If you’re a die hard hip hop fan like myself, you love finding up and coming rappers that people haven’t yet heard about. It gives you a sense of validation, it confirms your ever-growing love for the genre. You get to tell your friends about them, spread the word of their talent and sound, and eventually when they blow up, you get to tell people you’ve been following them from the beginning. Nowadays everyone knows someone who is trying to be a rapper. Unfortunately, rap music has become a low hanging fruit that anyone with some beats and autotune can make a hit song that has little to know actual meaning or talent behind it. However, a revolution is coming. Hip hop artists of outstanding merit are rising up and looking to reclaim hip hop for the truly talented. Here are some of those largely unknown up and coming rappers that will soon blow up on the hip hop scene and demand the attention they deserve.
1. Leef Wu
21 year old Leef Wu out of Palm Beach County, is an artist who all up and coming rappers from all walks of life should take notes from. Backed by lyrics depicting a tough upbringing and less than afraid to wear his heart on his sleeve, Leef Wu makes music with a creative sound full of poetic lyricism and emotion. Though he tends to keep to himself as a person, he puts everything out there through his music and displays an unbelievable stage presence whenever he has the microphone. On top of all of that, Leef Wu is a incredible producer, making most of his own beats, and producing music for plenty of other up and coming rappers as well. Look out for Leef Wu’s debut album “Color More” arriving soon on all music platforms.
2. Mute Smith
Bay Area’s very own Mute Smith is another great example for all up and coming rappers looking to further the genre in a creative and productive way. Mute Smith is currently based in Colorado and has been recording and releasing music non-stop this past year. A close friend and frequent collaborator of Leef Wu, Mute too has a catalog that displays his lyrical talent and charisma. His most recent album, “Flurries” brought happiness and reliability to folks who experience cold winters and his most recent single “Tell Me” has a unique summer vibe to it that any hip hop lover would appreciate. Mute and Leef also both appear on friend and producer Noodlepapi’s album Boilin’ Up. Check out his Soundcloud and Spotify pages and be on the lookout for more music by Mute in the future.
Maxie, a rising young talent from Los Angeles is another up and coming rapper to keep your eye on. He’s collaborated with Mute and Leef and is another example of a hip hop artist who appreciates the hard work that should be put into the craft. In Mute Smith’s song “Cry” featuring Leef Wu and Maxie, Maxie’s emotions can be heard not just through his impressive lyrical skill, but in his voice as well. I’m hoping all three of these amazing artists get together for more music in the future, as their different sounds mesh incredibly well together.
4. Low Hanging Fruit
Low Hanging Fruit is a group of two up and coming rappers named Trip and Soup and multi-talented producer Dirty Harry. Despite their name, Low Hanging Fruit creates incredible music with great lyricism, production, and overall sound. Low Hanging Fruit epitomizes the musical talent that Boulder, Colorado has to offer. They frequently perform at the Fox Theatre in Boulder, so catch a show and check out their Spotify and Soundcloud pages.
Mello is an up and coming rapper out of Boston, Massachusetts who’s aiming to put Boston on the map. I recently got the pleasure of seeing him put on a great show at the Fox Theatre in Boulder, which is ultimately how he got my attention. He’s also collaborated with Mute Smith and Maxie, as well as the late Mac Miller’s tour DJ and collaborator DJ Clockwork. Check out Mello’s most recent EP, “.WAVgoodbye” and keep an eye out for him in the future.
6. (Honorable Mention) Noodlepapi
I know Noodle mainly through his skills as a producer and collaboration with just about all of the artists on this list, so its only right he be mentioned in this article. Noodlepapi is a talented hip hop producer out of China. Now based in the United States, Noodlepapi’s emergence into the hip hop scene is important as Asian-American’s are largely underrepresented in hip hop, so talented artists like Noodle are helping to diversify and change the genre for the better. Check out his most recent album “Boilin’ Up” on all music platforms now.