Every year the XXL posts a list in which they crown the future leaders of hip hop. The list is usually cute and you can tell they’ve spent plenty of resources unearthing some of the game’s next stars. With that being said, 4MP took a shot at the Rookie Class, and though we have much more names to offer, we thought we’d keep it at a minimum, providing seven fresh faces. Here’s our first annual Rookie Class. Enjoy!
The YBN collective features a slew of versatile rappers, but Nahmir’s made his case for being the best in the crew. The Birmingham, Alabama based rapper, made an appearance on the Billboard charts after dropping “Rubbin Off the Paint,” and has garnered millions of views with hits like “Bounce Out With That” and “No Hook,” which features fellow YBN spitta Almighty Jay. He’s just scratching the surface and is one of the voices of the new school to keep your eyes on.
The Fox Five Gang has found another superstar in Young Nudy. As the cousin of Slaughter Gang’s 21 Savage, Nudy’s drip is undeniable. The East Atlanta native dropped a near flawless project with Nudyland in 2017, and has the charisma, energy, flow and authenticity to be a force on the street-rap circuit for years to come. His chemistry with super-producer P’ierre Bourne is undeniable, and his knack for making “murder” music danceable could help him ascend to mainstream stardom.
The quintessential Generation Z rapper, Sheck Wes is one of the youth’s most important voices. His boundless energy is something to marvel at, as he has a way of captivating listeners with an aggressive delivery that makes you want to hop off the couch and break shit. Signed to Travis Scott’s imprint, the Harlem-bread emcee packs venues and is destined to become a mainstay on the charts.
Dallas got one with Sessions. A hard-hitting lyricist, Sessions quit his day job in 2015 to pursuit music, and the decision turned out to be a great one. In 2018, he watched his hard work pay off as he signed a deal with Def Jam, and has made waves with his sophomore album, Grateful, as well as a variety of gripping socially conscious tracks such as “Like Me,” and “First World Problems.” Check him out.
Another Georgia-bred rapper on this list, Quando Rondo first caught my eye with the street-lullaby “I Remember” featuring Li’l Baby. His knack for turning introspective lyrics and pain into catchy melodies is reminiscent of NBA YoungBoy, and he should slide into your musical rotation as he continues to churn out gripping hits.
The City Girls
Trina birthed a pair of children who came out just as Icy as the “Diamond Princess,” herself. They go by the City Girls, a Miami-based duo comprised of the lovely and talented J.T. and Yung Miami. Like the 305-bred acts who’ve come before them, their content highlights the brash, raunchy and flashy lifestyle akin to South Florida, finessing beats with straightforward lyrics about finessing wallets and broke niggas. In the past year, they’ve been featured on Drake’s album Scorpion, where they stole the show on B-Side track, “In My Feelings” and have racked up the views on YouTube with hits, “I’ll Take Your Man,” “Where the Bag At” and “Tighten Up.” Though ½ of the City Girls is locked up (FREE J.T.), this slick-talkin’ duo is bound to provide your WCW with an onslaught of quotables for years to come.
When asked about his music Sahbabii told The Fader, “I like to sound light, I like the melodies to sound like you’re kissing cupid. I want that motherfucker to sound like heaven.” Mission accomplished. With colorful songs that makes you feel as if you’re on a psychedelic-fueled journey through another atmosphere, Sahbabii finesses his way through beats, throwing around fun-loving, sex-filled lyrics that produce a state of euphoria for his listeners. His project S.A.N.D.A.S. produced joints like “Pull up with Ah Stick,” “Marsupial Superstars,” and “Purple Ape,” and with his 2018 hit “Watery,” the Chicago-bred/Atlanta-based star doesn’t seem intent on slowing down.