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Top 10 Female Rappers

VO: Rebecca Brayton
Script written by Tanina Drvar. In the male-dominated world of hip-hop, these femcees really know how to drop a rhyme. Join WatchMojo.com as we count down our picks for the top 10 female rappers. For this list, we’ve looked at solo artists and girl groups as a whole and based our choices on a mix of their talent, recognition, and success. Warning: some of these clips contain explicit language and mature subject matter. Special thanks to our users Mattyhull1, jonmday87, shelbylocker, Mrslick1, Taylor TLK, Ricky Watts, DesiredSounds, Erica Jones and NightSpectre for submitting the idea on our Suggestions Page at WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Transcript
Script written by Tanina Drvar.

Top 10 Female Rappers


In the male-dominated world of hip-hop, these femcees really know how to drop a rhyme. Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 female rappers.

For this list, we’ve looked at solo artists and girl groups as a whole and based our choices on a mix of their talent, recognition, and success. Warning: some of these clips contain explicit language and mature subject matter.

#10: The Lady of Rage

The Lady of Rage is known for her incomparable flow and raw talent. Unlike other female MCs who cloak themselves in sex appeal, Robin Yvette Allen earns her rapping cred solely through her skills on the microphone. After collaborating with Dr. Dre and Snoop Dog on their respective albums, she shot into the spotlight rocking “rough and tough with her Afro Puffs” in 1994. Her much-anticipated solo album, Necessary Roughness, was released in 1997 to critical acclaim, cementing her role as an MC to be reckoned with.

#9: Nicki Minaj

One of the most inescapable female rappers in the game these days, Nicki Minaj has been enjoying incredible success since her 2010 debut album Pink Friday. Her crazy fast flow, word play, fashion-forward costumes, alter egos and accents, notably the British Cockney featured on “Super Bass”, have given Minaj a distinctive style all her own. While some describe her MC-ing as bubblegum rap, there is no denying that Minaj’s album sales have made her one of the most successful women in the business.

#8: Foxy Brown

Often compared to friend and eventual foe Lil’ Kim, Foxy Brown came onto the scene when she was still just a teen. Scantily clad and spewing raunchy lyrics, Foxy Brown’s performances mainly focused on her sex appeal. But, there’s no denying the lady still has serious flow. The former model can be heard on some of hip-hop’s biggest hits, including Jay-Z’s “Ain’t no N***as” and LL Cool J’s “I Shot Ya”. Her sexually charged single “I’ll Be” spread like wildfire on the radio, telling the hip-hop world to take notice: Ill Na Na had arrived.

#7: Lil’ Kim

Lil’ Kim stands out for her lewd lyrics, in-your-face sexuality, and outrageous personality. Taken under the late Notorious B.I.G’s wing, Lil’ Kim joined hip-hop group Junior M.A.F.I.A. when she was still just a teen. Young and eager, Lil’ Kim learned as much as she could from her late friend and mentor, who helped jumpstart her solo career. After collaborating with various artists, she began releasing solo albums, three of which have gone platinum, making Queen Bee the only female rapper, along with Missy Elliott, to achieve that feat.

#6: Lisa ‘Left Eye’ Lopes

One third of the hugely popular and much-loved group TLC, Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes had an originality to her that cannot be forgotten. Injecting her dynamic rhymes into the girl group’s hit singles, Left Eye was one of the most outspoken rap artists at the time. Sporting her signature condom glasses, Lopes was an advocate of safe sex, something that wasn’t spoken about so openly back in the early ‘90s. Meanwhile, her flamboyant personality and her creative rhymes have given her a place in hip-hop history.

#5: Eve

Edgy and fashion-forward, the first lady of the Ruff Ryders proved that she could throw down with the best of them. A true triple threat, Eve is a superb songwriter, a talented MC and an actress. Her solo hits, including “Let Me Blow Ya Mind” with Gwen Stefani and “Gangsta Lovin’” with Alicia Keys have made Eve a household name. Her uniqueness and mass appeal have skyrocketed this Philly MC’s career to super heights, and have secured her a place in the canon of hip-hop music.

#4: Queen Latifah

No conversation about hip-hop is complete without a nod to the Queen herself. One of hip-hop’s most iconic MCs, Queen Latifah has been in the game for the better part of three decades. Her earlier tracks like “U.N.I.T.Y” feature a young Latifah addressing hip-hop’s disrespect of women. Meanwhile, her strong voice, lyrical style and engaging rhymes have made the multi-talented artist an inspiration to generations of female MCs and have helped redefine the role of women in hip-hop. Now that’s true hip-hop royalty.

#3: Missy Elliott

Misdemeanor is probably the most creative MC to grace the hip-hop stage. She started her career working with childhood friend and producer Timbaland on projects for Aaliyah, SWV, and many others before releasing her own solo albums. It seemed like everything Missy touched turned to gold . . . or should we say platinum. The singer-songwriter and rapper has six platinum-certified albums and numerous hits under her belt! With unbelievable visuals, sick rhymes, and catchy beats, Missy is probably one of the most avant-garde artists in the genre.

#2: Lauryn Hill

L. Boogie’s incomparable flow and intelligent lyricism, laced with her social commentary and gorgeous voice, have put her in a category all her own. From her beginnings with ‘90s group Fugees, it was clear that Ms. Hill would become a superstar. Her engaging rhymes showed that she could hold her own with the best of them and made The Score one of hip-hop’s best albums of all time. Her hugely successful solo endeavor, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, showcased her talents as a singer, songwriter, and rapper. To this day, she still remains one of the best MCs in the game, male or female.

Before we unveil our top pick, here are some honorable mentions:
- M.I.A.
- Trina
- Monie Love
- Da Brat
- Lil Mama

#1: Salt-N-Pepa

Salt-N-Pepa’s impact on rap music can still be felt today, decades after they first burst onto the scene. One of the first all female rap crews, this trio from Queens started MC-ing in the mid-‘80s and paved the way for future generations of female rappers. Hugely successful, Salt-N-Pepa are multiple award winners, including a Grammy and several MTV VMAs. They took hip-hop’s misogynistic portrayal of women and flipped it on its head. They boldly rapped about sex and men, embracing their own sexuality and power as badass women. Now that is the stuff legends are made of.

Do you agree with our list? Who are your favorite female rappers? For more dope top 10s published daily, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com!
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