Billboard and Vibe Spark Debates by Naming JAY-Z the Greatest Rapper of All Time In an article published on February 8, by Billboard in partnership with Vibe, JAY-Z was named the greatest rapper of all time as the publication unveiled its “Top 50” for Hip-Hop's 50th Anniversary.
The top five rappers are ranked as follows: 5) Eminem; 4) Tupac Shakur; 3) Nas; 2) Kendrick Lamar; 1) JAY-Z.
Billboard highlighted JAY-Z's numerous achievements, such as being the first rapper inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame and having 14 No. 1 albums on the Billboard 200 chart, the most by any solo act.
The publication also recognized JAY-Z's impact on the industry through co-founding Roc-A-Fella Records and launching Roc Nation, D'usse, and Armand de Brignac, as well as serving as the president of Def Jam Records. During his tenure, he mentored artists like Rihanna and Kanye West, both of whom became billionaires.
The rest of the top 50 includes: The Notorious B.I.G, Lil Wayne, Drake, Snoop Dogg, Nicki Minaj, Kanye West (Ye), André 3000, Rakim, LL Cool J, J. Cole, Scarface, 50 Cent, Ice Cube, Missy Elliott, Big Daddy Kane, DMX, Ghostface Killah, Kurtis Blow, KRS-One, Method Man, Big Pun, Q-Tip, Black Thought, Pusha-T, Lauryn Hill, Lil Kim, T.I., Busta Rhymes, Chuck D (Public Enemy), Future, Mos Def (Yasin Bey), Common, Gucci Mane, Ludacris, Dr. Dre, E-40, Redman, Bun B, Queen Latifah, Ice-T, Jadakiss, MC Lyte, Melle Mel, Rev. Run (Run-DMC), and Rick Ross.