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20 Most Popular Jamaican Rappers You Should KNOW in 2023!

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For many of us, when we hear about Jamaica, the first thing that comes to our minds is not exactly hip-hop/rap music. 

By the mention of Jamaica, by default, we might start visualizing reggae music, Bob Marley, beautiful beaches, Rastafarianism, coconuts, mangos, the black, green, and gold flag, and maybe some cannabis—but definitely not a hip-hop MC with a microphone and an oversized polo. 

But as much as we might be tempted to think or even believe that this is all there is to Jamaica, it is nothing but a “single story” about this beautiful, vibrant and dynamic country. Just like there is hip-hop/rap in America and Europe, there is also hip-hop/rap in Jamaica. 

As a matter of fact, a Jamaican DJ in the person of DJ Kool Herc played a very vital role in the birthing of the hip-hop style of music in America. To show how important his role was, DJ Kool Herc is popularly referred to as the “Father of Hip-Hop” or “Founder of Hip-Hop.”

That being said, we will not be very far from the truth if we say that Jamaica as a nation is one of the mother countries that birthed hip-hop music. Considering the cultural vibrance and dynamics of Jamaica, it only makes sense that it played this very important role. 

This article is not about the history of hip-hop but about the 20 most popular Jamaican rappers you should know about or probably start listening to. This is also to remind you of the relevance and massive impact of Jamaica on the hip-hop genre. 

About the Jamaican Rap Scene

Hip-hop started gaining popularity in Jamaica in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Influenced by artists like DJ Kool Herc and Afrika Bambaataa from New York, Jamaican artists began experimenting with new music-making methods, incorporating rap over reggae beats.

Some notable Jamaican rap artists include Sean Paul, Shaggy, Canibus, Heavy D, Notorious BIG, and Sean Kingston. These artists, either of Jamaican descent or with strong Jamaican influences, have significantly contributed to the global hip-hop scene.

Jamaican rap incorporates elements from various musical genres, including reggae, dancehall, and electronic music. It blends the rhythmic patterns of Jamaican music with rap flows and beats, creating a unique sonic experience. 

The sound of Jamaican rap continues to evolve, with artists incorporating elements of trap, Afrobeat, and other global hip-hop influences. Thematically, Jamaican rappers often rap about social and cultural issues, personal experiences, street life, partying, and love. They touch on poverty, inequality, violence, resilience, and the Jamaican identity.

The future of rap in Jamaica looks promising as the scene continues to grow and gain recognition. With the influence of global trends and the unique Jamaican sound, artists are likely to experiment with new styles and push the boundaries of the genre.

Overall, the Jamaican rap scene has significantly contributed to the global hip-hop culture. Jamaican artists have gained international recognition; even American hip-hop founders come from these origins. 

The fusion of Jamaican musical elements with rap has influenced the sound of hip-hop globally, inspiring artists and producers to incorporate reggae-infused beats and dancehall vibes into their music. 

When it comes to live music, Jamaican music greatly influenced rap and hip-hop. The Jamaican sound system culture shaped the development of rap, with DJs and sound systems from Jamaica being highly respected. 

Acmatic is a notable Jamaican rap group. Jamaican rappers like Biggie Smalls and Busta Rhymes emerged from New York City’s Jamaican hip-hop scene. Reggae Sumfest is a famous Jamaican music festival that features reggae, dancehall, and rap/hip-hop acts. 

While Jamaican music significantly influences rap and hip-hop, it still maintains its distinct characteristics and origins. Jamaican music continues to impact global music beyond its borders.

20 Most Popular Jamaican Rappers

1. Biggie Smalls (The Notorious B.I.G.)

Biggie Smalls, also known as The Notorious B.I.G., was born Christopher George Latore Wallace on May 21, 1972, in New York City, USA, and tragically passed away on March 9, 1997, in Los Angeles at 24.

Biggie Smalls had Jamaican roots through his mother, Violetta Wallace. He lived in Brooklyn with his Jamaican mother and had a strong connection to his heritage. He frequently visited Jamaica during his childhood.

Biggie Smalls performed at the Sting concert in JamWorld, Portmore, on December 26, 1996, billed as the greatest one-night show on earth. 

With his distinct deep voice and impeccable flow, he crafted vivid narratives that painted a vivid picture of the struggles and triumphs of his life and the urban landscape around him. 

Biggie’s debut album, “Ready to Die,” released in 1994, is widely regarded as a classic and showcased his storytelling abilities and lyrical dexterity. 

The album’s standout tracks like “Juicy” and “Big Poppa” catapulted him to mainstream success, and he became an emblem of East Coast rap. 

His music seamlessly blended soulful samples with his gritty narratives, creating an unmatched sonic experience, and became one of the most influential works in hip-hop. 

2. Busta Rhymes

Born in Brooklyn, New York, to Jamaican parents, Busta Rhymes has often incorporated elements of his Jamaican heritage into his music, infusing reggae and dancehall influences into his distinctive style. 

Busta Rhymes, aka Trevor George Smith Jr., is a legendary rapper known for his dynamic flow, intricate wordplay, and high-energy performances. 

With his commanding stage presence and rapid-fire delivery, Busta Rhymes quickly gained recognition as a standout artist in the 1990s. His breakthrough came as a hip-hop group Leader of the New School member before starting a successful solo career.

Busta Rhymes’ musical impact stems from his ability to push boundaries and innovate within the genre. His complex rhyme schemes and infectious energy have influenced countless artists, while his collaborations with various musicians have showcased his versatility. 

Notable hits like “Woo Hah!! Got You All in Check,” “Put Your Hands Where My Eyes Could See,” and “Break Ya Neck” demonstrated his mastery of lyrical delivery and penchant for catchy hooks.

Throughout his career, Busta Rhymes has received critical acclaim and numerous accolades, including multiple Grammy nominations. He has also achieved significant commercial success with several platinum and gold albums. 

Beyond his solo work, he has collaborated with artists from various genres, further solidifying his cross-genre appeal. 

Busta Rhymes’ impact on the music industry extends beyond his discography, as he has also mentored emerging artists and is a respected figure in the hip-hop community.

His Jamaican roots have played an essential role in shaping his musical style, infusing his songs with elements of dancehall, reggae, and Caribbean rhythms. 

3. Vybz Kartel 

Hailing from Kingston, Jamaica, Vybz Kartel has left an indelible mark on the dancehall genre, becoming one of its most influential figures. The Jamaican dancehall artist is renowned for his controversial lyrics, distinctive musical style, and captivating stage presence. 

Kartel’s musical style is characterized by his raw, gritty delivery, complemented by infectious melodies and catchy hooks. He skillfully blends dancehall, reggae, hip-hop, and R&B elements, creating a sound that resonates with local and international audiences. 

This versatility allows him to explore various tempos, rhythms, and subjects, ensuring his discography remains diverse and engaging.

As an artist of Jamaican origin, Vybz Kartel embodies the spirit and essence of Jamaican culture in his music. His songs delve into themes like street life, social issues, love, and revelry, reflecting the Jamaican experience. 

By incorporating Jamaican patois, a vibrant and expressive dialect, into his lyrics, he further solidifies his connection to his roots.

Vybz Kartel’s achievements and recognitions within the music industry are extensive. He has released numerous successful albums and singles, frequently topping Jamaican charts and gaining international acclaim. 

Notable hits such as “Romping Shop” featuring Spice, “Fever,” and “Clarks” featuring Popcaan and Gaza Slim have cemented his status as a lyrical powerhouse with a devoted global fanbase.

His artistry and creativity have garnered numerous awards and accolades, including multiple Jamaica Music Industry Awards (JAMIAs) and International Reggae and World Music Awards (IRAWMA) nominations.

4. Sean Paul

If you are a Gen-z who grew up in the 2000s, you would have definitely heard of Sean Paul. The Jamaican dancehall and reggae artist has been significantly impacted by his infectious music, charismatic persona, distinctive vocal style, and chart-topping hits such as “Temperature,” “Get Busy,” and “Like Glue.” 

Sean Paul’s musical style is characterized by his smooth delivery, melodic hooks, and fusion of dancehall, reggae, hip-hop, and pop influences. His songs often feature catchy rhythms, vibrant beats, and a blend of English and Jamaican patois, creating a unique and infectious sound that transcends borders.

As an artist with Jamaican roots, Sean Paul proudly represents his culture through his music. His songs reflect the vibrant spirit of Jamaica, with themes of love, partying, and social issues. 

His charismatic stage presence and energetic performances have earned him a dedicated global fan base. His collaborations with international artists, including Beyoncé, Rihanna, and Sia, have further expanded his reach and cemented his status as a global music icon.

Beyond his commercial success, Sean Paul has received numerous accolades, including Grammy Awards and MOBO Awards. He has been a powerful ambassador for Jamaican music, raising its profile on the international stage.

5. Shaggy

Shaggy, born Orville Richard Burrell, is a Jamaican-American reggae and dancehall artist who has achieved international success with his infectious music and charismatic personality. 

Originally from Kingston, Jamaica, Shaggy’s career took off in the 1990s, and he quickly became one of the most recognizable voices in the genre.

He is known for his ability to effortlessly switch between singing and toasting (rhythmic chanting) in his songs, showcasing his versatility as an artist. 

With his distinctive voice and playful charm, Shaggy has produced numerous chart-topping hits, including “Oh Carolina,” “Boombastic,” and the iconic “It Wasn’t Me” featuring RikRok. 

His music is often accompanied by upbeat rhythms, infectious melodies, and lyrics that blend humour, romance, and social commentary.

Shaggy’s success extends far beyond the music charts. He has won multiple Grammy Awards and has sold millions of records worldwide. His collaborations with artists like Sting, Rihanna, and Sean Paul have further elevated his profile and expanded his audience.

6. Koffee

Internet is familiar with the name “Koffee,” a Jamaican singer, rapper, DJ, and guitarist known for her vibrant dancehall, reggae, and rap mix. 

She was born on February 16, 2000, and raised by her single mother in Spanish Town, just outside Kingston, Jamaica. The young artist gained international attention and a major-label deal with Columbia Records after her debut EP, “Rapture,” in 2019. 

The EP won a Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album. She became the first woman and the youngest recipient to win the award in the category’s history. In 2022, Koffee released her debut album, “Gifted.”

Koffee’s achievements include her groundbreaking Grammy win for Best Reggae Album at the 62nd Annual Grammy Awards, where she became the first woman to win the award and the youngest reggae trophy recipient ever. 

She also signed with RCA Records in the United States, signifying her intention to expand her music globally. Koffee’s debut EP, “Rapture,” and her single “Toast” garnered significant popularity and critical acclaim, propelling her to international fame. 

In addition to her Grammy win, she has been recognized with awards such as the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding International Song for her track “Lockdown” in 2021.

Koffee’s music combines elements of pop, melodic rap, trap, dancehall, and reggae. She draws inspiration from Jamaican reggae stars like Protoje and Chronixx. Koffee’s unique style and infectious songs have significantly contributed to modernizing reggae and expanding its global appeal. 

7. Sean Kingston 

We all have hummed the beautiful and catchy melodies of songs like “Beautiful Girls” and “Eenie Meenie” by the talented artist Sean Kingston, who was just sixteen years old when he started his career.

Sean is an American-Jamaican singer, songwriter, and rapper who rose to fame in the mid-2000s with his hit single “Beautiful Girls.” While primarily known for his pop and reggae-infused music, he has also dabbled in rap throughout his career.

Born Kisean Paul Anderson on February 3, 1990, in Miami, Florida, Sean Kingston has Jamaican roots, with his parents hailing from Jamaica. 

This Jamaican connection heavily influenced his musical style, as he often incorporates reggae and dancehall elements into his songs, infusing them with a laid-back island vibe.

In terms of his rap career, Sean Kingston has showcased his versatility by incorporating rap verses into many of his tracks. 

While primarily recognized as a singer, he has collaborated with various hip-hop artists and released songs featuring rap verses from himself and others. Some notable examples include “Me Love,” “Take You There,” and “Fire Burning.”

Throughout his career, Sean Kingston has enjoyed success with several chart-topping singles, including “Beautiful Girls,” which reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. He has also collaborated with renowned artists such as Chris Brown, Justin Bieber, and Nicki Minaj.

8. Heavy D 

Dwight Arrington Myers (stage name: Heavy D) was a Jamaican-born American rapper, record producer, and actor. He was born on May 24, 1967, in Mandeville, Jamaica, and moved to Mount Vernon, New York, at a young age. 

Heavy D is often called the “Overweight Lover” or “Heavy D,” which became his stage name. Heavy D gained prominence as a rapper in the late 1980s and early 1990s as the frontman of the hip-hop group Heavy D & the Boyz

The group consisted of Heavy D, DJ Eddie F, G-Wiz, and Trouble T-Roy (who tragically passed away in 1990). 

They achieved mainstream success with hits like “Now That We Found Love,” “The Overweight Lover’s in the House,” and “Is It Good to You.” Heavy D’s music was characterized by his smooth delivery, positive and uplifting lyrics, and a fusion of hip-hop, R&B, and dancehall influences. 

He was known for his charismatic personality, energetic performances, and catchy hooks. Heavy D’s style helped bridge the gap between hip-hop and R&B, and his music appealed to a wide audience.

In addition to his music career, Heavy D ventured into acting, appearing in several films and television shows. He starred in the hit TV series “In Living Color” and had roles in movies like “Life,” “The Cider House Rules,” and “Step Up.” He also contributed to soundtracks for films like “Beverly Hills Cop III” and “The Nutty Professor.”

9. Canibus

Canibus is a renowned Kingston-born American-residing rapper known for his exceptional lyrical skills and ability to freestyle. He gained prominence in the late 1990s with his debut album “Can-I-Bus,” released in 1998. 

The album, featuring production from notable artists such as Wyclef Jean and Salaam Remi, showcased Canibus’s impressive wordplay and intricate rhymes.

One of Canibus’s most notable tracks was “Second Round K.O.,” a diss track aimed at LL Cool J, which garnered significant attention and helped propel him into the spotlight. 

His music was characterized by complex metaphors, literary references, and scientific concepts, tackling diverse subjects like politics and metaphysics.

While Canibus faced challenges throughout his career, including a highly publicized rap battle with Eminem, he is widely recognized for his lyrical genius. His ability to construct dense rhyme patterns and incorporate layers of meaning has impacted the hip-hop genre.

Although some fans felt that his later releases didn’t match the groundbreaking potential of his early work, Canibus’s dedication to pushing the boundaries of rap and his commitment to the art of lyricism remains unquestionable.

Currently, Canibus releases music, collaborates with fellow artists, and engages in rap battles. His legacy lies in inspiring aspiring lyricists to elevate their skills and encouraging deeper expression through intellectual depth.

10. Chronixx

Growing up in a musical environment surrounded by artists like Burro Banton, Norris Man, and Gregory Isaacs, Chronixx showed a passion for music and songwriting from an early age. He began his recording career at 11 and gained recognition for providing harmony vocals for artists like Lutan Fyah.

His stage name, Chronixx, replaced his previous moniker, “Little Chronicle,” which he received due to his father’s stage name, “Chronicle.” 

Chronixx’s music has been associated with the “Reggae Revival” movement and other reggae musicians such as Protoje, Jah9, and Kabaka Pyramid. His lyrical content often revolves around anti-war, romance, and resilience themes. 

Some of his popular songs include “Here Comes Trouble,” “Skankin’ Sweet,” and “Smile Jamaica.” Chronixx’s EP “Dread & Terrible” reached #1 on the U.S. Billboard Reggae chart, and his album “Chronology” also peaked at #1 on the U.S. charts.

Throughout his career, Chronixx has garnered recognition and acclaim for his talent and contributions to reggae music. He has performed live at Central Park and appeared on  The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. 

Chronixx’s legacy lies in his ability to ignite a passion for roots and culture in people’s hearts worldwide, inspiring a new generation of reggae enthusiasts.

11. Buju Banton

Buju Banton gained international recognition for his powerful vocals, conscious lyrics, and captivating stage presence. His career began in the late 1980s when he was just a teenager. 

He quickly rose to prominence in the Jamaican music scene with hits like “Bogle” and “Love Mi Browning.” His distinctive voice and ability to fuse dancehall, reggae, and R&B elements set him apart from his contemporaries.

Buju Banton has been known for his socially conscious and spiritually uplifting lyrics throughout his career. He often addresses social issues, political corruption, and the struggles faced by marginalized communities in his music. 

Songs like “Untold Stories” and “Wanna Be Loved” exemplify his ability to deliver thought-provoking messages through his powerful voice.

2011 Buju Banton faced legal troubles when he was arrested on drug-related charges. After serving a prison sentence, he returned to the music scene in 2019 with his album “Upside Down 2020.” 

The album showcased his growth as an artist and received critical acclaim for its lyrical depth and musical diversity.

Buju Banton’s impact on Jamaican music and culture cannot be overstated. He has been honored with numerous awards, including a Grammy for Best Reggae Album in 2011 for his album “Before the Dawn.” 

His music inspires and resonates with audiences worldwide, and he is considered one of his generation’s most influential reggae dancehall artists.

12. 50 Cent 

Born in South Jamaica, Curtis James Jackson III, an American citizen,  adopted the stage name 50 Cent after a Brooklyn robber. He rose to prominence in the early 2000s with the release of his debut album, “Get Rich or Die Tryin’,” in 2003. 

The album was a massive success, propelled by hit singles such as “In Da Club,” “P.I.M.P,” and “21 Questions.” It showcased 50 Cent’s gritty lyrical style, captivating storytelling, and his ability to craft catchy hooks over hard-hitting beats.

“Get Rich or Die Tryin'” sold millions of copies worldwide, becoming one of the best-selling hip-hop albums ever. It solidified 50 Cent’s position in the rap industry and established him as a dominant force in mainstream music. 

He continued his success with subsequent albums like “The Massacre” (2005), “Curtis” (2007), and “Before I Self Destruct” (2009), which spawned popular singles and further cemented his status as a rap icon.

As for his association with Jamaica, 50 Cent has shown an appreciation for dancehall and reggae music. He has collaborated with Jamaican artists and incorporated genre elements into his music. 

One notable example is his collaboration with dancehall artist Mavado on the song “Let It Go” remix in 2009. The remix featured 50 Cent delivering verses alongside Mavado, merging their distinct styles.

13. XXXTentacion 

XXXTentacion gained significant attention and amassed a large following during his short but impactful career. His music blended various genres, including hip-hop, rap, rock, and alternative R&B. 

He was known for his raw and emotional approach to songwriting, tackling mental health, depression, and personal struggles. His music often featured introspective and introspective lyrics that resonated with many listeners.

Being of Jamaican descent, XXXTentacion had a cultural affinity for Jamaica. According to his Jamaican mentor and music producer Jon FX, XXXTentacion loved Jamaican cuisine, particularly curry chicken. 

There are anecdotes of him ordering large quantities of curry chicken from Jamaican restaurants in Sunrise, Florida, and enjoying the dish. 

In 2017, XXXTentacion released his debut studio album, “17,” which received critical acclaim and commercial success. The album showcased his versatility as an artist, with tracks that ranged from melodic ballads to aggressive rap songs. 

It explored pain, loneliness, and self-reflection themes, resonating with a generation that identified with his emotional honesty. XXXTentacion’s most commercially successful single, “Sad!,” was released in 2018 as part of his second studio album, “?”. 

The song reached the top of the charts in several countries and propelled him further into the mainstream spotlight. However, XXXTentacion’s career was tragically cut short when he was shot and killed in June 2018 at 20.

14. Afrika Banbaataa

Every hip-hop nerd has heard of Afrika Bambaataa, whose real name is Kevin Donovan. Kevin is a prominent figure in the development and popularization of hip-hop culture. 

Born to Zulu and Jamaican immigrants on April 17, 1957, in the Bronx, New York, Bambaataa is often called the “Godfather” or “Grandfather” of hip-hop.

In the 1970s, Bambaataa played a pivotal role in the emergence of hip-hop as a cultural movement. He was heavily involved in the street gang culture of the time but later shifted his focus toward promoting peace, unity, and positive social change through music. 

Bambaataa and other influential figures like Kool Herc and Grandmaster Flash are credited with laying the foundations of hip-hop and shaping its core elements.

As a DJ and music producer, Afrika Bambaataa is known for his eclectic and innovative style, blending various genres such as funk, soul, disco, and electronic music. 

He incorporated elements of these genres into his mixes and introduced them to the hip-hop community, expanding the musical palette of the culture. One of Bambaataa’s most famous songs is “Planet Rock,” released in 1982 by his group Soul Sonic Force. 

The track combined electronic music with hip-hop and became a massive hit, popularizing the electro-funk sound and solidifying Bambaataa’s influence on the music scene.

15. Slick Rick

Slick Rick is known for his sly drawing delivery and skilful storytelling. His music often combines street tales, exaggeration, and wit. He has released four studio albums and has collaborated with various artists in the rap industry. 

His discography includes 17 singles, including eight as a featured artist. Slick Rick was born in London, England, to Jamaican parents. He immigrated with his family to the Bronx, New York, in the late 1970s. 

He attended the La Guardia High School of Music & Art and became friends with future rapper Dana Dane. Together, they formed the Kangol Crew and performed in hip-hop battles.

His debut album, “The Great Adventures of Slick Rick,” achieved platinum status and significantly impacted hip-hop development. His unique talent, charismatic delivery, and witty lyrical perspectives solidified his reputation as one of hip-hop’s greatest storytellers. 

16. Safaree Samuels 

Safaree Samuels, born July 4, 1981, is a Jamican-American rapper, songwriter, and television personality. He gained prominence as a member of the rap group The Hoodstars member, including his childhood friend Nicki Minaj. 

However, he is best known for his work as a songwriter and producer. He has contributed to numerous hit songs, including Nicki Minaj’s early hits such as “Did It On’em” and “Roman’s Revenge.” Safaree Samuels has also released his music, including mixtapes and singles.

While Safaree Samuels’ music career has had some success, his legacy is often overshadowed by his highly publicized personal life and appearances on reality TV shows. He has been a cast member on VH1’s “Love & Hip Hop: Hollywood” and “Love & Hip Hop: New York,” providing glimpses into his relationships and life.

Lastly, he has worked with dancehall and reggae artists such as Bounty Killer, Sean Kingston, and Kranium, showcasing his versatility as a rapper and his willingness to explore different musical genres.

17. Ski Mask the Slump God 

Ski Mask the Slump God, born Stokeley Clevon Goulbourne on April 18, 1996, is an American rapper, singer, and songwriter of Jamaican descent. He rose to prominence in the SoundCloud rap era, gaining attention for his unique flow, animated delivery, and eccentric personality. 

Ski gained a significant following with tracks such as “Catch Me Outside” and “Babywipe,” showcasing his high-energy rap style and witty wordplay. His music often features fast-paced rhymes, playful ad-libs, and diverse flows.

Although Ski Mask the Slump God’s career is relatively young, he has already made notable achievements in the music industry. He has released several successful mixtapes, including “Drown in Designer” and “Beware the Book of Eli,” which helped solidify his fan base. 

Ski Mask the Slump God has also collaborated with other prominent artists, including XXXTentacion, Lil Pump, and Juice WRLD, further expanding his reach and musical influence.

In terms of his artistry, Ski Mask the Slump God is known for his versatile approach to music. He seamlessly blends elements of rap, trap, punk, and even rock into his songs, showcasing his ability to experiment with different styles and genres. His off-kilter delivery and charismatic personality have also contributed to his unique artistic presence.

18. Skillibeng

Skillibeng is a rising Jamaican dancehall artist and rapper known for his unique flow and lyrical prowess. He gained popularity with his hit songs like “Brik Pan Brik,” “Crocodile Teeth,” and “Shake.” 

He has made significant contributions to the dancehall genre. He has collaborated with notable artists such as Sean Paul, Popcaan, Wizkid, Vybz Kartel, French Montana, Nicki Minaj, DJ Khaled, Rich the Kid, Kali Uchis, J.I, the Prince of N.Y., and more.

Skillibeng’s music often incorporates elements of trap and drill, setting him apart from traditional dancehall artists. He has been praised for his versatility and has garnered a strong local and international following.

Skillibeng’s success has also led to notable achievements in his career. He signed with RCA Records and Eastsyde Records, marking a significant milestone and providing global support for his music.

19. Shenseea

Shenseea, whose real name is Chinsea Linda Lee, is a Jamaican rapper & dancehall recording artist known for her vibrant energy and versatile musical style. 

She gained initial attention through collaborations with prominent artists such as Vybz Kartel, Sean Paul, and Christina Aguilera. Shenseea signed a recording contract with Interscope Records in 2019, marking a significant career milestone. 

In 2021, Shenseea had verse(s) on “Donda,” Kanye’s well-acclaimed album. She contributed to the songs “Pure Souls” with Roddy Ricch and “Ok Ok Pt 2,” a banger that also featured Rooga. 

Her involvement in West’s album earned her a nomination for Album of the Year as a featured artist. Shenseea released her debut album, titled “Alpha,” in 2022. The album showcased her unique blend of dancehall and pop influences. 

It features a range of tracks, including the energetic single “Curious,” released in 2023. Shenseea’s work on various projects garnered Grammy nomination nods. 

These include Major Lazer’s “Music Is The Weapon” in the Best Dance/Electronic Music category, Kanye West’s “Donda” in the Album of the Year and Best Rap Album categories, and Masego’s “Studying Abroad: Extended Stay” for Best Progressive R&B Album. 

20. Skeng

Skeng, also known as Kevon Douglas, is a Jamaican dancehall artist whose recording career took off in 2019. Still, he gained a breakthrough in the industry with his single and music video for “Brrrp” the previous year. 

Skeng has achieved notable success on the YouTube Music Charts, becoming the most-streamed Jamaican artist for a particular tracking period. His tracks, such as “Gvnman Shift,” “Heaven Passport” featuring Intence, and “Live Large,” garnered millions of views. 

Skeng and his close friends and producers John Coop & Shacko Di Truth signed with Geejam Music. Geejam Music, headquartered in Jamaica, has a global publishing deal with Downtown Music Services, which provides publishing administration and label services for Skeng and his team.

He was also recognized as the most streamed Dancehall artist in Jamaica for the year 2022, based on data gathered by CertifiedStreams. He ranked among the top ten alongside notable artists like Masicka, Squash, Chronic Law, and Alkaline.  


In conclusion, the presence and influence of Jamaican rappers in the global hip-hop scene cannot be overlooked. Despite the association of Jamaica with reggae music, the country has contributed significantly to the development and evolution of rap music. 

This article highlighted some of the most popular Jamaican rappers who have made their mark in the industry. The Jamaican rap scene emerged in the late 1970s and early 1980s, inspired by artists like DJ Kool Herc and Afrika Bambaataa from New York. 

Jamaican rappers have successfully blended rap with reggae, dancehall, and electronic music, creating a unique and vibrant sonic experience. Their lyrics often touch on social and cultural issues, personal experiences, street life, partying, and love, reflecting Jamaican identity.

Notable Jamaican rappers include Biggie Smalls (The Notorious B.I.G.), Busta Rhymes, Vybz Kartel, Sean Paul, Shaggy, Koffee, Sean Kingston, and Heavy D. These artists have achieved international recognition, received critical acclaim and influenced the global hip-hop culture with their distinctive styles and contributions.

Jamaican rap continues to evolve, incorporating elements of trap, Afrobeat, and other global hip-hop influences. The future of rap in Jamaica looks promising as the scene grows and gains recognition. 

Jamaican rap’s fusion with reggae-infused beats and dancehall vibes has also influenced the sound of hip-hop worldwide.