Hi Guys, it’s Yemmi!

-Welcome to the wonderful world of everything but Kpop!

Every time strangers find put that I’m interested in Korea the first thing they ask is if I like Kpop. Even whilst living in Korea my fellow Korean students also ask, or rather, assume that is primarily the reason I have chosen to do an exchange. This is completely okay. Music is everywhere, music is inspiring, music draws people from all walks of life. Kpop and the Hallyu wave is one of the most prevalent aspect of Korean society for many foreigners and defiantly acts a a gateway to Korean culture for many many people, I can think of many people, myself included, who have found delight in these cultural aspects of Korea. Whilst there is absolutely nothing wrong with loving Kpop and follow fanbases and buying their merchandise etc, these posts I hope will appeal to the reader who is perhaps less fond of Kpop culture but still wishes to see what the Korean music scene has to offer.

So I though that I would split this up into types of music styles that I like and give you lovely people a list of artists mainstream and not, that I personally like to listen too when I’m not dancing widely to the latest SHINee track. I am aware that a lot of these artists will actually be known to people, many of them are arguably more popular in Korea than your average Kpop idol, especially in the university age bracket. However I’m trying to show you guys that just because it is Korean, it does not mean it’s Kpop and that Korea does have a varied and wonderfully rich music scene just like any other country. I also apologise if I do not cover every type of music, I can only really talk about what I like! (so anyone I dislike will most likely being omitted from these posts even if they’re popular, sorry!) This is in no way an ultimate list, it’s more a list of the people I listen to the most. See it as a friendly introduction, okay?

So without further ado here is my list of favourite Hiphop artists!

I chose to start with this genre because I feel that it is one that is growing with popularity in Korea at the moment. With popular shows like ‘Show Me the Money’ and well known Kpop idols seeking to be seen as rappers without the ‘idol’ tag; international attention is most definetly growing in this area, which I personally think is a good thing.

(In no particular order):

  1. Jay Park 박재범 (AOMG)
  2. Simon D 사이먼 도미닉(AOMG)
  3. Loco 로꼬 (AOMG) 
  4. Gray 그레이 (AOMG)
  5. Ugly Duck 어글리덕 (AOMG)
  6. Dok2 도끼 (ILLIONAIRE)
  7. Beenzino 빈지노 (ILLIONAIRE)
  8. The Quiett 더 콰이엇  (ILLIONAIRE)
  9. Geeks 개코 (Dynamic Duo) 
  10. Choiza 최자 (Dynamic Duo) 
  11. Verbal Jint 버벌진트
  12. Tablo 타블로 (Epik High)
  13. Yoon Mirae 윤미래 (MFBTY) -Queen of Rap~ I will fight anyone that says different
  14. Tiger JK 타이거JK (MFBTY)
  15. Bizzy 비지 (MFBTY)
  16. San-E 산이
  17. Okasian 오케이션 (Cohort)
  18. Reddy 레디 (Cohort)
  19. Keith Ape 키스에이프 (Cohort)
  20. Kid Ash
  21. G2 
  22. Palo Alto 팔로알토
  23. Ja Mezz
  24. Swings 스윙스
  25. Heize 헤이즈- truthfully there aren’t many female rappers that have songs I like, but Heize is one of them (she’s my fav)
  26. Supreme Boi (Rock Bottom Crew)
  27. Giri Boy 기리보이
  28. Crucial Star 크루셜스타
  29. Geeks 긱스
  30. Olltii 올티
  31. Cheetah 치타
  32. Iron 아이언(Also a member of Rock Bottom Crew)
  33. Masta Wu 마스타우
  34. Andup 앤덥
  35. Gary 개리 (LEESANG)
  36. Blacknut 블랙넛
  37. Basick 베이식
  38. Outsider- (Quickest Korean rapper, seriously he’s actually ridiculous)
  39. Mad Clown 매드클라운
  40. Vasco 바스코
  41. Genius Nochang 천재노창
  42. Jessi 제시 
  43. C-Jamm 시쨈
  44. Don Mills 던밀스 
  45. Deepflow 딥플로우
  46. Huckleberry P
  47. Nucksal 
  48. Soul Connection (an underground rap group I highly recommend them^)
  49. Microdot 마이크로닷
  50. Eluphant 이루펀트 
  51. Punchnello
  52. 1TYM- Old school hiphop group from the 90s/00s
  53. Sik-K- 시케이
  54. MaccKid
  55. SLEEPY- 스리피


  1. Rock Bottom Crew – Formed of Daenamhyup crew (Rap Monster of BTS used to be in this) plus others the crew includes Supreme Boi, Iron, Marvel.J, i11evn,  Kid’oh (formerly of Kpop group Toppdogg) and many others that should be on the list^
  2. Yankie- does good collabs with many artist I like but I can’t think of many songs by him alone that I like. 
  3. Big Bang- Are they Kpop or Hiphop? I’ve seen them listed as both and I’m really not sure what they come under…nor do I like them enough to argue their case, (I think they’re more Kpop). either way, they are highly popular and most people like them blah blah blah…
  4. YDGG- I dislike. no more comments.
  5. Supreme Team (disbanded): E-Sens & Simon D- I loved this duo when they were active and although i’m sad they disbanded, Simon D as part of AOMG is pretty damn good…silver linings I guess.
‘Idol’ Rappers (If they also belong to a Kpop group as well as releasing their own rap music I’ve still classed them as idol rapper. Nevertheless some of them have produced some of my favourite songs so I don’t think its a disadvantage to them…) : 
  1. CL (2NE1) -Although I don’t think anyone would dare call her one, CL is from a Kpop group and therefore an idol rapper, just a very good one. I almost put her on the actual list but I don’t really like any of her solo works so she stays here.
  2. Zico (Block B) -Does he still count as an idol rapper? I think he’s popular enough to drop the idol tag but like CL he is still from a Kpop group so…)
  3. Bang Yongguk (BAP) -Previous member of underground crew Soul Connection. He’s one of the best ‘idol’ rappers out there
  4. Rap Monster (BTS) – I like. No more comments.
  5. Suga (BTS) I like. No more comments.
  6. Bobby (IKON)- He won ‘Show Me the Money 3’ and is featured on many tracks, I don’t really like him in IKON though.
  7. Song Mino (Winner) -Good rapper, not a massive fan of Winner. UPDATE 9/9/16: Bobby and Mini are now in a hiphop duo (Called MOBB) together and as they were the only thing I liked from their respective groups I feel this is a major improvement. 
  8.  Jooheon (Monsta X) -I’m always surprised at how good he is, Monsta X are still a new group but (Like Winner and IKON) they were formed through a TV, show so have a lot of exposure.
  9. I.M.- Same goes for the youngest member of Monsta X, a very different style to Jooheon but nonetheless decent
  10. Jimin (AOA) -She’s pretty talented, that came across on the the tv show ‘UnPretty Rapstars’, but I really don’t like her voice. 
Sorry that this post was so long! Here is a link to the playlists, the Spotify playlist has full albums on it but doesn’t have songs from all the listed artists, so the Youtube playlist has more range if that’s what you’d prefer~

What are you opinions of Korean Hiphop…Do you like it? If so who are your favourite artists and songs? Can you think of people you like that I missed out of my list? Let me know in the comments! 


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *