Top 20 Best And Highest Selling Rapper (Hip Hop Artist) Of All Time

A Collage of some of the prominent and best selling rappers of all the time
A Collage of some of the prominent and best selling rappers of all the time ( Source : rappersmag )

Top 20 best and highest selling rapper (Hip Hop Artist) of all time are 1. Nicki Minaj 2. Ice Cube 3. Ja Rule 4. 2Pac. Best Selling Rappers in the music industry have won listeners' hearts worldwide.

What makes them widely popular is their diversity and medley in the songs. 

Before easy access to the internet, people listened to their favorite artists only through the means of albums. The earning source of artists from this field depended on the number of albums sold.

However, the trend of purchasing albums has declined significantly, and we have shifted to view counts on different streaming media platforms. 

Some commercially successful rappers have reigned the world of the rap industry since their initial career days.

From solo artists to bands, groups, and gangs, these people are successful not only in terms of finance but their popularity has also peaked to a huge extent. 

We have covered the success story of diverse rappers from different walks of life.

From Nicki Minaj to Ice Cube, all the artists have engrossed themselves in years of hard work and determination to achieve this height of success.

20. Nicki Minaj

When we name a top 20 selling US rapper Nicki Minaj tops the 1st place on the list. Nicki Minaj is one of the most influential rappers in the modern hip-hop industry.

The rapper has been professionally involved in the hip-hop world since 2004. 

Nicki Minaj album sales - 100 Million

Nicki Minaj has an estimated sales of 100 Million. At the same time, her best-selling album is called Pink Friday which was released in 2010. Pink Friday had 902,000 sales in the United Staes and 1.4 Million worldwide. 

The original name of Nicki Minaj is Onika Tanya Maraj. Born in the Saint James district of Port of Spain, the rapper is best known for her musical versatility and animated flow in rapping. She was interested in music during her teenage years and wanted to pursue a career. 

It was in the year 2004 that Minaj signed a contract with the Brooklyn group Full Force. In collaboration with the group, she did several projects that included the entrance song for WWE Diva Victoria, Don't Mess With. Afterward, the rapper left the group and began uploading songs through her personal Myspace profile. 

Rapper Nicki Minaj with her husband and baby boy
Rapper Nicki Minaj with her husband and baby boy ( Source : instagram )

Minaj recorded her first mixtape called Playtime is Over and released it in the July of 2007. Similarly, her second mixtape was called Sucka Free, and the third one was called Beam Me Up Scotty. Similarly, the 40-year-old appeared on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart from her feature in Knockout and Up Out My Face. 

Nicki became successful in making her one of the most prominent figures in the rap industry within a short span of time. She was chosen as one of the opening acts in the Femme Fatale Tour in 2011. At the same time, she also performed at the MTV Video Music Awards in 2018. 

The superstar released a standalone entitled Megatron in 2019, which debuted at number 20 in the United States. In addition, she has also collaborated with Colombian singer named Karol G on the song entitled Tusa, which reached number 42 in the United States.

Nicki Minaj has her own style when it comes to rapping. Therefore, she is different from than rest of the New York rappers. She has a different accent, and her rapping is distinctive for its speed, and use of alter egos. 

19. Ice Cube

O'Shea Jackson Sr. professionally known as Ice Cube, is a popular rapper from America. Besides being a rapper, Jackson is also involved in filmmaking and acting.

Ice Cube Albums Sales: 9 Million

The estimated record sales of the artist are more than 9 Million. In addition, Jackon's The Predator album was released in 1992 with a maximum sales of 2,060,000 copies, making it the Best Selling Album. 

Jackson began writing raps when he was in school at George Washington Preparatory. After recording a few of his creations, he decided to shift to Arizona for greater opportunities in life. He attended the Phoenix Institute of Technology and earned a diploma in architectural drafting. 

In 1986 Jackson formed a rap group named C.I.A along with his friend Sir Jinx. The group began performing in different parties and gradually received projects to work on.

The rapper was 16 years old when he sold his first-ever song to Eric Wright. He also wrote many songs for rapper Eazy-E, including his debut album, Eazy-Duz-It. 

The rapper formed his personal record label in the year 1990. It was named Street Knowledge. Similarly, in 1990 Jackson recorded his debut solo album under the name Amerikkka's Most Wanted, and it became an instant superhit. 

The 53-year-old's second album was named Death Certificates and was released in 1991. Similarly, his further albums include The Predator, Lethal Injection, War and Peace Vol. 1, and Laugh Now, Cry Later. Besides working in the rap and hip-hop industry, Jackson is also involved in movies and television.

The rapper has been featured in nearly 40 movies, and several are highly renowned. Some of the popular works of the rapper include Trespass and Three Kings.

18. Ja Rule

Ja Rule is the stage name of the renowned and best-selling rapper Jeffrey Bruce Atkins. Ja Rule has been active in the rap industry since the year 1994. 

Ja Rule album sales: 9.74 Million

Rapper Ja Rule has sold more than 9,740,000 albums, including 8,500,000 in the United States and 580,000 in the United Kingdom. Similarly, the best-selling Album od the rapper is called Pain In Love which sold more than 3,725,000 copies. 

Ja Rule began his career in rapping with the formation of the hip-hop group named Cash Money Click, along with other members like Chris Black and O-1.

He worked with his friends in the initial days under producer DJ Irv and released several songs. Their debut single entitled Get Tha Fortune was released in 1994 independently. 

The rapper's debut single was released in March 1999, entitled Holla Holla. In addition, Ja Rule released his debut album Venni Vetti Vecci in the same year. The album was successful in being number three on Billboard 200. He released his second single, called Between You and Me, in June 2000, which also gained immense popularity. 

Rapper Ja-Rule during one of his concerts in Napier, New Zealand
Rapper Ja-Rule during one of his concerts in Napier, New Zealand ( Source : instagram )

Ja Rule's second studio album was entitled Rule 3:36, and the third was called Pain Is Love. The latter was successful in being at the top of Billboard 200 and had sales of more than 361,000 copies.

The star's fourth studio album, The Last Temptation, came in 2002. 

One of the greatest albums of the rapper is Exodus. It became a major hit and led to the popularity of Ja Rule more than ever.

After releasing this album, the rapper decided to have a musical hiatus for some time. In 2011, he released a memoir entitled Unruly: The Highs and Lows Of Becoming a Man. In this memoir, he expressed the struggles and hardships of his own life when he first came to New York City. 

Other than rapping, Ja Rule has also laid his hands on acting. The first-ever film he played in was a buddy movie with Pras called Turn It Up.

Similarly, he has also been in other movies, including The Fast and The Furious, Back In The Day, and Half Past Dead. 

17. Wu Tang Clan

Wu-Tang Clan is a popular hip-hop group based in Staten Island, New York City. The group was officially formed in the year 1992.

Wu Tang Clan Album Sales: 11.4 Million

The group has sold more than 11,408,039 albums, including 6,500,001 in the United States and 560,000 in the United Kingdom.

Similarly, their best-selling album called, Wu-Tang Forever, became successful in selling more than 6,000,000 copies worldwide. 

The group members include RZA, GZA, Masta Killa, Ghostface Killah, Method Man, OI' Dirty Bastard, U-God, and Inspectah Deck. The group has been promoting hardcore hip-hop style. 

The group became widely renowned after releasing their entitled Protect Ya Neck. Similarly, their debut album entitled Enter the Wu-Tang also ensured the group's success.

While Wu-Tang Clan began getting more and more projects, the members also enhanced their independent careers. 

The first look of the final season of Wu-Tang: An American Saga
The first look of the final season of Wu-Tang: An American Saga ( Source : instagram )

The second album of the group was named Wu-Tang forever. It was released in June 1997. The album became widely successful and debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 one more time.

Similarly, the band released its fourth album, Iron Flag, in 2001. 

The main reason behind the popularity and success of the band is their unique lyrics and authenticity. In addition, they also add sarcasm and funny elements to their lyrics. They blend the style of lofi and esoteric lyricism, which appeals to the audiences to a great extent.

The Wu-Tang Clan has also performed in several places around the globe. The band's best-selling albums include Enter the Wu-Tang, released in 1993, and Wu-Tang Forever, released in 1997. 

16. Cypress Hill

Cypress Hill is a well-known American hip-hop group from South Gate, California. The group is popular for being the first hip-hop gang to have a star on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame.

Cypress Hill Albums Sales: 20 Million

The group has been able to sell more than 20 Million albums all over the world. Similarly, they are also considered the first Latino-American Hip-Hop group to go platinum and multi-platinum. 

Cypress Hill was founded for the first time in the year 1988. The founding members of the group are Senen Reyes and Ulpiano Reyes.

Later on, they were joined by Lawrence Muggerud and Louis Freese. Eventually, the group lost one of its significant members Mellow Man Ace. 

The group signed a record with Ruffhouse Records in the year 1989. In addition, the group's first self-titled album was released in the August of 1991.

At the same time, their lead single, A-side 'The Phuncky Feel One,' became very popular among hip-hop lovers all over the globe. 

The group released its second album, Black Sunday, in 1993, which became extremely famous. The album also debuted at number one on the Billboard 200.

In addition, Black Sunday was able to make triple platinum in the United States and successfully sold more than three million copies. 

The group members also ensured that their personal and individual careers flourished. DJ Muggs has released Soul Assasins along with other mates like Dr. Dre, KRS-One, Mobb Deep, and Wyclef Jean. Similarly, Sen Dog also released the Get Wood sampler with Flip Records. 

The third album of Cypress Hill came in 1995 under Temples of Boom. It became successful in peaking at number three on the Billboard 200. In addition, this album was also got certified by the RIAA.

After the major success of their first three albums, the group began touring around places for concerts and performances more frequently.

As of now, the group has already released 10 studio albums. Elephants Of Acid, released in 2018, and Back in Black of 2022 were also able to win the hearts of all hip-hop lovers. 

Cypress Hill has been nominated for several music awards, including the Billboard Music Awards and Grammy Awards.

In addition, their nomination for the MTV Video Music Awards was also included in the year 1994. Moreover, the group won the Hollywood Walk Of Fame Award in 2019. 

15. Dr. Dre

Rapper Andre Romelle Young is famous for his stage name Dr. Dre. The rapper has been active in the music industry since the year 1985. 

Dr. Dre Albums Sales: 24 Million

The estimated sales of Dr.Dre is 24 Million. One of his best-selling albums is named 2001, released in 1999. It sold over 10,601,000 copies all over the world. 

Dr. Dre was highly inspired by the song entitled The Adventures of Grandmaster Flash on the Wheels of Steel by Grandmaster Flash. Therefore, he often attended the club Eve's to watch the performances of rappers and DJs from different musical backgrounds. At the same time, Dre was also a great admirer of rapper Antoine Carnaby. 

The rapper joined a musical group named World Class Wreckin' Cru. The group released its first debut album under the Kru-Cut label in 1985. Similarly, Dr. Dre has also collaborated with rapper O'Shea Jackson. They recorded some songs for Ruthless Records. 

Dr. Dre has also made certain screen appearances. He was first featured as a weapons dealer in a movie entitled Set It Off. At the same time, he also appeared in some popular movies like The Wash and Training Day. 

The California native's studio albums include The Chronic released in the year 1992, and 2001, released in the year 1999, and Compton, released in 2015. The rapper has been successful in receiving six Grammy Awards altogether. In addition, Dr. Dre also won BET Hip Hop Awards in 2014 and was nominated again in 2015 and 2016 simultaneously. 

14. Lauryn Hill

Lauryn Noelle Hill is popularly known by her stage name Lauryn Hill. The rapper is based in the United States. 

Lauryn Hill has been able to sell more than 20,730,850 albums. Her most successful album is called The Miseducation Of Lauryn Hill which had over 20 Million sales. 

Born and raised in East Orange, New Jersey, Lauryn was born to her mother, Valerie, who was an English teacher, and her father, Mal Hill, who was a computer and management consultant. Her family loved listening to songs, and he had exposure to music from an early age.

Lauryn used to perform on stage right from her middle school days. In addition, she appeared as one of the contestants on 'It's Showtime at Apollo.' While at Columbia High School, she was a member of the track team and the cheerleading squad. 

Rapper Lauryn Hill performs in Montreal during her musical tour
Rapper Lauryn Hill performs in Montreal during her musical tour ( Source : instagram )

The rapper began her professional career in the year 1991. At the same time, she also laid her hands on acting as a side hustle. The rapper made history with her debut, Miseducation Of Lauryn Hill. The album became widely successful and paved the way for hip-hop, jazz, and r&b to another level. 

 Lauryn is considered one of the most influential rappers of all time. According to the New York Times, she is referred to as one of the most popular women in hip-hop. At the same time, Beyonce has claimed to be one of the best hip-hop rappers ever. Lauryn is credited as the artist who developed the idea of blending rap and melodious singing together simultaneously for the same song. The style is named Melodic Rap. 

13. Master P

Master P is one of the most prominent rappers based in the United States. The original name of the rapper is Percy Robert Miller Sr. 

Master P has sold more than 7,025,000 albums all over the world. His best-selling album, Ghetto D, became successfulul in making a sales of over 3,000,000 copies. 

Born and raised in Central City, the rapper opened a record store in Richmond, California, under No Limit Records and Tapes. It was in the year 1990 that Master P released a cassette tape, Mind of A Psychopath. The rapper's debut album was released on February 12, 1991, under Get Away Clean. 

Similarly, Master P came up with his second album, Mama's Bad Boy, the following year. In addition, his first-ever collaboration album with TRU, entitled Who's da Killer, was released for the listeners in 1994 March 18. Afterward, he collaborated with record houses and artists to create more music. 

The California native has 15 studio albums altogether. His latest album is entitled Louisiana Hot Sauce and was released in 2016. Master P has also featured in the rack entitled Brinks by Guccu Mane. Similarly, he was on tour with his brother Silkk The Shocker and son Romeo, No Limit Forever International, in 2010. 

It was in February 2013 that the rapper collaborated with his group, Louie V. Mob, to release a mixtape named New World Order. Similarly, on August 6, he released another mixtape by the name Famous Again. One of the most popular works of Master P is the release of No Limit Chronicles. It is a docuseries that has five parts and depicts the stories of the rapper's entire career as a rapper, a businessman, and a record executive. 

Master P has won the Favorite Hip-Hop Artist Award at the American Music Awards function. In addition, he has also ranked at number 36 by VH1 in the list of 50 Greatest Hip Hop Artists. Moreover, Master P has also been named as The Most Influential Rapper of All Time by Black Entertainment Television. 

12. Lil Wayne

Lil Wayne is a popular American rapper, singer, and songwriter. The original name of the rapper is Dwayne Michael Carter Jr. 

The estimated record of Lil Wayne is 120 Million. Similarly, his best selling album is called The Carter III, released in the year 2008. 

Carter has been interested in music since an early age. He wrote his first rap when he was just eight years old. In the summer of 1991, the rapper met Bryan Williams, who encouraged and motivated Carter to make his name in the rap industry. 

Rapper Lil Wayne in the edition of New Orleans Jazz Jersey
Rapper Lil Wayne in the edition of New Orleans Jazz Jersey ( Source : instagram )

 The rapper decided to drop out of college at the age of 14 and decided to give his entire time to enhancing his skills in rapping. He often recorded raps on William's answering machine. The year 1997 was the start of a new journey for him. He joined the Hot Boys group the same year, and their debut album, entitled Get It How U live, was released with a big bang. 

The debut solo album of the rapper Tha Block Is Hot was released when he was 17 years old. The album debuted at number three on the Billboard 200 and was certified by the RIAA. Similarly, his second album was released in 2000 under Lights Out. In addition, the third album by the rapper is called 500 Degreez, and the fourth one is 

11. Nas

Nair bin Olu Dara Jones popularly known as Nas, is one of the most prominent rappers in the United States. Nas began his career in music in the year 1989. 

The estimated record sales of the rapper is 15 Million altogether. Nas was able to get the highest amount of sales from his album entitled It Was Written, which was released in the year 1996. Similarly, ten of his albums have been certified gold, platinum, and multi-platinum in the United States. 

Born in New York, Nas was raised under the guardianship of African American parents. He was inspired by his brother, Jabari Fret, who has been in the rap industry for a long time under the name Jungle. 

Nas began his musical journey right during his teenage years. It was in the year 1989 that he met with producer Large Professor, who took him to a studio where rappers Rakim and Kool G Rap were recording. Nas would frequently visit the studio afterward and record his own creations. 

Rapper Nas during his musical tour at New York
Rapper Nas during his musical tour at New York ( Source : instagram )

In 1995 Nas got an opportunity to do a guest performance on albums including Doe or Die and The Infamous. The rapper's debut album was released in 1994 under the name IIImatic which also had a guest appearance of his father Olu Dara. The Source was also awarded the album best album of 1994. 

Similarly, the rapper's second album was released in 1996, called It Was Written. His other albums include I Am, Nastradamus, Stillmatic, God's Son, Street's Disciple, Hip Hop is Dead, Untitled, Life is Good, Nasir, King's Disease, King's Disease II, Magic, and King's Disease III. Nas has been nominated for MTV Video Music Awards and BET Hip Hop Awards. 

The rapper was also announced as one of the producers of the drama series The Get Down on Netflix. Similarly, Nas has also been featured in the award-winning documentary of 2017 entitled The American Epic Sessions. According to Journalist Peter Shapiro, Nas can create a devastating match between lyrics and production when it comes to music. 

10. Ludacris

Ludacris is best known for being one of the most popular rappers of all time. The rapper was originally born Christopher Brian Bridges. 

Ludacris has an estimated sales of 24 Million from his albums. The best-selling album of the rapper is World of Mouf, which was released in the year 2001. It was able to sell more than 4,000,000 copies all over the world. 

Ludacris was interested in music from a young age. Therefore, he decided to serve as an intern and a DJ on Atlanta's Hot 97.5. While working on the radio, the rapper became an acquaintance of music producer Timbaland. It was in the year 1999 that Ludacris released his first-ever debut album called Incognegro. 

In the year 2003, Ludacris released a single entitled Act A Fool. The music was included as the soundtrack of the movie 2 Fast 2 Furious. Similarly, the rapper also released an album under the name Chicken-N-Beer. The rapper's second studio album, Back For The First Time, was released in 2000. 

Rapper Ludacris visits Aspen and Snowmass in Colorado
Rapper Ludacris visits Aspen and Snowmass in Colorado ( Source : instagram )

Ludacris's other studio albums include World of Mouf, The Red Light District, Release The Therapy, Theater of the Mind, Battle of the Sexes, and Ludaversal. County singer Carrie Underwood has also featured the rapper on The Champion. Similarly, he has also developed a computer-animated musical children's television series under the name Karma's World which Netflix commissioned. 

As a recognition for his contribution to the music world, Ludacris has been awarded three Grammy Awards and MTV Video Music Awards. Besides being a rapper, Ludacris has also appeared in some films as an actor, including Crash, Gamer, and New Year's Eve. 

9. MC Hammer

MC Hammer is a multi-award-winning rapper based in the United States Of America. The rapper's original name is Stanley Kirk Burrell. 

Rapper MC Hammer is able to sell more than 24,985,660 albums, including 16,000,000 in the United States and 660,000 in the United Kingdom. Similarly, the best-selling album by the rapper called Please Hammer Don't Hurt 'Em was able to sell more than 18,000,000 copies. 

Hammer started his career professionally by forming a Christian rap group along with singer and musician Jon Gibson. The rapper performed with Tramaine Hawkins in Gibson's band and went to several concerts. At the same time, he also released a debut album entitled Feel My Power in the year 1986. 

In addition, Hammer recorded and produced several songs. However, all of his creations were not made public at that time. As of now, they are available on YouTube. The rapper released his second studio album in 1988 under Let's Get It Started. Similarly, his other albums include Too Legit To Quit, Family Affair, Active Duty, Look Look Look, Dance Jam The Music, The Funky Headhunter, and Full Blast.

M.C. Hammer has also involved himself in Television and film. He produced the movie Please Hammer Don't Hurt 'Em: The Movie in 1990 and has even starred in it. At the same time, he has also produced MC Hammer: 2 Legit. 

According to the artist, the rapper is highly inspired by singers like Big Daddy Kane, James Brown, Michael Jackson, and Wind and Fire. Hammer has been able to sell more than 50 million records worldwide. In addition, he has also received three Grammy Awards for his contribution to the music industry. The rapper has also been a part of important music tours, including A Spring Affair Tour, Too Legit World Tour, Music Fest, Outside Lands, and All-star House Party Tour. 

8. Drake

Drake is a Canadian rapper and singer who is renowned all over the world. The original name of Drake is Aubrey Drake Graham. 

The rapper has an estimated sales of 170 Million. At the same time, his best-selling album is called Views. It was released in the year 2016. At the same time, each one of the rapper's album has been certified platinum and even higher. 

Drake was enthusiastic about acting and singing from a young age. He made his musical debut in 2006 by releasing a mixtape called Room For Improvement featuring Trey Songz and Lupe Fiasco. 

It was in the year 2007 that the rapper released his second mixtape under the name Comeback Season. Similarly, his third mixtape, called So Far Gone in 2009. The mixtape received more than 2000 downloads in the first two hours of its release. Drake became widely popular and acclaimed because of the success of his mixtapes. 

It was in the year 2010 that the rapper released his debut single entitled Over. The song peaked at number 14 on the Billboard Hot 100. At the same time, it also popped the Rap Songs chart and was nominated for Best Rap Solo performance at the Grammy Awards. 

Studio Albums of the star include Thank Me Later, Take Care, Nothing Was the Same, Views, Scorpion, Certified Lover Boy, and Honestly Nevermind. Drake is considered one of the prominent figures in pop culture and is often respected as an influencer. In addition, Drake is also highly credited for popularizing the Toronto Sound in the music industry.

Rapper Drake wins Top Billboard 200 Album for Scorpion
Rapper Drake wins Top Billboard 200 Album for Scorpion ( Source : instagram )

According to the artist, he is highly influenced by rappers like Kanye West, MF Doom, Lil Wayne, and Jay-Z. Most of the songs by Drake have audible changes in the pronunciation of the lyrics. At the same time, he also includes the stories of his upbringing in Toronto and relation with the Middle East and the Caribbean. 

Some of the significant musical tours made by Drake include the famous Away From Home Tour in 2010. In addition, the Club Paradise Tour of 2012, Would You Like A Tour? of 2013, Boy Meets World Tour 2017, and Assassination Vacation Tour 2019 made the artist more connected to his fans and well-wishers from all over the world. 

7. Eminem

Rapper Marshall Bruce Mathers III is professionally known by his stage name Eminem. Eminem is best known for popularizing hip-hop style in the middle of America. 

What rapper has sold the most albums?

Rapper Eminem has an estimated sales of 220 Million. In addition, his best-selling album is called The Marshall LP, which was released in 2000. 

Eminem has earned 50 Platinum albums and 10 number-one albums in his home country. Diamond-certified sets of the rapper include The Marshall Mathers LP (11 million) and the 2005 compilation Curtain Call: The Hits (10 million).

Eminem's professional career began in 1988 when he founded his first-ever group, New Jacks. At the same time, he also made a demo tape in collaboration with DJ Butter Fingers. Eminem also developed the first music video feature in a song named Do-Da-Dippity by Camptown. 

The rapper's first EP was released in the spring of 1997 under Slim Shady. Similarly, he started his own record label named Shady Records in 1999. Eminem's LP under the name Marshall Mathers was recorded during 1999-2000, became widely successful, and sold 1.76 million copies in its first week.

In 2001, Eminem performed a duet with Elton John at the function of Grammy Awards. The same year he recorded an album entitled Devil's Night and toured with the group D12. In addition, he came up with The Eminem Show in 2002. It also became widely popular and led to the acting debut of the rapper in the semi-autobiographical named 8 Mile. 

The pop star released Encore in 2004 and Curtain Call: The Hits in 2005. Other albums of the singer include Relapse 2009, Recovery 2009, The Marshall Mathers LP 2 2013, Revival 2017, Kamikaze 2018, and Music to Be Murdered By 2020. 

6. Nelly

Cornell Iral Haynes Jr. is popularly known by his stage name Nelly. Nelly is a rapper based in the United States and is renowned all over the world. 

Nelly has an estimated sales of 29 Million from his albums. The best-selling album of the artist is named Nellyville, and it was released in the year 2002. The album became successful in selling more than 11,000,000 copes worldwide. 

The rapper began his musical journey in high school after forming a group named St. Lunatics with few friends. The group released their first single under Gimme What Ya Got, which became successful in the surrounding areas. 

It was in the year 1999 that the rapper was signed to Universal Music Group by A&R Kevin Law. His debut album named, Country Grammar, was released in 2000 under the same label. Similarly, in 2002 Nelly came up with his second album entitled Nellyville. It debuted at number one on Billboard's Top 200 Music Albums. 

Similarly, Nelly released his third album under the name Sweat in 2004. His other albums include Suit, released in 2004, Brass Knuckles in 2008, 5.0 in 2010, M.O. in 2013, and Heartland in 2021. 

Nelly wears a t-shirt of Nellyville, his second album on the occasion of it's 20th anniversary
Nelly wears a t-shirt of Nellyville, his second album on the occasion of it's 20th anniversary( Source : instagram )

Nelly also appeared in the Television reality show Nellyville from 2014 to 2015. The show ran for two seasons and aired on BET. The show was about the rapper's musical career, including his personal life experience. In addition, the rapper has also been a part of the film industry. 

Nelly's first-ever movie debut is Snipes. He played the role of a famous rapper named Prolifik in the movie, released in 2001. Similarly, he also contributed to the movie through his music. 

According to Peter Shapiro, Nelly's rapping style is an unforgettable hook based on schoolyard songs and double-dutch chants. Similarly, All Music describes his style based on where he comes from. Nelly gives a raw and traditional touch to his music and garnishes it with an urban dialect.  

5. 50 Cent

50 Cent is a popular name in the rap industry of the United States. Originally born as Curtis James Jackson III, 50 Cent is one of the most prominent rappers of all time. 

The estimated record sales of the artist is 30 Million. At the same time, his best selling album is called Get Rich Or Die Tryin' which was released in the year 2003. 

Jackson began his journey by rapping from the basement of his friend's home. He used turntables to record the instrumentals in the initial days. It was in the year 1996 that he got acquainted with Jam Master Jay of Run-DMC. who taught him to write a chorus, count bars, and make records. 

The popularity of Jackson grew immensely after the controversial single named How To Rob. He wrote this song within a half-hour car ride. The rapper released his debut album in 2003, entitled Get Rich or Die Tryin'. The album became successful and stood at number one on the Billboard 200. Similarly, its sales reached 872,000 within the first four days of release. 

The second album of Jackson was released in 2005 under the name The Massacre. Similarly, the third studio album was named Curtis and released in 2007. Nelly came up with his fourth album in 2009, named Before I Self Destruct, and the fifth one was released in 2014, entitled Animal Ambition. 

Jackson has received several awards and nominations for his contribution to the hip-hop industry. His debut album earned him a Best New Artist nomination at the 46th Grammy Awards. Similarly, the rapper has also received some prestigious awards like BET Hip Hop Award, Vibe Awards, World Music Awards, and Primetime Emmy Awards.

4. Snoop Dogg

Snoop Dogg is another popular rap artist from America. The original name of the rapper is Calvin Cordozar Broadus Jr. 

Snoop Dogg has an estimated sales of 37 Million from his albums. His best-selling album is called Doggystyle, it was released in the year 1993. This album was able to sell over 6,032,000 copies.

Broadus was interested in music from his childhood days. As a teenager, he formed a group with his cousins and began recording tapes. The rapper officially began working in the music industry in partnership with Dr.Dre. He worked on the debut solo album of Dr.Dre and received good fame. 

The debut single of the rapper Who Am I became one of the most played songs in the United States. In 1998, Broadus signed with Master P's No Limit Records and debuted with Da Game Is To Be Sold, Not To Be Told. Similarly, he signed with Geffen Records in the year 2004. 

Rapper Snoop Dogg performs on stage during one of his concerts
Rapper Snoop Dogg performs on stage during one of his concerts ( Source : instagram )

It was in the year 2007 that Snoop Dogg made history by becoming the first artist who released a track as a ringtone before releasing the single entitled, It's The D.O.G. The rapper has released twenty studio albums as of 2022. His latest studio album was called BODR and was released in 2022. 

Broadus is also the judge of the seventh annual Independent Music Awards, which was initiated to support new artists in the industry. According to The Washington Post and Billboard, the rapper is a West Coast Icon. Similarly, rappers like Schoolboy and Maxo Kream have regarded him as influencing the rap industry. 

3. Kendrick Lamar

Kendrick Lamar is another famous rapper from Compton, California. Lamar is famous for his commercial success in the music industry. 

Kendrick Lamar has gained an estimated sales of 70 Million from his albums. One of the best-selling albums of the artist is called DAMN. It was released in the year 2017. All the songs in this album are certified platinum. 

The original name of Kendrick Lamar is Kendrick Lamar Duckworth. Lamar began his musical journey at a young age. He used to write a lot of rhymes as a teenager. The rapper released his first mixtape in 2003, named Youngest Head Nigga in Charge. Similarly, he also released two more mixtapes called Training Day in 2005 and C4 in 2009. 

 In 2012, Lamar signed with Dr. Dre's label entitled Aftermath Entertainment. Meanwhile, he released his first LP named good kid, m.A.A.d. City. The rapper got nominated for seven Grammy Awards altogether in 2013. To Pimp a Butterfly, which Lamar released in 2015, was a big commercial success. Within a week of its release, the album broke a Spotify record with more than 9.6 million streams, and U.S. President Barack Obama proclaimed the song "How Much a Dollar Cost" as his favorite of the year.

Unexpectedly, in March 2016, Lamar dropped an untitled unmastered album with eight unfinished demos of songs. Lamar released another album in 2017 called DAMN., which was acclaimed by critics and fans and included the popular song "HUMBLE."In addition, in 2018, the rapper released his soundtrack for the film Black Panther. 

Lamar has also performed with stars like Snoop Dogg, Mary J. Blige, and Dr.Dre in the Super Bowl halftime show in the year 2022. Similarly, the rapper also released his fifth studio album called Mr. Morale and the Big Steppers, in the same year. The album contains collaborations with several other artists, including musicians and rappers. 

2. DMX

DMX is the stage name of the popular rapper Earl Simmons. Simmons began his musical journey in the year 1990. 

The estimated record sales of the rapper is 74 Million. Similarly, his best-selling album is called It's Dark, and Hell Is Hot, released in 1998. In 2014, DMX became the fifth best-selling rapper in the United States, with the sales of more than 23 Million Albums. 

Simmons is considered one of the best-selling rappers of all time. He started his career in music when he was only fourteen years old. The rapper has been interested in different rapping styles from a young age. During the initial days, he used to write his own lyrics and perform at the recreation centers nearby his residence.

Rapper DMX photographed by etcpix2
Rapper DMX photographed by etcpix2( Source : instagram )

 Gradually, he began utilizing all of his spare time to write lyrics. At the same time, he also developed connections with some of the popular rappers of his time. The rapper's debut album was entitled It's Dark, and Hell was Hot, released in 1998. The same year, Simmons came up with a brand new album named Flesh Of My Blood, Blood Of My Blood. Similarly, another album named The Great Depression in 2001 became a major hit. 

Rapper Simmons collaborated with well-renowned producers and musicians to release his albums. At the same time, he has also performed in several functions, including the BET Awards. His studio albums include Grand Champ in 2003, Year of The Dog in 2006, Undisputed in 2012, and Exodus in 2021. 

Simmons has made a great impact on the hip-hop industry. He is best known for breaking old records and creating new ones. The mainstream hip-hop industry flourished during the 2000s because of rappers like him. 

1. 2Pac

2Pac is the stage name of another popular hip-hop star and rapper Tupac Amaru Shakur. A native of New York City, Shakur has left a great legacy in rap music. 

2Pac has an estimated sales of 125 Million from his albums. Similarly, the rapper's best-selling album is called Greatest Hits, which was released in 1998. In addition, more than ten of his albums have been credited as Platinum. 

 Shakur was a great admirer of rap music from his early days. Therefore, he wanted to pursue a career in music. He started recording under the stage name MC New York in 1989.

In addition, the rapper also took poem classes from Leila Steinberg, who later helped him organize a concert. 

The rapper debuted by the name 2Pac on Digital Underground. At the same time, his song entitled 'Same Song' became very popular among listeners. In addition, it also got featured on the soundtrack of the film Nothing But Trouble.

The debut album of Shakur was named 2Pacalypse. Artists also praised like Eminem, Game, and Talib Kweli. 

The second album of Shakur was released in the year 1993 under the name Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z. The album became successful and was listed at number 24 on the pop albums chart, the Billboard 200.

Similarly, the third and fourth album of the rapper is called Me Against the World and All Eyes on Me, respectively. The former was released in 1995, and the latter was released in 1996. 

Shakur has also received several awards and nominations for his contribution to the music industry. In 2002, the rapper was awarded the Hip Hop Honors.

In addition, the Grammy Museum opened an exhibition for Shakur in 2015. At the same time, he was also ranked 10th among the top-earning celebrities by Forbes. 

Recent posts