Detroit will always be known as Motown City. Home to Motown Records, Motown has been legendary since our parents were kids. But there’s more to Detroit than Motown. It’s also the birthplace of very talented rappers. Legends like Eminem, present phenomenons like Big Sean and new leading lights like Dej Loaf have all started in the same city. Some of them have even brushed shoulders with each other or was introduced to the world by each other. Clearly this list isn’t about every Detroit rapper you should know. And while you may be very familiar with the artists in this list, you probably didn’t know how they started or where they came from.
Eminem is the poster child of Detroit. When you think of Detroit, you think of Eminem, and that’s mainly because he reps his city every chance he gets. He’s lived in different cities in Missouri, but at 11 years old, he called Detroit home. As a teenager, he and D12 member, Proof, frequented open-mic contests, which was the basis of his Detroit-based movie, 8 Mile. Once his Slim Shady LP dropped, he became a household name who went on to earn multiple multi-platinum No. 1 albums, 15 Grammys and an Oscar for Best Original Song for “Lose Yourself,” which was the anthem for 8 Mile.
The group, which included Eminem, was formed in 1996. Eminem soon went solo, but once he got to a certain plateau, he came back for his boys. During Eminem’s prominent success, he put these guys on the map. Since then, they’ve released two albums and several singles like, “Fight Music,” “Purple Pills” and “My Band.”
Though he was born in Santa Monica, the rapper moved Detroit at the age of three and has been repping it as his home ever since. He always knew he was going to be famous, which is why he consistently released his Finally Famous mixtape until it caught the attention of big wigs. Once he was cosigned by Kanye West, and introduced to the world, he’s been one of the fastest rising stars in mainstream hip-hop.