The 10 MCs Who Will Take Over Hip-Hop In The 2020s

As a new year is upon us, there is a lot of music to look forward to in the 2020s. In Hip-Hop, a new class appears to be forming. A legendary generation of artists and MCs came to fruition during the early 2010s, including Kendrick Lamar, Drake, J. Cole, Travis Scott, Rapsody, Big K.R.I.T., Meek Mill, Big Sean Wale, Nipsey Hussle, Joey Bada$$, Chance The Rapper, and many others. However, as we grow comfortable in a new decade, other artists distinguish themselves with style and substance all their own. That is evident with examples this week, as there is new music from Cordae, J.I.D., and Kota The Friend on the Ambrosia For Heads playlist (also embedded at the bottom of the article).

On episode #73 of the What’s The Headline podcast (audio embedded below), the AFH team establishes a list of 10 names that we believe will lead the school of MCs. While this includes artists who have put in years of work, it examines the definite steps taken in recent years to cement this status. The list focuses on purebred Hip-Hop—not Melodic Rap, which has become a subgenre (including Grammy categories) in recent years. The criteria are based on: Body Of Work (multiple impactful projects), Commercial Success, Acclaim/Recognition, and perhaps most importantly, Potential For Longevity.

No MC Has Been Better Than Benny The Butcher The Last 2 Years

Many names are discussed at length. Grammy-winners, record-breakers, and multi-platinum artists are weighed alongside some important voices of the DIY and independent scene. Artists with big-name endorsements and sponsorships are compared with others who have deliberately avoided DSPs or relegated aspects of their music to cult followings.

The Best Rappers Of The 2020s Decade (listed alphabetically):

Benny The Butcher
Conway The Machine
Isaiah Rashad
Jack Harlow
Megan Thee Stallion
Westside Gunn
Your Old Droog

As Hip-Hop never stops, time will tell how this list holds up.

Cordae Freestyles Over Biggie’s Beat & Blacks Out

The time codes for episode #73 of the What’s The Headline podcast:

0:00 Intro
5:02 There is a new generation of MCs emerging to take over the 2020s
9:20 The top MCs of the 2010s
12:43 The differences between traditional Rap and melodic Rap
17:30 The criteria for choosing the top MCs of the 2020s
18:10 The best rappers of the 2020s
18:14 J.I.D.
23:46 Jack Harlow
27:32 Lute
31:57 Mach-Hommy
36:10 Russ
42:37 Your Old Droog
45:01 Nick Grant
46:20 Boldy James
48:49 Cordae
51:53: Megan Thee Stallion
54:49 Cardi B
58:02 Reason
1:00:18 Isaiah Rashad
1:04:05 Why Da Baby and Lil Baby aren’t being considered
1:06:48 Westside Gunn, Conway The Machine and Benny The Butcher (Griselda)
1:10:35 Westside Boogie
1:11:40 Buddy
1:13:23 Saba
1:14:36 The Top 10 MCs of the Now School
1:18:18 Kool Moe Dee graded the top MCs of the 80s and 90s in a resurfaced report card
1:26:49 Pete Rock says he has not been paid for his work on Illmatic; who’s to blame?
1:32:25 Kanye West spills the details about his divorce on a new song with The Game
1:34:50 Tupac and MC Ren affiliate CPO Boss Hogg has passed away
1:36:40 New music of the week from Camp Lo, Nicholas Craven & Evidence, Gunna, Saba & Krayzie Bone, and Cainaan & Masta Ace

J.I.D. Reminds He’s One Of The Best MCs Of His Generation

#BonusBeat: The AFH playlist, featuring new music from Cordae, J.I.D., Benny, Westside Gunn, Conway, Lute, Isaiah Rashad, and others: