Well, I'm not as qualified as many to write what I think should be a somewhat definitive list. I was only hardcore into rap from 1988 to 1994, so anybody whose work was totally or mostly after 1994, I leave off the list due to ignorance (people, I'm sure, like Notorious B.I.G., Jay-Z, Common, Eminem, 50 cent, whomever...) Also, notice how it's "World's" Best Rappers List, and we're probably almost exclusively talking about American rappers.

I personally think that the greatest 3 rappers in terms of flow, technique, and skill, not taking into account people who never sold all that much (e.g. the great Grandaddy I.U.), from mid 80s to mid 90s would be, in no particular order:

Big Daddy Kane

Additionally, in terms of overall skill and/or cultural/political significance, I would add the following, who began in the mid 80s and did most of their good stuff by the mid 90s, in no particular order:

LL Cool J

Roxanne Shante' (only a select few songs were really good, but overall she is very significant)

Antoinette (possibly the closest thing, at least until the mid 90s, to a female Rakim or Kane)


(I mean, why ain't the females bein' represented?)

Nikki D (one of the best rap albums ever, totally overlooked, totally phat skillz)

Salt-N-Pepa (specifically Salt b/c of her phat skills and before anyone jumps on me, listen to "Swift" from Black's magic, also to see how much better she was than Pepa, compare their various, respective "Solo Power" songs on the "Salt With A Deadly Pepa" album)

Public Enemy (specifically Chuck D)

King Sun
Lakim Shabazz (possibly, don't remember him that well)

Cookie Crew
Monie Love
probably 2 or 3 NWA-associated people (Dre, Eazy, Cube)


Kool G. Rap (can't believe I went ths long w/o mentioning him)

Grandaddy I.U.
Snoop Dog (perhaps)

That's all I can think of now from mid 80s to mid 90s. Note that I did not cover early 80s b/c I don't know enough about it. I'm sure I'd say Grandmaster Flash, Melle Mel, Grandmaster Caz, Africa Bambataa, Kurtis Blow...people like that.
Above is my World's Best Rappers List.
#rakim #kane #nas #mid 80s - mid 90s #female inclusivity
by William Noel August 15, 2006
Top Definition
I don't know how authorized I am to judge this, but this is my opinion on the matter.

These 4 rappers I am about to name should be on every greatest rappers list. They each combined unique style, unique and incredible lyrics, and all around great ability while managing to be hip-hop and still me mainstream.

2pac-He made 14ish albums in the 4 or 5 years he was alive and in the game. Most rappers can't do that in their career. He made songs to dance to, political songs, and songs telling stories. He did all that while sounding very pleasant, having controversial issues every day and having millions waiting for his orders. Those things make him a must have on any greatest rappers list.

Notorious B.I.G-Undoubtly one of the best. His skill freestyling and story telling is by far the best (in my opinion) that hip-hop music will ever see. Though his career was short lived, he will always be remembered and lived on through his music.

Nas-Nas is my favorite rapper. Since his first release (Illmatic) to his work with the Firm to his last release (Street's Disciple) Nas has been one of the best. The lyrics of every song and the way he flows is unique and will never be seen again by a new rapper. He also managed to fall off the charts, then come back with one of the best albums (Stillmatic). From beef with BIG, beef with 2pac, and beef with Jay-Z, Nas has remained poised and great. Listen to any of his albums and you'll see why he is one of the greatest.

Eminem-This may seem shocking but I beleive Eminem is one of the all time greats. If you listen to the Slim Shady LP, The Marshall Mathers LP, and The Eminem Show, you'll see his greatness. His songs can make you laugh, or fire you up to a point beyond beleif. He can also fire back at any critism (Who Knew, Cleanin' Out My Closet, ect.). Eminem has dealt with protestors and being a white rapper. Buy his albums, you will not be dissapointed.

There are many other rappers who are great, perhaps better, but I beleive these four must be on every top 10 list.
these rappers are all part of the world's best rappers list
#best #rappers #eminem #nas #2pac #big
by trojanman12 August 28, 2006

Notorious BIG
Snoop Dogg
Mos Def
Talib Kweli

Wu Tang Clan
Beastie Boys
Public Enemy
The Roots
Dead Prez
Without a gun and a badge what do ya got? A sucka in a uniform waitin' to get shot!
-EASY E from NWA-
by jpj May 13, 2004
Tupac && Eminem
world's best rappers list

Come listen to my truest thoughts, my truest feelings
All my peers doing years beyond drug dealing
How many caskets can we witness
Before we see it's hard to live
This life without God, so we must ask forgiveness
Ask mama why I got this urge to die
Witness the tears falling free from my eyes, before she could reply
Though we were born without a silver spoon
My broken down TV, show cartoons in my living room (hey)
One day I hope to make it, a player in this game
Mama don't cry, long as we try, maybe things change
Perhaps it's just a fantasy
A life where we don't need no welfare
Shit with our whole family
Maybe it's me that caused it, the fighting and the hurting
In my room crying cause I didn't want to be a burden
Watch mama open up her arms to hugging
And I ain't worried bout a damn thang, with unconditionl love.

They say music can alter moods and talk to you
Well can it load a gun up for you , and cock it too
Well if it can, then the next time you assault a dude
Just tell the judge it was my fault and i'll get sued
See what these kids do is hear about us totin' pistols
And they want to get one cause they think the shit's cool
Not knowin' we really just protectin' ourselves, we entertainers
Of course the shit's affectin' our sales, you ignoramus
But music is reflection of self, we just explain it, and then we get our
checks in the mail
It's fucked up ain't it
How we can come from practically nothing to being able to have any fuckin'
thing that we wanted
That's why we sing for these kids, who don't have a thing
Except for a dream, and a fuckin' rap magazine
Who post pin-up pictures on their walls all day long
Idolize they favorite rappers and know all they songs
Or for anyone who's ever been through shit in their lives
So they sit and they cry at night wishin' they'd die
Till they throw on a rap record and they sit, and they vibe
We're nothin' to you but we're the fuckin' shit in they eyes
That's why we seize the moment try to freeze it and own it, squeeze it and
hold it
Cause we consider these minutes golden
And maybe they'll admit it when we're gone
Just let our spirits live on, through our lyrics that you hear in our
songs and we can...
#eminem #tupac #chicken #peanut #butter
by NAT♥NAT April 18, 2009
In no particular order, and definitely not complete. Era is taken into consideration.

Big Daddy Kane
Big L
Mos Def
Immortal Technique
Jay-Z (hate all you want, I dare you to test an album against reasonable doubt.)
Andre 3000
Jeru the Damaja
Ice Cube
The Game
Grandmaster Caz
Bustah Rhymes
Too Short
Missy Elliot (yeah, she makes the list)
Clipse (both of them)
LL Cool J
Pharoahe Monch
Kurtis Blow
Run DMC (respect)
Melle Mel
Del the Funky Homosapien
Slick Rick
Talib Kweli

People I want to give it up to, but just don't know if I can.
Ghostface Killah
Big Boi
Snoop Doggy Dogg
Common (I view him as more of a poet then a MC)
Eazy E
Chuck D
T.I. (I just like the dude)
Chali 2na

Queen Latifah
MC Lyte
Lauryn Hill
Eve (although I'm pretty sure most of her stuff is ghostwritten)
I am... the best rapper alive. World's Best Rappers List
#best #rappers #mcs #emcees #hottest
by mdub2 January 19, 2009
There is no one such list.
Unfortunately, there will never be agreement over this issue.
Perfection or skill is what you make of it.
All of us have different points of view.
Critically speaking, though, we all know who was the best.
Get the (subliminal) message about the "world's best rappers list"?
#the truth #you know who is the best #no lie #tha realest #the best
by Future Truth October 12, 2005
best rappers in no order

Kool G Rap (some people seem to forget about him)
Big L
Big Pun
Dead in the middle of Little Italy little did we know
that we riddled some middleman who didn't do diddily
-- Big Pun

worlds best rappers list
#rap #hip hop #best rappers #old school hip hop #nas
by Frank Sinatra Jr September 22, 2008
1. Tupac - c'mon he was THE shit

And thats it. There are too many amazing rappers out to name, but none of em come close to Tupac.
''I aint a killer but don't push me, revenge is like the sweetest joy next to gettin pussy''
by Kelsi July 20, 2004
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