Best Hip Hop Rapper In Kenya

Who is a Rapper?

A rapper is a type of entertainer who mixes music and rhymes to tell a story. Typically focused on life in the ghetto and the tough times of growing up in the bad part of town, the rapper often uses explicit lyrics to drive the meaning home.

Commonly taking music from other artists and music styles, this act of capturing a beat from a previously recorded song is known as sampling.

Often the rapper will play a short piece of music on a continuous loop, placing his lyrics over the music and effectively making an original work. Rappers often emulate gang members and take on gang nicknames, which they perform under instead of using their birth names.

Best Hip Hop Rapper In Kenya

Abbas Kubaff

Although he never achieved the commercial success of some of his peers or newer entrants, Abbas is a surgical lyricist idolised for his clever wordplay.

He has been in the music industry for well over 20 years. His earlier works Nairobism and Nairoberry alongside Bamboo, showcase his skill in album-making. His 2002-2006 run saw his hard-shell raps hand Hip Hop a space in the mainstream, at least.


Perhaps the hot take of the list, and even the most controversial, but Soundcity Africa nominee Wakadinali ticks all boxes. From an underground crew that has been in the game for well over a decade now, they have exceeded expectations.

No Kenyan acts express inner-city dwellings, youth rumblings, and take on every day like Wakadinali. To break through the glass ceiling in this fashion, they have established street and mainstream credibility seamlessly.


Probably the shortest discography among the lists’ contingent, it would be blasphemous to omit him from the list. The South-C prodigy single-handedly carried urban Kenyan music with his hit songs Huu Mwaka, Mos Mos, and others into the limelight. E-Sir’s music was original and packed with substance, hence why it is highly acclaimed monumental decades after his death.

From boastful yet feel-good cuts like Saree to introspective tear-jerking numbers like Hamnitishi, the lyrical tongue twister is immortalized in Kenyan books.


The self-proclaimed G.O.A.T (greatest of all time), Nyashinski is a star act. With melodic yet poetic cadences, when he graces a microphone to rap, he does not disappoint. Coming onto the scene with crew Kleptomaniax, Nyash was a wide-eyed rapper yet to complete high school when the masses heard of him.

Nyashinski lived in Kenya until 2006, when at 21 and a member of a rap trio, Kleptomaniax, his family relocated to Delaware, US where he worked as a truck driver for 10 years until his return to Kenya to continue his music career in 2016. His Lucky You offering was a textbook performance in album curation and will be heralded as one of the best hip-hop albums of the last decade.

Khaligraph Jones

The most awarded emcee on the list, Khaligraph Jones has been crowned Africa’s Best Rapper even by non-Kenyans.

Scoring records with some of the best emcees in the continent including Sarkodie, who is touted to be the best in Africa, Khaligraph has held his own. His machine-gun-like flow and intensity on the song have been highly adulatory. Khaligraph can make songs and conjure up freestyles in a fashion no one on the list can. His crossover ability is also potent hence why he easily ranks in the Top 5.


Besides Khaligraph Jones, Octopizzo is one of Kenya’s top rap stars. He symbolizes the heroism of making it out of adversity through music. Octopizzo’s success story cannot be ignored, even if critics vilify his cringe and crass punchlines arguing they can be a barrier for how high he ranks on the list. His expertise in making perpetual music that sticks, marrying artistry and creativity, and his nimble sense of fashion and experimentation set him apart.

Efforts in Noma Ni crystallise his style and paint him a classic example of black excellence. He is a trailblazer and continues to inspire upcoming rappers.

King Kaka

From Kaka Sungura to King Kaka, the evolution of Rabbit has been phenomenal. As an emcee hailing from Buru Buru Estate in Nairobi, Kaka’s formative years included hits such as Jam Nakam before he rallied on in the industry with numerous hits such as Ligi Soo.

His business acumen is also impressive, and he has partnerships with high-end brands such as Remy Martin. Kaka, beyond music, is an executive in Kaka Empire that has funneled careers for artists such as Femi One. His eye for talent and continuity in music and the arts is undeniable.


When it comes to flows, not many can beat Collo. He is a gem that can run rings around any emcee given the chance. He boasts numerous classics such as You Guy, Tuendelee and his stand-out verse on anthems such as Party Don’t Stop place Collo in the echelons of urban Kenyan music lore.

Relentless and acrobatic with his rhymes, Collo shot Kenyan music up when the international floodgates began to open and Kenyan music was at its arguable heights before the explosion of Afrobeats.

How much is Nyashinski paid per show?


Nyashinski – $20,000 (Sh2.

According to multiple sources – promoters, artists and agencies – that we spoke to, the “Mungu pekee” hit singer is the solo artiste charging the highest performance fees for a one-hour show.