Французский рэпер с длинными волосами

Французский хип-хоп всегда был интересен российскому слушателю. Наш автор Даниель Верс разобрался, кто сейчас во французском рэпе на волне.

Уровень хип-хопа
во Франции очень высок. Несмотря на начальное влияние запада, культура
аутентична в истоках и самобытна в эволюции жанра. Что представляет собой будто
собранный с нуля хип-хоп, а не что-то заимствованное и адаптированное. Есть в
этом всём некая целостность и независимость.

Каким бы языком
любви, по восприятию, ни был французский язык, история рэпа на нём начиналась
не с любовных баллад и добрых картавых дядь. А напротив, с неприкрытой ярости и
агрессии, катализируемой
ментальностью обитателей различных народов Франции.

Как и в США, с улиц к микрофонам несли свой
речитатив чернокожие жители страны, молодые эмигранты, прибывшие в страну, чтобы  обрести в ней новое пристанище. Улицы стали
для них основной средой обитания, на которых рифмованные подстегивания друг
друга успешно переходили в стычки. Банды распространяли насилие и враждебные
настроения, а в воздухе витала безнадёга. Всё это создало отдельный мир
протеста. Музыка протеста же не заставила себя долго ждать и несла здесь самый
непрозрачный смысл, который только может быть. Тематики первых песен касались
общественной несправедливости, политической обстановки, критики властей,
условий проживания на районах и тому подобных важных проблем. Провокационное творчество приобрело уйму как поклонников, так и противников
данного явления. С последними, в частности, с вышестоящими органами и
консервативной общественностью, нередко случались конфликты, выходящие
повсеместно на суд социума в СМИ. Изрядно пошумев, первые представители
рэп-сцены уверенно начали собирать полные залы.

Рэп появился во
Франции в 1984 году, получив распространение через независимые радиостанции и
телевидение в дальнейшем. Этому премного поспособствовал первый чернокожий
телевизионщик во Франции, рэпер Сидней, с авторской передачей, посвященной
хип-хопу с одноименным названием H.I.P. H.O.P.

К концу 80-х жанр толкнули в массы соратники по единственному тогда лейблу в стране Delabel,
немалоизвестные в России IAM, NTM Supreme, пионеры Assassin, платиновый MC
Solaar а также менее известные нам Saxo, Rico, NewGeneration MC’S, Minister
AMER и другие появляющиеся в то время в радиопередаче Deenastyle, в вещании
Radio Nova.

Если соотнести
размеры страны и размеры внутреннего музыкального рынка с теми же показателями
в США, то мы без преувеличений можем отметить не менее успешную конверсию и
развитость индустрии. В подтверждение этому количество проданных копий альбомов
исполнителей, ТВ и радио-эфиров и распроданных выступлений. Таким образом рэп-музыка
выходит в стране на передний план, оставляя далеко позади себя поп-звёзд в
странах, где французский – один из основных языков.

Все это привело
к открытию во Франции региональных представительств крупных музыкальных
организаций, таких как «Def Jam», а также других дочерних из большой четверки
лейблов.

Так что даже
многие артисты Америки позавидовали бы такой активности французского
поднимающегося подполья.

Обо всей этой
самодостаточности и самобытности френч-рэпа в поп-культуре, о его влиянии на
внутреннюю социальную обстановку, а также на жанр RAP.RU писал ещё в далёком
2006 году в цикле статей «Кто
есть кто во французском рэпе» (часть 1, часть 2)

К чему же пришёл
рэп во Франции? Кто эти хэдлайнеры ТВ, радио и обладатели десятков миллионов
просмотров на YouTube?  Стоит познакомить наших читателей с
некоторыми из тех, кто сияет ярко прямо сейчас.


10. Alonzo

Кассим Джая,
более известный по сценическому псевдониму Alonzo, 34-летний опытный рэпер, который в
деле с 2002 года. Кассим проявляет себя довольно разносторонне, его можно
услышать и в поп-проектах, и в R’n’B, и в дансхоле. С одинаковым успехом
данный МС может закинуть куплет как на deep’овую дорожку, так и выдать грозный куплет на
трэп-бит. Изначально Alonzo был частью коллектива «Psy 4 de la Rime», далее примерно с 2009
года ушёл в свободное плавание. Его ранние релизы не сказать чтобы имели
ошеломительный успех, но плотно держали исполнителя на плаву. Что подтверждают
отзывы музыкальных критиков, золотой статус двух последних альбомов, а ныне –
многомиллионные просмотры его видео-работ на YouTube.

9. Kaaris

Оку Арман Гнакури, родом из коммуны Севран, что в пригороде
Парижа, Сен-Сен Дени, в деле уже довольно долго, с 1999 года, но широкие массы
о нём услышали только лишь в 2012 году, на альбоме рэпера Booba. А уже через год Оку выпускает альбом «OrNoir», на Therapy Music, дочернем лейбле Universal Music, верно движется к топу, и в
2015 году записывается с Future.

8. Lacrim

Lacrim – это эдакий, извините за тавтологию, французский French Montana.

Карим Зену, рэпер алжирского происхождения, родом из Марселя.
Путь Lacrim’a наверх пролёг через тягости детства в нищенстве и ночлежках на улице, а к рэпу
Карим пришёл после четырёхлетней отсидки в тюрьме. Lacrim заимел уйму совместных работ как с французскими
звёздами, так и с мировыми, например с Migos или же с вышеупомянутым Монтаной.

Куча совместных треков плюс пара крупных хитов, и Lacrim плотно засел во французских чартах и плейлистах слушателей.

7. Joke

Южный француз Жиль Атеяба Коффи Солер a.k.a Joke вышел на обозрение хип-хоп комьюнити в
2009 году с микстейпом «Prêtpourl’argent», после
которого слушатели пророчили ему долгую музыкальную карьеру. Его дебютный
альбом 2014 года «Ateyaba», на котором поучаствовал Pusha T, разлетелся по чартам. Также на
одном из ранних EP был
замечен бородач Action Bronson. После двухлетнего отсутствия Joke объявил о своем
возвращении в марте этого года клипом «Vision», первым синглом с нового
альбома «UltraViolet», над которым 27-летний Жиль сейчас активно
работает.

6. Sadek

Садек Бургибу – французский рэпер и актёр тунисско-русского
происхождения. В возрасте 11 лет, будучи прикованным к постели, после того как
его сбила машина, начал писать свои первые тексты песен. Выздоровев, начал
участвовать во фристайл-баттлах, малых и больших, в которых безоговорочно
выигрывал. Сейчас, в свои двадцать шесть, Sadek успел выпустить 7 альбомов и может похвастаться появлением на них как
французских топовых рэперов, так и западных, например, Meek Mill.

5. Niska

27-летний Стэн Динга
Пинто, родом из Конго, более известный как Niska, обрёл свою
известность в 2015 году после сотрудничества со старым французским рэпером, а
нынче поп-исполнителем Maître Gims. Дебютный альбом «Zifikoro», выпущенный в 2016 году, забрался на первые
позиции чартов и стал «золотым» через 3 месяца.

4. Gradur

Ещё один французский топ-игрок родом из Конго, 26-летний
Ванани Гради Мариади. «Амбассадор трэпа» Gradur, как его прозвали СМИ, взорвал пространство
франкоязычного цифрового пространства серией стритовых видео «Sheguey», что значит в переводе с конголезского жаргона
«ребенок с улицы». Особенно обрела популярность десятая часть данных
стрит-видео под названием «Traction».

На
хайпе данной работы был выпущен дебютный альбом рэпера «L’hommeaubob», на который он затащил таких звёзд, как Migos и Chief Keef.

3. MHD

Молодой Мохамед Силла, 1994 года рождения, он же MHD, называет свой стиль «AfroTrap», а также выпускает с 2015 года серию стритовых
видео с аналогичным названием, собирая завидное для коллег количество
просмотров. Этому поспособствовал пиар в соцсетях от таких примечательных лиц,
как Drake, Madonna, её сына Дэвида и даже от игроков французского
клуба ПСЖ. Дебютный альбом «MHD», вышедший в прошлом году, неплохо стартовал и взял двойную платину в
стране. В него вошли шесть песен из
выпусков «AfroTrap», а под
конец года рэпер выпустил седьмую часть выпусков, которая может похвастаться на
данный момент более чем 120 миллионами просмотров.

2. Nekfeu

Кен Самарас родился в Ницце в 1990 году, в 11 лет переехал в
Париж и с головой окунулся в хип-хоп. Успел побывать в малоизвестных россиянам
группах 1995, S-Crew, Maggiore 5 и Entorage, но к настоящей славе пришёл, будучи в сольном свободном
плавании. За свой дебютник «Feu», на котором можно найти работу с Ed Sheeran, Кен в 2016 году получил награду «Лучший музыкальный альбом»
на премии «Victoires de la musique» (французский
аналог Грэмми). А вторым альбомом Nekfeu подчеркнул свою значимость, продав более 300 000 экземпляров, а во
Франции это трижды платина.

1. PNL

На первом месте не соло-исполнитель, а группа. За три года
два брата алжирского происхождения – NOS и Ademo (Тарик и Набиль Андрие) взобрались на самый пик
музыкальной индустрии в стране. Хотя до этого каждый из них, будучи соло, не
добился больших результатов, всё изменилось, когда, объединившись, парни начали
делать преимущественно клауд-рэп. Название группы означает «Peace’n’Lovés», причём «Lovés» –это сленговая отсылка к «деньгам». СМИ провозглашают PNL хозяевами нынешней рэп-сцены Франции. Альбом «Danslallegende» 2016-года получил бриллиантовый статус, что
во Франции значит более 750 000 проданных экземпляров. Также в апреле 2017
года группа выступала на фестивале Coachella.

Born in Cameroon and adopted at 1 year in France. I spent all my childhood in Alsace before studying in Paris. I like to defend my beautiful country with its strengths and weaknesses. Find me on Linkedin and CV.

Table Of Contents

  • My Top 25 French Rappers : Methodology And Dataset
  • My Top 25 French Rappers in %%currentyear%%
    • 25. VALD
    • 24. MC SOLAAR
    • 23. DIAM’S
    • 22. BIGFLO & OLI
    • 21. KAARIS
    • 20. SEXION D ASSAUT
    • 19. Black M
    • 18. PLK
    • 17. NAPS
    • 16. MHD
    • 15. ORELSAN
    • 14. LOMEPAL
    • 13. GAZO
    • 12. SOPRANO
    • 11. SCH
  • Top 10 French Rappers in %%currentyear%%
    • 10. DADJU
    • 9. AYA NAKAMURA
    • 8. NISKA
    • 7. NEKFEU
    • 6. MAÎTRE GIMS
    • 5. BOOBA
    • 4. DAMSO
    • 3. PNL
    • 2. JUL
    • 1. NINHO
  • Who is the most famous French rapper?
  • Is rap popular in France?
  • What is French rap music?
  • What is the most famous rap song right now?

Bonjour les amis,

French rap, or French hip-hop, is a form of music that has come to define the identity of France.

Today, French rap is one of my favorite music genres.

Below, I’ve put together a ranking of the best French rappers in the year 2023.

Before that, If you want to go back into the history of French music, read my article on My 23 Best French Songs 80s.

— Louise

Don’t miss this post: My best of french rap (official top 23 songs)

My Top 25 French Rappers : Methodology And Dataset

The ranking is from the French SNEP after 1994 : Syndicat National de l’Edition Phonographique.

The SNEP is an interprofessional association that has been defending the interests of recorded music in France since 1922.

I have manually selected the top 25 french rapper according to the number of times they have appeared in the top 200 since 1994.

Here is the SNEP method and thresholds for obtaining certification:

  • Since April 2018: only streaming listening from premium consumption (paid subscriptions) is taken into account when calculating best sellers and certifications.
  • Singles certification: streaming + downloads + physical sales

A track’s downloads are converted into stream equivalents (on the basis of 1 download = 150 streams) and then added to the track’s streaming volumes.

  • Thresholds:

GOLD : 15 MILLION EQUIVALENT STREAMS
PLATINUM: 30 MILLION EQUIVALENT STREAMS
DIAMOND: 50 MILLION EQUIVALENT STREAMS

My Top 25 French Rappers in %%currentyear%%

So, Here are my top 25 top French rappers :

25. VALD

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 4
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2018 : Désaccordé (annual rank 3)
  2. 2022 : Annunaki (annual rank 109)
  3. 2019 : Journal perso II (annual rank 170)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Vald is a distinctive figure in the French rap scene, known for his provocative lyrics and unique style. Born Valentin Le Du, he emerged in the early 2010s and quickly gained traction with his sharp wit and social commentary. His music often explores complex themes and societal issues, making him a voice of his generation. With several successful albums and a loyal fan base, Vald continues to push the boundaries of the genre, solidifying his place in the French hip-hop landscape.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of Vald:

24. MC SOLAAR

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 4
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2001: Hasta la vista (annual rank 12)
  2. 2001 : Solaar pleure (annual rank 19)
  3. 2002 : Inch’ allah (annual rank 19)
  • Presentation of the rapper: MC Solaar is a seminal figure in the French rap scene, heralded for bringing a poetic flair to the genre since his debut in the 1990s. His lyrical prowess and social commentary have earned him a revered spot in the Francophone music world. Through numerous albums and hit singles, MC Solaar has explored a variety of themes, often weaving in political and philosophical undertones. His enduring influence showcases the depth and versatility of French hip-hop, making him a celebrated icon in both France and beyond.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of MC SOLAAR:

23. DIAM’S

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Female
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 4
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2006 : La boulette “generation nan nan” (annual rank 7)
  2. 2003 : DJ (annual rank 9)
  3. 2006 : Jeune demoiselle (annual rank 26)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Diam’s, a potent voice in the French rap scene during the early 2000s, was known for her candid lyrics and social activism through music. Her tracks often addressed societal issues, personal struggles, and the quest for authenticity, resonating deeply with listeners. Despite her retreat from the public eye post-2010, following a personal and religious awakening, Diam’s legacy continues to be felt. Her forthright narrative and bold stance on various issues left an indelible mark on the genre, showcasing the transformative power of hip-hop in addressing complex human and societal experiences.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of DIAM’S:

22. BIGFLO & OLI

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 5
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2018 : Dommage (annual rank 78)
  2. 2018 : Demain (annual rank 99)
  3. 2015 : Comme d’hab (annual rank 151)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Bigflo & Oli, a dynamic sibling duo in the French rap scene, are known for their heartfelt storytelling and relatable lyrics. Their music often explores familial relationships, personal experiences, and societal observations, resonating with a wide demographic. With multiple successful albums and a genuine, approachable demeanor, they have garnered a loyal fan base. Their ability to meld emotive narratives with catchy beats showcases a versatility that continues to endear them to audiences, making them a refreshing and beloved presence in the contemporary French hip-hop landscape.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of BIGFLO & OLI:

21. KAARIS

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 6
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2017 : Tchoin (annual rank 27)
  2. 2018 : Diarabi (annual rank 33)
  3. 2018 : Bling Bling (annual rank 68)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Kaaris, a compelling figure in the French rap scene, is known for his aggressive lyrical style and dark, atmospheric beats. His music, often reflecting on harsh realities and personal struggles, has resonated with a broad audience seeking authenticity. With several hit albums and singles, Kaaris has solidified his standing in the French hip-hop community. His unabashed narrative and bold persona continue to contribute to his reputation as a fearless and evocative artist, pushing the boundaries of the genre and engaging listeners with his raw storytelling.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of KAARIS:

20. SEXION D ASSAUT

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 7
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2012 : Avant qu’elle parte (annual rank 9)
  2. 2012 : Ma direction (annual rank 17)
  3. 2012 : WATI (annual rank 20)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Sexion d’Assaut, a prominent French rap collective, emerged in the 2000s and quickly gained acclaim for their potent lyrical content and cohesive group dynamic. Their music, often exploring social and personal themes, resonated with a broad audience. With several successful albums, they significantly impacted the French hip-hop landscape. Though individual members have since pursued solo careers, the legacy of Sexion d’Assaut endures, their insightful narrative and collaborative synergy having left an indelible mark on the genre, inspiring a new generation of Francophone rap artists.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of SEXION D ASSAUT:

19. Black M

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 7
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2014 : Sur ma route (annual rank 6)
  2. 2014 : Mme pavoshko (annual rank 39)
  3. 2015 : Je garde le sourire (annual rank 128)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Black M initially gained fame as a member of the rap group Sexion d’Assaut before embarking on a successful solo career. Known for his catchy hooks and engaging storytelling, his music often explores personal experiences and social issues. With several chart-topping albums and singles, Black M has established a broad fan base. His ability to blend rap with pop elements showcases a versatility that continues to earn him acclaim, making him a cherished artist in the Francophone music community.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of Black M:

18. PLK

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 9
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2019 : Problèmes (annual rank 48)
  2. 2021 : Pilote (annual rank 51)
  3. 2019 : Un peu de haine (annual rank 78)
  • Presentation of the rapper: PLK, an acronym for Polak, is a promising talent in the French rap landscape known for his energetic delivery and streetwise lyrical content. His music often narrates the realities of urban life, resonating with a young and dynamic audience. With albums and hit singles to his name, PLK has swiftly ascended in the ranks of the French hip-hop community. His authentic storytelling and relentless work ethic continue to bolster his reputation, showcasing a vibrant and raw energy that adds a fresh dimension to the contemporary French rap scene.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of PLK:

17. NAPS

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 9
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2021 : La kiffance (annual rank 1)
  2. 2022 : Best life (feat. Gims) (annual rank 13)
  3. 2022 : La kiffance (annual rank 16)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Naps has carved a niche with his catchy melodies and relatable lyrics. His music, often reflective of his experiences and the vibrant culture of Marseille, has resonated with a wide audience. With a lot of hit singles and albums, Naps has built a solid fanbase, showcasing his ability to blend rap with elements of pop and Mediterranean sounds. His authentic narrative and ear for catchy hooks continue to contribute to his rising profile, marking him as a unique and engaging voice in the contemporary French hip-hop community.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of NAPS:

16. MHD

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 9
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2017 : Afro Trap Part. 7 (La puissance) (annual rank 20)
  2. 2016 : Afro Trap Part. 3 (Champions League) (annual rank 36)
  3. 2021 : Afro trap part. 11 (king kong) (annual rank 46)
  • Presentation of the rapper: MHD, a Franco-Guinean rapper, is a pioneer of the “Afro Trap” genre, blending African music with trap beats to create a unique sound that has resonated globally. Since his debut, MHD has enjoyed considerable success, with hit singles and albums showcasing his innovative style. His music often celebrates his African heritage while also exploring life in the Parisian suburbs. Despite facing legal challenges, MHD’s influence remains substantial in the French rap scene, and his Afro Trap movement continues to inspire a new generation of artists blending traditional and modern sounds.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of MHD:

15. ORELSAN

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 11
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2022 : La quête (annual rank 19)
  2. 2022 : Jour meilleur (annual rank 29)
  3. 2012 : La terre est ronde (annual rank 51)
  • Presentation of the rapper: OrelSan is known for his clever lyricism and keen social commentary. Through his music, he explores a wide range of topics including societal norms, personal struggles, and the human condition. With several acclaimed albums and hit singles, OrelSan has carved a niche for himself in the Francophone hip-hop scene. His thoughtful narratives, coupled with a sharp wit, continue to engage audiences, making him a compelling and relatable voice in the contemporary French rap landscape.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of ORELSAN:

14. LOMEPAL

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 11
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2019 : Trop beau (annual rank 9)
  2. 2019 : 1000°C (annual rank 30)
  3. 2018 : Yeux disent (annual rank 35)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Lomepal, a versatile artist in the French rap scene, stands out with his poetic lyrics and introspective storytelling. His musical journey showcases a blend of rap and indie influences, resulting in a unique sound that has captivated a broad audience. Lomepal delves into personal experiences and existential themes, fostering a deep connection with listeners. His emotive delivery and artistic visuals continue to contribute to his growing stature in the Francophone music community, marking him as a nuanced and thought-provoking artist in modern French hip-hop.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of LOMEPAL:

13. GAZO

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 11
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2022 : DIE (annual rank 5)
  2. 2021 : HAINE&SEX (annual rank 12)
  3. 2022 : CELINE 3X (annual rank 37)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Gazo, a rising star in the French drill scene, is garnering attention with his raw lyrical style and compelling beats. Hailing from the suburbs of Paris, his music reflects the gritty realities of street life, resonating with a young, urban audience. With hit tracks like “Drill FR” under his belt, Gazo is at the forefront of introducing the drill genre to the French music scene. His authentic narrative and energetic delivery continue to build his reputation, marking him as a promising talent in the evolving French hip-hop music.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of GAZO:

12. SOPRANO

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 13
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2015 : Clown (annual rank 48)
  2. 2014 : Cosmo (annual rank 55)
  3. 2008 : Ferme les yeux et imagine toi (annual rank 71)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Soprano, a seasoned artist in the French rap scene, is lauded for his lyrical ingenuity and emotive delivery. His music often touches on personal experiences and societal issues, fostering a deep connection with listeners. With a career spanning over two decades, Soprano has an extensive discography that showcases his versatility and growth as an artist. His ability to blend rap with elements of pop and world music has broadened his appeal, making him a cherished figure in the French music landscape and beyond.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of SOPRANO:

11. SCH

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 14
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2022: Lif (annual rank 1 )
  2. 2021: Mannschaft (annual rank 1 )
  3. 2021: Marché noir (annual rank 3)
  • Presentation of the rapper: SCH, a compelling figure in the French rap domain, is known for his gritty narratives and distinctive, husky voice. His music, often dark and atmospheric, delves into themes of street life and personal struggle. Since his emergence, SCH has released critically acclaimed albums that resonate with the authenticity-seeking audience of the genre. His cinematic storytelling and unique aesthetic continue to contribute to his growing reputation, marking him as a noteworthy artist in the French hip-hop community, and a bold representative of its modern sound.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of SCH:

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10. DADJU

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 16
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2018 : Bob Marley (annual rank 5)
  2. 2018 : Reine (annual rank 11)
  3. 2019 : Compliqué (annual rank 29)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Dadju, a distinguished artist in the French music scene, elegantly melds rap with R&B, creating a signature sound that has garnered a widespread following. His lyrical narratives often explore personal and social themes, resonating with a broad spectrum of listeners. With several hit singles and albums, Dadju has established a significant presence in the Francophone music community. His emotive delivery and adept songwriting continue to contribute to his rising profile, marking him as a compelling voice in the evolving French urban music.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of DADJU:

9. AYA NAKAMURA

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Female
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 17
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2018 : Djadja (annual rank 4)
  2. 2019 : POOKIE (annual rank 6)
  3. 2020 : 40% (annual rank 28)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Aya Nakamura has a unique style that blends catchy beats with relatable lyrics. Though not really a rapper, her influence extends into the hip-hop community. With her roots in Mali, her music often reflects a blend of cultures, resonating with a diverse audience. Her tracks, like “Djadja” and “Copines,” have not only topped charts in France but have gained international acclaim, showcasing the global appeal of contemporary French urban music. Her energetic persona and authentic storytelling continue to capture the hearts of listeners worldwide.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of AYA NAKAMURA:

8. NISKA

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 19
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2017 : Réseaux (annual rank 3)
  2. 2017 : Salé (annual rank 21)
  3. 2017 : B.O.C (annual rank 60)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Niska has captivated audiences with his energetic performances and gritty storytelling. His music often delves into the realities of street life, delivered with a distinctive flow that sets him apart. Since his breakout, Niska has consistently released hit singles and albums that resonate with both hardcore rap aficionados and the mainstream audience. His authentic narrative and engaging persona continue to contribute to his rising stature in the French hip-hop community, marking him as a vibrant voice in the genre.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of NISKA:

7. NEKFEU

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 19
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2015 : On verra (annual rank 26)
  2. 2017 : Mauvaise graine (annual rank 50)
  3. 2015 : Ma dope (annual rank 79)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Nekfeu is revered for his lyrical prowess and thought-provoking narratives. Since his emergence with the collective 1995, he has carved out a successful solo career. His music, often introspective and socially conscious, resonates with a wide audience. With a poetic style, Nekfeu addresses complex issues, contributing to the rich discourse within French hip-hop. His acclaimed albums and engaging performances continue to cement his status as a significant and influential artist in the Francophone rap community.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of NEKFEU:

6. MAÎTRE GIMS

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 19
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2013 : J’ME TIRE (annual rank 9)
  2. 2013 : Bella (annual rank 10)
  3. 2014 : Zombie (annual rank 14)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Maître Gims has become a household name due to his catchy tunes and distinctive voice. Born in the Democratic Republic of Congo, his music often intertwines with themes of identity and personal narrative. Over the years, Maître Gims has diversified his musical style, blending rap with elements of pop, R&B, and reggae, which has helped him reach a broader audience both in France and internationally. His ability to cross musical boundaries while maintaining a unique sound has solidified his standing in the contemporary French music scene.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of MAÎTRE GIMS:

5. BOOBA

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 24
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2021 : Mona lisa (annual rank 10)
  2. 2016 : 92i veyron (annual rank 39)
  3. 2017 : DKR (annual rank 40)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Booba is a veteran in the French rap scene, boasting a career that spans over two decades. Known for his aggressive style and controversial lyrics, he’s been a polarizing yet influential figure. His discography is vast, with numerous albums and singles that have topped the charts in France. Booba’s relentless innovation and bold persona have helped shape the landscape of French rap, making him a pivotal figure in promoting the genre both in France and on the international stage. His legacy continues to inspire a new generation of Francophone rappers.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of BOOBA:

4. DAMSO

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 30
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2017 : Macarena (annual rank 4)
  2. 2017 : E. Signaler (annual rank 13)
  3. 2018 : Ipséité (annual rank 31)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Damso, a Belgian-Congolese rapper who has made a significant mark in the French rap scene, is known for his introspective lyrics and smooth flow. His music often explores themes of identity, existentialism, and the human condition, resonating deeply with a broad audience. Since his debut, Damso has released several critically acclaimed albums, solidifying his place in the Francophone hip-hop community. His thought-provoking narrative and unique sound continue to contribute to the rich tapestry of French rap, showcasing its ability to traverse complex emotional and societal landscapes.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of DAMSO:

3. PNL

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 41
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2019 : AU DD (annual rank 2)
  2. 2017 : Bené (annual rank 14)
  3. 2017 : ONIZUKA (annual rank 32)
  • Presentation of the rapper: PNL, a French rap duo consisting of brothers Tarik and Nabil Andrieu, has carved a niche in the music scene with their ethereal beats and introspective lyrics. They emerged in 2014 with a unique style that blends melancholy with street realism. Their narrative often delves into personal experiences and the complexities of societal issues. With several chart-topping albums, PNL has not only garnered a loyal following but also contributed to the global appreciation of French hip-hop, showcasing the genre’s diversity and emotional depth.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of PNL:

2. JUL

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 42
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2022 : J’ai tout su (annual rank 20)
  2. 2016 : Tchikita (annual rank 23)
  3. 2021 : PIC ET PIC, ALCOOL ET DRAME (annual rank 29)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Jul, an enigmatic figure in the French rap music, is celebrated for his prolific output and a unique blend of rap and electronic music. Since his debut in 2013, his DIY approach and catchy, auto-tuned hooks have garnered a massive following. Jul often explores themes of street life and personal experiences in his music, delivering a raw and authentic sound that resonates with a broad audience. His ability to churn out hits with remarkable consistency has solidified his position as a prominent and influential artist in the French hip-hop community.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of JUL:

1. NINHO

  • Category : French rapper
  • Gender: Male
  • Number of singles in annual top 200 since 1994 : 48
  • Top 3 most popular singles in annual top 200:
  1. 2022 : JEFE (annual rank 3)
  2. 2020 : Lettre à une femme (annual rank 5)
  3. 2019 : La vie qu’on mène (annual rank 8)
  • Presentation of the rapper: Ninho, born William Nzobazola, is a dynamic presence in the French rap arena, known for his melodic flow and storytelling prowess. Since his emergence in the mid-2010s, he has captivated audiences with his authentic narratives and emotive delivery. His albums and singles often chart high, reflecting a resonating connection with listeners. As a young artist with a growing discography, Ninho continues to shape the contemporary French rap scene, blending emotive lyrics with catchy beats, thus broadening the appeal of the genre to a wider audience.
  • Youtube about the most popular single of NINHO:

Here I am at the end of my top .

Follow these rappers and you’ll see that they’re the best of the moment.

— Louise



People also ask about Top french rap songs:

Who is the most famous French rapper?

The most famous french rapper could be Booba.

He is an iconic figure in the French rap scene.

He has been active since the late 1990s and has released numerous successful albums.

But in 2023, most famous rappers could be:

  • Hamza
  • Gazo
  • Freeze Corleone

Is rap popular in France?

Yes, rap is immensely popular in France.

It serves as a powerful voice for the youth, especially those from marginalized communities, offering an outlet to express their experiences, frustrations, and hopes.

The genre resonates deeply with the diverse French population, given the nation’s historical and contemporary challenges around immigration, identity, and social integration.

French rap artists adeptly blend local and global influences, making their music both a reflection of French culture and a universal call to action.

This combination has propelled its widespread appeal and enduring popularity.

What is French rap music?

French rap music is a significant and influential subgenre of hip-hop that originated in France during the 1980s.

Born out of the global hip-hop movement, it has since developed its unique style, characterized by its intricate lyrics, diverse beats, and reflection of French urban life and culture.

French rappers have always used their platform to address pressing societal issues, such as immigration, identity, racism, and the challenges faced by the suburban youth.

Artists like MC Solaar, IAM, and NTM pioneered the scene, making way for later acts like Booba, Nekfeu, and PNL.

The language’s lyrical fluidity allows French rap to be both poetic and hard-hitting.

The blend of African, Arab, and Caribbean influences adds to its rich tapestry, making it a distinct and captivating listen.

Today, French rap not only dominates the local charts but also enjoys recognition on the international stage, solidifying its place in the global music panorama.

What is the most famous rap song right now?

In France, right now, the most famous rap song is:

CASANOVA by Soolking.

And in the US it is:

PAINT THE TOWN RED by Doja Cat.


About Culture In France :

Tapping into the vibrant pulse of the music scene, the cream of the crop French hip-hop artists etch an indelible mark in the annals of rap history. An intriguing exploration into their contributions illuminate the best French rappers who have blazed trails in the realm of francophone beats and rhymes. This expedition delves into the distinctive style of French rap that has reverberated across the globe, underlining the impact and popularity of its leading players. 

As we embark on this journey, the figures who’ve sculpted the French rap scene come alive. Each artist carves their unique path, using their individual styles to deftly navigate the musical landscape. French hip hop artists have invariably left their unmistakable imprint, with their sonic storytelling and lyrical finesse setting them apart as some of the finest craftsmen in the rap industry. Their ability to straddle the mainstream while remaining true to their roots and influences is a testament to their exceptional talent. 

Leading the pack are major artists such as Damso, Booba, and Nekfeu. Damso, a striking figure in the French rap domain, has earned a reputation for thoughtful lyrics layered over melodic beats. In contrast, the legendary Booba has captivated audiences with his gritty, street-savvy anthems, garnering accolades and awards in his storied career. Meanwhile, Nekfeu fuses poetic lyricism with kaleidoscopic beats, pushing the boundaries of the genre. His ground-breaking albums and standout songs reflect his dexterity and innovation, solidifying his standing among the most influential French rappers. 

From internationally acclaimed albums to chart-topping anthems, these artists have painted a vibrant panorama of the best French hip-hop. Its leading luminaries, from famous French rappers to underground French hip hop artists, have sculpted a dynamic soundscape that carries their stories and their spirit. This exploration of these artists’ journeys through the music industry underscores their invaluable contribution to the genre, preparing audiences to immerse themselves in the world of French rap that has shaped the sound of a generation. It indeed serves as an introduction to an engrossing world where beats, rhymes, and narratives converge in a fascinating harmony. 

Most divisive: Kery James

Over 3.8K Ranker voters have come together to rank this list of French Rappers

  • Damso

    1

    Damso’s meteoric rise to the pinnacle of the French rap scene has been nothing short of remarkable. With his distinctive voice and versatile flow, Damso effortlessly weaves intricate rhymes and narratives that explore the nuances of human nature, delving deep into the complexities of life and relationships. As an artist, he remains unapologetically true to his Congolese roots by incorporating African rhythms and melodies into his music, creating a unique and powerful fusion that elevates French rap to new heights. Damso not only stands proud among the best French rappers of all time but has also become a bona fide cultural icon for millennials and beyond.

    Rock Out To Some Of The Most Popular Songs From Damso
      — «Macarena»
      — «BruxellesVie»
      — «A. Nwaar Is The New Black»

    Dive Into Damso’s History With Some Unique Deep Cuts
      — «Fais  -moi un vie»
      — «Exutoire»

  • Booba

    2

    Booba has been a force to be reckoned with in the French rap scene since his early days as a member of the iconic duo Lunatic. Known for his braggadocious lyrics and hard-hitting beats, Booba has continued to push the boundaries of French rap with his unapologetic and brutally honest storytelling. His ever-evolving style and entrepreneurial spirit, coupled with an uncanny ability to remain relevant across generations, have earned him the title «King of French Rap» and cemented his place in hip-hop history. Booba’s undeniable influence and ingenuity have inspired countless artists and solidified his status as one of the best French rappers of all time.

    Rock Out To Some Of The Most Popular Songs From Booba
      — «Scarface»
      — «OKLM»
      — «DKR»

    Dive Into Booba’s History With Some Unique Deep Cuts
      — «Caramel»
      — «5G»

  • Niska

    3

    Niska burst onto the French rap scene with an inimitable blend of charisma and raw talent that has remained unparalleled in recent years. His distinctive voice and infectious energy have made him one of the most sought-after artists in the industry, earning him collaborations with heavyweights such as Booba and Maître Gims. Niska’s music masterfully encapsulates the gritty realities of urban life in France while infusing it with Afrobeats and Dancehall influences, showcasing the versatility and depth of French rap as a genre. A true game-changer, Niska’s relentless passion and creativity have earned him a rightful place among the best French rappers of all time.

    Rock Out To Some Of The Most Popular Songs From Niska
      — «Réseaux»
      — «Bâtiment»
      — «Chasse à l’homme»

    Dive Into Niska’s History With Some Unique Deep Cuts
      — «Mustapha Jefferson»
      — «Zifukoro»

  • Nekfeu

    4

    Nekfeu’s poetic lyricism and introspective musings have captured the hearts and minds of fans across the globe, making him a quintessential figure in modern French rap. Equally skilled as a solo artist and as a member of the hip-hop collective 1995, Nekfeu consistently pushes the envelope by challenging societal norms and exploring uncharted territory in his music. His thought-provoking lyrics and ability to seamlessly blend genres like jazz and soul into his tracks demonstrate a profound understanding of the foundations of French rap while also paving the way for the future of the art form. Nekfeu’s unwavering dedication to his craft and visionary approach to storytelling solidify his position among the greatest French rappers of all time.

    Rock Out To Some Of The Most Popular Songs From Nekfeu
      — «On verra»
      — «Le horla»
      — «Nique les clones, Pt. II»

    Dive Into Nekfeu’s History With Some Unique Deep Cuts
      — «Commando»
      — «Zone»

  • SCH, with his enigmatic persona and gripping storytelling, has carved out a unique niche in the French rap landscape. His hauntingly poignant lyrics and atmospheric instrumentals draw listeners into a world where darkness and vulnerability coexist, reflecting the complexities of human experience. SCH’s music transcends the confines of traditional French rap, delving into a cinematic and introspective realm that challenges the listener to confront their deepest emotions. As one of the most innovative artists in the game, SCH’s contributions to the genre have earned him a well-deserved spot among the best French rappers of all time.

    Rock Out To Some Of The Most Popular Songs From SCH
      — «Dix  -Neuf»
      — «Poupée russe»
      — «Champs  -Élysées»

    Dive Into SCH’s History With Some Unique Deep Cuts
      — «Le code»
      — «Mort de rire»

  • Maître Gims

    6

    Maître Gims has emerged as one of the most versatile and multi-talented artists in French rap, seamlessly transitioning between hard-hitting rap anthems and emotive pop ballads. His ability to craft catchy hooks and powerful melodies has earned him commercial success and critical acclaim, with his debut solo album, Subliminal, achieving diamond certification in France. Gims’ captivating stage presence and unwavering dedication to his craft have led to numerous awards and achievements, solidifying his status as a true icon in the French rap scene. Maître Gims’ versatility, talent, and impact on the genre have earned him a rightful place among the best French rappers of all time.

    Rock Out To Some Of The Most Popular Songs From Maître Gims
      — «Bella»
      — «J’me tire»
      — «Sapés comme jamais»

    Dive Into Maître Gims’s History With Some Unique Deep Cuts
      — «Ana Fi Dar»
      — «Marabout»

#статьи


  • 0

Политические активисты, лейбл футуристов и афротрэп.

Фото: JOEL SAGET / AFP / Getty Images

Первые значимые хип-хоп-исполнители Франции вышли на сцену в начале девяностых, когда в США жанр уже обрёл множество поджанров и обзавёлся собственной мифологией. Логично предположить, что французы в поисках вдохновения смотрели преимущественно на США.

Иммигранты первого и второго поколения из Сенегала, Мадагаскара, Мали и других бывших колоний приезжали во Францию и не только искали там способ выжить, но и создавали самобытную культуру. Хип-хоп, который к тому времени уже стал главным жанром темнокожих, подходил для этого как нельзя лучше.

Подписывайтесь на телеграм-канал «Ты как?». В нём наши коллеги душевно и научно рассказывают о психологии и саморазвитии, а мы по выходным будем делиться там свежими подборками фильмов и музыки 🙂

В конце восьмидесятых одним из авторитетов в американском хип-хопе была группа Public Enemy — очень политизированный коллектив, который читал про расизм и призывал к социальным изменениям. Те же идеи во Франции распространились ещё шире, поскольку в стране были сильны левые настроения. Тексты хип-хоп-групп иногда выглядели как манифест Французской коммунистической партии, пересказанный языком улиц.

Такие группы, как Assassin, поднимали темы полицейского насилия, угнетения обычных людей, экономического неравенства, современного рабства, экологии, социальной маргинализации, политического заключения, прав женщин, расизма и колонизации Африки.

Конкретно у Assassin были детальные тексты про актуальные политические реалии. Вот цитата из песни Esclave de votre société:

«Если тебя поймают даже с 10 граммами гашиша,

Ты дилер и преступник в глазах правосудия.

Но если министра поймали на растрате денег,

Парламент голосует за оправдание и он свободен как ветер».

Французские рэперы постоянно подчёркивали своё единство с американскими. Например, в песне L’Etat Assassine участники группы почитают память Родни Кинга и Малика Уссекина. Родни Кинг — афроамериканец, которого полиция жестоко избила при задержании, что вызвало акции протеста и высказывания в музыке. Малик Уссекин — студент алжирского происхождения. Он прогуливался рядом с демонстрацией за отмену иммиграционных законов в Париже и попался под руку полиции, которая избила его до смерти.

NTM была второй культовой группой и наравне с Assassin продвигала политический хип-хоп. Темы её песен были прямо унаследованы не только у Public Enemy, но и у «красной» культуры французских пригородов.

Вот что вспоминал Кул Шен, участник Suprême NTM:

«Моя семья — португальские иммигранты, поэтому я вырос в обстановке, где постоянно обсуждалась политика. В таких пригородах настроения всегда крайне левые».

Лирика Кул Шена и JoeyStarr из Suprême NTM была в хорошем смысле пафосной: группа придавала огромное значение риторике о свободе, угнетении, политической жизни. За это группу гнобили оппозиционные ей политические силы и СМИ. В начале девяностых всё ограничивалось негативными статьями, но в 1993 году на группу подал в суд полицейский профсоюз.

Причиной стала песня Police, посвящённая злоупотреблениям и превышению полномочий. В итоге Кул Шену и JoeyStarr вынесли «шестимесячный запрет на занятие профессией эстрадных певцов». Однако вышестоящий суд смягчил наказание — назначил рэперам штраф и два месяца тюрьмы условно.

Клод М’Барали, парень сенегало-чадского происхождения, изучал языки и философию в Сорбонне. Но наравне с академическими интересами его тянуло к уличному искусству. Сначала М’Барали раскрашивал стены тегами Soar и Solaar, а затем взял псевдоним MC Solaar и стал рэпером. Первым его заметил диджей Дэниел Биньо, который в своей пиратской программе Radio Nova крутил американский хип-хоп.

MC Solaar считается первым успешным французским рэпером — известность пришла к нему в начале девяностых с песней Bouge de là, то есть «Проваливай отсюда». В отличие от песен Assassin и Suprême NTM, хит MC Solaar не содержал высказываний против расизма: это лёгкая и даже смешная песня о том, как рэпер ездит по городу и встречает разных персонажей, которые велят ему проваливать. Эта песня достигла пятого места во французских чартах и стала платиновым хитом.

MC Solaar известен сложной лирикой, лукавым юмором, игрой слов, лиризмом и исследованием человеческих типажей. Его дебютный альбом Qui seme le vent recolte le tempo («Тот, кто сеет ветер, наследует ритм») хвалили за трогательные описания его друзей.

Французские рэперы часто используют много сленговых слов или прибегают к верлану — части французского молодёжного сленга, для которого характерна перестановка согласных в обратном порядке и замена гласных. Однако у MC Solaar было не только классическое образование и хорошо поставленная речь, но и желание, чтобы его услышало как можно больше людей. Поэтому он делал свои тексты понятными и для тех, кто не погружён в хип-хоп-культуру.

Хоть MC Solaar и любит упоминать философов, но его песни о простом и понятном — о добре и зле, светлых и тёмных сторонах личности и общества. Сам он часто говорит, что хочет стать для слушателей своеобразным учителем, который научит думать и выбирать между добром и злом, показывая в песнях обе стороны. А вот про актуальные события он почти не читал, предпочитая по-философски говорить о вечном.

Лейбл Time Bomb в середине девяностых обитал в андерграунде, альбомов его представителей не было в магазинах, но зато их песни часто крутили в радиошоу Générations. Благодаря радио им удалось пробиться к слушателям и произвести настоящую революцию.

1995–1997 годы, пик активности группы, называют временем, когда французский хип-хоп радикально изменился и вырос из зачаточного состояния в большой и самостоятельный жанр. Главным двигателем процесса стал именно лейбл Time Bomb, в котором работало 11 человек: дуэт Lunatic, трио X-Men, Oxmo Puccino, Pit Baccardi, дуэт Jedi, Diable Rouge, Ziko.

Time Bomb можно сравнить с поэтами-футуристами: больше всего они повлияли не столько на содержание, сколько на форму, так как ломали привычные формы стихосложения. Рэпер Booba в песне Écoute bien («Слушай внимательно») назвал это «революцией в красноречии», Cassidy высказался ещё радикальнее: «Мы взорвали французский язык».

Песни рэперов из Time Bomb были полны звукоподражаний, игр слов и созвучий. Все артисты лейбла говорили не только на французском, но и на языке их родителей: арабском, волофе (один из официальных языков в Сенегале) и других. Это позволяло им свободнее обращаться с «языком колонизаторов», использовать нестандартную лексику и грамматику: в общем, пересобирать правила французского на свой лад.

Сейчас такие каламбуры и переиначивания не дадут вау-эффекта, но в середине девяностых ситуация была иная. До этого рэперы во Франции изъяснялись более чётко и «литературно», их тексты можно было спокойно прочитать на бумаге как стихотворение. Time Bomb привнесла во французский рэп игры с ритмом, акцентами, интонациями, техниками дыхания, речитативом.

На протяжение всех девяностых французские СМИ травили политических рэперов, представляя их неадекватами или даже головорезами, которые не хотят решать проблемы общества, а просто жаждут насилия. Такая массовая медийная атака привела к тому, что протестное наполнение хип-хопа иссякло. Теперь рэперы искали вдохновения не на акциях протеста, а во дворах криминальных пригородов.

Эта тенденция проявляется в песнях дуэта Lunatic. Рэперы Буба и Али, входившие в TIme Bomb, не обращаются к массам, чтобы вдохновить их бороться за свои права. Их песни только о том, что происходит с ними, их друзьями или соседями по району.

Уйма подпольного сленга делает смысл песен непонятным для тех, кто не в теме. По сути, это рэп из гетто для гетто: сделки, сведение счетов, девушки, «братья», тюрьма и море агрессии, зачастую беспричинной.

Яркий пример автобиографичности творчества Lunatic — песня La Lettre. В ней Буба пишет из тюрьмы Али (что было на самом деле), говорит о тюремном быте и жалуется на принудительный труд, без которого у него нет шансов выйти досрочно.

Затем он рассказывает, что мечтает получить вновь, когда выйдет: наркотики, оружие, секс и деньги. С одной стороны, это типичные рэп-темы, с другой — иллюстрация того, что тюрьма на самом деле не выполняет функцию исправительного учреждения и выпускает людей, которые в криминальной среде ещё больше проникаются её миропорядком и эстетикой. Культовой стала такая цитата из песни:

«Тюрьма подвергает нас давлению, она питает наши революционные инстинкты, так что к чёрту социальную реабилитацию».

Трио TTC первым во Франции стало подражать стилю продюсеров с юга США — так называемому стилю Dirty South, переполненному качовыми синтезаторами.

Участники группы говорили, что независимый американский рэп стал для них неинтересен, потому что начал повторять сам себя. TTC хотели перенести хип-хоп с улиц в клубы и делать большие хиты. Их треки были переполнены острыми хай-хэтами и энергичными синтезаторами. За референс они взяли работы таких рэперов, как Ludacris и Lil Jon.

Песни TTC отличались не только тем, что ориентировались на общедоступные хиты. Если патриархи жанра из девяностых читали очень серьёзный рэп: то задумчивый, то откровенно угрюмый; то участники TTC хотели развлекаться, поэтому их песни были куда веселее, насыщеннее шутками, в том числе и на грани фола.

TTC сделали клубный саунд основным для французского хип-хопа в нулевые. Ещё сильнее этому способствовало скрещивание рэпа с электронной музыкой. Многие хип-хоп-продюсеры, такие как DJ Mehdi, Para One и DJ Detect, переходили в электронику. Рэперы тоже вносили разнообразие в биты, а запустил эту волну рэпер Grems, он же Микаэль Эвено.

По творчеству Гремса видно, что ему неинтересно делать что-то одно. Его хип-хоп сочетается с хаусом, гетто-теком, дабстепом. А кроме музыки он занимается ещё и граффити и графическим дизайном. В каком-то смысле Гремс для Франции стал тем же, кем Канье Уэст — для хип-хопа всего мира: он показал, что жанр не обязан ограничиваться какими-либо схемами или условностями, ограниченным набором инструментов и семплов, а вместо этого каждый раз добавлял что-то новое.

Как и в США, хип-хоп Франции — на 99% мужская вечеринка. Diam стала одной из первых рэперш, которой в нулевые удалось прорваться из андерграунда на широкую сцену. При этом пела она вовсе не про «пусси-джуси на тусе». Девушка обратила внимание на проблемы женщин и общества в целом. Это сделало её одной из самых популярных артисток в стране.

Diam была на пике своей славы после успешного альбома 2006 года Dans Ma Bulle («Внутри моего пузыря»), концертного тура с аншлагами и музыкальных наград как во Франции, так и во всей Европе. А за кулисами она боролась с психологическими проблемами, из-за которых ещё с детства у неё периодически возникали мысли о самоубийстве. Ситуация достигла критической точки, когда Diam попала в психиатрическую больницу.

Диам нашла неожиданный способ выйти из депрессии — она приняла ислам, начала носить хиджаб и бросила творчество. Сейчас она снимает фильмы и не думает о возвращении в музыку.

Хотя Жюль выпустил первый альбом только в 2014 году, к настоящему моменту он уже успел продать более 6 миллионов копий своих альбомов и стать самым коммерчески успешным рэпером Франции. Также он самый прослушиваемый на стриминговых платформах Франции артист. Большинство его альбомов достигают первого места, а в 2018-м он у него наконец появился первый сингл №1 — Toto et Ninetta.

Жюль раскрутился с помощью приёмов, которые сейчас доминируют и в Америке: речитатива с автотюном, танцевального бита с отголосками латиноамериканских жанров — пуэрто-риканского реггетона и бразильского байле-фанка. При этом для слушателей Жюль остался своим парнем, а не богемным рэпером в дорогой одежде и с элитным алкоголем.

Для жителей его родного Марселя Жюль — местный парень, ставший голосом рабочего класса, а не тот, кто выдаёт себя за американца. При этом его слушают и модные парижане, и люди в возрасте. Свою независимость рэпер доказал хотя бы тем, что стал звездой без поддержки крупного лейбла.

Во французском хип-хопе есть парадокс: исполнители — часто эмигранты в первом-втором поколении, приехавшие преимущественно из Африки. При этом они практически не добавляют в свои песни ничего из музыкальных традиций исторической родины. Часто можно услышать обвинения, что французский хип-хоп начисто копирует американский. И это притом что Франция, а особенно Париж, исторически была важным центром распространения традиционной музыки Африки, поскольку музыканты приезжали в бывшую метрополию на гастроли и учёбу.

Рэпер MHD, родившийся во Франции в семье сенегалки и гвинейца, не хотел забывать о своих корнях и заявил о создании нового жанра — афротрэпа. В нём MHD работал с наследием ритмов северо-запада Африки, которые к Франции, как он считает, имеют больше отношения, чем американские биты, сделанные на драм-машинах. MHD читает не только на французском, но и на языках фула и волоф, распространённых в Западной Африке.

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I’ve put together a list of the best French rappers of all time, highlighting the artists who have left an indelible mark on the world of hip-hop with their unique styles and lyrical prowess.

This article celebrates the rich tapestry of French rap, showcasing the diverse talents that have shaped this dynamic genre.

  • MC Solaar
  • Vald
  • Booba
  • SCH
  • Jul
  • Niska
  • Ninho
  • KEKRA
  • PNL
  • MHD

1. MC Solaar

MC Solaar is widely considered the best and most influential French rapper of all time! Born in Senegal as Claude M’Barali, he adopted his stage name when he moved to Paris.

Here he released his first album, Qui Seme le Vent Recolte le Temp, in 1991.

Being one of the few French rappers to break into the American hip-hop scene, MC Solaar received several platinum certifications during his career.

Helped by his work on Guru’s Jazzmattaz album and Missy Elliott’s song “All N My Grill,” MC Solaar will remain one of the few French hip-hop artists to make it into international markets.

He’s certainly worth checking out!

2. Vald

The French rapper Valentin Le Du, who goes by the stage name Vald, sure has generated some controversy!

Known for his bizarre creativity and contentious subject matter, Vald has shot to the top of the French charts on more than one occasion.

In total, he has only released two mixtapes, two EPs, and two albums, but this hasn’t stopped him from successfully infiltrating the French rap scene.

His albums Agartha and Xeu both reached number one in France, and his EPs also performed well.

If you’re a fan of cloud rap and comedy rap, Vald is an up-and-coming rapper that you need to listen to!

3. Booba

Elie Yaffa, who adopted the stage name Booba, is the most legally downloaded French rapper ever.

Beginning his career in the 90s as a breakdancer, he is considered one of the highest-paid rappers in France.

Booba is more than just a rapper, though! The businessman expanded his brand when he established his own record label, Tallac Records, his own jewelry line, and his own clothing line.

The successful French rapper has released eleven albums, five of which have received platinum certification.

His most outstanding achievement, though, is his album Trône, which was handed diamond certification after selling over ten million copies!

4. SCH

Julien Schwarzer, better known as SCH, was born in Marseille to a French mother and German Father.

He has so far released six albums; each of which reached the top three in the Frech charts and was certified platinum.

Launching his career at the young age of thirteen, he began by posting his content on the Skyblog site under the name Schwarzer.

On becoming more popular, Schwarzer adopted the stage name SCH and began to hit the French and Belgian charts!

The gangster persona that SCH has adopted reflects upon Marseille’s reputation as a hotspot for organized crime.

Many call Marseille the “Los Angeles of French rap”, with Schwarzer fitting into the scene perfectly.

5. Jul

Born Julien Mari, Jul is another prolific French rapper from Marseille.

Described as a hip-hop powerhouse, he sent waves through the French rap scene in 2014 with his platinum-selling debut album Dans Ma Paranoïa.

Before arriving as a solo artist, though, Jul first found his feet in 2017 as part of the rap collective Ghetto Phénomène.

As a solo rapper, he’s known for the rapid rate at which he releases material!

Jul has released a whopping twenty-two albums over his career, many of which have received at least platinum status, and by the end of the 2010s, he had sold more albums than any other rapper in the history of French rap.

Now that’s dedication!

6. Niska

Stanislas Dinga Pinto, otherwise known as Niska, is a popular French rapper.

Originally a part of the rap group Negro Deep, he decided to take the stage as a solo artist in 2015.

His five albums are wildly successful, each reaching the top three in the French charts.

His 2017 album Commando received diamond certification after selling ten million copies, and many of his other singles and albums have been certified platinum, solidifying his stance in the French hip-hop scene!

Becoming a father at the young age of 16 didn’t stop Niska from reaching success!

He continued to release further music and continues to be one of the most popular French rappers of all time.

7. Ninho

Ninho broke into the French rap scene from the suburbs of Paris and began his road to stardom at the young age of 12.

He broke into the French hip-hop scene in 2017 when his album Comme Prévu topped the French album charts.

William Nzobazola, as he’s known to friends and family, has appeared on songs with several other influential French rappers, including Niska and SCH.

He has since released numerous albums, many of which have reached the number-one spot.

In 2021, Ninho solidified his standing in the history of French rap when he became the French rapper with the most certified singles, with 100 gold singles, 39 platinum singles, and an impressive 19 diamond singles!

8. KEKRA

KEKRA is perhaps the most elusive of all French rappers on this list; he rarely gives interviews and has never been seen without a mask!

For this reason, he’s rather controversial, particularly after admitting that “rap is not a real job.”

He has given a few different reasons for his hidden identity, arguing that “it’s my music you have to listen to” before stating that it’s “so my mother would not find out that I’m a rapper, she would be disappointed.”

Despite the controversy, KEKRA has released eleven albums in total, many of which have performed very successfully.

Many of his albums at the beginning of his career were self-released before he signed with the French record label Because Music.

9. PNL

PNL, which stands for Peace N’ Lovés, is comprised of siblings Ademo and N.O.S.

The French duo had a difficult start to life when their father was jailed for bankruptcy and their mother for drug trafficking.

They didn’t let their unfortunate beginning stop them, though!

The brothers first evolved as solo artists before merging in 2014 with their debut studio album, Le Monde Chico.

They have since released three albums, of which two are certified diamonds with over ten million copies sold!

In 2020, PNL had an impressive year for awards when they won the Victoires de la Musique, an annual French award ceremony, for Best Music Video for their song “Au DD.” 

That same year, Deux frères was nominated for album of the year at the IMPALA European Awards, but they, unfortunately, missed out on the prize. Still, a nomination is pretty impressive!

10. MHD

Mohamed Sylla, known as MHD, is an influential French rapper who introduced a new genre of rap to the French hip-hop scene.

He blended trap music with the music of West Africa, coining this innovative genre “Afro trap.”

MHD got off to a strong start, releasing his debut, a self-titled album, in 2016.

It sold over two hundred thousand copies in less than six months, and he soon began receiving international recognition in Guinea, England, Senegal, and Morocco following an international tour.

Unfortunately, things went south for MHD when he was charged with second-degree murder in 2019.

Despite claiming his innocence, he was in custody for eighteen months before his release.

Despite this controversial roadblock, Sylla released a third album in 2021 which performed well.

11. Soprano

Saïd M’Roumbaba, known as Soprano, is a talented French rapper, singer, and songwriter.

He began his journey as part of the rap group Psy 4 de la Rime but soon left the collective to pursue a solo career.

His 2007 debut album Puisqu’il Faut Vivre broke into the Billboard European Top 100, as did many of his following albums.

Despite his solo success, Soprano has continued to work with Psy 4 de la Rime, bringing out two further albums with the group.

In 2019, he was introduced to the Musée Grévin, a wax museum located in Paris.

His wax figurine wears a hat signed by De Bornarel, a Karl Lagerfeld jacket, and Aaron Jah Stone jewelry, a recreation of the outfit he wore at the NRJ Music Awards in 2018.

12. Nekfeu

Ken Samaras, who adopted the stage name Nekfeu, began his career as a member of $-Crew, which was comprised of his childhood friends.

Impressively, he’s also a member of the L’entourage crew and the band 1995!

With these groups, he often participated in open-mic duels around Paris, building up a strong reputation before releasing his debut solo studio album, Feu.

The album won “Best Urban Music Album at the 2016 Victoires de la Musique.

He released his third album, Les Étoiles Vagabondes, in 2019.

It received diamond certification after it premiered in cinemas as a movie accompanied by the album and consolidated Nekfeu’s success as a rapper and actor.

13. Black M

Alpha Diallo, best known as Black M (previously Black Mesrimes), launched himself into the French rap scene in 2014 with the help of his platinum-certified album Les yeux plus gros que le monde.

He is also a member of the Sexion d’Assaut rap group.

The pseudonym Black Mesrimes is a play on words, a mashup of the name of the former public enemy number one, Jacques Mesrine, and the words “rhymes” and “black.”

Black M has received a whopping five awards, including a young talent award,  Best Musical Artist, Best French Act, and two lots of Best Music Video of the Year.

Since 2002, Black M has been showing the world what French rap really means!

14. OrelSan

Aurélien Cotentin, or OrelSan, is one half of the French hip-hop duo Casseurs Flowters.

He’s also an established solo artist, with four platinum-certified studio albums that each broke into the French album chart!

In 2023, OrelSan won three awards at the Victoires de la Musique: Concert of the Year, Original Song of the Year, and Music of the Year.

With his previous accomplishments, this adds up to an impressive twelve awards from the ceremony!

15. Lino

Lino is both a solo artist and a member of the French rap duo Srenik.

Known to his friends and family as Galino M’Bani, Lino is originally from Congo.

His brother Calboni M’Bani, known as “Calbo,” is the second half of the duo.

Ärsenik has released three albums, each of which charted in France, with Requiem charting also in Belgium and Switzerland.

As a solo French rapper, Lino has released two solo albums of his own.

Both of his albums, Paradis assassiné (2015) and Radio Bitume (2012), charted in France and exacerbated his popularity.

16. Gazo

Ibrahima Diakité, known as Gazo, is a French rapper from the suburbs of Paris.

Despite being kicked out by his parents at age twelve and leaving school at age fifteen, Gazo found his talent and joined the Gangster Disciple Nation (GDN) with some friends.

He started off posting his rap videos on YouTube, which garnered the attention of French rapper Gims.

Gims offered him a joint track on his album, and launched Gazo’s career! Many now call him “The Prince of French Drill,” a title he proudly owns.

Gazo identified a brand for French drill music, drawing influence from UK and US drill, and brought French drill onto the scene.

As such an influential French rapper, he’s certainly one to watch.

17. Lacrim

Karim Zenoud, a French rapper of Algerian descent, is better known by his stage name, Lacrim.

Over the course of his career, he has collaborated with various French artists and released many successful albums and singles.

Lacrim has released four studio albums, three of which topped the French charts.

Force & Honneur was perhaps his most successful album, being certified 3x platinum and charting in France, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Switzerland.

Despite his popularity as a rapper, Lacrim had some rather controversial events in his lifetime. He was accused of possession of a gun and was incarcerated for three years.

However, after eight months of hiding in Morocco, he was imprisoned again for the second time in three years. He was released in 2016, and he continued to release albums.

18. Da Uzi

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vNZYGGwmN3I

Davy Ngoma Di Malonda is a French rapper who goes by the stage name Da Uzi.

His career has been somewhat controversial due to multiple imprisonments, but his rap talent cannot be denied.

Da Uzi has released three studio albums: Architecte, which topped the French charts, and Vrai 2 Vrai and Le Chemin des Braves, which both peaked at number three.

All of his albums performed well in France, Belgium, and Switzerland, widening the scope of French rap.

19. Gims

Gandhi Bilel Djuna started his career as a French rapper with the stage name Maître Gims, but more recently is known simply as Gims.

He’s a former member of the hip-hop group Sexion d’Assaut but also achieved a lot of success as a solo artist.

His first major album, Subliminal, sold over one million copies in Belgium and was thus certified gold, launching his career.

Since then, Gims has released four more albums, which have each been successful.

Ceinture noire was extremely successful, being certified 2x diamond in France and platinum in Belgium.

Gims has won a total of five awards over his career, with an impressive total of twenty nominations!

20. Gringe

Guillaume Tranchant, otherwise known as Gringe, is one half of the duo Casseurs Flowters (along with Orelsan).

Despite his success as part of the duo, much of his success as a French rapper has come from his solo work.

Gringe’s album Enfant lune was certified gold and charted at number twenty in France, number thirteen in Belgium, and number thirty-five in Switzerland.

He has featured on singles with various popular artists and helped to popularize French rap.

Best French Rappers – Final Thoughts

Hopefully, now the task of finding new music to listen to is a little less daunting!

You now know twenty French rappers that are worth putting on your playlist, as well as some of their best albums.

Finding new artists to listen to, and even expanding to new music genres, helps to keep our musical experience fresh and interesting!

We hope you enjoy listening to these French rappers, who are the best of all time.

You may also like: Best Rappers of All Time

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