It seems there’s not enough time in the day, week, month or even year to listen to all the best rap songs dropping these days. Fans are currently provided with a plethora of artists and styles to enjoy on their streaming service of choice.

But amid the overabundance of music, certain songs always find a way to stand out from the pack. So, HipHopDX is putting the spotlight on these songs, highlighting everything from straight bars to more melodic tracks. This month’s list includes new music from Jay Electronica, Run The Jewels, Joyner Lucas, Conway The Machine and more.

This article is part of DX’s monthly “Best of The Year” series. Check out some of DX’s other lists to stay up-to-date with all of the new music dropping this year. This month’s article includes songs released between January 1 and April 1.

Check out the Top Rap Songs of 2020… (so far). Make sure to scroll all the way down to the bottom and find HipHopDX’s playlist of the best rap songs of 2020. And don’t forget to follow us on Spotify!

The Best Hip Hop Songs of Jan – March 2020

 

“The Blinding” – Jay Electronica f. JAY-Z, Travis Scott & The-Dream

Jay Electronica and JAY-Z perfectly complement each other on A Written Testimony, particularly on the Travis Scott-assisted “The Blinding.” Both rappers come out swinging, starting the song off with spiritually laced bars over a hard-hitting instrumental. But when the beat switches midway through the track, Jay Elec displays true vulnerability and laments his fear of criticism. It’s a revealing moment that sheds light on why fans waited so long to hear his debut album.

“Yankee and The Brave (ep. 4)” – Run The Jewels

It appears Run The Jewels are gearing up for the release of their fourth studio album as they returned in March with a new single. From the production to the lyricism, everything about this track is unique, yet the song is quintessential RTJ.

“They Got Sonny” – Conway & Alchemist f. Cormega

Conway The Machine and Alchemist make for a deadly combination as proven throughout their LULU EP. But their formula was made even more potent with the addition of Cormega, who helped the duo craft a street rap gem in “They Got Sonny.” Conway’s verbal smack to the face and Mega’s equally hard-hitting bars are right at home on ALC’s brooding beat. Hopefully, this is just the first of many more songs from this trio.

“Will” – Joyner Lucas

Joyner Lucas finally surfaced with his long awaited ADHD album, much to the relief of his loyal legion of fans. Album highlight “Will” finds Lucas professing his admiration for actor/MC Will Smith, comparing his own journey to Smith’s celebrated career. Throughout the cleverly crafted track, he weaves the titles of several of Smith’s films into his lyrics, including Aladdin, Wild Wild West and Bad Boys.

“Break Bread” – Count Bass D

Two decades in the music industry have made Count Bass D wise to all BS. “Break Bread” puts his wisdom on full display as the veteran rapper/producer explains why “likes and views will never get you fed,” urging artists to always get paid for their work. After lacing the song’s opening with some attention-catching horns, Count transitions into a more relaxed mood to deliver his important sermon on why money is always better than exposure.

“Savage” – Megan Thee Stallion

Megan Thee Stallion has been building her Hot Girl brand over the past couple of years and continues to grow her fanbase. With the help of TikTok, Meg’s latest single has the potential to take her movement to the next level. The song has a catchy hook, memorable bars and of course, an accompanying dance.

 

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@normani so you really ain’t invite me over ? wow #savagechallenge

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“Pyro (leak 2019)” – Denzel Curry

Like much of Denzel Curry and Kenny Beats’ Unlocked album, “Pyro (leak 2019)” leaves listeners wanting more due to its short runtime. Despite clocking in at less than two minutes, the track is filled with potent bars and stylistic flair. From altered vocals on a Mario reference and hitting high notes like ODB to witty wordplay about Goodie Mob and Malcolm X, Curry packs a heavy punch on the lone verse of  “Pyro (leak 2019).”

 

“Upside Down” – Royce Da 5’9 f. Benny The Butcher

Over a loopy interpolation of the classic novelty hit “Tom’s Diner,” Royce Da 5’9 and Benny The Butcher prove why their amongst the elite lyricists of today’s Hip Hop on “Upside Down.” Name another record in 2020 that will give you a history lashing on South African Khoikhoi woman Sarah Baartman while simultaneously inducing the screw face.

“Rogue Wave” – Aesop Rock

Following a self-imposed hiatus, wordplay wizard Aesop Rock reemerged with “Rogue Wave” earlier this month, yet another verbose offering in his expansive catalog. The song marks the Rhymesayer MC’s first musical offering since January 2019’s Malibu Ken project.

“1997” – Key Glock

South Memphis rapper Key Glock tells his story on the haunting Bandplay-produced track “1997,” which is taken from the recently released album Yellow Tape. The Paper Route EMPIRE rapper stays true to his hometown with his Three 6 Mafia flow and bluesy rhymes.

“Yah Yah” – Eminem

Eminem recruited some of the best to ever do it — Black Thought, Royce Da 5’9 and Q-Tip — for an epic posse cut that stands out as one of the shining moments of Slim Shady’s surprise album Music To Be Murdered By.

“Still Dreamin'” – J.I.D, Lute & 6LACK

Dreamville fans got a taste of “Still Dreamin'” in last year’s Revenge documentary but had to wait until 2020 to hear the track in full. The wait was worth it as J.I.D delivered a master class alongside Lute and 6LACK on the Revenge of the Dreamers III: Director’s Cut song.

“Carefree” – Mick Jenkins

Mick Jenkins has the ability to sound completely laid back on a beat while still making sure he’s concise with his lyrics. “Carefree” delivers a catchy hook, clever bars and a smooth instrumental.

“Life Is Good” – Future & Drake

Future and Drake teamed up once again, this time to remind everyone they’re doing well in life. This song brought the best out of the duo and left fans anticipating a potential full-length follow up to their 2015 effort What A Time To Be Alive.

“Nightime (Interlude)” – Russ

Although Russ dubbed this track an interlude, it can stand on its own without question. After getting co-signs from Rihanna in the form of an Instagram video and JAY-Z in the form of a playlist, Russ is looking to have his biggest year yet. The song mixes an infectious hook with high-pitched vocal bridges to create a unique sound, which is much different than some of Russ’s other music.

Honorable Mentions:

Below is a list of more songs that we loved and still have on repeat. Check back so that you don’t miss the best songs of 2020!

  • Blue World – Mac Miller
  • Letter To Nipsey – Meek Mill & Roddy Ricch
  • Shells Kitchen – Raekwon
  • Crunk Ain’t Dead (Remix) – Duke Deuce
  • Yikes – Nicki Minaj
  • I Do It ft. Big Sean & Lil Wayne – Lil Wayne
  • Invincible – Pop Smoke
  • Outdone – Tech N9ne
  • What’s Poppin – Jack Harlow
  • Nightime (Interlude) – Russ
  • 1997 – Key Glock
  • Life Is Good – Drake & Future
  • Rogue Wave – Aesop Rock
  • Still Dreamin’ – J.I.D. Lute & 6lack
  • Prices – Lil Uzi Vert
  • Zoom Zoom – PNV Jay
  • Angels Getting Pedicured – Jadakiss f. 2 Chainz
  • uhoh(whereyoho@?) – Lojii
  • Make Right – Slim Thug f. Z-Ro
  • John $tarks – Stove God Cook$ & Roc Marciano
  • Unknown Michael – Killah Priest
  • PTSD – G Herbo f. Juice WRLD, Chance The Rapper & Lil Uzi Vert

The Playlist