6. Andre 3000
When Andre 3k is on the mic, the result is something like poetry. The southern legend and one half of Outkast shook up the sound of the south alongside Big Boi in the mid 90s. When the duo dropped their debut, Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik in ’94 they were quick to blow up peoples radars for up-and-coming rappers. The album ended up going platinum by the end of the year.
The way that Andre flows is reminiscent of a stream of consciousness, painting pictures and drawing scenes. The south wouldn’t be the same without Outkast, and Andre pioneered that influence. With three undeniable classic albums: Outkast: ATLiens, Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik, and Stankonia, and a growing catalog of amazing features, Andre easily earns spot number 6.
Simply put, there’s no one that does it like Marshall Mathers. Coming from one of the poorest neighbourhoods in Detroit, Em rose from adversity, struggling to be taken seriously despite his race. What defined Slim was not only his villainous, explicit style, but his incredible lyrical dexterity. Ask any rapper that considers themselves a lyricist and Eminem is one of their biggest inspirations.
What sets Em apart is his huge level of mass appeal. At the height of his popularity he had two 10x diamond certified albums with The Marshall Mathers LP and The Eminem Show. Few rappers have gained such insane mainstream popularity without compromising their technical ability. Eminem stays lyrically top tier and has such a unique persona that he can’t be passed up in any top five.