Making a list of 10 most gifted rappers in a city will always be controversial especially when most of them are close to you.
Being gifted is one thing and using the gift to change the things around you is another which is one area we looked at before picking the list.
For one to be a gifted rapper, he should have in the past or present; have contents that made waves in the industry, and being the artiste who has helped others to stand on their feet will also be put into consideration as well as the artiste’s popularity and uniqueness.
A rapper like Bee came out with ‘Sweet Lullaby’ around 2009, a song that showed the world that rap music can still be done with Owerri dialect.
Acharaman and Aifee had Relax and Makachukwu respectively and these were songs that made people believe that rappers can really go the distance from this part of the world.
These songs and many others will always be part of our history and the fruits of the struggles of these artistes are what others are enjoying today.
For the future, we have the likes of Arty Ready, Romy, Skinny Blaze, 3rinitee, Lorenzo, and many others who have done their parts in one way or another; while the contributions of producer duo, Yung Roc and Reflex Soundz can never be taken for granted in building of rap music in the city of Owerri.
While Yung Roc produced ‘Nwafor (Street Credibility)’ in 2011, LMG produced ‘Ability’ in 2012, with Regiz, Reflex and Kasablanka coming out with ‘We hot’, ‘Oku Abiala’ and ‘Street worship’ respectively in 2013. These tracks are rap masterpieces which featured many rappers in one track and I believe they were all made to showcase the rap prowess of the city.
Before the list was put up, fans, DJs, and radio presenters were sent a long list which each of them narrowed down to 10 and it will be wonderful to note that some names appeared in all the lists while others appeared on few.
The gifts of our rappers in this part of the world will revolves around the uniqueness of rappers like Murda Crack; hardcore delivery of others like Aifee; comic rap by KeyloGram (former Lokey); Acharaman’s ability to go strictly on Igbo and English; LMG’s controversies and ability to turn poetry to lyrics and that of Angel D who has so far remained the only female rapper based in the state that is holding it high.
I will go with the verdict of E-Sure celebrity Awards on this one, where Aifee bagged the award of Artiste of the year.
Looking at contents, lyrics and contributions to the growth of the industry, he has stood his ground as the most consistent rapper from the past and future.
The resounding echoes of Makachukwu, Chairman sir and his courage to do Maye (message to the government ) will for sure sit him at the top.
Among everyone on the list, he is the only one with one album and two videos to his name.
His originality is impeccable and he has risen to spotlight despite being an indigene of Anambra State.
This is a demonstration that music knows no boundary.
He was always among the first three in all the lists we received and funny enough his name was omitted one one or two.
Imo State born LMG can win the award of the most hated rapper in the city, but his fame spreads beyond the boundaries of the state; fame made with music and controversies.
LMG was made with his 8 track online mixtape ‘Disinfentant’ in 2012, where the lyrics of the hit track, Mbo still remain a masterpiece.
He has ‘Once upon a time’, ‘Illuminate’ as well as other mixtapes to his credit. His recent works, ‘Names of Noise Maker’ and ‘Caution’ have earned him hate and love in their different ratios and some said he invested his talent in controversies.
LMG was partly in the past, but I see him sitting tight in the future, if a non-beef track and a video are his next plans in the industry.
Acharaman has played a great role in inspiring others rappers, having done more collabos than any other rapper in the city.
The Mbaise born rapper is never ashamed of Igbo language in his lyrics and while people would be wondering why he sits below LMG and Aifee, I’ll say it is because his most recent works are not rap tracks.
Acharaman release ‘Nwa Mbaise’ and ‘Form a circle’, and in both he sang, leaving ‘Ndumodu’, ‘Relax’, ‘Sherikoko’ and other collaborations as materials for assessment.
Acharaman is another poet in town and his beastly delivery is second to none (Igbo rappers) in the state.
He has recently demonstrated that he can also do pure English rap without a single Igbo word.
It was difficult to decide where to place him, because many love him for his freestyle prowess.
With his King of freestyle title now a myth, X-Busta released two singles ‘A Shot’ and ‘Shomo’ early this year, with the later making it far because it is a dancehall track.
Although his talent as a rapper has often been argued and criticized, he still holds the heart of fans within and beyond the state because while on his freestyle thing, he gives them what they want; one reason he made it far with the big boys at Star Trek.
His name has drawn attention to this part of the world and if he converts his freestyle ability to the lyrics of making another rap track like Aifee, LMG and Acharaman have done, he will be a real deal for his Record Label, Valencia Records and the industry as a whole.
A Cyprus returnee whom despite the trending dancehall fever has never compromised with his style of music.
Dawn Tawn will be a rapper everyday and he has demonstrated that from his debut with ‘Ndi Nko’, ‘Boss life’, One Jeans one shoe’, ‘Bonny and Clyde’ and other.
One Jeans one shoe, to me will be the best thing from him, and his uniqueness, consistency and ability to pass a massage in all his songs is among the reasons that put him in this list.
His tracks have made it far, gaining him good airplay on radio stations around the country and beyond.
Whenever I’ll start rapping, I’ll surely do a collabo with him, because his thickness will give my weak voice the protection it needs.
Having him below the rest of the artistes above him looks unfair, but putting his recent form and participation in the music industry, one would realize that his fame has gone down, while those above him have risen because they stepped up performances and talents.
Red Loaf is another artiste who can do a whole track without an English word. His vocal strength and lyrical prowess is one reason a fair list can never over look him.
He has been in the past, made his biggest mark with the track ‘Marriage material’, while other tracks from him have done well. This proves why Naira Stake Entertainment chose to invest on him.
Collabo tracks like, ‘Street Worship’, ‘How come’ with Angel D, are some of his recent works and there is no way one can omit his name in the making of hip-hop as an acceptable genre of music in Imo State.
He is also one of the artistes on the list with an album in the market.
Alongside Aifee and Redloaf, 2Blac is also in the league of album owners on the list.
He is known for his dangling rap style and ability to always put down springs of rhyme in Igbo Language.
‘Aguru’, ‘Mpagi dia’ and recently ‘Doromi’ and ‘Anything for you’ are wonderful tracks that shows he still has what it takes to be a top artiste now and in future.
7th place does not say badly about his talent because he is one of the artistes on the list with the highest number of successful contents both in the market and online.
I know him as a comic rapper and I decided to call him that after listening to ‘Nonsense’ and his part in Aifee’s Chairman Sir, where he played with words to produce a wonderful rap verse that still thrills whenever those songs are being played.
He has also proven to be a force in what he does; going far to demonstrate that he is gifted beyond comic rap in his recent singles.
Keylo’Gram who was formerly known as Lo’Key sits on the 8th position today, but I see him moving up in future because his talent is never a doubt.
Being the only female on the list makes her the best in one angle because she will pick the award of the best female rapper in Owerri instantly.
One would ask, why Angel D? Why not the likes of Pattsy Chizzy and Treasure Gold, but the assessment was based on those resident in Owerri, which is also a reason PortHarcourt based Profingaz who is just schooling in Owerri was omitted.
Angel D with just a single has remained consistent in events, taking her ground as an inspiration for aspiring female rappers.
Much will not be said about the achievements of a lady rapper who has performed in almost half of the states in the country because she is just one lady standing out in the world of men.
Murda Crack can never be heard in two places because there is only one person that raps like him and he is the one.
Singles like ‘The best’, ‘Mama don’t cry’ and other collabos nailed him deep on this list. Although he comes in as the last, he is still a worthy rapper who will never be afraid of any beat.
His uniqueness and ‘pap pap’ delivering is second to none and he is surely one of the rappers that bring out the best in any song they feature in.