51 Songs

EDITORS’ NOTES

It's an artistic revolution even former U.S. President Barack Obama witnessed firsthand when Vietnam's queen of hip-hop, Suboi, spit bars during a 2016 Ho Chi Minh City town hall. Long lurking in the shadow of Asia's pop establishment, hip-hop has experienced a tectonic shift in popularity as crews like 88rising (a global squad comprising artists from China, Japan, South Korea, the U.S., and Indonesia) make music that celebrates rather than imitates their overseas brethren's. Rappers like South Korea's Keith Ape and L.A.'s Dumbfoundead stay true to themselves while borrowing from African-American culture. The result is a cross-cultural movement that has inspired a generation of Asian kids starved for a familiar-looking face in the crowded rap universe, and earned the respect of contemporaries from Ghostface Killah to Playboi Carti. Rich Brian, BLOO, and 24 Flakko (who flew to Atlanta to work with 21 Savage on “Bad Guy”) are honorary trap ambassadors stockpiling clicks and props. Our editors regularly update this playlist—if you hear something you like, add it to your library.

EDITORS’ NOTES

It's an artistic revolution even former U.S. President Barack Obama witnessed firsthand when Vietnam's queen of hip-hop, Suboi, spit bars during a 2016 Ho Chi Minh City town hall. Long lurking in the shadow of Asia's pop establishment, hip-hop has experienced a tectonic shift in popularity as crews like 88rising (a global squad comprising artists from China, Japan, South Korea, the U.S., and Indonesia) make music that celebrates rather than imitates their overseas brethren's. Rappers like South Korea's Keith Ape and L.A.'s Dumbfoundead stay true to themselves while borrowing from African-American culture. The result is a cross-cultural movement that has inspired a generation of Asian kids starved for a familiar-looking face in the crowded rap universe, and earned the respect of contemporaries from Ghostface Killah to Playboi Carti. Rich Brian, BLOO, and 24 Flakko (who flew to Atlanta to work with 21 Savage on “Bad Guy”) are honorary trap ambassadors stockpiling clicks and props. Our editors regularly update this playlist—if you hear something you like, add it to your library.

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