When delving into the realm of the finest Louisiana rappers throughout history, you’re immersing yourself in a city with a profound history and an impressive breed of hip-hop acts.
Whether it’s the transformative impact of No Limit Records on the rap landscape in the late ’90s, the dominance of Cash Money in the hip-hop industry during the ’00s and ’10s, or the current reign of NBA YoungBoy as one of the most prominent figures in the game, Louisiana consistently produces remarkable hip-hop talent.
This compilation highlights the paramount rap artists from the city. From NBA YoungBoy to Juvenile, Kevin Gates to Lil Wayne, here are the preeminent 10 Louisiana rappers of all time.
1. Lil Wayne
Lil Wayne, renowned as one of the most iconic rappers of his era, commenced his journey at the age of 11, showcasing his freestyling prowess. His debut album, “Get It How U Live!” in 1997, set the stage for his meteoric rise. The breakthrough came with the release of “Tha Carter” in 2004, solidifying his mainstream success and birthing chart-topping hits like “6 Foot 7 Foot,” “A Milli,” and “Lollipop.” With numerous Grammy Awards, including Best Rap Song for “Lollipop,” Lil Wayne’s impact on the rap scene is indisputable.
2. YoungBoy Never Broke Again
Also known as NBA YoungBoy, he burst onto the scene with the 2015 mixtape “Life Before Fame.” Recognized for his high-energy and aggressive rhymes, YoungBoy has claimed four number-one albums. Hits like “Outside Today” from “Until Death Call My Name” and albums such as “Top” and “The Last Slimeto” have solidified his standing as a prominent figure in contemporary rap.
3. Jay Electronica
Jay Electronica’s 2007 mixtape, “Act I: Eternal Sunshine (The Pledge),” garnered significant attention, leading to the release of the acclaimed single “Exhibit C” in 2009. This track caught the ear of Jay-Z, resulting in Jay Electronica signing with Roc Records. Although with only one full album, “A Written Testimony,” his impact is undeniable, earning a Grammy nomination for Best Rap Album.
4. Boosie Badazz
Formerly known as Lil Boosie, this rapper dominated the 2000s with his distinctive humor and higher-pitched voice. Hits like “Wipe Me Down” and “You Better Believe It” showcased his unique style. Boosie’s reign continued with albums like “Ghetto D” and tracks such as “Make ‘Em Say Uhh!”
5. Master P
A multi-talented figure, Master P not only excelled as a rapper but also as an actor and record producer. Rising to prominence in the ’90s, he gained attention with singles like “Mr. Ice Cream Man” and the album “Ghetto D,” featuring the iconic track “Make ‘Em Say Uhh!” Inducted into the Louisiana Music Hall Of Fame in 2013, Master P’s impact is enduring.
Best known for hits like “Back That Azz Up,” “Slow Motion,” and “U Understand,” Juvenile’s career took off with the 1995 album “Being Myself.” With subsequent releases like “Juve The Great” and “Reality Check,” Juvenile maintained his influence on the rap scene.
Mystikal, with his distinctive gravel-like voice infused with soul and funk, left an indelible mark in the ’90s and early 2000s. Hits such as “Shake Ya Ass,” “Danger (Been So Long),” and “Here I Go” showcased his dynamic style across albums like “Unpredictable” and “Ghetto Fabulous.”
8. Kevin Gates
Kevin Gates, associated with Webbie and Boosie Badazz, gained attention with the mixtape “Luca Brasi 2,” featuring the hit “I Don’t Get Tired.” His 2015 single “2 Phones” marked a significant breakthrough, showcasing Gates’ ability to delve into personal topics like struggles with depression.
9. Fredo Bang
Fredo Bang, known for his raw and passionate rap style, explores themes of street life and hardship. His 2020 debut album, “Most Hated,” includes tracks like “Top” and “Oouuh,” resonating with fans drawn to his harmonizing trap and southern hip-hop fusion.
Hailing from Baton Rouge, TEC emerged as a prominent talent, initially featured on Maine Musik’s “Go Crazy” in 2016. Known for his explicit content detailing criminal behavior, TEC’s YouTube releases gained popularity. Tracks like “Thru The Storm” and “3rd Eye” solidify his position among Louisiana’s rising stars.
Despite a relatively short presence, SSGKobe made a name for himself with SoundCloud releases from 2018. Notable tracks like “Nurse,” “Money Talk Remix,” and “Calabasas” showcase his rising trajectory, with “Calabasas” featuring $NOT on the EP “Ko.”
12. Soulja Slim
Soulja Slim, a prominent figure outside New Orleans, left a lasting legacy despite his tragic murder in 2003. His 1998 debut album, “Give It 2 ‘Em Raw,” and subsequent releases like “The Streets Made Me” and “Years Later” showcased his impact, with his part on Juvenile’s “Slow Motion” becoming a posthumous hit.
Curren$y, influenced by Lil Wayne and Master P, achieved success with albums like “This Ain’t No Mixtape” and “Pilot Talk.” As an independent artist, his financial success surpassed some major-label counterparts. Hits like “Essence Fest” and “3 AM in New Orleans” contribute to his influential career.
Webbie gained recognition through his appearance on Lil Boosie’s “Got To Get It” in 2001. Rising to fame with the hit single “Gimme That” from the album “Savage Life” in 2005, Webbie solidified his presence with tracks like “Swerve,” “Independent,” and “Bad Bitch.”
15. Marcel P. Black
Marcel P. Black distinguishes himself by addressing social justice issues in his rap lyrics, delivering impassioned performances. Songs like “Star And Whisper,” “Boss,” and “Cry Freedom” showcase his commitment to addressing societal challenges and expressing his views with intensity.