10 Denver Rappers You Need to Know

Denver rap is rife with talent. Although it's rarely mentioned as much as hip-hop hotbeds like Detroit, Chicago and Atlanta, the Colorado capital is steadily flourishing. Curious about hip-hop artists from the Mile-High City but not sure where to start? Here are 10 Denver rappers you should know about.

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BLKHRTS

Unlike anything else in the Denver scene, the BLKHRTS make dark, raw hip-hop inspired by goth, punk and industrial rock. But it’s far from any type of rock rap. It’s too street for that label. The trio, consisting of Denver emcees Yonnas, King FOE and Karma tha Voice, have been consistently pushing out new music, getting booked for multiple SXSW gigs every year and receiving coverage in The L.A. Times, among other outlets. Their live show is so hype that mosh pits aren’t out of place. More »

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Mane Rok has consistently made his mark on the Denver rap scene. He basically has a show every week all over Colorado, New Mexico and Arizona. He has a slew of innovative projects (En Stereo with producer Es Nine is my personal favorite). Also, his inventive video for "This One’s," a lyrical conviction of police brutality, had folks in the Denver community uniting for a cause. More »

This hip-hop trio, consisting of rapper A.V.I.U.S., producer extraordinaire Es-Nine, and world renowned turntablist Cysko Rokwel, make that boom bap hip-hop that any purist will love. The inked a distribution deal with Kamikazi Airlines (an imprint launched by Ugly Duckling’s Dizzy Dustin).  More »

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When a Denver rapper gets co-signed by folks like Royce Da 5’9”, Big Pooh, Chino XL, Crooked I, Joe Budden and Statik Selektah, he's surely going to get some attention. Those are just a few artists that were featured on producer-rapper SP Double’s headbanging album, Loyalty, Honor, Respect. SP received nationwide coverage for the project and for fans who love that lyrical hip-hop, this is where you need to be. Don’t sleep. More »

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When Trev Rich (p/k/a Rockie G 5) stepped on the Denver scene, his youthful arrogance rubbed some folks the wrong way. But when he dropped his Uncensored mixtape last year, folks started to come around. Hs songs were getting good rotations in the club scene around town. Now the young whipper snapper has dropped his latest mixtape, Gold Dreams, with hopes of taking him to that next level. It does. Keep an eye out because he’s up next. More »

This husband and wife duo hark back to the days of the Native Tongues--when hip-hop had a cultural identity. Although Aja Black and Big Samir actually live in Colorado Springs, about 60 miles south of Denver, they’re consistently doing shows in town. They rep Colorado whenever they’re touring. The pair recently tore the roof off the Apollo in Harlem and toured Morocco. Oh yeah, Aja sings and raps while Samir raps in both English and French. Remind you of anyone? More »

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This hip-hop band has been rocking Denver stages for quite some time and continues to bring an innovative and creative sound every year. The band even saw some of their songs placed on MTV shows Jersey Shore and I Used to Be Fat. Now with an album and a couple of EPs under their belt, the band is growing in popularity. Plus, getting mentioned in New Music Seminar’s top 100 "Artists on the Verge" helps the fellas move closer to putting Denver on the map. More »

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Pries is already tailor-made for success. Musically, his production team consistently hits him with club and radio-ready joints. Lyrically, Pries' stories of college life, achieving his dreams and just straight partying are relatable to any 20-something trying to find their place in the world. With a slew of top-notch albums under his belt, Pries could be Denver’s Wiz Khalifa if the music gets in the right hands. More »

In 2011, Myke Charles was the first rapper and a star attraction on NBC’s The Sing-Off as part of the acapella group Urban Method. Even though the group didn’t win, they finished in the top three. Judges and fans alike fawned over Charles. Along with the current shows and touring with Urban Method, Myke is consistently dropping new music on his own, including his banging mixtape, Lift-Off with Denver’s DJ Chonz, and with his hip-hop group, Fresh Breath Committee. He’s closer than you think. More »

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Foodchain consists of four emcees, two producers and a band. They created a buzz large enough to catch the attention of Shady Records. The group was personally invited by Eminem’s manager and Shady executive Paul Rosenberg to perform a set at the Shady Records Showcase during the 2012 SXSW Festival. Along with coverage across a handful of major hip-hop sites, they get consistent radio play on Sirius XM’s Shade 45. Their live show will convert any non-believer. Foodchain is just minutes away. More »