West Coast rap has a long and distinguished history with its unique style and sound that has had a lasting impact on the rap music scene. The genre has been heavily influenced by the likes of Dr. Dre, Tupac, and Snoop Dogg who have become iconic figures in the rap world. The sound of West Coast rap is characterized by heavy basslines, funk-inspired grooves, and a distinctive lyrical flow.

West Coast rappers are known for their intense, often aggressive lyrics that often touch on topics such as street violence, poverty, and racism. This style of rap was born out of the struggles of inner-city life in Los Angeles and its surrounding cities.

West Coast rappers often tell stories of their personal struggles and hardships, painting a vivid picture of life in the inner-city.

The sound of West Coast rap is heavily influenced by funk and jazz elements, with heavier bass and drum beats than other rap genres. This often results in a slower, more laid-back flow. Many West Coast rappers also incorporate sampling and scratching into their music, creating a sound that is unique and distinct.

Many of the most popular West Coast rappers have had a lasting impact on the rap scene, inspiring a new generation of rappers with their unique style and sound. Tupac Shakur, Snoop Dogg, Ice Cube, and Dr. Dre are some of the most iconic and influential West Coast rappers, and their imprint on the rap scene is undeniable.

West Coast rap has changed the sound of rap music, and its influence can still be heard today. From the heavy basslines, to the aggressive lyrics, and the funk-inspired rhythms, West Coast rap has made its mark on the rap music landscape, and will continue to shape and influence rap music for years to come.

Pioneers of West Coast Hip-Hop

1. Ice-T

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Ice-T is one of the pioneers of West Coast rap, having been involved in the genre since its earliest days. Ice-T is known for his politically charged lyrics and his commitment to speaking out on issues such as poverty and violence.

He has released several classic albums, including his landmark album “O.G. Original Gangster,” which is widely considered to be a classic in rap music.

He was also an integral part of the “Gangsta Rap” movement and is widely credited with introducing the genre to mainstream audiences. Ice-T is still actively making music and is an undeniable influence in the rap scene.

2. N.W.A.


N.W.A. is an American hip-hop group from Compton, California, often cited as one of the pioneers of gangsta rap.

Comprised of Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, Eazy-E, MC Ren, and DJ Yella, N.W.A. rose to fame in the late 1980s and early 1990s with their controversial and confrontational lyrics addressing the socio-economic issues of inner-city life.

Their debut album, Straight Outta Compton, was released in 1988 and redefined rap music with its revolutionary sound and lyrics.

The album contained the hit singles “F*** the Police” and “Gangsta Gangsta,” and went on to become one of the best-selling rap albums of all time.

Their subsequent albums, Efil4zaggin and Niggaz4Life, also received critical and commercial success.

N.W.A.’s influence and impact on hip-hop culture, particularly the West Coast subgenre, cannot be overstated, and their influence continues to be felt in the rap music of today.

3. Too $hort

too short

Too $hort is a veteran rapper from Oakland, California. He is widely regarded as a pioneer of West Coast hip-hop, having released his first album, Don’t Stop Rappin’, in 1985.

Since then, Too $hort has gone on to create an impressive thirty-plus album and EP discography.

His sound is often characterized as a blend of rapping and funk-inspired West Coast beats. He has worked with some of the biggest names in hip-hop, including Snoop Dogg, Ice Cube, and E-40.

Too $hort has also had a few acting roles over the years, appearing in films such as Friday and Menace II Society. Despite being in the rap game since the mid-80s, Too $hort has managed to stay relevant with each new generation, making him a true rap icon.

4. Eazy-E

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Eazy-E was an American rapper and record producer from Compton, California. He was an important figure in the evolution of West Coast hip hop and a pioneer in gangsta rap.

He was a member of the rap group N.W.A. and went on to launch his own successful solo career. He was known for his intense and hard-hitting lyrics, often dealing with themes of crime and violence.

He was also an important figure in the emergence of rap-metal fusion, working with artists like Korn, Limp Bizkit, and Guns N’ Roses to help create a unique sound.

Eazy-E’s impact was felt across the rap industry and he continues to be remembered as one of the most influential and successful rappers of all time.

5. Dr. Dre

dr dre

Dr. Dre is a legendary American rapper and hip-hop producer from Compton, California. He is widely considered one of the most influential rappers of all time, having helped shape the sound of West Coast hip-hop for over 30 years.

His debut solo album, The Chronic, is considered a classic, while his game-changing production work on albums such as 2001 and N.W.A’s Straight Outta Compton helped define the genre.

Dre has won multiple American Music Awards, a Grammy Award, and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2016.

He has also collaborated with some of the biggest names in rap and pop music, including Snoop Dogg, Eminem, and 50 Cent. His influence on the culture of hip-hop is unparalleled and his legacy will live on for many years to come.

Gangsta Rap and G-Funk Legends

6. Snoop Dogg

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Snoop Dogg is one of the most iconic figures in the world of Gangsta Rap and G-Funk. His extensive career began in 1992 when he released his debut album, Doggystyle.

Since then, Snoop Dogg has gone on to become a multi-platinum selling artist with over 200 million records sold worldwide and 11 Grammy Award nominations. He is also a renowned actor, entrepreneur, and philanthropist.

His influence can be seen in the countless artists he has mentored and collaborations he has taken part in.

His lyrics and beats have been sampled and remixed by different genres of music, like hip-hop, funk, and EDM. Snoop Dogg’s legacy will live on through his music and the impact he has had on hip-hop culture.

7. Tupac Shakur

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Tupac Shakur was an iconic American rapper and actor who left behind an amazing musical legacy. He started his career in the early 1990s, and within a few years, he had become one of the most popular rappers in the world.

His music has been praised for its creativity and lyrical depth, and he was noted for his exploration of social issues such as racism and poverty.

His death in 1996 was a shock to the music industry, but his influence continues to this day. His influence on hip-hop and rap music has been immense, and he remains an inspirational figure to many.

8. Ice Cube

ice cube

Ice Cube is a rap artist, actor, producer, director, and screenwriter best known for his politically charged and socially conscious music.

He is considered one of the founding fathers of gangsta rap. He has been a mainstay in the rap music scene since the early 1990s and is still releasing music today.

His songs are often filled with references to social issues such as racism, poverty, and police brutality. He has also ventured into acting and producing, most notably in the Friday and Barbershop movie franchises.

With a career spanning almost three decades, Ice Cube has made an indelible mark on the rap and hip-hop genre, and his influence is undeniable.

9. Warren G

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Warren G is a rapper and hip hop producer from Long Beach, California. He is best known for his platinum-selling single, “Regulate” featuring Nate Dogg, as well as for producing Dr. Dre’s classic debut album The Chronic and Snoop Dogg’s debut album Doggystyle.

He became a founding member of the hip hop group 213, along with Snoop Dogg and Nate Dogg.

Warren G has released five solo albums since 1994, and has been credited with helping to shape West Coast G-Funk and the hip-hop genre.

He also collaborated on a number of projects with Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, and other West Coast rappers. Warren G is widely recognized as a pioneer of West Coast hip-hop and has been praised for his lyrical style and production ability.

10. DJ Quik

dj quik

DJ Quik is a multi-platinum American West coast rapper and icon of the G-Funk era of hip hop. He has been producing music since the early 1990s, and his distinctive production style has earned him a loyal fan base.

Quik is known for his high-energy rap lyrics, which often come together with funk and soul samples from classic records.

He is also credited as an innovator for combining rap and funk styles, creating something that was unique at the time.

His influence continues to be felt within the hip hop genre, and his music continues to be appreciated. He has collaborated with many other West coast rappers over the years, and is highly respected within the music industry.

West Coast Female Rappers

11. Yo-Yo

Yo-Yo is one of the most recognizable and influential female rappers to emerge from the West Coast scene.

She made her debut in the early 1990s with her seminal album Make Way for the Motherlode, which featured the singles “It’s a Big Thang” and “Stompin’ to tha 90s.”

Yo-Yo was one of the first female rappers to have an album reach the Billboard 200 chart, and she was also the first female rapper to be nominated for a Grammy Award.

She is known for her lyrical depth and her social conscious approach to hip-hop. She has collaborated with many of hip-hop’s most notable artists, including Ice Cube and The Roots.

Yo-Yo is also heavily involved in the community, and she has been an advocate for education, music, and arts programs in her hometown of South Central Los Angeles.

12. Lady of Rage

Lady of Rage, also known as Rochelle “Rae” Lyles, is an American rapper who rose to fame in the early 1990s.

She is best known for her hardcore-style rapping and was one of the first female MCs to become a major star on the West Coast Hip Hop scene.

Her most notable work includes tracks from her debut album, Necessary Roughness, such as “Afro Puffs,” which was produced by Dr. Dre and was featured on the Above the Rim soundtrack.

Lady of Rage is also known for her appearances in various collaborations with Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg, and her work on the Death Row Records label.

Lady of Rage has continued to develop her career, with multiple albums, guest appearances on tracks, and tours. She is considered one of the most influential female rappers of all time.

13. Kamaiyah


Kamaiyah, born Kamaiyah Johnson, is an American rapper from Oakland, California. Kamaiyah’s career began to take off in the mid-2010s when she released her mixtapes A Good Night in the Ghetto and Before I Wake.

Since then, Kamaiyah has become an established artist in the hip hop industry, collaborating with artists such as Drake, YG, and Quavo.

Her debut studio album, A Good Night in the Ghetto, released in 2016 and was praised by critics and was nominated for two awards by the Bay Area Music Awards.

Kamaiyah continues to add to her growing career, with her most recent release being her 2019 EP, Got It Made. Her sound is a unique blend of the Bay Area’s G-Funk, 90’s rap, and a modern twist, making her one of the most unique female rappers in the game.

14. Snow Tha Product

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Snow Tha Product is a Mexican-American rapper and singer from California. She was born in San Diego and started rapping in her teens.

She is known for her hard-hitting lyrics and her smooth yet powerful flow. She is an outspoken advocate for social change and has become a figurehead for the Latinx and hip hop communities.

Her music has been featured in TV shows, movies and video games, as well as in a variety of genres including hip hop, trap, reggaeton, and Latin-trap.

She has collaborated with many popular artists, including Bad Bunny, Ty Dolla Sign, and Vince Staples. Her most recent release, “Don’t Need Love”, has reached the top of the Billboard Latin chart and has been streamed over 40 million times.

Snow Tha Product is a truly inspirational and groundbreaking artist who is pushing the boundaries of hip hop and Latin music.

15. Ill Camille

Ill Camille is a Los Angeles rapper who has been turning heads in the music industry for the last few years. Not only is she an incredible rapper, but she is also a talented singer, songwriter, and producer.

With her smooth and melodic delivery, Ill Camille has quickly gained a loyal fan base. Her lyrics explore themes related to identity, love, and relationships. Her debut album, Heirloom, was praised for its lyrical depth and authenticity.

Since then, she has released multiple EPs and singles that have received critical acclaim. Ill Camille has a distinct sound that is truly all her own and one that will surely stay with us for a long time to come.

West Coast Rappers from the 2000s

16. The Game

The Game is an American rapper who rose to fame in the early 2000s. He is known for his intense lyrics and streetwise style.

Drawing inspiration from the West Coast hip hop scene, The Game is often praised for his unique flow, immersive storytelling and masterful lyricism.

He first made waves with his debut album “The Documentary” in 2005, an album that is considered to be one of the best rap albums of all time.

Since then, The Game has released numerous albums, including “Doctor’s Advocate” (2006), “LAX” (2008), and “Jesus Piece” (2012).

Throughout his career, The Game has collaborated with some of the biggest names in hip hop, including Lil Wayne, Snoop Dogg, and Jay-Z.

His latest album, “Born 2 Rap,” was released in 2019. The Game has been a major influence on the West Coast rap scene since the 2000s and continues to be one of the most respected rappers in the game.

17. Kendrick Lamar

kendrick lamar

Kendrick Lamar is one of the most influential and acclaimed hip-hop artists of the modern era. Born in Compton, California, he has had a meteoric rise to fame since the release of his first studio album, Section.80, in 2011.

In the few years since, he has earned multiple Grammy awards, and has been featured on some of the biggest and most popular songs of the decade.

His creative use of samples, inventive storytelling, and clever wordplay have earned him the respect of fellow hip hop fans, critics, and celebrities alike.

While Lamar has been widely acclaimed for his artistic and lyrical content, he often uses his music and platform to comment on social and political issues, including police brutality, racism, and the dangers of poverty.

His activism and artistry have made him a symbol of empowerment for people of all backgrounds, and his influence on modern hip hop is immense.

18. Tyler, The Creator

tyler the creator

Tyler, The Creator is an accomplished rapper and producer from Los Angeles, California. He is known for his unique sound which blends alternative hip-hop, g-funk, and neo-soul. He also produces and directs his own music videos.

Tyler is known for his clever wordplay and often draws influence from his personal life experiences in his music.

His critically acclaimed debut album, Goblin, was released in 2011 and his latest album, Igor, was released in 2019.

Tyler’s innovative approach to creating music has resulted in multiple Grammy nominations and has cemented his status as one of the most respected artists in the rap game.

He is also the founder of the Odd Future Collective, an influential collective of musicians with whom he has collaborated. Tyler, The Creator is an artist who continues to bring fresh and exciting music to the world.

19. Schoolboy Q

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Schoolboy Q is an American rapper, born in Germany and raised in Los Angeles, California. He first rose to prominence with his 2011 studio album, Setbacks, and his follow-up album, Habits & Contradictions, released in 2012, was even more successful.

His style is rooted firmly in West Coast hip hop, and he has since become one of the most respected artists in the genre. His music is known for its substantial lyrical content, as he often writes about topics such as teenage struggles and mental health.

Schoolboy Q’s latest album, Blank Face LP, was released in 2016, and reached the top of the Billboard 200 chart. He has also collaborated with a number of other artists, including Kendrick Lamar, A$AP Rocky and Kanye West.

With an ever-growing fan base and an impressive discography, Schoolboy Q has cemented his place as one of the most respected rappers in the music industry.

20. Ab-Soul

Ab-Soul is an American rapper from Carson, California. He is part of the hip hop collective Black Hippy, formed by members of the same label Top Dawg Entertainment.

Ab-Soul is known for his introspective, creative, and eccentric lyrics which often explore the human condition, and have won him acclaim from fans and critics.

His debut studio album, Control System, was released in 2012 and debuted at number 39 on the US Billboard 200 chart, and has since been certified Gold.

He has since released three additional studio albums, These Days…, Do What Thou Wilt., and DWTW, all of which have received critical acclaim.

Ab-Soul has collaborated with the likes of Kendrick Lamar, Mac Miller, J. Cole, and ScHoolboy Q among others, and has achieved success in both the mainstream and underground hip-hop scenes.

His music is highly respected by fellow artists, and he has gained a loyal fan base around the world. Ab-Soul is an incredibly talented rapper and an innovator of the genre, and he continues to use his art to explore concepts of life and spread a message of positivity.

West Coast Rappers with Lyrical Prowess

21. Ras Kass

Ras Kass is a West Coast rapper who is known for his lyricism and sharp wit. He has been active in the hip hop scene since the mid-1990s, becoming a major underground artist in the late 1990s and early 2000s.

His lyrics are often hard-hitting and socially conscious, tackling such topics as racism, poverty, and politics.

He is considered to be one of the most talented and lyrically-gifted rappers of all time, and is respected for his complex flows and wordplay.

His albums have been praised for their thoughtful and thought-provoking lyrics, as well as his ability to balance his political and social commentary with some lighter, more humorous material. He is a truly unique artist who has made an indelible mark on hip hop culture.

22. Kurupt

Kurupt is an American rapper from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He is best known for his work with the popular hip-hop group Tha Dogg Pound.

His debut album, Kuruption!, was released in 1998, and was certified Gold in the United States. He has released five solo albums and has collaborated with many other Hip-Hop and rap artists.

Kurupt has also gained a reputation for his street credibility and his gritty musical style. His rhymes often reflect his life experiences and are sometimes considered controversial.

Kurupt is highly respected and admired by his peers and other artists in the hip-hop community for his skill and lyrical talents. He is also a popular guest artist on many hip-hop albums and has gained a strong following over the years.

24. Del the Funky Homosapien

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Del the Funky Homosapien is a highly influential hip hop artist who has made an indelible mark on the genre.

His cutting edge and humorous lyrics have gained him a devoted cult following. His sound is unique and unmistakable, mixing elements of jazz, punk, funk, and soul with a lyrical flow that is both witty and insightful.

Del has pushed the boundaries of hip hop, creating a sound that is entirely his own. Along with his solo work, Del has collaborated with some of the biggest names in hip hop, including Wu-Tang Clan, Gorillaz, and Hieroglyphic. He is a pioneer in the hip hop scene that is respected by his peers and fans alike.

25. Evidence

Evidence is an underground hip-hop artist hailing from Venice Beach, California. He is a founding member of the rap trio Dilated Peoples and has released five solo albums since 2004.

Evidence has earned acclaim for his lyrics, which often incorporate dark humor and vivid storytelling. He has also become known for his production style, which combines samples from classic soul and funk with modern electronic elements.

His music has been praised for its depth and complexity, making him one of the most respected rappers in the underground hip-hop scene. Evidence has collaborated with a wide range of artists, including Slug, Alchemist, DJ Premier, and Defari.

He has also provided guest verses for several notable albums, including Kanye West’s College Dropout, and Curren$y’s Pilot Talk II. Evidence’s music continues to be praised for its unique blend of old school and modern sounds, making him one of the most sought after artists in the underground hip-hop scene.

26. Murs

Murs is an American rapper, singer, and songwriter. He has released 9 studio albums, numerous EPs and mixtapes, and has worked with artists such as Linkin Park, Snoop Dogg, and Tech N9ne.

His career began in the late 1990s, and he has steadily built an impressive following since then. He is known for his lyrical content which often deals with personal issues, as well as his unique delivery and flow.

His most recent album, A Strange Journey Into the Unimaginable, was released in 2019 and has been met with widespread critical acclaim.

Murs’ music has also been featured on the soundtracks of video games, television shows, and movies.

He is a highly respected artist and has won several awards, including Best Underground Hip-Hop Album at the 2011 Independent Music Awards and Best Lyricist at the 2013 BET Hip-Hop Awards.

Murs continues to bring quality hip-hop to the masses and is sure to keep fans intrigued and interested for many years to come.

Conscious West Coast Rappers

27. Jurassic 5

Jurassic 5 is an American hip hop group based in Los Angeles, California. Formed in 1993, the group consists of two DJs and four emcees.

The group is known for their conscious West Coast rap style, a style which emphasizes positive messages and the use of creative sampling. Their music is often upbeat and often incorporates humor, as well as elements of funk, soul, and Latin music.

Jurassic 5 has released four critically acclaimed albums, and their hit songs include “Quality Control” and “What’s Golden.”

The group is seen as a major influence on the West Coast rap scene and is credited with paving the way for many contemporary West Coast hip hop acts.

28. The Pharcyde

The Pharcyde is an American hip hop group from Los Angeles, CA. They are best known for their humorous and socially conscious lyrics.

The group was formed in 1991 and consists of four core members, Imani, Bootie Brown, Slimkid3, and Fatlip.

The Pharcyde has released three studio albums, Bizarre Ride II the Pharcyde, Labcabincalifornia, and Humboldt Beginnings.

Throughout their career, they have collaborated with a variety of producers and artists such as J Dilla, Free The Robots, and Jazzy Jeff.

The Pharcyde are widely regarded as one of the most influential and innovative hip hop groups of their era, as their music and style have been highly influential in the development of alternative hip hop.

29. Souls of Mischief

Souls of Mischief is an American Hip Hop group from Oakland, California. The group is composed of four emcees, A-Plus, Opio, Phesto, and Tajai, who met in high school and have been recording together since 1993.

Their debut album, ’93 ’til Infinity, was released on Jive Records in 1993 and is considered a classic West Coast Hip Hop album and a cornerstone of the West Coast Hip Hop sound.

Since then, Souls of Mischief have released a total of five albums, with the most recent being 2015’s There Is Only Now, which features guest appearances from Busta Rhymes, Talib Kweli, and Snoop Dogg.

Despite not achieving mainstream success, Souls of Mischief have been praised by critics and dedicated fans alike for their lyrical dexterity and their production. They are an important part of Hip Hop history, and their influence can be heard in many of today’s rappers.

30. Dilated Peoples

Dilated Peoples is an American hip hop group from Los Angeles, California, formed in 1992. Consisting of rappers Evidence, Rakaa, and DJ Babu, the group has released five studio albums, two collaboration albums, and multiple singles.

Their most well-known songs include “This Way”, “Worst Comes to Worst”, and “You Can’t Hide, You Can’t Run”. The group has been praised for their lyrical complexity and musical diversity, blending together different genres and incorporating samples from a variety of sources.

They are credited for helping to bring the West Coast underground hip hop scene to mainstream attention.

Dilated Peoples have stayed true to their roots, continuing to put out powerful and relevant music that reflects the issues facing their community and the world.

31. Blackalicious

Blackalicious is a California-based hip-hop duo made up of rapper Gift of Gab and producer Chief Xcel. The duo has been making music together since the early 90s and has been widely praised for their creative and lyrically complex tracks.

Their most well-known single, “Alphabet Aerobics,” is a tongue-twisting demonstration of rap skills that has been viewed millions of times on YouTube.

The group’s debut album, Nia, released in 1999, is considered a classic in underground hip-hop circles. Blackalicious has also released four additional albums, further cementing their place in hip-hop history.

Their music is widely respected for its poetic and thoughtful lyrics, its creative production, and its strong socially conscious messages. Blackalicious is a truly unique and influential voice in the hip-hop world.

Contemporary West Coast Rappers

32. YG

YG is a prominent rapper from the West Coast, and one of the biggest names in contemporary rap. He rose to fame with his song “Toot It and Boot It” in 2010, and since then has released a steady stream of hits, including “My Nigga”, “Big Bank”, and “Go Loko”.

YG is known for his hard-hitting and aggressive style of rapping, often tackling gritty and controversial topics with a lyrical ferocity.

His music speaks to the struggles of his native Compton, California, and he has become an influential figure for many in the hip hop community.

YG’s dedication to his craft has earned him respect among both mainstream and underground fans, and has helped to shape the face of modern West Coast rap.

33. Vince Staples

Vince Staples is an American rapper, singer, and songwriter from Long Beach, California. He rose to prominence with the release of his critically acclaimed debut album Summertime ’06 in 2015.

Since then, he has released several mixtapes and albums, collaborating with some of the biggest names in hip-hop and proving himself as one of the most talented and versatile rappers in the game.

Staples is known for his lyrical complexity, often shedding light on social and political issues. In addition to his music, Staples is also a political activist, using his platform to bring awareness to issues such as racism, police brutality, and poverty.

His uncompromising approach to rap music has been praised by fans and critics alike, and he is regarded as one of the most important voices in rap today.

34. Roddy Ricch

Roddy Ricch is an American rapper who has become one of the most successful artists in the rap genre. He is best known for his hit song “The Box”, which topped the US Billboard Hot 100 chart and reached number 1 in more than 20 countries.

He is also the mastermind behind the Grammy-winning album “Please Excuse Me For Being Antisocial”.

Ricch’s success can be attributed to his lyrical skills and unique style. His music often combines melodic singing and rapping with inspiring stories of his life and struggles. He is also known for his use of spoken word and resounding 808s.

Ricch is also a philanthropist. He has contributed to charities such as The Boys and Girls Club of America and the Los Angeles Dream Center. He has also been an advocate for mental health awareness and has spoken out about his own struggles with anxiety.

35. Saweetie

Saweetie, also known as Diamonté Quiava Valentin Harper, is an American hip-hop artist and songwriter. She is best known for her breakout hit single, “Icy Girl”, which was released in March 2018.

Since then, her music has landed on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, and she has collaborated with numerous other artists and producers.

She has also released a number of EPs, such as ‘High Maintenance’ and ‘Icy’. Saweetie is known for her unique take on rap, with lyrics that combine humor and realness into a catchy sound.

She has become a well-known figure in hip-hop, and her unique style has attracted fans from all around the world. With her diverse range of music, Saweetie is sure to continue creating memorable tracks for years to come.

36. Blueface

Blueface is an American rapper from Los Angeles, California, who has become one of the hottest budding hip-hop stars in the game. He first gained mainstream attention for his song “Thotiana,” which has since become a platinum-selling hit.

His latest single, “Bussdown,” has been streamed over 11 million times on Spotify alone since it was released in 2019.

In addition to his chart-topping singles, Blueface has been featured on tracks with some of the biggest names in music, including Drake, Cardi B, and Lil Baby.

His unique style and delivery are what separate him from the rest, as he effortlessly switches from singing to rapping and back again.

He has skyrocketed to the top of the hip-hop and rap charts in a very short time and is quickly becoming an artist to watch.

West Coast Rappers with a Unique Style

37. Mac Dre

Mac Dre was an influential rapper from the West Coast who had a unique style unlike any other. Hailing from the Bay Area of California, he quickly gained fame as a rapper and had a style that was heavily influenced by funk, hip-hop, and old-school rap.

He was known for his frenetic delivery and his ability to craft catchy hooks using samples from classic funk and soul records.

His lyrical content often focused on the struggles of the urban experience and the glory of having a good time.

His album, Young Black Brotha, is widely considered one of the most important West Coast rap albums of its era and showcased his unique talent. Mac Dre tragically passed away in 2004, but his impact on the music scene will always be remembered.

38. Andre Nickatina

Andre Nickatina is an American rapper and producer from San Francisco, California. He is regarded as one of the best Bay Area rappers of all time and is well-known for his lyrical prowess and distinct voice.

He debuted in the mid-90s with his first album The New Jim Jones, and has since released over thirty albums and mixtapes.

Nickatina has collaborated with other iconic Bay Area rappers such as Too Short, E-40, Mac Dre, and Andre Nickatina has even been featured in films such as Friday After Next.

His music is known for its humorous yet conscious content, catchy hooks, and clever wordplay. Nickatina is a respected figure in hip-hop culture and has gained a loyal cult following throughout the years.

39. E-40

E-40 is a highly acclaimed American rapper and entrepreneur from Vallejo, California. He is widely known for his distinct lyrical style and energetic delivery, as well as his extensive use of slang.

E-40 has been active in the hip-hop scene since 1986 and has released 25 solo studio albums, four collaboration albums, and four mixtapes.

He is a founding member of the rap group The Click, and has collaborated with several prominent hip-hop and R&B artists, including Too Short, Snoop Dogg, and T-Pain.

To date, E-40 has sold millions of records worldwide and has earned multiple Grammy Award nominations for his work.

As a businessman, he has launched his own record labels, Sick Wid It Records and Heavy on the Grind Entertainment, as well as his own energy drink company, Earl Stevens Selections.

His impact on the hip-hop genre has been recognized by many of his peers, and he is regarded as one of the most influential rappers of all time.

40. Earl Sweatshirt

Earl Sweatshirt is an American rapper, record producer, and songwriter from Los Angeles, California. He is best known for being a member of the hip-hop collective Odd Future, as well as his solo career.

He released his debut album “Doris” in 2013, which was highly praised by critics and fans alike. His music has been described as emotionally honest, dark and intense, and his style has been described as abstract and experimental.

His most recent album “Some Rap Songs” was released in 2018 to critical acclaim. Earl Sweatshirt is a remarkable artist and a unique voice in the rap game, and has established himself as one of the most exciting and important artists of this generation.

41. Rapsody

Rapsody is a rap artist from North Carolina who has been making waves in the hip-hop industry since her debut album, The Idea of Beautiful, was released in 2012.

She has gone on to receive critical acclaim for her thought-provoking rhymes and hard-hitting production.

Her lyrics often focus on themes of justice, equality, and empowerment while addressing real-life issues such as police brutality, racism, and sexism.

She has become an inspiration to women in hip-hop and a beacon of hope for the future of rap music.

Rapsody has also collaborated with some of the biggest names in the game, including Kendrick Lamar, Anderson .Paak, Chance the Rapper, and J. Cole.

With her incredible talent, she has been able to take the rap world by storm and become one of the most successful female rappers of modern times.

Underground and Cult Favorite West Coast Rappers

42. Freestyle Fellowship

Freestyle Fellowship is an underground hip-hop group from Los Angeles, California, and have been active since 1990. The group is composed of emcees Myka 9, Aceyalone, Self Jupiter, and P.E.A.C.E.

They are widely considered to be one of the most influential and important West Coast underground rap groups, and have released several highly acclaimed albums throughout their career, such as “Innercity Griots” and “Temptations”.

Their music is characterized by its focus on storytelling, intricate rhyme patterns, and abstract lyricism. Their influence has been felt in the works of many successful rap acts, including Jurassic 5, Dilated Peoples and The Pharcyde.

Freestyle Fellowship is one of the most respected West Coast rap groups, and their cult following and passionate fan base will ensure they are remembered as a major force in West Coast hip-hop.

43. Living Legends

Living Legends is an American hip hop group from California, originally formed in 1993. The group consists of artists Aesop Rock, Eligh, Luckyiam, Murs, Scarub, and The Grouch.

They are known for their unique sound and collaborations with renowned artists such as The Roots, Jurassic 5, and Del the Funky Homosapien.

With over 20 years in the game, Living Legends is considered one of the most influential hip hop groups in the West Coast scene.

They have released numerous studio albums, mixtapes and EPs, and have achieved critical acclaim for their lyrical composition and socially conscious content.

Living Legends are respected not only for their music, but for their commitment to promote equality and justice in their communities.

Through their music, they have helped create awareness about important social issues and encouraged young people to become more involved in their communities.

As a group, their unique style and blending of different sounds has enabled them to push the boundaries of traditional hip hop and make a lasting impact.

44. Planet Asia

Planet Asia is a rapper from Fresno, California who is best known for his inventive lyrical flow and clever wordplay. He has been active as an artist since 1998, and has released a number of widely praised solo albums as well as collaborations with other rappers.

His distinct sound is rooted in classic East Coast hip hop, but with a modern twist inspired by West Coast rap.

His lyrics are often reflective of his upbringing in a tough neighborhood, and he is unafraid to touch on more serious topics such as racism and police brutality.

He has also been praised for his work in promoting Asian-American representation in the hip hop scene. Planet Asia is an underrated and often overlooked talent who deserves more recognition for his contributions to the genre.

45. Zion I

Zion I is a hip hop duo based in Oakland, California. The group consists of rapper Baba Zumbi and producer Amp Live. Their music has been described as a conscious hip hop that is a combination of jazz, funk and hip hop with socially conscious lyrics.

Zion I has released eight studio albums, two EPs, three collaboration albums and several compilations. Zion I’s sound is a blend of classic hip hop and live instrumentation combined with smooth, melodic vocals.

The duo has been praised for their lyrical content and thought-provoking messages on social issues. Zion I has been featured in publications such as Rolling Stone, The Source, and XXL.

Their music has been featured in films and television shows and they have also performed at several high-profile festivals, including South By Southwest, Bonnaroo, and Electric Zoo.

46. Busdriver

Busdriver is an experimental hip hop artist from Los Angeles, California. He has been active in the rap scene since the early 2000s, and is known for his unconventional approach to the genre.

His style commonly combines a rapid delivery with a variety of topics and subject matter that often contain socio-political themes.

Busdriver’s unique lyrical style has garnered him a large and dedicated fan base over the years, and his albums have been acclaimed by critics.

He has also collaborated with a variety of other notable artists, including The Alchemist, Aesop Rock, and Open Mike Eagle.

Busdriver’s music has been described as both thought-provoking and edgy, and he is considered to be one of the most influential hip hop artists of his generation.

West Coast Rap Groups and Collectives

47. Cypress Hill

Cypress Hill is an American hip-hop group formed in South Gate, California, in 1988, made up of rappers B-Real, Sen Dog, DJ Muggs, and percussionist Eric Bobo.

Since their formation, they have been credited as the first Latino rap group to have a major influence on mainstream music, and have had a number of hit singles, including ‘Insane in the Brain’ and ‘Hits from the Bong’.

Their sound blends elements of hip-hop, Latin beats and metal, and their lyrics often address themes of social injustice, drug abuse and gang life.

Consequently, they have achieved significant notoriety as anti-establishment icons, and the group has been credited with helping to bring Latin music to the forefront of popular culture.

48. Tha Dogg Pound

Tha Dogg Pound is a rap duo consisting of Daz Dillinger and Kurupt. The duo formed in 1992 and since then have been a force to be reckoned with in the rap industry.

They have released a number of critically acclaimed albums, including their debut album Dogg Food (1995) and the double-album Tha Dogg Pound 2002: Tha Last Great Release (2002).

From their dynamic and distinct rhymes, to their unique production, Tha Dogg Pound has consistently put out quality music that has been widely appreciated by fans.

They have also collaborated with artists such as Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, and 2pac, further demonstrating the duo’s influence and breadth of talent.

Tha Dogg Pound stands as one of the most influential rap acts of the 90s and 2000s, and their legacy will continue to live on for many years to come.

49. Westside Connection

Westside Connection is a rap supergroup founded in 1996 consisting of Ice Cube, Mack 10, and WC. They released their debut album ‘Bow Down’ in 1996 which was an instant success, becoming certified platinum by the RIAA.

The album was characterized by its aggressive political lyrics and themes, which were heavily influenced by Ice Cube’s political background. The group was a pioneer in the rap scene and was one of the first groups to bring street rap to the mainstream.

They released two more albums before disbanding in 2005, with the group’s members focusing on their respective solo careers. While the group may have disbanded, their influence on the hip-hop scene can still be seen today.

50. Brotha Lynch Hung

Brotha Lynch Hung is an American rapper from Sacramento, California who has been active in the rap music industry since the early 1990s. He is best known for his very unique lyrical content which often focuses on gore, violence, and black humor.

His style of rapping has been compared to that of horror films, and his production is characterized by intense, gritty and bass-heavy beats.

He has released several studio albums, including Season of da Siccness, which is widely regarded as a classic in West Coast hip hop.

He is also well known for his collaborative efforts with other artists, such as Tech N9ne, Insane Clown Posse and Twiztid.

In addition to his solo career, he has also been involved in various side projects and has made numerous guest appearances on other albums. His influence in the music industry continues to be felt today, and he remains a highly respected rapper.

51. Digital Underground

Digital Underground is an iconic American hip-hop group that has been making music since the late 1980s. The group is renowned for their unique style, blending funk, soul, and hip-hop to create a sound that is unique and instantly recognizable.

They are perhaps best known for the hit single “The Humpty Dance,” which was released in 1990 and reached the top 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

They have since released several albums and singles and have toured extensively, developing a strong following along the way.

The group has also been praised for their role in introducing new artists and styles to the hip hop world. Digital Underground remains an important and influential presence in the rap and hip hop scenes, both as an artist and as an influence.

Underrated West Coast Rappers

52. Xzibit

Xzibit is an underrated West Coast rapper from Detroit, Michigan, who has been in the rap game since the mid-90s. Xzibit is best known for his hit single, X, which was released in 1998.

Since then, Xzibit has gone on to have a successful career, releasing five studio albums, four of which have gone gold or platinum in the US.

His music is a unique blend of hip-hop, funk, and soul, which always keeps the listener entertained.

Xzibit has also appeared in numerous films and television projects, including his own reality show, Pimp My Ride. He is an important figure in the West Coast rap scene, and his influence can still be felt today.

53. MC Eiht

MC Eiht is a well-known rapper from Los Angeles, California. He is best known for his work with the rap group Compton’s Most Wanted. He has been in the rap game since the early 80’s and has become a staple in the West Coast rap scene.

Throughout his career, his lyrics have often focused on street issues and gang violence in the inner-city. In 1994, he released his debut solo album, We Come Strapped, which featured the hit single “Gotta Get Mine”.

He has since gone on to release several more solo albums and collaborate on various projects with other prominent West Coast rap artists. MC Eiht is a respected figure in the rap game and continues to be an influential force in the West Coast rap scene.

54. Spice 1

Spice 1 is a legendary American rapper from the Bay Area of California. He is most known for his hardcore street lyrics and his collaborations with other Bay Area hip-hop rappers such as E-40, Too Short, and 2Pac.

Spice 1 has been a major influence in the Bay Area rap scene since his debut in 1991 with his album “187 He Wrote”. He has since released more than 25 albums, many of which are considered classics.

His music is often cited for its gritty, hardcore raps and its focus on the realities of inner-city life.

Spice 1 has also achieved commercial success, his single “Jealous Got Me Strapped” reaching #3 on the Billboard Rap Singles chart. His influence on the Bay Area rap scene continues to be felt today, with many of the newer artists citing Spice 1 as an inspiration.

55. C-Bo

C-Bo is an influential rapper from Sacramento, California who has been active in the hip-hop scene since the early 1990s. He is well-known for his hard-hitting, aggressive lyrics and his affiliation with the notorious rap label, Thug Life Records.

Throughout his career, C-Bo has released a number of solo albums and collaborations with other popular artists. His debut album, Tales from the Crypt, sold over 500,000 copies and was certified gold.

He is also known for his use of controversial topics and his defiant stance against police brutality, drug use, and gang violence.

C-Bo has been credited with bringing hardcore West Coast rap to the mainstream and influencing numerous artists in the hip-hop genre. His legacy in the rap game is undeniable, and his influence will continue to be felt for many years to come.

56. B.G. Knocc Out & Dresta

B.G. Knocc Out & Dresta are two hip-hop artists from Compton, California. They are most well known for their 1995 hit single, “Real Brothas,” which was a response to the gangsta rap of the time.

The duo has been consistently active since the early 1990s, releasing several albums and mixtapes over the years.

Their lyrical content and style of production are often compared to the likes of N.W.A., Eazy-E, and Dr. Dre.

The duo has received critical acclaim for their contribution to the West Coast hip-hop scene and has collaborated with some of the biggest names in the genre. B.G. Knocc Out & Dresta are widely considered one of the most important and influential duos in hip-hop history.


In conclusion, the West Coast continues to be a major influence in hip-hop and rap music. For over 40 years, its boundary-breaking artists have pushed musical boundaries and created an iconic sound that has shaped the industry for generations.

From Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, Cypress Hill, Tupac Shakur to Kendrick Lamar and Snoop Dogg, West Coast rappers have consistently produced some of the most influential and critically acclaimed music in hip-hop history.

With each new generation of talent emerging from this region, it is clear that the legacy of West Coast rap will continue to thrive for decades to come.


Who are some of the most famous west coast rappers?

Some of the most famous west coast rappers include Snoop Dogg, Kendrick Lamar, Tupac, Ice Cube, and Dr. Dre.

When did the west coast hip-hop scene emerge?

West coast hip-hop began to emerge in the early 1980s, with the rise of gangsta rap groups such as N.W.A.

What was the influence of west coast rap on the wider hip-hop scene?

West coast rap had a significant influence on the wider hip-hop scene, with its distinctive style and sound becoming widely adopted by hip-hop artists around the world. Its influence can be seen in the production techniques and lyrical content of many rap songs today.

What is the most popular west coast rap album of all time?

The most popular west coast rap album of all time is Dr. Dre’s ‘The Chronic’, which was released in 1992. It has sold over five million copies and is considered one of the most influential rap albums of all time.


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