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10 Best Female Rappers Of All Time

10 Best Female Rappers of All Time

The once male-dominated industry has become more diverse. And female rappers are showing that they are just as talented, attract fans, have hits, and can perform just as well as male rappers. One thing is for sure, times are changing. The rise of female hip-hop artists seems to be slowly changing the demographics of hip-hop and the rap scene. While there may not yet be enough respect for their work, the fact is that many female artists are at least as creative as their male counterparts.

There were very few female artists in hip-hop’s early days. But rap is no longer the tightly controlled boy’s club of early ’90s and ’80s. Today’s female rappers are a testament to the fact that women have made great strides since the 1980s. There are many successful female artists in the music industry today. Two of the most successful of all time are Nicki Minaj and Cardi B. These strong women are role models for many female rappers today. From Megan Thee Stallion to City Girls to Sawetie and dozens of other female rappers, male dominance in the music industry is over. The list below shows just how far women have come on the rise.

Here is our top 10 list of the best female rappers of all time:

1. Missy Elliott – Greatest Female Rappers

Missy Elliott became one of the first female superstars of hip-hop. As a rapper/singer, she had several hits such as “Sock It 2 Me“, “Get Ur Freak On” and “Work It“.

Additionally, she is considered one of the most successful songwriters and producers in the hip hop and R’n’B scene. She has written hits for Aaliyah, Christina Aguilera, Destiny’s Child, Monica, Pink, Janet Jackson, Mýa, Mariah Carey, Tweet and Whitney Houston, among others – often together with her producer partner Timbaland, with whom she has been friends since childhood.

In 2019, Missy announced a new album on her Instagram account, which was released the same year, as well as her comeback. In collaboration with Fatman Scoop, she released the remix to Ciara’s Level Up. On August 22, 2019, she released her new EP Iconology. At the same time, she released a music video for one of the songs, “Throw It Back“.

Listen to Missy Elliott on YouTube

2. Nicki Minaj – Greatest Female Rappers

Nicki was five years old when her family moved from Trinidad and Tobago, Trinidad and Tobago, to Queens (New York). She was raised by a drug-addict father and spent most of her childhood fantasizing about how she could escape this chaotic life.

She began her career as a backup vocalist for aspiring rappers in New York City.

Minaj’s mixtapes “Playtime Is Over” (2007) and ” SuckaFree” (2008) created a lot of buzz. She then signed to Young Money Entertainment, in 2009 and released her mixtape “Beam Me Up Scotty” in the same year.

Nicki received six American Music Awards and 11 BET Awards. She also received four MTV Video Music Awards. Four Billboard Music Awards were presented to her. A Billboard Women in Music Rising Star Award was presented to Nicki Minaj. And she was nominated 10 times for the Grammy Award.

Nicki Minaj is undoubtedly one of the top female rappers ever.

Listen to Nicki Minaj on YouTube


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3. Lauryn Hill – Greatest Female Rappers

Lauryn Hill is best-known as a member of Fugees. She also released the solo album “The Miseducation of Lauryn“. Hill was in highschool when she formed a group with the Fugees. The album “Blunted on Reality” (1994), as well as the Grammy Award-winning “The Score” (1996) were released by Hill.

The Miseducation Of Lauryn Hill reached the number one spot on the U.S. Billboard 200. It featured the singles “Doo Wop“, “Everything Is Everything” and “Ex–Factor” (her biggest solo hit in the UK), which were also number one in the United States. The record won five Grammy Awards, including Album and Best New Artist at the 41st Grammy Awards.

Lauryn Hill is a legend. She is one of the greatest female rappers of all time, even though she only released one album “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill”. Hill sang a lot on the album, which wasn’t a complete rap album. But she made sure you listened when she rapped. You had to hit rewind. Hill’s Miseducation and her role in The Fugees was outstanding.

Listen to Lauryn Hill on YouTube

4. Cardi B – Greatest Female Rappers

Because her sister’s name is Hennessy, the New Yorker born Belcalis Almanzar in 1992 was always called Bacardi by her parents. She based her stage name on it, but changed it slightly so that she would not come into conflict with the well-known Cuban rum distillery in publicity matters.

In the TV series “Love & Hip Hop New York” on VH1, she was able to attract attention in front of the camera even before she released her first successful mixtapes and was featured on Shaggy’s single “Boom Boom“.

The single “Bodak Yellow” was released in June 2017. This is the moment when the female rapper from the Caribbean finally made it into history. Cardi B’s Disstrack surpassed all other songs on the hit list, and reached number 1. Only Lauryn Hill was able to achieve a single hit with rap music so high with “Doo Wop”.

Her new album “Invasion of Privacy“, released in April 2018, reached the top of charts immediately. Cardi B is now one of the most popular female rappers.

Cardis B is known for her unique pronunciation. She speaks with a strong Spanish accent that she loves to use effective. Cardi B didn’t need to be involved in the beef debate when Azealia Banks accused her of not being able to spell and use grammar correctly. She wants to be happy with her pregnancy. She just gave in to her Instagram account deletion. Offset is the father of the child.

Cardi B now has more than 75 million followers on Instagram. Cardi B is now the most followed female rapper, after Niki Minaj who has twice as many instagram followers.

Listen to Cardi B on YouTube

5. Lil’ Kim – Greatest Female Rappers

Lil Kim lived much of her teenage life on the streets after being kicked out of her home. She mainly did freestyle rap, inspired by other female rappers like The Lady of Rage and MC Lyte.

She was first discovered in 1994 by The Notorious B.I.G. who invited her to his hip hop group Junior M.A.F.I.A. “Conspiracy” was their first album as a rap group. It earned them two top 20 singles. “Hard Core” (1996) was Lil’ Kim’s debut studio album and was certified double platinum. Her next two albums, “The Notorious K.I.M.” (2001) and “La Bella Mafia” (2003), were also certified platinum.

While Lil Kim might have had some writing assistance at the beginning of her career she has a unique talent in being able to rap those lyrics. Her unique flow and delivery are still a role model for many female rappers today.

You can see Biggie rapping Lil Kim’s song ‘Queen B***h’ in this YouTube video. He made the “reference track” to show Lil Kim how to flow these lyrics.

Listen to Lil’ Kim on YouTube


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6. Foxy Brown – Greatest Female Rappers

After being signed to Def Jam Records, Foxy Brown released her debut album “Ill Na Na” in 1996, followed by “Chyna Doll” in 1999 and the Grammy-nominated album “Broken Silence” in 2001.

Before her debut album “Ill Na Na” was released, Foxy Brown had already made several guest appearances on “I Shot Ya” (LL Cool J) and “Ain’t No…” (Jay-Z), among others. The album sold 1.5 million copies. From it also comes her biggest hit “I’ll Be“, which she recorded with Jay-Z.

Despite its commercial success, the record is one of the most controversial music albums in US music history. Critics accused the then only 18-year-old of endangering youth through her harsh and sometimes obscene lyrics. But it was especially her rough, unyielding nature and brash disregard for the role of the average teenager that made Foxy a beloved figure in ’90s hip-hop.

Listen to Foxy Brown on YouTube

7. Iggy Azalea – Greatest Female Rappers

Amethyst Amelia Kelly was born in Sydney in 1990. Still in her Australian home of Mullumbimby, the then 12-year-old discovers her love of rap. She plasters her room with Tupac photos and becomes his fanatical fan after hearing a recording of “Baby Don’t Cry” at a friend’s house. When her father, through a teacher at school, slipped her a note letting her know that he was going to disappear for a few years, she withdrew, often sad, depressed and dreaming of emigrating to the United States. Which she eventually did.

At 16, she pretends to go on vacation, drops out of school and flies to Miami. From there, she makes her way via Atlanta to Los Angeles. The clips for “Pu$$y” and “My World” spread via YouTube. With a broad Southern accent, which she acquired after entering the country, she tells her own story of the American dream in singles like “Work“.

In 2011 she releases the first mixtape “Ignorant Art“. Then in 2014 the first album “The New Classic” is released on the label Grand Hustle Records. The re-release Reclassified, extended by five tracks, appears seven months later. With 13.8 million followers on Instagram, Iggy is clearly one of the most popular female rappers.

Listen to Iggy Azalea on YouTube

8. Salt-N-Pepa – Greatest Female Rappers

The group Salt-N-Pepa was formed in 1985, and it was one of the first female Rap groups ever.

“Let’s Talk About Sex”, their 1990 superhit, makes a clear statement in this regard.

A remix, released in 1987 as “Push It“, then becomes the breakthrough. Push It earns Salt-N-Pepa a Grammy nomination and gives the album Platinum.

They won the Grammy Award for Best Rap Performance By a Duo/Group in 1995.

Listen to Salt-N-Pepa on YouTube

9. Queen Latifah – Greatest Female Rappers

Queen Latifah (born Dana Owens) is one of the first rap artists, male or female, to turn her musical career into a permanent position in Hollywood.

All Hail the Queen“, her debut album in 1989, was a massive success. It also received a Grammy nomination as Best Rap Performance. The single “Fly Girl” hit the British charts during the summer 1991. It was her most popular title, even though it was not placed in the top regions.

Her second album “Nature of Sista” was released 1991, and her third album “Black Reign” 1993. It featured the single ” U.N.I.T.Y.“, which won her a Grammy Award. It was also a hit on the Billboard Hot 100.

In 1993 she founded her own record company: Flavor Unit Records. On her record “Dana Owens Album” (2004) she turns to jazz. This album contains largely sixties-style arrangements, including an arrangement of the folk classic California Dreaming by The Mamas and the Papas.

Listen to Queen Latifah on YouTube

10. M.I.A. – Greatest Female Rappers

Her real name Mathangi “Maya” Arulpragasam is not necessarily memorable. But as M.I.A., an abbreviation for “Missing in Action,” the British rapper of Tamil descent will surely be remembered for a long time to come. In the early 1980s, M.I.A. and her parents were forced to leave their home country of Sri Lanka. The activities of her father, who founded a militant liberation organization during the civil war raging there, forced the rest of the family to return to London via India. Here Mathangi attends Central Saint Martins Art School, where her artistic talent is quickly recognized. She is commissioned to design the album cover of the band Elastica and to document their subsequent tour on film.

The tight network of the British artist scene then gets M.I.A. a deal with the label XL Recordings. The singles “Sunshowers” and “Galang” already herald the success of the later albums through their high chart positions. In 2005 and 2007 the first two albums named after Mathangi’s parents, Arular and Kala, are released. “Paper Planes” becomes an international superhit, selling over 3 million copies. The song sparks controversy. Only after the removal of shots and the revision of individual passages of the lyrics, the song was played by MTV.

But as M.I.A. already announces in Paper Planes: “I have more records than the KGB”. M.I.A. remains rebellious. She can’t even be stopped in her political activism by entry bans.

After the birth of her son Ikhyd in 2009, she releases her third album “Maya” in 2010 and tours the world several times as a headliner. 2013 sees the release of the fourth album “Matangi“, 2016 “AIM“. Thematically, M.I.A. is always on the cutting edge of political events and clearly sends socially critical and political messages.

Borders” (2016) is a video about people fleeing across the Mediterranean, “Bad Girls” (2013) an explosive tour de force by the rapper through a desert in the Middle East, which was read as M.I.A.’s plea against the ban on women driving in Saudi Arabia.

Not everyone is pleased with her clear messages. M.I.A. polarizes, but has 969,000 loyal Instagram followers.

Listen to M.I.A. on YouTube


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