10 Best Cleveland Rappers of All Time

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Aight, listen up fam, we about to take a stroll down memory lane, hitting up the mean streets of Cleveland.

This city, known for its Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, has also birthed some major players in the rap game.

Cleveland got its own flavor, its own beat, and the cats who rose up from here, they ain’t just making noise, they’re making history.

From the old school to the new school, from gritty street anthems to introspective melodies, Cleveland rappers have contributed to the culture in a big way.

So here it is, y’all, the top dogs from the 216, from the Land.

10. Ray Jr.

Ray Jr. is a homegrown talent known for his hearty, in-your-face rapping style.

Born and raised in East Cleveland, Ray Jr. captures the essence of the city in his music, presenting tales of street life with a raw edge.

His major breakthrough came in 2012 with the hit “Sloppy”, featuring Machine Gun Kelly and introducing him to a broader audience.

Ray Jr.’s strength lies in his authenticity; he remains rooted in the realities of Cleveland’s streets, which adds a visceral quality to his music.

His style resonates with those who appreciate rap’s grittier side, making him a significant figure in the Cleveland rap scene.

9. Dub-O

Dub-O, a member of the EST 19XX collective spearheaded by Machine Gun Kelly, has made considerable strides in the Cleveland rap scene.

His mixtapes “Do I Know You?” and “Old Lights New Lights” showcase his blend of hard-hitting beats and thoughtful, introspective lyrics.

Dub-O’s lyricism, filled with vivid storytelling, draws from his experiences growing up in Cleveland, painting a picture of life in the city that resonates with many.

His distinctive style and flair for delivering relatable verses have helped him establish a dedicated fanbase in Cleveland and beyond.

8. Chip Tha Ripper

Known for his smooth flow and laid-back style, Chip Tha Ripper, now known as King Chip, has been a staple of the Cleveland rap scene for years.

His breakout mixtape “Money”, launched in 2007, introduced his relaxed, easygoing style that quickly gained a dedicated following.

Collaborating with artists like Kid Cudi and Curren$y has helped him broaden his reach beyond Cleveland.

King Chip’s music often explores the themes of hustling and striving for success, which aligns with his own career trajectory.

7. Ripp Flamez

Ripp Flamez is a relatively new face in the Cleveland rap scene, but he’s already making waves.

His melodic style of rap, blending elements of hip-hop and R&B, sets him apart from many of his peers.

His mixtape “DayOne Forever” put him on the map, establishing him as one of Cleveland’s emerging artists to watch.

Ripp Flamez’s music often reflects on his experiences and struggles, and his emotional honesty adds a layer of depth that distinguishes him from other artists in the Cleveland rap scene.

6. Pooh Gutta

Pooh Gutta has been a consistent presence in the Cleveland hip-hop scene for years.

Known for his aggressive style and energetic performances, Pooh Gutta’s music encapsulates the spirit of the streets of Cleveland.

His mixtapes, such as “East St Cleveough” and “Shark Season”, have solidified his reputation as a force to be reckoned with in the city’s rap scene.

Pooh Gutta’s unique style and unapologetic lyricism have earned him a dedicated fanbase that appreciates his no-holds-barred approach to rap.

5. Q Money

Q Money made his entry into the rap game with a distinct style, combining gritty narratives with a distinct sense of melody and rhythm.

His 2017 single “Work” propelled him to the national stage, capturing listeners with its infectious energy.

His lyrics, often depicting his journey from the streets of Cleveland to stardom, resonate with many.

Despite facing legal troubles, his impact on Cleveland’s rap scene cannot be understated.

His unique style and undeniable charisma have left an indelible mark on the city’s hip-hop landscape.

4. MGK (Machine Gun Kelly)

Machine Gun Kelly burst onto the rap scene with his rapid-fire flow and explosive performances, living up to his stage name.

His debut album “Lace Up” charted on the Billboard 200, cementing his status in the industry.

Notably, MGK’s style has evolved over the years, delving into the realms of rock and pop-punk.

However, his contributions to the Cleveland rap scene remain significant.

His narrative of rising from the streets to stardom resonates with many in the city, making him an influential figure in Cleveland’s hip-hop history.

3. Kid Cudi

Kid Cudi is a pioneer in the music world, often credited for his influence on the modern generation of hip-hop artists.

His innovative blend of rap, rock, and electronic music on his debut album “Man on the Moon: The End of Day” ushered in a new era of genre-blurring sounds.

Throughout his career, Cudi has been open about mental health struggles, introducing these topics into mainstream rap.

His introspective lyricism and unique soundscapes set him apart in the music industry, marking him as one of Cleveland’s most influential exports.

2. Bizzy Bone

As a member of the influential rap group Bone Thugs-n-Harmony, Bizzy Bone made significant contributions to the Cleveland rap scene and the rap industry as a whole.

Known for his rapid-fire delivery and his harmonizing rap style, Bizzy Bone helped to put Cleveland on the map in the 1990s.

His solo career continued to solidify his status as an influential figure in the industry, producing albums that showcased his distinct style and lyrical prowess.

His contributions to hip-hop have made him a legendary figure in Cleveland’s music history.

1. Bone Thugs-N-Harmony

Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, composed of rappers Bizzy Bone, Wish Bone, Layzie Bone, Krayzie Bone, and Flesh-n-Bone, is a legendary hip-hop group hailing from Cleveland.

Their unique blend of melodic harmonies and rapid-fire rap helped them break into the mainstream, especially with their hit single “Tha Crossroads,” which won a Grammy.

Their influence on the rap industry is significant, popularizing the fast-paced, melodic style of rap that many artists adopt today.

Their journey from Cleveland to international fame is inspirational, solidifying them as the most influential rap act from the city.

And there you have it, fam! These Cleveland lyricists have shown that the heartland can spit fire just as fierce as any coast.

They’ve etched their names in the rap game, putting Cleveland on the map.

But remember, hip-hop ain’t just about who’s the dopest on the mic; it’s about storytelling, expressing pain, joy, the highs, the lows.

It’s about speaking truth to power.

These Cleveland rappers done that and more, proving you can come up from anywhere, even a city often overlooked in the rap world.

So next time you’re bumping that playlist, don’t forget about the 216, where legends are born and the beat never stops.

Until the next rhyme, keep it 100. Peace!