The Top 22 most successful American rappers – Ranking 2023

Die besten US Rapper in der Rangliste 2023. Drake, Eminem, Kanye West, Jay-Z und viele mehr.

Who are truly the most successful American rappers? We’re not talking about public opinion or “feeling,” but rather basing our answer on real sales figures. We have evaluated this question and the American database for music awards for you. As a follow up to the Top 22 most successful German rappers post, here is the ranking for the American music market.

Information about the rating system

The ranking was created on the basis of the current Gold & Platinum database of the RIAA. The following points were awarded: (as of February 2023) Single Gold = 1 point Single Platinum = 2 point Album Gold = 2 points Album Platinum = 3 points Single Diamond = 5 points Album Diamond = 7 points

In the event of a tie, a winner was decided based on monthly Spotify streams.

The 22 best American rappers – Übersicht

#1 Drake

Drake (real name Aubrey Drake Graham, born 24.10.1986 in Toronto, Canada)

Awards: 13x Gold 378x Platinum 140x Diamond

Total score: 1599

Did you know? Drake is by far the most successful rapper in the world. He has a tattoo of Harry Potter on his back. Toronto earned about $440 million in tourism in 2018 just thanks to Drake. Despite the incredible global success Drake has, he is not signed to any American label, but to the UK label “Boy Better Know” by rapper Skepta.

#2 Eminem

Eminem (real name Marshall Mathers III, born 17.10.1972 in St. Joseph, USA)

Awards: 34x Gold 156x Platinum 70x Diamond

Total score: 797

Did you know? The hit song “My Name Is” was created on the same day that Eminem and Dr. Dre met. Eminem is the hip-hop artist with the most subscribers on YouTube (40million+). Eminem still hasn’t learned how to use a computer.

#3 Post Malone

Post Malone (real name Austin Richard Post, born 4.07.1995 in Syracuse, New York)

Awards: 3x Gold 96x Platinum 61x Diamond

Total score: 514

Did you know? Post’s stage name is made up of two names; his last name “Post” and “Malone” which was generated by a rap name genrator. Post Malone loves video games and has also streamed regularly on Twitch. Everyone starts small: Before his breakthrough, he worked as a DJ at weddings to keep his head above water.

#4 Kanye West

Kanye West (real name Kanye Omari West, born 08.06.1977 in Atlanta, USA)

Awards: 9x Gold 176x Platinum 10x Diamond

Total score: 438

Did you know? Kanye West lived in China when he was 10 years old. Nowadays his name is no longer Kanye, because he changed his real name from Kanye Omari West to “Ye.” Even Michael Jackson, the King of Pop was a big fan of Ye, which was mutual.

#5 Nicki Minaj

Nicki Minaj (real name Onika Tanya Maraj, born 08.12.1982 in Port of Spain, Trinidad & Tobago)

Awards: 15x Gold 73x Platinum 51x Diamond

Total score: 438

Did you know? Nicki Minaj’s parents were both gospel singers, though her father was heavily addicted to drugs. Her brother was convicted of sex crimes. Everything points to a difficult childhood with many complications and conflicts. She started writing her first rap song at the age of 12 and was a member of a band.

#6 Lil Wayne

Lil Wayne (real name Dwayne Michael Carter, Jr. born 12.09.1982 in New Orleans, USA)

Awards: 13x Gold 152x Platinum 10x Diamond

Total score: 395

Did you know? Lil Wayne used to be called “Shrimp Daddy.” He released his first album when he was 11, and he’s also been carrying a gun since he was 11.

#7 Future

Future (real name Nayvadius DeMun Wilburn, 20.11.1983 in Atlanta, USA)

Awards: 92x Gold 106x Platinum 11x Diamond

Total score: 373

Did you know? Future has changed his name to “Cash.” Before he got the name “Future” from the Dungeon Family, his name was “Meathead of Da Connect”. The American rapper Future now has 7 children.

#8 Lil Baby

Lil Baby (real name Dominique Jones, born 3.12.1994 in Atlanta, USA)

Awards: 54x Gold 104x Platinum 10x Diamond

Total score: 321

Did you know? US rapper Lil Baby visited the White House with the Floyd family, a year after the death of George Floyd. Young Thug encouraged Lil Baby to leave the “hood,” seeing his talent. According to his own statements, the reason for Lil Baby not having tattoos is quite simple: he doesn’t want to be a bad example for his children and grandchildren in the future.

#9 Cardi B

Cardi B (real name Belcalis Almanzar, born 11.10.1992 in the Bronx in New York City, USA).

Awards: 8x Gold 64x Platinum 32x Diamond

Did you know? Cardi B’s parents named her “Bacardi” as a child. However, due to brand name infringement, Cardi could not adopt this name as a stage name and called herself Cardi B. Whereby the “B” is chosen rather arbitrarily. She speaks openly about her relationship with stripping and about surgical interventions and is still considered one of the most influential influencers in the rap scene.

#10 Jay-Z

Jay-Z (real name Shawn Corey Carter, born 04.12.1969 in New York City, USA)

Awards: 16x Gold 82x Platinum

Total score: 219

Did you know? Jay-Z shot his older brother who stole his jewelry when he was 12 years old, but they made up in the hospital. After the death of his close friend The Notorious B.I.G, Jay-Z fell into depression. At the age of 11, Jay-Z was abandoned by his father.

#11 Travis Scott

Travis Scott (real name Jacques Berman Webster II, born 30.04.1991 in Houston, USA)

Awards: 14x Gold 67x Platinum 10x Diamond

Total score: 204

Did you know? Travis Scott and his friend Chris Holloway formed the duo “The Graduates” at the age of 16. Due to depression, Travis had to drop out of university. Travis could play the drums at the age of three.

#12 YoungBoy Never Broke Again

YoungBoy Never Broke Again, or NBA YoungBoy (real name Kentrell DeSean Gaulden; born 20.10.1999 in Baton Rouge, USA).

Awards: 70x Gold 62x Platinum

Total score: 202

Did you know? US rapper YoungBoy started recording music at the age of 14. His father was sentenced to 55 years in prison. NBA YoungBoy is 23 years old and already has 10 children.

#13 XXXTentacion

XXXTentacion (real name Jahseh Dwayne Ricardo Onfroy, born 23.01.1998 in Plantation, Broward County, Florida; deceased June 18, 2018 in Deerfield Beach, Florida, USA).

Awards: 12x Gold 61x Platinum 10x Diamond

Total score: 192

Did you know? His name is pronounced “ex-ex-ex-Tenn-Tah-Si-yon.” In 2017, X was knocked out on stage. On June 18, 2018, he was shot during a robbery and died in the hospital shortly after.

#14 Lil Uzi Vert

Lil Uzi Vert (real name Symere Woods, born 31.07.1995 in Philadelphia, USA)

Awards: 26x Gold 44x Platinum 11x Diamond

Total score: 174

Did you know?
 Lil Uzi loves everything that has to do with anime. No one could think of having a million-dollar diamond implanted in their forehead, except Uzi. However, he had it removed again. Lil Uzi’s biggest inspiration is Marylin Manson, but he also likes Katy Perry quite a bit.

#15 Kendrick Lamar

Kendrick Lamar (real name Kendrick Lamar Duckworth, born 17.06.1987 in Compton, USA)

Awards: 21x Gold 71x Platinum

Total score: 171

Did you know? Kendrick was a straight-A student. On Halloween, he dressed up as Jesus. As a young child, rapper Kendrick watched Tupac and Dr. Dre shoot a music video.

#16 Nelly

Nelly (real name Cornell Iral Haynes Jr., born 2.11.1974 in Austin, USA)

Awards: 9x Gold 28x Platinum 10x Diamond

Total score: 149

Did you know? Nelly moved to Spain when she was three years old. In high school, Nelly founded the hip-hop group “St. Lunatics”. Nelly is one of the greatest rappers of his time who are not from the East or West Coast.

#17 The Notorious B.I.G.

The Notorious B.I.G. or Biggie Smalls (real name Christopher George Latore Wallace, born 21.05.1972 in Brooklyn, New York City; deceased 9.03.1997 in Los Angeles, USA).

Awards: 4x Gold 27x Platinum 11x Diamond

Total score: 145

Did you know? Biggie had a collaboration with Shaquille O’Neal. In his high school days, Biggie was a straight-A student. Before the breakthrough, Biggie Smalls was a freestyler on the streets.

#18 – 50 Cent

50 Cent (real name Curtis James Jackson III, born 6.07.1975 in New York City, USA)

Awards: 14x Gold 62x platinum

Total score: 143

Did you know?
 American rapper 50 Cent has starred in 17 movies. In May 2000, 50 Cent was shot nine times.
 There are two video games based on 50 Cent; “50 Cent: Bulletproof” (2005), and a sequel in 2009.

#19 Lil Nas X

Lil Nas X (real name Montero Lamar Hill, born 9.04.1999 in Lithia Springs, USA)

Awards: 2x Gold 26x Platinum 17x Diamond

Total score: 142

Did you know? Rapper Lil Nas is the first artist to have a song on the Billboard 100 for 19 weeks. Being a fashion lover, he wore a Versace dress that took 700 hours to make by hand. He is one of the only rappers who does not have tattoos.

#20 Gunna

Gunna (real name Sergio Giavanni Kitchens, born 14.06.1993 in College Park, USA)

Awards: 29x Gold 29x Platinum 10x Diamond

Total score: 136

Did you know? Before 2016, Gunna was still called Yung Gunna. According to Gunna, Young Thug is the best rapper alive. Gunna has been learning boxing for several months.

#21 Migos

Migos are a rap group that originally had three members; Quavo (real name Quavious Keyate Marshall, born 2.04.1991 in Lawrenceville, USA), Offset (born 14.12.1991 as Kiari Kendrell Cephus in Lawrenceville, USA), and Takeoff, who recently passed away (real name Kirsnick Khari Ball; born 18.06.1994 in Lawrenceville, Georgia; deceased 1.11.2022 in Houston, USA).

Awards: 17x Gold 57x Platinum

Total score: 136

Did you know? The name “Migos” has existed only since 2010. Before that the group was called “Polo Club.” Quavo is Takeoff’s uncle and Offset is Quavo’s cousin. “Migos” comes from the word Amigos.

#22 Young Thug

Young Thug (born Jeffery Lamar Williams on August 16, 1991 in Atlanta, USA)

Awards: 32x Gold 25x platinum 10x Diamonds

Total score: 135

Did you know? In 2017 he donated all proceeds from a sold out concert to the #Fightforpoverty campaign. Young Thug has 6 children and 10 siblings.