The Ten Best-Selling
Hip Hop Artists Of
All Time. – Part I
Eminem – 227 million units sold – Eminem is the most successful rapper of all time. He is also the 6th best-selling solo music artist of all time, with over 200 million albums sold. Marshall Mathers, alias Eminem, began his rap career at the age of 16 while growing up in Detroit. Dr. Dre, the rap mogul, took over a decade to discover Eminem and sign him to his first recording contract. It was the beginning of an illustrious and unprecedented hip-hop career. Despite his controversial lyrics, Eminem was successful in establishing hip hop as a popular genre.
Drake – 152 million units sold – Aubrey Drake Graham grew up in Toronto, Canada. His debut solo album debuted at number one on the charts. His second album, Take Care, was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Rap Album. An influential figure in modern popular music, Drake has been credited for popularizing singing and R&B sensibilities in hip hop. Drake is ranked as the highest-certified digital singles artist in the United States by the RIAA. Drake has achieved 10 number-one hits on the Billboard Hot 100 and he has the most top 10 singles (54), the most charted songs (258), the most simultaneously charted songs in one week (27), the most Hot 100 debuts in one week (22), and the most continuous time on the Hot 100 (431 weeks.
Kanye West – 140 million units sold – is a rapper, record producer, entrepreneur, and fashion designer. He was born in Atlanta and raised In Chicago. He is widely regarded as one of the most influential hip-hop musicians of all time, as well as one of the greatest musicians of his generation. One of the world’s best-selling music artists, he is frequently lauded as one of hip hop’s greatest artists, with his music among the most acclaimed. Six of West’s albums were included on Rolling Stone‘s 2020 500 Greatest Albums of All Time list with the same publication naming him one of the 100 Greatest Songwriters of All Time. Forbes estimates his net worth at $2 billion as of 2022, making him the wealthiest musician in the world.
Jay-Z – 125 million units sold – Shawn Corey Carter, born in Brooklyn, New York is a rapper, record executive, and media proprietor. He is one of the most influential hip-hop artists in history. He was the CEO of Def Jam Recordings and he has been central to the creative and commercial success of artists including Kanye West, Rihanna, and J. Cole. One of the world’s best-selling music artists, Jay-Z also holds the record for the most number-one albums by a solo artist on the Billboard 200 (14). Also ranked by Billboard and Rolling Stone as one of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time, Jay-Z was the first rapper honored in the Songwriters Hall of Fame, and the first solo living rapper inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Lil Wayne – 110 million units sold – Dwayne Michael Carter Jr. born in New Orleans, is a rapper, songwriter, and record executive. He is commonly regarded as one of the most influential hip-hop artists of his generation and is often cited as one of the greatest rappers of all time. His career began in 1995, at the age of 12, when he was signed by rapper Birdman, joining Cash Money Records. Lil Wayne has also sold over 20 million albums and 70 million digital tracks in the United States, making him one of the world’s best-selling music artists. He has won five Grammy Awards, 11 BET Awards, four Billboard Music Awards, two MTV Video Music Awards, and eight NAACP Image Awards. In 2012, he became the first male artist to surpass Elvis Presley with the most entries on the Billboard Hot 100, with 109 songs. Lil Wayne also currently serves as the chief executive officer (CEO) of his own label, Young Money Entertainment.