Though year-end lists are naturally subjective, they give us an opportunity to round-up the overwhelming amount of great music that hip-hop gave us in 2016. The lists have also inspired fruitful debate in the comments section. We've rolled out the lists for Hottest Songs, Hottest Albums, Hottest Mixtapes, Breakout Artists, Breakout Producers, and more. Now it's time to decide upon the King of 2016, and rather than crown our own selection, we're leaving the vote up to you. Though we expect a tight and divisive contest, there should be some consensus regarding the nominees. There's no denying that the guys listed below led the charge in what was a huge year for hip-hop. 

Underneath each artist's name is a recap of his output this year. Vote below and defend your choice in the comments. We've also put up a poll on Facebook Live, though that one doesn't include Future, Kanye, 2 Chainz, or Lil Uzi. 


  • Charting More Life singles 
  • Rihanna's "Work," DJ Khaled's "For Free," Future's "Used to This"

Young Thug 

  • I'm Up
  • Slime Season 3
  • Jeffery

Gucci Mane 

  • Everybody Looking 
  • Woptober 
  • Free Bricks 2K16 (with Future) 
  • 1017 vs The World (with Lil Uzi Vert
  • The Return of East Atlanta Santa

2 Chainz 

  • Felt Like Cappin 
  • ColleGrove (with Lil Wayne) 
  • Daniel Son; Necklace Don
  • Hibachi for Lunch

Chance The Rapper

  • Coloring Book
  • Merry Christmas Lil' Mama (with Jeremih) 
  • Kanye West's "Ultralight Beam"

J. Cole

  • 4 Your Eyez Only

Kanye West 

  • The Life of Pablo 
  • Collabs with Drake, ScHoolboy Q, A Tribe Called Quest & more


  • Purple Reign 
  • EVOL 
  • Free Bricks 2K16 (with Gucci Mane) 
  • DJ Khaled's "I Got the Keys," 21 Savage's "X," The Weeknd's "All I Know" 

Lil Uzi Vert 

  • Lil Uzi Vert vs. The World
  • The Perfect Luv Tape
  • 1017 vs. The World (with Gucci Mane) 

21 Savage 

  • Savage Mode (with Metro Boomin) 
  • Collabs with Drake, Meek Mill, Travis Scott & more