Top 10 Greatest Hip-Hop Producers of All Time

The Top Ten
1 Dr. Dre Andre Romelle Young (born February 18, 1965), known professionally as Dr. Dre, is an American rapper, record producer, and entrepreneur. He is the founder and CEO of Aftermath Entertainment and Beats Electronics, and previously co-founded, co-owned, and was the president of Death Row Records. Dr. Dre... read more

Without Dre, there wouldn't be G funk. He's a very important figure in the G funk style of West Coast hip hop. About a quarter of the artists from the West Coast (and a few on the East Coast) had a track produced by him. I have seen a lot of comparison between DJ Premier and Dr. Dre. I would say that Dre is more skillful. His image is much more of DJ Premier, but DJ Premier would definitely be the best when it comes to boom bap.

I mean, he has the greatest track record of all time... Straight Outta Compton, Eazy-Duz-It, The Chronic, Doggystyle, All Eyez on Me, Slim Shady LP, MMLP, Get Rich or Die Tryin'... I mean, I could go on for days. Don't get me wrong, Premier is amazing, and his record is arguably as good, but Dre revolutionized the game altogether. And this is coming from Nas's #1 fan.

2 DJ Premier

Anybody who knows a little bit about Hip Hop (and I mean real Hip Hop) would know that Premo is definitely the king of producers. He shaped the style of the birthplace of Hip Hop. Dr. Dre may be good for big party hits like Still D.R.E., The Next Episode, etc., but when it comes to quality instrumentals, that real hardcore and underground stuff, Premo is number one. He produced for the best MCs out there. Not saying Dre sucks, he is in my top 5 list, but Preem is unquestionably the best. Dre is more famous because he also raps and does big hits and because of his entourage (Snoop, Em, 50, etc.).

Long live hip hop. Peace from Naples, Italy.

3 RZA Robert Fitzgerald Diggs, better known by his stage name RZA, is an American rapper, record producer, musician, actor, filmmaker and author. A prominent figure in hip hop, RZA is the de facto leader of the Wu-Tang Clan.

RZA tops Dre and Primo overall. I say that because RZA has several classic albums to his name, not just hits, and each of those albums are still relevant to this day. Dre has no classic albums. Anyone who says Straight Outta Compton, The Chronic, or Snoop's first, has poor taste in rap in my opinion. Those albums have hits, but with many similar sounding beats and boring content. Of his big hits like 'In the Club,' he didn't produce the entire album, just a few singles. On the production side, many of his beats sound similar and are irrelevant, period. Dre is overrated! His body of work artistically does not stack up to the likes of Primo, Dilla, or Pete Rock... much less RZA. Artistically speaking, the comparison is a joke.

4 Kanye West Ye (born Kanye Omari West; June 8, 1977) is an American rapper, songwriter, record producer and fashion designer. He is regarded as one of the most influential, as well as controversial, artists of the 21st century... read more

I'm not a huge fan of Kanye. I think he's a jerk. He's whiny, bratty, is a diva, and throws a fit whenever he loses an award. I really hate Taylor Swift's music, but the way he treated her at that awards show was unacceptable. But there is absolutely no doubt in my mind that he is one of the greatest music producers of all time. I mean, he did a great job with Find Your Love. Drake was grateful, I'm sure. Also, the interlude for All of the Lights is incredibly beautiful, something you wouldn't get from Kanye's bad attitude. And the music for the actual track was great. He is a great producer, one of the reasons a lot of artists get as far as they are.

5 Madlib

Madlib is the best. He has lots of groups, a great variety of hip hop music (including jazz, bossa nova, reggae...) Maybe Dre is more famous, but he is not the best. And I don't know how RJD2, Pete Rock, Oh No, Guru, Peanut Butter Wolf, and many more aren't at the top 10.

RZA and Premo get the top spot for me, but Madlib is truly masterful and deserves a higher spot. Kanye is great, so is Pete Rock, and so is Dilla, obviously, but Madlib knows how to make some sick beats.

Madlib takes vintage sounds and makes the most left-field beats sound like liquid bliss poured into your ears. Recommended dose: multiple times per day.

6 J Dilla

Dilla is top 1, not because he's better than Preemo or Dre but because he influenced everybody. Never had the big shine as he remained humble in the underground. However, if you go back and listen to what he did, it's just magical. Every production done for ATCQ, Pharcyde, Common, Erykah Badu, Busta Rhymes, Doom, etc., is an instant classic. His own albums, collaborations, and remixes are filled with the dopest beats. If you go back in time, you can always tell the beats done by Dre and Preemo as they sound alike. You can't with JayDee's as he was versatile like that.

Oh, and there's a total new 'genre' in music because of him and Madlib. Go check out the beat scene that's rapidly growing all over the world with dudes like Flying Lotus, Onra, Ohbliv, etc., getting their shine.

7 Pete Rock

A real Dilla fan respects Donuts' wishes to never be compared or be said to be better than Pete Rock.

Pete Rock is the best beatmaker of all time. Petestrumentals is the greatest beat tape of all time. My biggest inspiration along with Dilla.

How is that idiot Kanye West higher than this legend?

8 Havoc

Havoc mastered the gritty East Coast sound that haunts the graffiti-filled streets of New York City. His ability to find a sample and manipulate it to sound like something that came from the weed-scented project hallways is unmatched, as demonstrated with Survival of the Fittest. Don't believe me? Go listen to the original sample of Survival of the Fittest and see how he transformed it into the masterpiece it became. Mobb Deep makes stick-up kid theme music. But his resume doesn't stop there, with classic tracks such as Shook Ones, Quiet Storm, and Hell on Earth, complemented by Prodigy's lyricism and laid-back flow, it leaves no doubt as to who is one of the greatest producers of all time! Oh, and long live Prodigy! Mobb Deep for life!

9 Eric B.

He deserves top 10. What he did with Rakim is amazing.

10 Eminem Eminem, born Marshall Bruce Mathers III, is an American rapper, actor and music producer born on October 17, 1972 in St. Joseph, Missouri. Eminem has sold over 300 million records making him the bestselling hip-hop artist of all time. In addition to his solo career, he is a member of D12 and (with Royce... read more

Made a lot of music, but mostly for himself. Anyway, even if he made it for himself, he used and amazingly mixed different instruments, samples, scratches, and genres such as hardcore hip-hop, alternative hip-hop, classic rock, guitar rock, alternative rock, pop, funk, reggae, psychedelic rock, and etc. He worked with different types of producers and musicians. He made hip-hop music more expressive. He mixed female vocals, his vocals, chorus, kids chorus, and etc. The form of Eminem's music is so ordinary, so he influenced a lot of artists' music (like Kanye, Kid Cudi, or Tyler the Creator) and literally made his own special hip-hop genre known as "Eminem's music," ahah, because nobody sounds like him.

The Contenders
11 Large Professor
12 Rick Rubin Frederick Jay "Rick" Rubin is an American record producer and former co-president of Columbia Records.

He is very well known for producing Beastie Boys in the 80s, but not only hip hop but Slayer and Eminem too.

13 Apollo Brown
14 El-P

I don't think he's the best producer in the game, but I'm voting for him because he deserves top 10 status for his contribution to underground hip hop.

Run the Jewels haven't put out a weak track. Every piece of production is fire. Also, his work with Company Flow was amazing and took experimental hip hop to a whole new level.

It's embarrassing to see Eminem fanboys voting Em as the best producer ever. Respect to El Producto.

Run The Jewels is easily the best rap group still in the game, thanks to the phenomenal producing job El-P does for the group.

15 Buckwild
16 Q-Tip

Midnight Marauders, Low End Theory, Illmatic, We Got It From Here, etc. Only 0.6%? He's up there with Premo, Dre, and Dilla.

17 9th Wonder

He contributed to the North Carolina independent hip hop with Jamla. Much respect.

He is the best hip hop producer today.

18 SouthPaw
19 MF Doom Daniel Dumile (July 13, 1971 - October 31, 2020), also known as MF DOOM, was a British-born hip hop recording artist who spent most of his life in the United States. He died on October 31, 2020, however, his death wasn't revealed until December 31.

If you've listened to Doom, then you should understand the genius of the supervillain.

20 Stoupe the Enemy of Mankind

Incredible work! His beats are true art. Beautiful, dark, deep. It's impossible to do it better than Stoupe.

His beats are a work of art on their own.

21 No I.D.

He's the best, hands down, godfather of Chicago music, with many hits under his belt. Secretly does so much for hip-hop, and people go to him for advice on a beat, and has a hit for almost everyone in Roc Nation. Remember (D.O.A)? Yes, that's him.

What? He should be the second, maybe even the first. Just take a listen to Common's early songs like I Used to Love H.E.R. and Resurrection. God damn, I think he is the best producer ever.

22 Timbaland Timothy Zachery "Tim" Mosley, known professionally as Timbaland, is an American record producer, singer, songwriter, rapper and DJ.

Better than Dre, Timbaland's beats are original, well put together, and progressive. Arguably the best Hip-Hop producer of all time next to Kanye West. Dre is overrated, in my opinion. His beats are simple and boring, Timbaland's beats are exciting to listen to.

Timbaland revolutionized hip-hop music. The best, just my opinion though. To be honest, I'm kinda mad Diddy isn't on this list. He isn't Timbaland or Dre, but he was a dope producer.

The Way I Are, Love 2 Love Ya, Clock Strikes, 808, Miscommunication, Carry Out... Don't tell me that these beats don't hit hard.

23 Scott La Rock
24 P. Diddy Sean John Combs, also known by his stage names Puff Daddy, Puffy, P. Diddy, Diddy, Love and Brother Love is an American rapper, singer, songwriter, actor, record producer, and entrepreneur.

This guy's made numerous hits. He literally created B.I.G. and many other artists. He should be at number 5 after Dre, RZA, Timbaland, and Kanye.

The Notorious B.I.G., he's the one who made his best beats. P. Diddy (Puff Daddy)'s beats are sick. How is he not even in the top 10?

There is not one label greater than Bad Boy. Period. The New York drip Diddy blessed us with. we didn't deserve!

25 4th Disciple
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