Since 2013, hip-hop magazine XXL has produced their annual “Top 10 Freshman List.” The Freshman List selects 10 upcoming hip-hop artists to watch. Since its creation, the annual Freshman List has been almost a religious text among hip-hop fans, showcasing the game’s hottest new talents. In past years, the list has featured now mainstream superstars such as Kendrick Lamar, Chance the Rapper, Wiz Khalifa, Travi$ Scott, Chief Keef, and Lil Uzi Vert just to name a few.

Since last year’s list, A LOT has happened in the game. Every single day, new artists have racked up millions of plays on Soundcloud. With so many new artists popping up every day, the staff of XXL has some tough decisions ahead of them when making this year’s list. Although in the past the staff of XXL has made unpredictable selections, here is my personal list of 2018’s Top 10 Freshman (not in order).


  • Famous Dex
  • YBN Nahmir
  • Lil Skies
  • Jay Critch
  • Trippie Redd
  • Nav
  • Smokepurpp
  • Ski Mask the Slump God
  • Cardi B
  • Rich The Kid


David’s Honorable Mentions:

  • Gunna
  • Yung Bans
  • Lil Baby