List of the Baddest African Rappers

RAP also called hip-hop music stands for Rhythm and Poetry. It was developed in the early 1970s by urban blacks and disc jockeys. This music usually has an insistent recurring beat pattern combined by instrumentals, which provides a counterpoint for fast rhyming by the musician cum rapper. Although rap music is not very popular in Africa, the following top ten baddest African rappers have risen to break the myth that rap music is only a preserve of the whites and black Americans.

They have proved that this genre of music not only pays, but Africans can listen and relate with the music at ease just like any other type of music that they are used to.The following list brings to our knowledge some of the best African rappers, the countries they hail from and some of their musical accomplishments in the rap industry.

Top Ten Baddest African Rappers

Name of the RapperNationality
Kaligraph JonesKenyan
AKASouth African
M.I AbagaNigerian
L-TidoSouth African
TumiSouth African
ProVerbSouth African
Mode 9Nigerian

Kaligraph Jones, Kenyan

Kaligraph Jones is not only known for his versatility, but also for his stage presence and distinct rhythmic flow of his music. His delivery of punch lines is second to none. The most inspiring and amazing thing about this rap musician’s career is that he made his entry at just fourteen years of age and from then onwards, there has been no turning back.

His star has been shining brighter and brighter as a result of his musical talent. His huge fan base is enough to tell you that he is among the best African rappers that we have on the continent. Kaligraph’s music is heavily influenced by societal issues, his day to day experiences and has a touch of reggae music in it. He is probably the most talked about Kenyan rapper right now.

AKA, South African

baddest African rappers
Image not of AKA

Having curtain raised for rap music maestros such as Kanye West, 2 Chainz, Big Sean, Kendrick Lamar and Rick Ross among others during their performances in South Africa, AKA is not only a great force to reckon with, but also one of Africa’s best rappers.

He has managed to bag awards such as the Best Street Urban Music Album and the Male Artist of the Year award at the 18th South African Music Awards which is considered an equivalent of the Grammy Awards in South Africa. His consistency and fresh talent set him apart from the rest of his competitors in the rap industry.

M.I Abaga, Nigerian

With quite a handful of nominations and awards to his name, M.I is certainly deserving of all the fame that has accrued to him since he joined the entertainment industry. His rapping style, talent, and versatility is quite the envy of many competitors in the same field as he, as well as upcoming rappers.

He rose to fame back in 2006 after releasing the single, ‘Crowd Mentality’, which was greatly received by lovers of rap music in the continent. He has managed to bag many awards including the coveted MTV Africa Music Awards among many others. This young Nigerian rapper has so much going on for himself, not to mention that he is also a music executive at the renowned Chocolate City.

Shukid, Kenyan

Kenyan hip hop artist has managed to secure a spot for himself among popular African rappers due to his immense talent. Musical observers and fans alike, are of the opinion that Shukid is headed towards being one of the greatest lyricists of Africa’s new age rap music.

He is the self-proclaimed king of rap music in the East African region. We do not beg to differ, as his musical prowess speaks for itself.

L-Tido, South African

This South African hip hop recording artist has managed to get famous just as an independent artist, something very few artists manage to achieve. His style and diversity has managed to acquire him a huge fan base and bag him awards, such as the Best Newcomer in Africa award at the Channel O Music Video Awards in 2010.

Tumi, South African

Tumi is not only a great hip-hop artist but was also the lead vocalist of the famous band, Tumi and the Volume that was officially disbanded in late 2012. Currently, he works alongside the popular French hip-hop band known as Chinese Man.

M.anifest, Ghanaian

M.anifest is an award-winning Ghanaian hip-hop artist cum songwriter. He is talented immensely and as a result, he is considered as one of Africa’s best rappers. What makes him stand out from the rest of his competitors is his consistency, which has seen him release track after track. His fans have never experienced a longing for his music as he keeps them satisfied.

His popularity and hard work has earned him recognition from the BBC’s arts program, ‘The Strand’, which mentioned him among the four acts to look out for back in 2012.

Sarkodie, Ghanaian

When it comes to rap musicians, Ghanaian hip-hop artist is in a class of his own. What makes him more unique is the fact that he raps not only in fluent English but also in his native language Twi. His music is loved and enjoyed not only across the African continent but also across the globe.

Sarkodie is considered to be among the best African rappers, and as a result, he has earned himself numerous awards such as the coveted Best International Act: African category at the 2012 BET (Black Entertainment Television) Awards.

ProVerb, South African

baddest African rappers
Image not of ProVerb

Iconic is the adjective that perfectly describes this South African rap music sensation ProVerb. He is one of the best and most talented hip-hop musicians in South Africa as well as Africa. He is famed for his debut album called Book of Proverbs released back in 2005.

Apart from rapping, he hosts the South African hip-hop show known as Head Rush and has and hosts his own radio show as well.

Mode 9, Nigerian

Mode 9 is the crème de la crème of African best rappers. He is known for his excellent wordplay and his lyricism that is second to none. He has an enviable stage presence and his energy is quite electrifying.

Mode 9 has been the roll winner on the coveted Headies Lyricist seven times, showing that his musical prowess is quite unchallengeable. He has 6 studio albums to his name and several popular singles.


Being considered among the best rappers among other rappers requires a lot of things such as a good flow to the rhymes, a huge fan base, a flair to the punches and last but not least, how much one charges per performance, that is, in a club or at a concert.

The aforementioned top ten baddest African rappers have proved to be worth the salt by meeting the said threshold and even surpassing it. They have strived to prove wrong, the myth that rap music is only a preserve of Caucasians and black Americans. Their huge fan base also proves the myth wrong.

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