First Annual XXL Awards Winners

Rapper of the Year Readers’ Choice

Kendrick Lamar


Kendrick Lamar was poised to have a memorable 2012. Even without major distribution or a single to increase exposure, his 2011 indie release, Section.80, landed on year-end “Best Of” lists at hip-hop and mainstream outlets alike. It should be no surprise, then, that K. Dot’s 2012 TDE/Aftermath/Interscope-backed major label debut, good kid, m.A.A.d city—an even more meticulous effort—earned similar praise. It wasn’t just because more people heard it (it debuted at No. 1 on Billboard); it was because of what they heard. Add national and international touring from the year’s start to finish, sprinkle in standout guest spots on records from the game’s biggest names—T.I., Meek Mill, Big Sean, and Mac Miller—and 2012 cemented the XXL Freshman as hip-hop’s next great hope.

Nominees: Rick Ross, 2 Chainz, Nas, Kendrick Lamar, Meek Mill

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  • BR

    #Dope As Fuck This Is Epic! I Love It Everything Is Accurate. I Was Hoping T-Minus Would Get Producer Of The Year But Mike Will Deserves It Too. This Is Great Guys Keep Up The Good Work. Exellent!

  • Brandon Siebenaler

    Macklemore should def not have gotten new artist

    • NTK

      I’m thinkin’ the same thing but the dude just went triple-platinum off Thrift Shop and The Heist has bars. So I can’t hate, good job XXL!

    • karlon burkett

      In my opinion, Kendrick Lamar or Lecrae should’ve won.

      • Jonathan Rile

        Kendrick is not a breakout artist anymore…

        • karlon burkett

          He’s definitely not, but he was nominated for the award for some reason.

  • Garcus Marvey

    “Push ya afro back to ’76, muhfucka.”

  • PG

    idk how drake won the best guest verse on a hip hop record over andre 3000 or ghostface killah. plus why the verse of andre 3k on sixteen ft rick ross isnt nominated?? he straight up killed it!! smh

  • Landry Choupo


  • Jake

    Mercy best single? Nah.

  • abstrakt

    Hit-Boy should’ve gotten best producer “Goldie” “Clique” “1-Train” “Theraflu” “I Wish You Would” “Backseat Freestyle” and kendrick should’ve been best breakout artist but other than that I guess I can live with the rest

    • sincerelycourt

      so true

  • Jay

    Really Justin Bieber has he’s own award category?

  • bigL

    why the f*** did nas not win anything???First was Grammys now here.

  • Danny

    Kendrick debuted at Number 2 not Number 1

  • Danny

    Best Rapper/Producer Tandem should have gone to Macklemore & Ryan Lewis

  • Anthony

    P.O.S should win every award because he smokes all these fools.

  • ricky

    drake got guest verse on a hip hop record?? word? -__- did you guys not hear commons response to that guest verse ???

  • Keanu Kees

    Macklemore definitely deserved Breakout Artist of the Year. Glad to see Mack & Ryan both were nominees on the Tandem as well, personally, I think they should’ve won it because Ryan is now a huge part of Macklemore’s music. XXL did good on this though, no complaints. You guys definitely have to give Macklemore credit on the Breakout Artist though.

  • Ronald Jack

    NAS album should be album of the year or a lifetime achievement award. Him making a classic like Life is Good this late in his career is special.

  • jango boy

    xxl is trash

  • Mike.S.Chromey

    It’s Still Two Chainz Bitch , now what the fuck is up!?

  • jon

    is nas ever gonna get respect?