The year in hip-hop

Top 10 Detroit tracks

We asked our favorite Detroit hip-hop scribe for his top local tracks from the year. Each of these is easily heard via Soundcloud, Bandcamp, and YouTube. Happy listening!


"Got Damn"

The lyrical tale of how a love interest can turn into baby mamma drama is super relatable for many people.

2. Supa Emcee

"The Here After"

A Jim Morrison sample plus a Purge-themed music video is dope a thousand times over.

3. Djkage

"Song of Victory"

Valid, Ron D., Negus Arubis, and Mic Phelps spitting over some Earth, Wind, and Fire horns is a can't-lose.

4. DJBooth

"Crushin, featuring Chavis Chandler and Sheefy McFly"

Sheefy lyrically destroys an S.O.S. Band sample while Chavis sings the hook. A straight bounce Detroit track.

5. Captwolf


Crazy eclectic and extremely dope song from the most unique band of emcees to emerge this year.

6. Valid

"New Nasty (remix)"

The original was already dope, but the murder mitten mix featuring Dusty McFly, Pierre Anthony, and Neisha Ne'Shae is just as good.

7. Nolan the Ninja


2015 saw the emergence of break beats and well-crafted instrumentals. This was one of the best.

8. Boldy James

"Toast to the Kings"

Very cocky, a little trap but super lyrical and only for those who are about that life.

9. Guilty Simpson

"The D"

You never get enough big axle anthems and this was one this year's best.

10. Phat Kat


Bars, bars, bars are on display for one of Detroit's most notable vets. (Somebody needs to get him in the studio with Pharoahe Monch).

About The Author

Kahn Santori Davison

Kahn Santori Davison is from Detroit, Michigan. He's a husband and father of four and a self-described, "Kid who loves rap music." He's been featured on Hip-Hop Evolution and Hip-Hop Uncovered. He's also a Cave Canem fellow, author of the poetry book Blaze (Willow Books), a recipient of a 2015 Kresge Literary...
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