We’ve all jammed to Beyonce, Nicki Minaj, and Rihanna a time or two… or a million, but there are a few other artists in the realm of Hip Hop and R&B that we should all be listening to. The talented artists on this list are either just making their mark in the music industry or returning from a hiatus with a long overdue album. From Harlem-born Rapstresses to Texas made crooners, all of the artists on the list will have a place in the music industry for a long time to come.
The Harlem, New York native first rose to internet fame after the release of “212” featuring Lazy Jay and “Liquorice”. Her quick-witted metaphors and smooth flow have gained her fame not only in the hip-hop community, but in the fashion world as well. She has performed (and been a brand ambassador) for notable names including Karl Lagerfeld and Alexander Wang. Miss Banks’ debut album Broke with Expensive Taste didn’t do as well as it could (or should) have on the charts, but with tracks such as “Wallace” and “Idle Delilah” the album received overwhelmingly positive reviews from critics.
A combination of dry humor, sick beats, white eye contacts, and an extremely nasty flow create the lyrical genius that is Hopsin. Born Marcus Jamal Hopson, the California native first made a name for himself when he began releasing singles on YouTube. Since then, Hopsin has been featured as a member XXL magazine’s Freshmen 10 class of 2012 and had his mixtape Haywire (released on DatPiff.com) certified gold. Tracks like “Hop Madness”, “Gimme That Money”, “Heather Nicole” give insight into the wacky yet complex and intellectual world of Hopsin.
3. Tori Kelly
Another a California native, Tori Kelly’s breezy, Mariah Carey-esque voice made her an instant YouTube sensation beginning at age 14. The singer, songwriter, and guitar player released covers of songs like Justin Timberlake’s “Suit and Tie” and Lauryn Hill’s “Ex-Factor” that caught the eyes of many in the music biz including super producer Pharrell Williams. Since then, Tori has been signed to Capitol records and released an EP’s entitled Handmade Songs by Tori Kelly and most recently, Foreword featuring amazing songs including “Confetti” and “Dear No One”.
Former lead singer of the boy band NLT (Not Like Them) Travis Garland is definitely making an impact in the world of R&B. Strong lead vocals on the band’s songs including “Karma” and “She Said, I Said” made the transition from group member to solo artist after NLT’s split in 2009 easy for Garland. Since going solo, this Texan has released both an album and an EP that showcase his vocal ability on tracks like “Motel Pool” and “Clouds”. His YouTube released covers of Miguel’s “Adorn” and Usher’s “Climax” have also boosted Travis’ internet fame and much critical acclaim.
After taking a break from the music industry in 2011, the “Bust Your Windows” singer entered 2014 with a major bang and in true Jazmine fashion, the Philly, Penn songstress released a single that had all horrible boyfriends in their feelings entitled “Dumb.” Jazmine Sullivan is no stranger to the music industry; the release of songs including “Need You Bad”, “10 Seconds”, and “Lions, Tigers, and Bears” earned her several Grammy nods. However, her 3 year long hiatus and the release of a hot new album entitled Reality Show (go listen to “Dumb” ft. Meek Mill and get your life) constitutes Jazmine’s place on this list