The future of music

25 Best Kentucky Rappers (Most Famous)

December 15, 2023
kentucky rappers

I’ve curated a list of the best Kentucky rappers, spotlighting the most famous and influential artists emerging from the Bluegrass State.

This article is a showcase of Kentucky’s unique contributions to the rap scene, highlighting the talents and distinct styles of its homegrown artists.

Top Kentucky rappers

  • Jack Harlow
  • Rubi Rose
  • R Prophet
  • BBlasian
  • Static Major
  • Bryson Tiller
  • Wuntayk Timmy
  • Vory
  • RA Scion
  • Heavy Honcho

1. Jack Harlow

Few rappers can boast of the meteoric rise that Jack Harlow has witnessed in recent years. 

And that makes him the first name in many people’s minds when talking about the best Kentucky rappers.

He’s become one of the hottest prospects in the rap industry, with songs that many hip-hop lovers can’t get over. 

Jack started his career in 2015 with multiple EPs and mix tapes before taking a significant leap with the Don Cannon record label.

He’s released several hits throughout his career, including “What’s Poppin’ which became one of the most popular hip-hop songs of 2020.

The remixed version featured rappers Tory Lanez, Lil Wayne, and DaBaby and peaked at #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. 

By the way, have you listened to Jack’s “First Class” hit from his 2022 Come Home the Kids Miss You album? 

You don’t want to miss that. 

2. Rubi Rose

Lexington-born female rapper Rubi Rose is an alumnus of Georgia State University, where she pursued politics.

She’s mentioned the likes of Michael Jackson, Marvin Gaye, Megan Thee Stallion, Nicki Minaj, and Cardi B as her biggest inspirations throughout a career that spans about seven years.

Rubi first rose to fame after appearing in the Migo’s “Bad and Boujee” hit.

After releasing a remixed version of Playboi Carti’s “On Top” hit, she attracted even more attention and has since built an impressive career in the hip-hop industry.

Rose also became popular after appearing on Cardi B’s “Wap.”

Her signature song, “For the Streets,” became a massive hit in 2020 thanks to its relatable lyrics. 

3. R Prophet

Kenneth Ryan Anthony, commonly known as R Prophet, is an Oakland-born American rapper who rose to fame as a member of the famous Southern rap group Nappy Roots.

He moved to Kentucky in 1985 and has been one of the most popular figures from the Bluegrass state. 

Anthony crafted his acting skills while at Youth Performing Arts School.

He later advanced to Western Kentucky University, where he perfected his music career.

As a member of Nappy Roots, the Kentucky native released the highly successful Watermelon, Chicken & Gritz album in 2002.

R Prophet has won multiple awards with the Kentucky-based hip-hop group.

As a solo artist, he’s released several singles, including the famous “Run Tell The DJ To Crank It.”

4. BBlasian

The next name on our list is the Louisville-born rapper who found success with his authentic lyrics.

BBlasian started his music career in 2017 and has always met his fans’ expectations.

He made the best of earlier successes to build a loyal following in the hip-hop industry.

Today, he’s one of the first names that comes to mind when talking about the best Kentucky rappers. 

5. Static Major

Static Major might not be an actual rapper, but he’s done so much to Kentucky’s entertainment industry that should never go under the radar.

He is a Louisville-born singer, songwriter, and record producer who started his career with the Playa R&B trio.

He’s best known as a prolific songwriter who’s composed excellent lyrics for Destiny’s Child, Pretty Ricky, Aaliyah, and Ginuwine.

Sadly, Static Major died in 2008 from medical complications at only 33.

His discography includes “Bus Stop Breezy,” “Till the Wheels Fall Off,” and “I Got My.”

6. Bryson Tiller

The next artist on this list has a close relationship with Wuntayk Timmy.

Bryson Tiller is another Louisville-born rapper who launched his career in 2011.

He got off to a perfect start with his Killer Instinct Vol 1 mix tape before following it up with a highly successful 2015 single, “Don’t.”

His first studio album, Trapsoul (2015), was another success, reaching the top 10 on the Billboard 200.

Bryson continued his success by featuring in Rihanna’s “Wild Thoughts,” further confirming him as one of the best rappers from Kentucky. 

Tiller has won multiple accolades, including 4 BET Awards, two iHeartRadio Music Awards, and a Soul Train Award. 

7. Wuntayk Timmy

Wuntayk Timmy is one of those Kentucky rappers who deserve more attention from hip-hop music lovers than they actually have. 

He oozes confidence and has shone in his brief career with his matchless charisma and memorable flow.

Timmy is everything the future of the Kentucky rap industry should be built on.

You can listen to some of his best songs, such as “So Goat,” “My Name,” and “Weight for U,” to appreciate the beauty of Kentucky hip hop. 

8. Vory

Tavoris Javon Hollins Jr. is another popular figure in the Kentucky rap scene who won a Grammy Award for his contributions to Jay-Z and Beyoncé’s Everything Is Love studio album.

He’s also remembered for his role in Kanye West’s 10th studio album, Donda.

9. RA Scion

RA Scion, born Ryan Abeo in Louisville in 1974, is one of the veterans in the Kentucky rap scene who started his career in the early 2000s.

Ryan has been writing lyrics since he was 12, having discovered his rapping talent at a young age.

Such was his love for music that he dropped out of school to pursue his rapping career.

He found his breakthrough after relocating to Seattle and meeting DJ Sabzi, a prolific music producer from the early 2000s. 

Since then, RA Scion has released five studio albums, five EPs, and several singles.

10. Heavy Honcho

Heavy Honcho is another Kentucky rapper who’s succeeded in the modern rap industry, especially on platforms like SoundCloud.

He’s one of the fastest-rising names in the American rap industry since debuting in 2019 with “Feel My Pain.”

Heavy Honcho’s best songs describe his upbringing in Kentucky with lyrics that resonate with many locals.

With a growing fanbase every day, he’s well-placed to rule the Kentucky rap scene for years. 

11. EST Gee

George Albert Stone III, also known as EST Gee, is a Louisville native who charted on the Billboard 200 with his Bigger Than Life or Death mix tape.

He’s affiliated with Yo Gotti’s Collective Music Group (CMG) and is best known for the songs “5500 Degrees” and “Lick Back.”

An alumnus of St. Xavier High School, EST Gee started his rapping career while on house arrest.

He was inspired by rapper Lil Baby and started his career with the stage name Big Gee before switching to the now-famous EST Gee.

His 3rd mix tape, Ion Feel Nun, was the major turning point in his career, earning mainstream attention that ultimately pushed him to the top. 

12. Deacon The Villain

Deacon The Villain is another Kentucky-born rapper and record producer who’s worked with King Tee, KRS-One, and J-Ro.

He’s a long-time buddy of the famous American writer and activist Jeffrey Shaun King, who attended the same school in Versailles, Kentucky.

Deacon’s discography includes a studio album, two collaborative albums, and ten guest appearances. 

13. ZaZa

Is there any excuse not to listen to this 8-year-old rapping sensation from Lexington, Kentucky?

Zahara Noel Bean is a promising social media icon who became popular on Instagram with her dancing and rapping talents. 

She boasts over a million Instagram followers and still entertains her fans with her flawless lyricism for her young age. 

14. Finis “KY” White (KY Engineering) 

It would be unfair to leave out the hip hop sound engineer Finis “KY” White when listing the best rappers from Kentucky.

While he isn’t a rapper, the Kentucky native has worked with some of the biggest names in the hip-hop world, including Meek Mill, Rick Ross, Drake, and 2 Chainz.

From his days as a homeless man to becoming one of Kentucky’s best-ever record producers, Finis’ success story is nothing if not inspiring. 

Even at the pinnacle of his career, he still holds that matchless drive to create good music.

15. Troy Money

Troy Money needs no introduction to the Kentucky rap scene, having started his journey at a young age.

He’s cemented his legacy with witty and authentic lyrics, often rapping about real-life experiences.

Troy also doubles as an entrepreneur. 

The rapper’s tough childhood prepared him for his ultimate breakthrough, having seen his father spend over ten years in prison for a criminal offense. 

Growing up, he played in many sports but never hid his love for rapping, a dream he’s finally realized and lived for nearly a decade. 

16. Chuckie Campbell 

Chuckie Campbell is a musician, fiction writer, editor, educator, and publisher who grew up in Richmond, Kentucky. 

He went to Madison Central High School, where he excelled as a basketball player.

Campbell is also a promising hip-hop artist, winning two All WNY Music Awards in 2014 for Best Rapper/Hip-Hop Performer and Best New Artist. 

17. Skinny DeVille

Skinny DeVille of Nappy Roots is among the greatest Kentucky rappers in 2023.

He’s worked on many songs such as “No Static,” “Sick & Tired,” and “Good Day,” and is described as “the philosopher” of the southern alternative hip hop group. 

18. Ron Clutch 

Ron Clutch is among the founding members of the Nappy Roots rap group, best known for hits like “Awnaw,” “Po’ Folks,” and “Good Day.”

He grew up in Kentucky with an unmatched love for music and art and has become one of the best rappers from the region. 

19. Big V

Big V is another legendary artist who deserves a special mention among the best Kentucky rappers.

He was a long-time member of Nappy Roots and found success with hip-hop and UK rap genres.

Big V is a Bowling Green native who attended Western Kentucky University. 

20. B Stille

Everybody associates B. Stille with the iconic Nappy Roots, one of the best alternative Southern rap groups of the 90s. 

He was born in 1979 as Brian Scott and attended the Louisville Male High School and Western Kentucky University.

B. Stille has had a successful career as a solo artist and as a member of the Nappy Roots group, grabbing attention with his unique, raspy voice and clever wordplay in most of his songs. 

He mentions Kenny Rogers, OutKast, Busta Rhymes, and Ice Cube as his biggest inspirations. 

21. E The Profit

E The Profit is an Elsmere native ranked among the best up-and-coming Kentucky rappers.

The rapper is among the new crop of artists creating a name for themselves in Kentucky with songs that will easily earn them new fans. 

Some of his best hits include “R.T.T.B,” “Evergreen,” and “Beat Em Down.”

22. Lil 30

Lil 30 is another new name in the Kentucky rap scene who’s becoming better at his craft every day.

He’s only been around since 2021 but is already making bold moves in the rap game with eyes firmly set on leaving his mark on the Kentucky rap scene.

You can bet on him to rule the hip-hop charts in the coming years. 

23. 2forwOyNE

2forwOyNE is one of Louisville’s most precious gifts, having risen to fame in 2017 through Jack Harlow’s “Dark Knight.”

He is a member of Harlow’s Private Garden collective and started his career playing instruments before switching to rap.

He describes his music as an indie-soul fusion and mentions the likes of Frank Ocean and Andree 3000 as his biggest influences. 

24. 2K Baby

2K Baby is one of the best up-and-coming Kentucky rappers who’s only become bigger and better since going viral with his “Old Streets” freestyle.

Born in 2000, the Louisville native previously used the Lil Sage stage name before making a name for himself in his native Louisville.

The Kentucky rapper is known for his passionate and somewhat emotional songs centered on real-life struggles.

His early experiences shaped his rapping career, having witnessed the struggles of his childhood friends, with some going to prison. 

His debut EP, Pregame Rituals, features G Herbo, YFN Lucci, and Lil Durk. 

25. DBenzo

Lexington-born DBenzo is another rapper to watch in the Kentucky rap scene.

He is one of the many names to have found success with a blend of hip-hop and R&B, bringing a unique sound that has earned him many followers in the rap scene.

DBenzo cites Lil Wayne as one of his biggest influences.

Best Kentucky Rappers – Final Thoughts

Kentucky rappers are massively underrated, considering some of the big names from the beautiful Southern state are already leaving their mark on America’s hip hop.

Jack Harlow is arguably the biggest name from the Bluegrass state right now.

But as you can see, the list is quickly expanding, with new names like 2K Baby already setting the pace for upcoming rappers. 

From DBenzo to Rubi Rose, we hope you will find this guide to the 25 best Kentucky rappers useful. 

You may also like: Best Rappers of All Time

Will Fenton

Will, the founder of MIDDER, is a multifaceted individual with a deep passion for music and personal finance. As a self-proclaimed music and personal finance geek, he has a keen eye for futuristic technologies, especially those that empower creators and the public.

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