favorite?

  • A poet April 26th, 2009 at 3:36 pm

    I can see were your coming from its interesting how you point out that Nas may be better then rakim now people just don’t wanna hear that cause Rakim is the original in my opinion Nas might be the best ever he’s slacking lately though

  • CT Aisyah April 29th, 2009 at 3:03 am

    Being a rock fan I wouldn’t even know where to begin to pick the best rapper BUT I’ve got to say one thing — this is an excellent piece of work! Why? Because you’ve presented your opinion in a very unbiased manner and gave very logical answers for you reasoning. It’s not always easy to refrain from nominating your favorite as the best when evidence suggests otherwise. Seriously this is excellent.

  • Bo Russo April 30th, 2009 at 6:13 pm

    Sorry young one,You’ve got to go old school here,these guys cant touch Easy E,NWA or Ice-T.Even Run DMC is better than anything being produced.Sadly,the only reason Tupac is known at all is because of his untimely death,but he had some talent for sure.

  • Simon Belmont May 3rd, 2009 at 12:03 am

    thanks for the feed back guys yea Bo Jack i made a part 2 that should be up in a few days if not 2night but yes i do agree with you.

  • skylite May 9th, 2009 at 10:54 pm

    Interesting article although I really have no idea who would be considered the best :)

  • Leonardo da Vinci E. August 28th, 2009 at 11:48 am

    Well obviously the proof is in the pudding; So which of these guys sold the most records and attracted the most numerous following?

  • mal September 6th, 2009 at 11:09 am

    you cant name a best rapper theres to many styles its a matter of opion but you can name a few that are all great.

    nas
    eminem
    ice cube
    wc
    wu thang
    necro
    ill bill
    proof
    dmx
    onyx
    redman
    cypress hill
    canibus
    krs-one
    tech n9ne
    imortal tech
    could go on all day….

  • Tainted Innocence December 20th, 2009 at 5:51 pm

    My favourite rappers are Eminem and DMX (when hes off the weed)

  • B to the ian December 28th, 2009 at 10:01 pm

    the guy who said the only reason tupac was known because he died sounds stupid as hell. If tupac was still alive, his music and influence would be even stronger because while he was alive he was still recognized as being one of the greatest rappers ever, plus people think he didn’t have flow, it’s sad that they haven’t even heard enough of his songs to say that. He had alot of songs where he had better flow then biggie or almost any rapper out there. break it down lyrically and nobody is touching him as far as depth goes, except for eminem and rakim, but still not quite pac. people need to check out his original music before he got signed. now nas, he’s ok, but he’s not all that good.

  • Slatki April 19th, 2010 at 8:21 pm

    DMX, hands down, his rhymes hit hard, and the mans a genius in battles

  • Someone with a Brain May 14th, 2010 at 4:22 am

    Idiots, what do you all know about hip hop? Lil Wayne is a joke of a rapper. The truly greatest rappers are: Rakim, The Notorious B.I.G, Nas and KRS-One. Point blank period.

  • insanemacbeth September 24th, 2010 at 1:43 pm

    RAKIM is THE GOD EMCEE; NAS is THE SECOND COMING OF RAKIM; JAY-Z is THE THIRD INSTALLMENT. KOOL G. RAP is up there, too. JAY ELECTRONICA has the skillz, to be considered a god emcee. if he stepped up his work ethic.

    then, you have sikk writers, eg. CHINO XL, RAS KASS, EMINEM, & CANIBUS.

  • i been listening to rap longer than u October 14th, 2011 at 11:41 pm

    if you look at who turned the rap industry upside down, it has to be rakim. when eric b and rakim came out, rap fans were shocked. i remember when rap magazines used to refer to eric b and rakim in italics!

    it’s subjective after a point – biggie / nas / guru / ice cube / tupac – all are great. i don’t think anyone broke the mold of rap like rakim, however.

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