Wiz Khalifa was one of the biggest rappers when he first broke out of Pittsburgh with his hit track ‘Black And Yellow’ and since then has had a slightly rocky journey.
Coming up on mixtapes originally in the Pittsburgh area of Pennsylvania, Khalifa eventually got noticed by Benjy Grinberg, an agent at Rostrum Records. Impressed by his rapping abilities, Grinberg gave Khalifa the opportunity to record and release his next mixtape with Rostrum Records.
Khalifa released his first mixtape, Prince Of The City: Welcome to Pistolvania, in 2005, and after his full-length album was released in 2006, Rolling Stone magazine named him an “artist to watch”. Following this magazine appearance and debut project, Khalifa signed with Warner Bros. music to release more mixtapes. His first mixtape’s lead single ‘Say Yeah’ charted high on the Billboard Rhythmic Top 40, but did not enter the Billboard Hot 100. Irrespective, the single was downloaded by fans.
In 2009, Khalifa parted ways with Warner Bros. but continuing on with Rostrum Records, he released the mixtape How Fly, a collaborative mixtape he recorded with New Orleans rapper Curren$y. In November of 2009, Khalifa released yet another mixtape entitled, Burn After Rolling.
After this, in 2010, he was featured on the cover of XXL as one of their freshmen alongside artists such as Donnis, J. Cole, Pill, Freddie Gibbs, and Fashawn. Following this exposure, in promotion of his 2009 album Deal Or No Deal, Khalifa set-off on a 20-date tour with rapper Yelawolf. After the tour, he released his Kush And Orange Juice mixtape. The sheer volume of downloads it received made it a smash, and soon after, Khalifa signed with Atlantic Records. Here, he released his debut major-label album Rolling Papers and O.N.I.F.C followed.
Wiz Khalifa is a good rapper. However, he did have quite a sharp decline in popularity shortly after his first three albums, as his consistent stoner-rap tracks made him become a very one-dimensional artist with almost everything about him and his music revolving around weed. This, coupled with his Maroon 5 pop track, also caused a steep drop in his popularity.
However, he is still legendary, and in an interview with Red Bull Music, Khalifa unveiled some of his favourite rappers and rap groups. He commenced by naming Bone-Thugs-N-Harmony, stating, “I liked their style and just how unique they were, and of course their harmonies, how they used all that and kept it unique. Their style was original.”
He then named some of his other favourites, listing Dipset’s Cam’Ron, Big Daddy Kane, The Notorious B.I.G and his frequent collaborator Snoop Dogg. You can see the full list below.
Top five rappers according to Wiz Khalifa:
- Big Daddy Kane
- The Notorious B.I.G
- Snoop Dogg
- Juicy J