The United Kingdom has long been a hot spot for undeniable musical talent and the rap genre is no exception. In the past few years, a team of talented British rappers have brought their memorable and accent-laden bars to the global hip-hop industry.
Some of the noteworthy artists leading this movement are Stormzy, Kano, and Skepta. However, there are other up-and-coming stars shifting the rap landscape in the UK that you may not have heard of! Keep scrolling for details!
Tion Wayne, who was born and raised in North London, crafted his career by incorporating a blend of energy and authenticity into the genre.
His budding ascent to the top has been marked by strategic collaborations and the right beats — and the recipe has worked so far. In 2023, he collaborated with Nines on “Amen,” a heavy-handed track laced with religious intonations and opulent visuals.
Earlier this year, he released “Healing,” which is an expository account of his career trajectory so far. The up-and-coming rapper and DJ learned the ropes from the likes of Stormzy and other popping UK recording artists.
Russ Millions, born Shylo Batchelor Ashby Milwood, came on to the UK drill rap scene ready to take it by storm, and he is doing just that.
His debut single, "Gun Lean," gave him a push in the right direction, and earned him critical acclaim. Since that release, he has put out several other projects including his 2020 releases — Russ Hour and My Son: The EP.
In early 2023, he shared a mixtape titled One of a Kind, w has gotten quite a bit of success on the UK Singles Chart so far. Russ is currently independent, which gives him a ton of creative autonomy that he plans to put to good use in the future.
"I’ve got my own record label so I just want to help out other people and I want to get my label to a place where I can do that,” Russ said in an interview with NME. “I don’t want to be the rapper or the star all the time. I want to be able to step back eventually and just run my label. That’s my goal.”
London-born AJ Tracey is another British artist who is taking the radio waves by storm. The well-enunciated independent artist has churned out tracks like “Reasonable” and “Little More Love,” which each have a captivating sonic rhythm.
The rapper has previously lent his voice to social justice causes. Additionally, he founded the AJ Tracey Fund to support the educational aspirations of Black students who attend Oxford University.
Although AJ Tracey’s career continues to blossom, he is not a “new” artist, per se.
In fact, his career has been built over the past decade and continues to flourish over time. In 2020, he won an award at the NME Awards for his track “Ladbroke Grove.”
Needless to say, it will be interesting to see what's next for these rising stars.
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