Three months have passed in 2024 and the year is already looking like it’s going to be one for the books as far as hip-hop is concerned. Here are some of the biggest moments in rap for the first quarter of the year so far.

  • 21 Savage Earns No. 1 Album

In January, 21 Savage returned from a six-year solo album hiatus to release his third LP American Dream. The album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart after moving 133,00 equivalent album units in its first week. It was the first rap album to top the chart in 2024 but it wouldn’t be the last. It took seven months for a rap album to reach No. 1 in 2023.

  • Jack Harlow’s “Lovin on Me” Spends Multiple Weeks at No. 1

Despite being released last November, Jack Harlow‘s hit song “Lovin on Me” has been one of the biggest songs of 2024. The single climbed to the top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart in December of 2023, only to return to pole position for another five weeks in January and February of 2024.

  • Killer Mike Sweeps the Grammys

In February, Killer Mike had a monumental moment at the 2024 Grammy Awards. The Atlanta rapper swept the rap category, earning the award for Best Rap Album for his Michael LP, and Best Rap Song and Best Rap Performance for “Scientists & Engineers” featuring André 3000, Future and Eryn Allen Kane.

  • Megan Thee Stallion Earns No. 1 Song

Megan Thee Stallion had the internet abuzz in February when she returned with her new single “Hiss.” The track shot up to No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, tying a record held by Nicki Minaj and Lauryn Hill for being the only female rappers to debut a song atop the Billboard Hot 100.

  • Ye and Ty Dolla $ign Earn No. 1 Album and No. 1 Song

After several delays, Ye returned with his new Vultures 1 album with Ty Dolla $ign on Feb. 10. Any question if Ye would succumb to cancel culture was dashed after the album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart  and then stayed at No. 1 for consecutive weeks. In March, the single “Carnival” featuring Rich The Kid and Playboi Carti also hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100.

  • Kendrick Lamar Puts Rap Game on Notice

Future and Metro Boomin‘s highly anticipated new We Don’t Trust You album dropped in March. The LP features a verse from Kendrick Lamar that put the rap game, and J. Cole and Drake specifically, on notice. K-Dot shaded the two rappers on the vitriolic verse, shutting down talk of a rap Big Three consisiting of himself, Drake and Cole. “Muthaf**k the big three, n***a/It’s just big me,” he raps in what has been the most talked-about verse of the year.

  • Future and Metro Boomin Earn No. 1 Album and No. 1 Song

Future and Metro Boomin’s We Don’t Trust You album proved to be a hit. The album debuted at No. 1 with 251,000 equivalent album units in its first week, which marked the biggest first-week sales for any album of any genre in 2024. A week later, the aformentioned “Like That” also charted at No. 1 on the singles chart.

  • New Rappers Charting on Billboard Hot 100

Thusfar, 2024 has also seen several new artists getting shine on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Flo Milli (“Never Lose Me”), Bossman Dlow (“Get in With Me”), 310Babii (“Soak City”), BigXThaPlug (“Mmhmm”), Rich Amiri (“One Call”) and or course the enigmatic 4Batz (“Act II Date @ 8”) have all eanred spots on the chart this year, showing the vitality of the young crop of rhymers.

Things are looking up this year following a somewhat lackluster 2023. More is definitely in store.

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Author: C. Vernon Coleman II
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