What Is The Difference Between Rap And Hip Hop

Difference Between Rap And Hip Hop

Difference Between Rap And Hip Hop

Difference Between Rap And Hip Hop

Difference Between Hip Hop and Rap

The Difference Between Rap And Hip Hop is actually a very simple explanation. This is a long long LONG talked about debate. What I am saying here is going to be my educated opinion on the whole matter but I know it will hold some light to the issue for you if you are a bit confused.


I know a lot of people have this question. For years and years, I wasn’t sure what the true answer was. Then after years of being inside the music industry and seeing it from the outside in and then the inside out, I finally started understanding the difference between rap and hip hop.

rap vs hip hop difference

So what is the Difference Between Rap And Hip Hop?

What Is Rap

Rap – To be completely honest, anyone can rap. Any party you go to you can find some guy who calls himself a ‘rapper’. It’s not hard to rhyme words and learn rhyme patterns and start rapping. That’s why everyone and their brother is a rapper nowadays. What they are not though, is an artist. They are not pieces of culture that change the way people live their lives. They do influence society in any way shape or form.

A rapper is just that, a rapper: a title that no one even takes seriously when you tell them that you are one. I am EXTREMELY established as an Artist and started as a rapper. It’s funny because when people ask what I do, I still don’t tell them that I make music or rap. Why?! Because then I have to show them that I am not just a rapper…. but that I am an actual artist. I’d have to do that by providing them proof of my fan base size and then actually showing them that my music is real, heartfelt, honest and resonates with people.

Even though it may seem like they are similar, there is such a drastic difference in the two that just establishing the fact that you are a Hip Hop Artist instead of a rapper in a conversation when meeting someone could take upwards of 10 minutes to explain.

hip hop vs rap

What Is Hip Hop

Hip Hop – Hip Hop affects everything that it touches. Hip Hop has a culture.

Hip Hop doesn’t always have the most honest or real lyrics but the person who is creating the hip hop has a unique style and or content that will be able to create a new sound and therefore something that can affect culture|society.

Looking back into the early 90’s, you’ll notice there were a ton of hit songs that were SUPER HOT and HUGELY recognized songs but they weren’t all considered Hip Hop. For instance, Vanilla Ice – Ice Ice Baby was a massive hit song. But because he was literally just a rapper, he wasn’t at all Hip Hop.

Now look at something like Dr. Dre and everything that NWA did. While they may have been just rappers, what they did affected culture so heavily it created its own wave and greatly affected culture, which makes them one of the definitions of Hip Hop.

Rap and hip hop main difference

examples of hip hop vs rap

More great examples are of course Tupac, Biggie Smalls and Big Pun.



Tupac spoke the truth. His music resonated with people because it seemed to be FOR the people

Biggie Smalls rapped about elegant life and coming from rags to riches. His flow and delivery were pristine.

Big Pun prided himself on his vocabulary skills and was well known for using rhyming dictionaries and thesauruses to create his raps.

1304437276_Big Punisher bigpuncondom

While they were all quite different, all of them affected culture in their own massive way. They all stood for something different in Hip Hop while actually still standing for the same thing.

rap or hip hop

the confusion between both rap and hip hop

rap and hip hop differenceNow it is completely possible to affect society and not be Hip Hop, but it depends on a lot of factors.

I mean could you ever really consider Iggy Azalea Hip Hop? Not really… but she influences society and has a massive fan base. But she doesn’t affect society in a way that could be considered Hip Hop.

She was literally an example that you could take a pretty white female and create controversy with her in order to generate buzz and a fan base. T.I. understands how the game works and he definitely made millions off of using her to manipulate children and also stir up the industry.

rap and hip hop comparison

rap and hip hop comparison side by side

I could talk about the Difference Between Rap And Hip Hop for a long long long article, but the general point has been made above. I’m sure you get it now.


The key takeaway from all of this is that you need to be MORE than just a RAPPER. I would have called this site Smart Artist if people would have understood the difference between rapper and artist and knew I was talking about a rap artist. Because being a rapper isn’t enough. You need to work on your craft and build your culture and fan base.


You need to create your culture and spread it to everyone you can. As you spread you will affect more and more people which will change small pieces at a time and eventually big pieces thereby embedding you into society.


– NovAK


That is the Difference Between Rap And Hip Hop

rap and hip hop comparison

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