Who’s Next Up: The Best Upcoming Rappers Across America

BY WILL LAMPLEY

Raury

Daily, the internet means more and more to finding new music and supporting it. Because of the internet, the idea of an artist being regional and having to sound like where they come from is becoming smaller. Now, listeners can enjoy music from all over the country and compare to find out who the best from each area is. Let’s see who the best new artists of America really are…

Chicago, IL

Courtesy of OkayPlayer

Mick Jenkins

Mick Jenkins is an interesting dude. My first time listening to Mick was by way of Earl Sweatshirt (one of my favorite rappers). During his renaissance of realizing the importance of incorporating his voice as an instrument and making his lyrics more understandable while still becoming a better lyricist, Earl tweeted the link to Mick’s video for a song called “Martyrs”. I was instantly pulled in. While including elements of drill visuals in an almost sarcastic way, Mick goes into the woods (a common place for lynching) as well as his kitchen and living room (a common place for drill music videos) and cuts between shots with one common element- a noose. His lyricism is on full display, but his voice is deep and has a heavy presence. He finds the perfect spot between lyricism and energy, which I think is the perfect recipe for a great artist. He just released his conceptual tape The Water[s].

Watch the video for his song “Jazz”

Atlanta, GA

Courtesy of Dazed Digital

Raury

Whether Stone Mountain native Raury is actually a rapper may be the biggest question of many others about him. Other questions may include, “Where did he come from?”, “Why did he get to open for Outkast?” or “Why has he been hanging out with Kanye?”. Whether we will ever get to find out the exact answers to these questions is unknown. One thing that we can agree on is that the music is dope. Really dope. He’s already come with his debut project and signed a deal with Columbia, with plans to make the world a better place. It’s said that his video for “God’s Whisper” was enough to make Kanye West fly him down to Mexico. Until we can find out what his plans are, we can definitely enjoy “Indigo Child” and watch him rise and expand as a star.

Watch the video for his single “God’s Whisper”

OG Maco

By this point, you’ve probably heard OG Maco, and if you don’t know him, you at least know his infectious single “U Guessed It”. What you may not know is that Maco is more than one song. He’s one of the most interesting rappers to come out in 2014. The video for said song is actually one of the greatest videos of the year, composed of him and his friends running around a hotel, a live performance and DONDA level graphics. Hot 97 program director turned radio personality Ebro Darden has compared Maco to Mystikal because of his all at once energetic and calm style. Whether or not you can agree with Ebro, the College Park rapper has a bright future and a witty pen. Judging by his song “F*ck Em x3” with Migos, he’ll be here for a while.

Listen to his single “F*ck Em x3”

Detroit, MI

Courtesy of The Stashed

Dej Loaf

Just like OG Maco, Detroit rapper Dej Loaf has blown up off of the strength of one song. Her voice, her flow, her taste in production and even her sunglasses are just… cool. But also like OG Maco, she’s more than her first hit, and she’s proved that by her new releases “We Good” and “Bird Call”. Dej Loaf’s most interesting appeal may be the juxtaposition between her voice and obvious femininity balancing with her violent subject matter and harsh vocabulary. Dej has just released her new tape “Sell Sole” featuring appearances from Young Thug and Ty Dolla $ign as well as signing a record deal to Columbia records. Time will tell whether Dej can properly use the success of “Try Me” to follow up to her first single on a major label.

Watch the video for her song “Bird Call”

Texas

Courtesy of Billboard

Kevin Abstract

I’ve known about Kevin Abstract forever. That may seem like somewhat of an annoying way to look at it, but my first experience with his music was a song by the name of “Fools Gold” off of a mixtape hosted by the forum Odd Future Talk from 2011. Since then, Kevin has progressed and evolved, as well as garnering more attention with his crew ASF and releasing an EP with Planetarian. In 2014, Kevin came back in a bold way. His hair was pink, his voice had more conviction and color and his music was better than ever. His free album “MTV1987”, completely produced by Romil, probably had the best roll out of the year, led by art from HK Covers and a lead single with a video shot in the middle of Wal-Mart- an 8 minute video at that. Everything about Kevin’s album is bold and innovative, and most importantly, it’s great music.

Watch his video for his single “Drugs”

 

NEXT PAGE

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.