Everybody knows people with nicknames, even if you don’t have one yourself. Some nicknames are really creative and interesting, while others seem like half-hearted attempts at notoriety. The same can be said for rapper’s nicknames. In a genre that glorifies bragging and boasting, it’s very common to hear rappers talk about themselves in songs and often refer to themselves under different monikers. Some rappers do this in a unique and entertaining way that builds their brand, while others are more focused on what cool names to call themselves to make a news headline. Below is a complete guide to which rappers have the best nicknames.
Travis Scott – La Flame
Despite also using the Cactus Jack moniker at times, La Flame will always be my favorite nickname for Travis. Doubling as a nickname and an occasional adlib, it pairs perfectly with his most popular ad-lib “It’s lit!”. The best, and most self-aware, lyric using this name comes from “Dark Knight Dummo” by Trippie Redd when Travis raps “Don’t need no more stains / Or get hot like my name / La Flame”.
Drake – 6 God & Champagne Papi
I couldn’t pick just one of Drake‘s many nicknames, as these two are both great in their own right. After rising through the music ranks while referencing his city of Toronto as “the 6”, it was only natural for Drake to proclaim himself the 6 God once his rap dreams were fulfilled. Considering what he’s allowed to get away with at Raptors games, most notably walking on to the court and feuding with opposing players, he might actually be a god in his city. Champagne Papi also makes this list because nobody other than Drake would ever call themselves something this outlandish in a song, and then proceed to make it their Instagram handle for the next few years. Props to Drake for having the confidence we all wish we had.
Lil Yachty – Lil Boat
This is one of my personal favorites because not only is it clever and catchy, it makes a lot of sense as well. His official stage name (Lil Yachty) and his nickname (Lil Boat) both mean practically the same thing and are very easy to remember. Lil Boat is also the name of Yachty’s mixtape series that sparked his come-up. Creds to Yachty for keeping his nicknames and titles nautical themed.
2 Chainz – Tity Boi
So this is where the names start getting a little more unusual. Tity Boi was the original rap name of the Atlanta-born artist until he changed it as his popularity started growing. In a 2011 interview with Vibe, 2 Chainz discussed the origins of this name by stating, “The name Tity Boi actually came from my mama, from me being spoiled and an only child, breastfed. My mama called me Tity Boi, my dad called me Tity Man, my hood called me Tit”. While 2 Chainz changed his rap name to be more kid-friendly, the Tity Boi moniker lives on through occasional references in his songs. When asked about how he chose his new name he responded with, “In my 8th-grade yearbook picture I had on 2 chains. I had always been into like jewelry so 2 Chainz just stuck”.
Mac Miller – Larry Fisherman
This one borders the line between a nickname and alter ego, but it is very creative and unique nonetheless. When Mac began producing music for other artists, he would use the pseudonym Larry Fisherman to keep the audience focused on the vocal artist. This is shown most clearly on the 2014 Vince Staples mixtape Stolen Youth, which has the name Larry Fisherman on the cover as executive producer. Mac has also used the moniker Larry Lovestein to release a full-length jazz project. When asked about his personas by HardKnockTV, Mac replied, “The thing I like about these characters is I feel like I can bring together all these pieces of myself and emphasize them”.
Kendrick Lamar – Kung Fu Kenny
A relatively new nickname, first appearing on his 2017 album DAMN, Kung Fu Kenny is definitely one of my favorites on this list. The “Kung Fu” perfectly describes Kendrick’s fast-paced and intense rapping style that he can employ whenever he chooses, but the more informal “Kenny” shows he can also be laid back and relaxed as well. A great and versatile nickname for possibly the greatest and most versatile rapper of our generation.
Action Bronson – Mr. Baklava
Although not as prominent of a nickname as some of the others on this list, former chef and current rapper and television star Action Bronson’s moniker is without a doubt the most creative on this list. Referencing the delicious Middle Eastern pastry is no accident, as Bronson gives credit to his nationality as well as his culinary past. Mr. Baklava became a popular nickname for the Queens-born rapper on Fuck, That’s Delicious, Bronson’s show on Vice.