Rap Music

Best Female Hip Hop Artists, All-Time

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Top 15 Female Hip Hop Artists of All-Time

From the 1980s to the 2000s

In a male dominated industry there has always been just as talented and gifted, if not more, female hip hop artist. Years and years of being overshadowed, female rappers have finally received most of the recognition that they deserved. What some modern-day hip-hop fans and rap artist do not know are the women in hip hop that opened the doors and paved the way for the current top female artists. Since the 1980s, there have always been a female rap artist that was at the top of the rap game, and the below list will showcase the talent that women in hip hop have provided over the years.

Top 15 Female Hip Hop Artists

1. Missy Elliot. From her 1997 release of Supa Dupa Fly to well into the mid-2000s, Missy Elliot dropped hit after hit while selling millions of records. Over the course of her career, some of her top songs included “The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly)”, “Get Ur Freak On”, “Lose Control”, “Work It” and others. With her record sales and accolades, Missy Elliot is one of the most successful hip hop artists of all-time.  Youtube: Missy Elliot

2. Nicki Minaj. Introduced to the world during the late 2000s and early 2010s. First with Gucci Mane, she was only viewed as a mixtape artist. Following her stint with Gucci Mane, she joined Lil Wayne’s Young Money and would eventually become one of the world’s largest pop stars. Nicki Minaj is still releasing music and is still relevant with high ranking status within the rap game. After millions of records sold and gaining millions of fans worldwide, it can be debated if Nicki Minaj is the greatest female hip hop artist of all-time. Youtube: Nicki Minaj

3. Lil Kim. Queen B is probably the most iconic female hip hop artists of all-time. Lil Kim was way ahead of her time as many of the current top female artists seem to be knowingly or unknowingly adopting her raunchy style. With three platinum selling albums, “Hard Core”, “The Notorious K.I.M.”, and “La Bella Mafia”, Lil Kim easily left her mark in rap history. Youtube: Lil Kim

4. Queen Latifah. Debuting in 1989 with “All Hail the Queen”, Queen Latifah has managed to release two gold albums, Black Reign (1993) and The Dana Owens Album (2004), and a handful of hit songs, like “U.N.I.T.Y.” and “Ladies First”. What is special about Queen Latifah, she was one of the first hip hop artists to transform from music to film and television. Youtube: Queen Latifah

5. Lauryn Hill. Despite releasing only one solo album, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, arguably one of the best albums of all-time, Lauryn Hill is still considered as one of the top female MCs of all-time. Making a name for herself with the rap group The Fugees, she transformed herself into being a well versatile solo artist.  Youtube: Lauryn Hill

6. Salt N Pepa. These three women, Salt, Pepa, and DJ Spinderella, were one of the first hip hop acts that reached pop star level stardom. Known for songs like “Push It”, “Let’s Talk About Sex”, and “Shoop”, all while dominating hip hop throughout the late 1980s and early 1990s. Youtube: Salt N Pepa

7. Roxanne Shante. A true pioneer for women rappers as Roxanne Shante was one of the first female hip hop artists that not only gained notoriety, but also respect for her craft as a hip hop artist during a time when rap was just starting and dominated by men.

8. Eve. While of late, many may recognize Eve as an actress that starred in movies and television series, but the Philly MC, with the help of the Ruff Ryders, was one of the top rap artists during the early 2000s. Debuting in late 1999 with Let There Be Eve…Ruff Ryders’ First Lady, Eve would bless the hip hop world with four albums and hit songs like “Love Is Blind”, “Gangsta Lovin'”, “Let Me Blow Ya Mind”, and multiple others. Youtube: Eve

9. Trina. Da Baddest is also one of the coldest female hip hop artists, and without a doubt the most successful southern female rap artist of all-time. Her introduction to the hip hop community through Trick Daddy’s “Nann N****” single led her to taking control of her career and eventually one of the most respected southern MCs during her time. Youtube: Trina

10. MC Lyte. Easily one of the most respected hip hop artists of the 1990s as consistency led to MC Lyte’s longevity as well admiration for her artistry as one of the best hip hop lyricist of all-time. Youtube: MC Lyte

11. Da Brat. The Chicago MC had the help from an Atlanta producer, Jermaine Dupri, to combined one of the best lyricist of her time with some of the best production her their time, Da Brat was able to established a successful career after releasing her first hit song, “Funkdafied”. Youtube: Da Brat

12. Foxy Brown. Foxy Brown is female hip hop artist that seems to be forgotten when it comes to talking about the top female rappers of all-time. With large presence in hip hop during the late 1990s, Foxy Brown released Ill Na Na, Chyna Doll, and Broken Silence, all platinum and gold selling records, as well being part of the rap group The Firm with Nas and AZ. Youtube: Foxy Brown

13. Mia X. The Mama Drama was able to hold her own as one of the first true southern female hip hop artists and also not being overshadowed while being part of Master P’s No Limit records. Only releasing three albums, with the two Unlady Like and Mama Drama being the ones that reached some sort of success, Mia X will still go down in history as one of the best southern MCs. Youtube: Mia X

14. Gangsta Boo. Similar to Mia X, Gangsta Boo held her own as being one of the top Hypnotize Mind artists and the most standout artist of Three 6 Mafia. Along with being part of Three 6 Mafia, Gangsta Boo was able to have a solo career with the hit song “Where Dem Dollas At”, on the southern classic album Enquiring Minds. Youtube: Gangsta Boo

15. Remy Ma. While a stint in prison shorten her career, Remy Ma was the top female hip hop artists of the early 2000s, as well one of New York’s top rap artists during that time. Her first album was release in 2005, There’s Something About Remy: Based on a True Story, but not until 2016 with the hit song “All The Way Up” did she truly receive the respect that she deserved. Youtube: Remy Ma

*Feature Image Editorial credit: Featureflash Photo Agency / Shutterstock.com

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