Top 10 Rap songs of all time

Rap music has had a significant impact on society in several ways:

1. Cultural Expression: Rap music has provided a platform for marginalized communities, particularly African Americans, to express their experiences, struggles, and aspirations. It has become a powerful form of cultural expression that explores themes of social justice, race, and identity, helping to shape and define modern urban culture.

2. Social Commentary: Rap lyrics often tackle social issues such as systemic racism, police brutality, poverty, and inequality. Through their storytelling and poetic devices, rap artists shed light on pressing societal problems, sparking conversations and raising awareness among listeners.

3. Political Activism: Rap music has been used as a tool for political activism and social change. Artists like Public Enemy, N.W.A, and Kendrick Lamar have used their platform to address political issues, advocate for social justice, and mobilize their audience to take action. Rap music has become a voice for the oppressed and a means of protest against social injustices.

4. Influence on Fashion and Pop Culture: Rap music has heavily influenced fashion trends, especially within the hip-hop community. Artists like Run DMC and Kanye West have shaped popular styles, from streetwear to high-end fashion, creating a substantial impact on the fashion industry. Additionally, rap music’s influence on pop culture can be seen in movies, television shows, advertising, and other mainstream media.

5. Economic Impact: Rap music has established a multibillion-dollar industry, creating employment opportunities for artists, producers, DJs, and other professionals. It has also contributed to economic development through concerts, merchandise sales, endorsements, and the rise of streaming services. This industry has provided a chance for artists from disadvantaged backgrounds to achieve financial success and improve their socioeconomic status.

6. Global Influence: Rap music has transcended borders and become a global phenomenon. Artists like Eminem, Jay-Z, and Lil Nas X have achieved international fame and have fans worldwide. This global reach has fostered cultural exchange, created connections between diverse communities, and opened up opportunities for creating cross-cultural collaborations and understanding.

While rap music has brought about positive social changes, it has also faced criticism for promoting violence, sexism, materialism, and drug use in some of its lyrics. According to uscannenbergmedia.com, “Oftentimes, people allow the stigma surrounding hip-hop to overshadow the power of the music.”

Good, bad, or indifferent rap has surpassed the lifetime expectancy of most critics. Here are the top 10 rap songs of all time in no particular order curated by Jammin 105.7 listeners.

 

  • Sugarhill Gang-Rappers Delight

    Rappers Delight was released September 16, 1979 on Sugarhill Records. Owned by husband and wife Joe and Sylvia Robinson. It’s not surprising the fascinating “lyrics are known all over the world, with the foxy ladies and the pretty girls.” It’s going down in history as the baddest rap song  that ever could be.

  • Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five - The Message

    “The Message” is a song by Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five. It was released as a single by Sugar Hill Records on July 1, 1982, and was later featured on the group’s debut studio album of the same name. The perfect example of  cultural expression.

  • RUN DMC- It's Like That

    “It’s Like That” was released in 1984. Run DMC was my first concert and when they did this song, I knew then I wanted to be a DJ. i went home and begged my mother to by my a set of turntables. At that time she couldn’t afford them so I started djing with two cassette players until I made enough money to purchase my first turntable. DJ Thump was then born!

  • 2-Pac- Dear Mama

    This song was clearly 2 Pac’s way of being transparent and expressive. Telling the story of how his mother was on drugs, and his unfortunate dealings with the law. Another form of social commentary.

  • Queen Latifah - U.N.I.T.Y.

    In November of 1993, Queen Latifah addressed many Sexist issues with this song. A time where rap was dominated mostly by men, Queen Latifah wasn’t afraid to speak up for women. The song focuses on confronting the disrespect that women face in society, addressing issues of street harassment, domestic violence, and slurs against women in rap songs.

  • The West Coast All-Stars. - We're All In The Same Gang

    This song is dear to me due to the fact I grew up in South Central Los Angeles and witnessed the gang violence, and watching how it was destroying our youth. Babies dying at tender ages due to drive by shootings. Former original Los Angeles gang member, Michael Concepcion was shot and paralyzed due to gang violence. According to rockthebells.com by the late 1980s, there were more than 450 street gangs, with over 36,000 members, operating in Los Angeles. Concepcion saw a way to use his clout as a Respected OG (original gangster)  Crip to bring together rap stars to help raise awareness and reach the youth.

  • EMINEM-Lose Yourself

    Eminem wrote the hit song while filming 8 Mile, the 2002 movie which tells the true story of his life. While on the set for the movie, Eminem had a trailer where he’d go to write songs during filming breaks. This song made history by becoming the first rap song to ever win an Oscar.

  • The Notorious B.I.G- Hypnotize

    Biggie Smalls died in 1997, just two weeks before the release of his smash album Life After Death. The album’s lead single “Hypnotize” remains one of Biggie’s biggest hits to this day. Quotable lyrics and one of the most unforgettable videos.

  • Ice Cube- It Was A Good Day

    Telling the true story of a rare “Good Day” in the hood was Ice Cubes intensions. This song was released on Jan. 20, 1992. He mentioned some very familiar things that actually happened on that day. The Lakers actually beat the Super Sonics on that day, it was a clear and smogless day, and Yo! MTV Raps did air that day.

  • Bone Thugs N Harmony- Crossroads

    “Crossroads” is one of the all-time biggest songs commemorating deceased rappers, laying the groundwork for several songs like Master P’s “I Miss My Homies” Eminem’s “Like Toy Soldiers” and  Puff Daddy ft. Faith Evans’ “I’ll Be Missing You.” was dedicated to the late great Eazy-E. 

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