The Unkut Guide To Rap Genres
Tuesday December 22nd 2009,
Filed under: Features,Not Your Average,The Unkut Guide
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There are so many different types of rap today that almost anybody’s taste can be catered to. But how do you keep up with them all? Let’s take a quick look at some of the important rap genres that are out there right now…

Shout Rap

During the mid-80’s, Shout Rap was the move. Run-DMC perfected it and thousands followed until Rakim shut that shit down with his laid-back, precise delivery on ‘Eric B. Is President’. M.O.P., Bumpy Knuckles and Willie D keep it alive to this day.

Weed Carrier Rap

You got your deal because your boy had a hit. See: Bravehearts, Drag-On, St. Lunatics, Flipmode, D-12 etc.

Whisper Rap

Some people think that Young Chris from the Young Guns invented this technique. These people are morons. LL Cool J created that shit on his first album on joints like ‘I Want You’ and, more famously, ‘I Need Love’ on the follow-up. Currently still popular with Jay-Z and Termanology.

Champagne Rap

Another LL innovation, even though it alienated most of fans on Walking Like A Panther. Puffy, who was his manager at the time, took note and re-introduced the genre to the world with Biggie and Mase five years later. Jay-Z another early adopter, has since moved onto Wine Rap.

Crazy-Ass Cracker Rap

So you’re a white guy who raps, but you don’t want to be mistaken for Vanilla Ice. Solution? Act crazy. It worked for Eminem, Cage, Necro, Everlast, RA The Rugged Man and many, many more.

Gravel-Voiced Rap

Can either involve putting on a stupid voice or just being the result of having messed-up vocal chords. Big Twins, Agallah, Rockness Monsta and Party Arty (R.I.P) are prime examples.

Nasal Rap

First debuted on by Rammelzee on ‘Beat Bop’, it was adapted by Cypress Hill and their boys Funkdoobiest during the Weed Rap explosion of the early 90’s. Most recently demonstrated by Eminem on most of Relapse.

Gutter Rap

Anything that involves rapping about hitting people in the head with bottles. Blaq Poet is a perfect example.

Coke Rap

Anything where 75% of the subject matter revolves around slinging that girl. Think The Clipse, Raekwon and Hard White.

Hipster Rap

Blame Outkast.

Emo Rap

Want to hear dudes talking about feelings, but don’t dig the nu-metal styling’s of Linken Park? Then Atmosphere and Kid Cudi might be right up your alley. Music to cut yourself to.

Backpack Rap

First popularized by Buckshot of Black Moon in the ‘Who Got The Props’ video, but it could be argued that Leaders of the New School were the first backpackers in rap. Started to die off as the indy vinyl began to fade, and was buried forever by Kanye after he started rocking Gucci backpacks.


From the days of Esham and Gangsta NIP to the Gravediggaz to Necro‘s Death Rap, rapping about cutting-up bodies in trash bags will never play out.

Macho Rap

The classic old-school style of Grandmaster Caz and Melle Mel, which was later championed by members of the original Flavor Unit such as Lakim Shabazz and Lord Alibaski.

Millionaire Rap

Really rich dudes explaining all the awesome stuff they do on the daily, when they aren’t making pointless vanity project rap albums.

Scientifical Madness Rap

Following in Jeru and Afu-Ra’s footsteps, projects from Divine Styler, Styles of Beyond and Dr. Octagon were basically just scientific manuals read-out over drum beats.

Ignorant Rap

Disco Rick, The Posion Clan, Bust Down and Awesome Dre are some pioneers in this field. More recently, OJ Da Juiceman and Gucci Mane have held down this lane.

Gun-Clap Rap

We don’t use Thug Rap or Reality Rap anymore. If you rap about Tonz ‘O Gunz…you know the rest.

Throwback Rap

Trying to rap like it was the 80’s or 90’s just because it seems ‘cool’ or ‘trendy’. The results are usually gheyer than a three dollar bill.

Disabled Rap

My bad…I mean Differently-Abled Rap. Think Rob Quest (the blind guy from Devin‘s old crew Odd Squad), Bushwick Bill (a midget who became a cyclops), the guy from the Ying Yang Twins with the gimp hand.

Space Rap

Prodigy from Mobb Deep might argue that Keith Murray was a Space Rapper, but it’s been going on since the days of electro. More recently, Mr. Lif and Lil’ Wayne have been spaced the fuck out.

Old Man Rap

Not every MC over 40 is necessarily is this category – only the dudes that bore us to tears with grown folk talk.

Jignorant Rap

When you combine a jiggy attitude with ignorant content, you get Jiggnorance. Killa Kam wins again.

Rat Rap

Anything with a reference to ‘Stop Snitching’.

Part Two

What else needs to be included?

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55 Comments so far
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Pimp Rap – Snoop Dogg, Devin the Dude, etc.

Christian Rap – I don’t think I can name one Christian Rap group..

Jazz Rap – ATCQ and De La, followed now by Jazz Liberatorz and Blu

Grandma Rap – Common (when he’s not doing electro-hop nonsense) and especially Chamillionare bc he doesn’t curse. What part the game is that?

Comment by Dom Corleone 12.22.09 @

heads up, its Rockness Monsta not Ruckness Monsta

Comment by ENIG MUE 12.22.09 @

das efx rap – everybody and they momma diggity-ed

fast rap – twista, Jay Z, Jaz O, Bone thugs

black rap – dead prez, x-clan, public enemy

singa rap – Nate Dog, Bone Thugs, Buckshot, Method?

funk rap – Dre, Redman, Lordz of the Underground

Lisp Rap – eric sermon, kool G

nahright rap – too easy?

I can’t rap – Bizzare

I really try hard rap – The Game, Chino XL

Comment by phd 12.22.09 @

lmao @ “music to cut yourself to”

Comment by Legend 12.22.09 @

Corey red, Eshon Burgundy, and Theory Hazit are some tight Christian MCs. Trust me not what you would think.Google them.

Comment by Jay 12.22.09 @

Blog-Hop : Charles Hamilton, and whoever else has chucked Eskay a few $$$

Comment by step one 12.22.09 @

I created the term Jiggnorant-Rap in 2000 to apply to classic era Ca$h Money Records and songs like Whoa as i felt J-Zone’s term of Ig’nant-Rap didn’t quite do the breathtaking displays of flossing and ignorance exhibited on them justice. Cam would definately be an excellent example, though.

I think you have to credit Champagne-Rap and Millionaire-Rap to Dr Jeckyll & Mr Hyde.

The proof : pre-LL songs like Gettin’ Money and Fast Life, the Champagne Of Rap LP front and back sleeves, Andre Harrel having the ego to book them above Run Dmc on bills, actually turning into an executive himself and being Puffy’s main inspiration.

Comment by MF 12.22.09 @

Wow – this list falls very short. Have you ever watched the Boondocks? LOL.

Misogynist Rap – Too Short, Jay-Z (early), Kurupt

Beef Rap – 50 Cent

Hyphy Rap – Yay Area

Mexican Rap – Chicanos

Really Fast Rap – Bone Thugs, Twista

Thug Rap – Reminding the audience that they are thugs

Comment by HM 12.22.09 @

Nasal > Nasel.

fantastic article

Comment by benhameen 12.22.09 @

Wow you mentioned Bust Down and Odd Squad and Gangsta Nip in one article. You fucking rule.

Ive been knocked over by women on the way to the dance floor for Bust Down’s Nasty Bitch more times than I care to count.

“Her pussyhole smells like sour cream n onions” is the definition of ignorance. or “She started to ride me, she rode me from the back I said ‘Whoa Kimosabe'”

Comment by benhameen 12.22.09 @

nerd rap

ho rap

(wack) white chick rap

minstrel rap

kiddie rap

hick rap

multiculti rap (aka NPR rap)

jock rap

frat rap

Comment by gordon gartrelle 12.22.09 @

Dude with the gimp hand is in 3-6 mafia, not Ying Yang…good list tho.

Comment by kid capo 12.22.09 @

You gotta include dyke rap and teh ghey rap if only for the fact that someone somewhere is doing that shit.

Lazer Beam Rap – pew, pew, pew
Church Rap – rappers becoming preachers
Hand Clap Rap – Swizz Beats style plus whistles
Fux Yo’ Rap – Man, fux this rap shit I am listening to rock music

Comment by Dallas' Blaxberry 12.22.09 @

how you gonna forget DMX in the gravel voiced rap category. this nigga talks like he raps.

Comment by beanoo617 12.22.09 @

Smooth Rap- Rap with a large female fanbase. Drake, Plies, Twista, Fab…

Comment by Molotov 12.22.09 @

How the fuck could you leave Joe Budden out of the Emo rap section. He basically perfected that shit. You also left Uncle Murda out of the Gutter rap category. Young Jeezy isn’t under coke rap

There nobody under Hipster rap?? Mickey Factz, Kidz In The Hall, The Knux and The Cool Kids runt that shit.

The “Disabled Rap” category is bullshit as the main subject matter of these guys doesn’t revolve around being disabled.

In summary your list needs a lot of work. Nice try though.

Comment by JohnBlack 12.22.09 @

“Intelligent Thug” Rap – People like Tragedy, sometimes Prodigy. Also crosses over into “Messiah Rap” that Nas, Rakim, Killah Priest and Trag again (check the meaning of Mahdi) get into.

Comment by lair 12.22.09 @

Nerdcore: Emcee Paul Barman

Comment by se7enthirty 12.22.09 @

THIS is why I fux with this site…

don’t forget Ghost Written Rap

where a master rhymer puts the pen to the paper and gives you a hit song…shouts to kane, kool g rap, and treach

Comment by getthesenets 12.22.09 @

Would PM Dawn be the first Emo Rap??

Comment by Beatlover 12.22.09 @


Comment by TYBO2020 12.22.09 @

drug rap. dudes who actually use drugs and then rap (and as we all know, weed is not a drug.)
not to be confused with coke raps of course.

Comment by clocksuckaz 12.22.09 @

cinema rap:

Slick Rick

Comment by dockevoc 12.22.09 @

I love him to death(pause) but yu gotta put joe budden in that emo category

Comment by I'm me 12.22.09 @

School Rap – Kris Kross, because they missed the bus.

Comment by Stixxx 12.22.09 @

Alot of dudes can be cross-referenced into the “rap for people who dont like rap” category. “I like Coldplay, Mars Volta, The White Stripes, and some rap… you know, Kanye and Sage Francis”

Comment by silvamore 12.22.09 @

HYPHY – I don’t think they know that’s my word!

Rasta Rap

Bay Rap – Zion I, Hyro (Maybe Back Packin’, but Zion I is still going)

Comment by Joaq 12.22.09 @

ha, funny ish…
i think yall got the ll albums backwards tho.. “i need love” came first.. “i want you” was the follow up.

Comment by - keka - 12.22.09 @

How about skater rap: – pharell and fiasco

LOL @ Lazer Beam Rap – pew, pew, pew

Comment by JP 12.22.09 @

Back-and-Forth Rap- I’m not talking about Cameo. The first 3 and a half Outkast albums had a brilliant back-and-forth hand off quality between Andre and Big Boi. They may have drifted apart too much to make it work any more but M.O.P. still makes it work and they make it work very well.

Comment by Jablis 12.22.09 @

Another heads up:

Gravediggers = Gravediggaz
Gangster NIP = Ganksta NIP

Comment by Son 12.22.09 @

r&b rap – rakim’s hits almost always interpreted popular r&b songs. now most of the hip hop soul stuff is more or less rhythm & blues x rap.

Comment by bavu 12.22.09 @

Hahaha funny shit. i love how haters don’t get the joke and take this shit all serious. a couple others:
that listen to more Dave Matthews than they do KRS-one making rap music about college life over Weezer songs. Usually pretty ghey. See Asher Roth and Chris Webby (like Asher, only more bro and less famous).

“MC” rap: A lot of wordy, multi-syllabic nonsense that is on par with what you’d find in an online rap battle. See Canibus circa 2003

Starbucks rap: The only kind of rap Starbucks would ever co-sign. Also pretty ghey. See Common and Jay-Z (yeah i said it).

Wu Weed carrier rap: Same as normal weed carrier rap, but for Wu weed carriers since their are neigh-on 100 of them. See killarmy or sunz of man.

Bitch music: more of an overarching category, bitch music pertains to everything from fabolous to common. basically anything your bitch would listen to.

Comment by Wally_Sean 12.22.09 @

ah shit that first was supposed to be “frat rap”

Comment by Wally_Sean 12.22.09 @

I love the term “weed carrier” ha ha..I’m gonna use that in a song for sure. I would love to sit down and add to this list and make up categories or I should say my O.C.D would love it but I’m to busy, nice post all the same, very entertaining. Keep the site going man. Its the only hip hop place I feel understood.

Comment by Johnny Hardcore 12.22.09 @

@clocksuckerz: Tame 1 kings this.

Comment by gx 12.22.09 @

Peace to the Gods rap = Brand Nubian, Killah Sha or anyone who excessively drops the word God.

Comment by dialect 12.23.09 @

I love the term “weed carrier” ha ha..I’m gonna use that in a song for sure. I would love to sit down and add to this list and make up categories or I should say my O.C.D would love it but I’m to busy, nice post all the same, very entertaining. Keep the site going man. Its the only hip hop place I feel understood.
Comment by Johnny Hardcore 12.22.09 @


You love the term ‘weed carrier’? Like this dude coined it? And you’re going to use it in a song? Maverick stuff!

Comment by jamie j. 12.23.09 @

pretendo rap – justin timberlake, black eyed peas

in the space rap/robot rap category – esoteric, kool keith, non-prophets

in the 80’s throwback rap – cool kids, kanye (only because of his shutter shades and tight pants)

girl rap – queen latifah, mc lyte, yo-yo, rah digga, etc.

sex style – too short, kool keith, ll cool j kinda

annoying as fuck rap – dose one, awol one, busdriver, most mainstream rap

new york rap – nuff said
boston rap – guru, termanology, mr lif, esoteric
philly rap – the roots, jedi mind tricks
detroit rap – black milk, eminem, etc.

fat rap – this is something you’ve done a drop about robbie can’t believe you forgot about it, the fat boys, big pun, notorious b.i.g., rick ross, heavy d, and so on.

conspiracy theory rap – prodigy, jedi mind tricks, atma, lost children of babylon, immortal technique

pcp rap – tame-one, cage, beastie boys, necro

Comment by gstatty 12.23.09 @

oh you can’t forget to put mf grimm in the disabled rap category

Comment by gstatty 12.23.09 @

martial arts flow.bragnboast.
oh n sean price is the definition of ignorance.

Comment by swordfish 12.23.09 @

Shawty Lo would go under whisper rap; also DJ Paul of Three 6 Mafia was born with a stunted arm, and D-Roc of the Ying Yang Twins was born with two fingers missing on one of his hands.

Comment by Goldie 12.23.09 @

@jamie j: Actually,I kinda did blow-up the term Weed Carrier:

@keka: Please go and sit in the corner.

Comment by Robbie 12.23.09 @

@ jamie j…I haven’t heard it before. I thought it was witty, I thought Robbie made it up,I was suggesting I would make a punch line out of the term.I guess he didn’t make it up, oh well,its still funny and your name is still jamie J…how MAVERICK is that? Who even uses the word maverick? Do you call swimming trunks “swimmers”?(says in best Austin Powers voice)

Comment by Johnny Hardcore 12.23.09 @

Work that up in yourself and have a Merry Christmas.

Comment by Johnny Hardcore 12.23.09 @

Mack Rap — Too Short
Pimp Rap — Suga Free

Comment by hook 12.23.09 @

“conspiracy theory rap – prodigy, jedi mind tricks, atma, lost children of babylon, immortal technique”

Add Nonphixion and Ill Bill to this too,one of the best to do this type of rap

Comment by dj blendz 12.23.09 @

Bad jamaican accent rap : KRS One, Heavy D

I’m nothing without primo beats rap : Guru, Jeru, Group Home

I don’t care baout music rap : too many to name

I pretend to be a muslim but act like stupid ignorant fuck rap : too many to name

Comment by Trickykid 12.23.09 @

I’m dead but still release records : Biggie, 2 Pac, Old Dirty Bastard

Comment by Trickykid 12.23.09 @

I was produced by the bomb squad and still manage to have wack beats on my album rap : young black teenagers

Comment by Trickykid 12.23.09 @

To add a few more rap generes:
LCD rap
Ringtone rappers
Myspace Rappers
Mixtape rappers
Chubby Becky Rappers

Comment by Jermaine Thomas 12.23.09 @

Buck 65 should be here.
How about Cunninlynguists?

Nasal rap made me laugh. Cypress Hill is NOTHING but nasal music.

Comment by Dora The Explorer 12.24.09 @

Ad Rock is the first Nasal kid I do believe.

Comment by Johnny Hardcore 12.24.09 @

Christian Rap – that guy who does “My Life be Like”.

Comment by Tyrone L 12.24.09 @

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