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The 10 Greatest White Rappers

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See also: EL-P's Dystopian Hip-Hop is No Sci-Fi Fantasy See also: Asher Roth Is Bro Rap Incarnate, but Don't Hold It Against Him See also: Action Bronson @ Club Red See also: Ten Awesome Mixtapes To Download Right Now (NSFW)

What are the first names to come to mind when we say "white rapper?" Vanilla Ice and Snow? Yeah -- when you put it that way, "white rapper" sounds an awful lot like an insult.

But the days of Brian Austin Green are behind us. Take a look at Aesop Rock (who's scheduled to perform tonight at Marquee Theatre), who leads the discussion firmly away from Joaquin Phoenix and into more interesting, dynamic, powerful light.

But he's not alone. Read on for our picks for 10 of the greatest white rappers ever.

Mac Miller

You know you've probably made it to the big time when Donald Trump tells the world that you're "the next Eminem." Of course The Donald was probably a little biased: Miller named a song after him. Miller's followed the popular path of becoming a mixtape success story, and parlaying that success to a major label debut, the well received Blue Slide Park.

RA the Rugged Man

RA the Rugged Man may not be the most well known rapper out there but there is no denying the guy's skills. The Long Island native signed with Jive Records when he was 18 and has worked with some of hip-hop's biggest talents, but has kept things quiet since 2004's Die, Rugged Man, Die. This year is supposed to see its followup, titled Legends Never Die and is slated to feature a diverse guest roster including Kool G Rap, Talib Kweli, Masta Ace, Brother Ali, and Tech N9ne.

Brother Ali

This albino MC from Minneapolis is known for his lyrical skills and his songs that range in topic to race, politics, and religion. His last full-length album was 2009's Us. Since then he's been touring pretty relentlessly and has released a few EPs. Speaking of touring, he's got an upcoming show on Saturday, September 15, at Club Red in Tempe.

Asher Roth

Yes, you probably remember Asher Roth from his big hit "I Love College." But, Roth is hardly a one trick pony: He's continued to develop his skills as an MC and the 2011 mixtape Pabst & Jazz only helps to show his improvement.


After scoring both a commercial and critical hit with 2007's I'll Sleep When I'm Dead Brooklyn rapper El-P hit a rough patch but seems to have come back strong with his most recent release Cancer for Cure. You can read Up on the Sun's Chase Kamp's interview with El-P about his recently released album here.

Aesop Rock

Widely known for his complex lyrics and use of unconventional beats Aesop Rock is a longtime favorite of fans of the "backpack rap" genre. Those beats and lyrical delivery can be heard on Aesop Rock's most recent release Skelethon.

Action Bronson

Once a well respected and classically trained chef in New York, Action Bronson has since shifted gears full-time to his music career. But his love of food often makes its way into his music as well as his other passions like professional wrestling and weed.

The Streets

The UK hip-hop scene doesn't really get much attention here in the States. The most notable import is ironically a white rapper as is the case of Mike Skinner aka The Streets.

Beastie Boys

Not only are the Beastie Boys one of the talented groups in the history of rap but they are also one of the most important in the genre of hip-hop in general as the Beastie Boys were largely responsible for exposing the genre of rap to most of middle of America.


While Eminem's most recent efforts haven't been quite as good as his earlier material, there is no arguing his place among white rappers. Not only is his the best white rapper ever, he is arguably one of the best rappers ever.

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