South Africa’s hip-hop industry has been on the rise since the days of mid-’90s crew Prophets of Da City, the country’s first major hip-hop group. Today, SA is enjoying a golden era of hip-hop, celebrating the freshest and realest MCs in the country. Here we’ve compiled a list of the nation’s top current MCs in the limelight, while remembering the birth of hip-hop in South Africa and paying homage to the great game-changers who created and cleared a path for hip-hop to become what it is today in “Mzansi” (The South).
MCs such as Amu, SPEX, Pitch Black Afro, HHP and groups such as Skwatta Kamp and H20, as well as contributors like Lance Stehr—who started South Africa’s first hip-hop label, Ghetto Ruff Records—all played major roles in putting South African hip-hop on the map and inspiring the new artists of today. With the credit given where it’s certainly due, it’s clear that the competition between SA’s MCs is thick and can continually be debated upon, but here’s the list of XXL‘s top 10 finest MCs in South Africa.–Compiled and written by Rudzani “RooAt” Netshiheni (@Roo_AT)