Now That’s What I Call Music: The Best Hip Hop Albums of All Time is a site that celebrates the best in hip hop music. Featuring reviews, news, and interviews with the genre’s biggest stars.
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The best hip hop albums of all time
Whether you’re a fan of old-school rap or modern hip-hop, there’s no doubt that the genre has produced some absolute classics over the years. But what are the best hip hop albums of all time?
From N.W.A’s Straight Outta Compton to Kendrick Lamar’s DAMN., there are so many amazing hip hop albums out there it’s hard to know where to start. So, we’ve put together a list of what we think are the greatest hip hop albums ever made.
Do you agree with our choices? Let us know in the comments below!
1) N.W.A – Straight Outta Compton (1988)
2) Public Enemy – It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back (1988)
3) Beastie Boys – Paul’s Boutique (1989)
4) De La Soul – 3 Feet High and Rising (1989)
5) A Tribe Called Quest – The Low End Theory (1991)
6) 2Pac – All Eyez on Me (1996)
7). Lauryn Hill – The Miseducation Of Lauryn Hill (1998)
8). Eminem – The Marshall Mathers LP (2000)
9). Outkast – Stankonia (2000)
10). Jay-Z – The Blueprint (2001)
11). Kendrick Lamar – good kid, m.A.A.d city (2012
The greatest hip hop albums of all time
Hip hop lovers rejoice! We have compiled a list of what we believe to be the greatest hip hop albums of all time. This list is sure to get you excited and maybe even inspire you to create your own list. From the old school to the new school, there is something for everyone on this list.
1) The Notorious B.I.G.- Ready to Die
2) 2Pac- All Eyez On Me
3) Nas- Illmatic
4) Jay Z- Reasonable Doubt
5) Outkast- ATLiens
6) Lauryn Hill- The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill
7) Kendrick Lamar- good kid, mAAd city
8) Run DMC- Raising Hell
9) Beastie Boys- Licensed to Ill
10) Public Enemy- It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back
The most influential hip hop albums of all time
In a genre that is often derided for being style over substance, these are the albums that changed the game and made an indelible mark on hip hop culture. From classics like The Chronic to modern masterpieces like To Pimp a Butterfly, these are the most influential hip hop albums of all time.
-The Chronic by Dr. Dre (1992)
-All Eyez On Me by 2Pac (1996)
-The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill by Lauryn Hill (1998)
-The Marshall Mathers LP by Eminem (2000)
-The Blueprint by Jay Z (2001)
-The College Dropout by Kanye West (2004)
-Late Registration by Kanye West (2005)
-Get Rich or Die Tryin’ by 50 Cent (2003)
-Animal Ambition by 50 Cent (2014)
The most important hip hop albums of all time
In order to compile this list, we took a hard look at the last four decades of hip hop music and scoured the globe for the albums that defined the genre. We considered innovation, artistic growth, social importance, and commercial success when making our decisions. This is not a list of the best-selling hip hop albums of all time — it’s a list of the most important hip hop albums of all time.
This is an expanded heading that provides more information about the topic.
The most groundbreaking hip hop albums of all time
There are few genres of music more influential than hip hop. Emerging in the 1970s in the South Bronx, hip hop quickly spread across the globe, dominating the charts and influencing everything from fashion to language.
Over the past four decades, hip hop has produced some truly groundbreaking albums. Here are just a few of the most important ones.
-The Sugarhill Gang – Rapper’s Delight (1979)
-Run-D.M.C. – Run-D.M.C. (1984)
-Public Enemy – It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back (1988)
-NWA – Straight Outta Compton (1988)
-A Tribe Called Quest – The Low End Theory (1991)
-Beastie Boys – Check Your Head (1992)
-Notorious B.I.G. – Ready to Die (1994)
-Outkast – Aquemini (1998)
-Eminem – The Marshal Mathers LP (2000)
-Kanye West – The College Dropout (2004)
The most innovative hip hop albums of all time
Innovation is key in any genre of music, but it seems to be especially important in hip hop. In a genre that is often accused of being repetitive and one-dimensional, the onus is on artists to keep things fresh. And while not all innovative albums are commercial successes, they all have one thing in common: they push the genre forward. Here are 10 of the most innovative hip hop albums of all time.
1) The Notorious B.I.G., Ready to Die (1994)
Biggie’s debut album was a game-changer for hip hop. Not only was it a commercial success, selling over four million copies, but it was also a critical darling, receiving rave reviews from music critics. And with good reason: Ready to Die is a masterpiece, showcasing Biggie’s incredible storytelling ability and gift for crafting unforgettable hooks. It’s an album that set the standard for what a hip hop album could be, and it’s still just as fresh and relevant today as it was 25 years ago.
2) Outkast, ATLiens (1996)
Outkast’s second album is often hailed as one of the best hip hop albums of all time, and with good reason. ATLiens is a sprawling, ambitious album that finds Andre 3000 and Big Boi experimenting with new sounds and styles. From the spacey title track to the jazzy “Elevators (Me & You),” ATLiens is an album that hits on all cylinders, cementing Outkast’s place as one of the most innovative groups in hip hop history.
3) A Tribe Called Quest, The Low End Theory (1991)
A Tribe Called Quest’s second album is often cited as one of the greatest hip hop albums ever made, and it’s easy to see why. The Low End Theory is an intricately crafted work of art that features some of the group’s most memorable tracks, like “Excursions” and “Jazz (We’ve Got).” With its complex rhyme schemes and jazz-influenced production, The Low End Theory expanded the sonic palette of what a hip hop album could be—and ushered in a new era of conscious rap in the process.
4) Eminem, The Marshall Mathers LP (2000)
Eminem’s third studio album was his breakout moment, cementing him as one of the biggest names in music— Period . The Marshall Mathers LP is an unapologetic look at Eminem’s life, told through some of his most controversial tracks ever (“Kim,” “Stan”). It’s an album that isn’t afraid to push boundaries or offend—and it changed the face of mainstream rap forever.
5) Kendrick Lamar, good kid mAAd city (2012) Kendrick Lamar – good kid mAAd city (Full Album Stream): Watch Now! – YouTube
Kendrick Lamar’s major label debut is one of the most critically acclaimed albums in recent memory—and for good reason. good kid mAAd city is a masterful work of art that finds Kendrick telling his own personal story against a backdrop of west coast gangsta rap. It’s an emotionally charged album that explores themes like fatherhood, racism, and Rincon justice system head-on—and it confirms Kendrick as one of the most talented MCs alive today .
The most influential artists in hip hop
In the world of hip hop, there are a few artists who stand out above the rest as the most influential of all time. These artists have changed the landscape of music, and their influence can still be felt today. Here are the most influential artists in hip hop.
1. Tupac Shakur
2. The Notorious B.I.G.
The most important moments in hip hop history
Hip hop music began in the late 1970s in New York City. Afrika Bambaataa, a DJ from the Bronx, is credited with first using the term “hip hop” to describe the style of music. Hip hop is a combination of rap music, which is poetry or rhyming spoken word set to a beat, and DJs who create new beats by mixing tracks. Hip hop emerged from the African American community, but has since become popular with people of all cultures and races.
The most important moments in hip hop history include:
-The release of “Rapper’s Delight” by The Sugarhill Gang in 1979. This song is credited with being the first rap song to gain mainstream popularity.
-The release of “The Message” by Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five in 1982. This song contains a message about the harsh realities of life in inner city neighborhoods.
-The founding of Def Jam Recordings by Russell Simmons and Rick Rubin in 1984. Def Jam would go on to sign some of the biggest names in hip hop, including Beastie Boys, Public Enemy, and LL Cool J.
-The release of “Walk this Way” by Run DMC and Aerosmith in 1986. This song helped to break down barriers between different genres of music and paved the way for further collaboration between rap artists and other musicians.
The greatest hip hop songs of all time
In no particular order, here are the greatest hip hop songs of all time:
1) “N.Y. State of Mind” by Nas
2) “The World is Yours” by Nas
3) “I Used to Love H.E.R.” by Common
4) “The Light” by Common
5) “Juicy” by The Notorious B.I.G.
6) “Big Poppa” by The Notorious B.I.G.
7) “Warning” by Mobb Deep
8) “Shook Ones Pt. II” by Mobb Deep
9) “Criminal Minded” by Boogie Down Productions
10) “South Bronx” by Boogie Down Productions
The most influential hip hop albums of the 21st century
The 21st century has been a sterling one for hip hop music, with the genre continuing to evolve and mutate while retaining its essential core. From trap to mumble rap, there’s been no shortage of great music to soundtrack our lives. Here are 20 of the most influential hip hop albums of the 21st century.
The Come Up – J Cole (2011)
Cole World: The Sideline Story – J Cole (2011)
Watch The Throne – Jay Z & Kanye West (2011)
Yeezus – Kanye West (2013)
My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy – Kanye West (2010)
To Pimp A Butterfly – Kendrick Lamar (2015)
DAMN. – Kendrick Lamar (2017)
good kid, m.A.A.d city – Kendrick Lamar (2012)
The Marshall Mathers LP2 – Eminem (2013)
The Low End Theory – A Tribe Called Quest (1991)
We got it from Here… Thank You 4 Your service – A Tribe Called Quest (2016)
Run the Jewels 3 – Run the Jewels (2016)
RTJ2 – Run the Jewels (2014)
Blank Face LP – Schoolboy Q (2016)
Oxymoron – Schoolboy Q (2014)
Because the Internet – Childish Gambino (2013