18 Classic Hip-Hop Mixtapes That You Can Stream Right Now

Written by on February 16, 2019

Mixtapes have long played an important role in hip-hop. Often viewed as an unfiltered, more authentic alternative to the traditional album release, the mixtape format as we now know it rose to prominence in the blog-era 2000s, just as hip-hop heads were becoming more internet savvy. The careers of some of the leading genre’s biggest stars were cemented as a result of their once considered unofficial bodies of work. Other rap kings have had their legacies launch off of the strength of their mixtapes.

Starting from the bottom, a relatively unknown Drake dropped the game-changing So Far Gone 10 years ago this week and nothing has been the same since. With hit records like “Best I Ever Had” and “Successful,” the critically acclaimed project plays like an official album. The mixtape, which features 17 tracks along with a bonus cut, Kanye West and Lykke Li remakes and guest appearances from R&B stars Trey Songz, Lloyd and Omarion, as well as his OGs Bun B and Lil Wayne, introduced the world to the Toronto upstart. It also propelled the careers of Grammy Award-winning producers Boi-1da and Noah “40” Shebib. In honor of So Far Gone’s 10th anniversary, the 6ix God blessed fans who’ve previously only had access to an abbreviated EP version of the classic mixtape by liberating it in its totality, making it available on major streaming platforms including Spotify, Apple Music and Tidal.

Drake joins a growing list of artists who have made their mixtapes available for mass consumption. Wiz Khalifa and Curren$y have also reintroduced a classic mixtape recently. Currently on the joint 2009 tour, the “Rolling Up” tandem streamed their 2009 collaboration How Fly for the first time earlier this month. Wiz’s cult-classic, Kush & OJ, as well as other gems from his catalogue have also popped up on streaming services over the years.

Here, XXL takes a look at 15 classic mixtapes from the likes of Jay-Z, Future, Meek Mill and others that are currently available on streaming services.

Dame Dash Presents Paid In Full / Dream Team

2002

Artist: Roc-A-Fella Records

Available on: Tidal

Standout tracks: “Champions,” “Don’t You Know,” “One For Peedi Crack,” “Roc Army”

50 Cent Is the Future

2002

Artist: G-Unit

Available on: Spotify

Standout tracks: “U Should Be Here,” “Bump Dat Street Mix,” “The Banks Workout,” “G-Unit Soldiers,” “Bad News,” “G-Unit That’s What’s Up!”

God’s Plan

2002

Artist: G-Unit (With DJ Whoo Kid)

Available on: Spotify, Apple Music

Standout tracks: “Catch Me in the Hood,” “If Dead Men Could Talk,” “Banks Workout Part 2,” “187 Yayo,” “Minds Playing Tricks,” “Niggas”

The S. Carter Collection

2003

Artist: Jay-Z

Available on: Tidal

Standout tracks: “Young, Black & Gifted Freestyle,” “Pump It Up Freestyle,” “Beware”

 

Trap or Die

2005

Artist: Young Jeezy (With DJ Drama)

Available on: Spotify, Tidal

Standout tracks: “Trap or Die,” “Get Ya Mind Right,” “We Luv Ya,” “3-6 Freestyle,” “U.S.D.A., Pt. 2″

Dedication 2

2006

Artist: Lil Wayne (With DJ Drama)

Available on: Spotify

Standout tracks: “Sportscenter,” “Welcome to the Concrete Jungle,” “Spitter,” “Where The Cash At”

Separate But Equal

2006

Artist: Little Brother (With DJ Drama)

Available on: Spotify, Tidal, Apple Music

Standout tracks: “Boondock Saints,” “Speed Racin,” “I Need You,” “Let It Go”

Can’t Ban the Snowman

2006

Artist: Young Jeezy (With DJ Drama)

Available on: Spotify, Tidal

Standout tracks: “Ya Dig,” “Jeezy the Snowman,” “I’m Back,” “Studio Gangsters”

Down With the King: Gangsta Grillz

2006

Artist: T.I. (With DJ Drama)

Available on: Spotify

Standout tracks: “Welcome Back,” “99 Problems Freestyle,” “Jackin’ for Beats,” “Final Four”

So Far Gone

2009

Artist: Drake

Available On: Spotify, Tidal, Apple Music

Standout tracks: “Say What’s Real,” “Best I Ever Had,” “Successful,” “Ignorant Shit,” “Houstatlantavegas,” “Uptown,” “The Calm,” “Congratulations”

How Fly

2009

Artist: Wiz Khalifa and Curren$y

Available on: Spotify, Apple Music, Tidal

Standout tracks: “Car Service,” “Fly Niggas Do Fly Things,” “Drunk Dialing,” “How Fly,” “Rollin’ Up”

Kush & Orange Juice

2010

Artist: Wiz Khalifa

Available on: Spotify, Tidal, Apple Music

Standout tracks: “The Kid Frankie,” “Mezmorized,” “Visions,” “Good Dank,” “Glass House”

The Marathon

2010

Artist: Nipsey Hussle

Available On: Spotify, Apple Music, Tidal

Standout tracks: “Blue Laces,” “A Million,” “Keys to the City,” “Mac 11 on the Dresser,” “I Dont’ Give a Fucc,” “Mr. Untouchable”

Dreamchasers

2011

Artist: Meek Mill (With DJ Drama)

Available On: Spotify, Apple Music, Tidal

Standout tracks: “I’m a Boss,” “Derrick Rose,” “Tony Story,” “House Party,” “Middle of Da Summer”

Best Day Ever

2011

Artist: Mac Miller

Available on: Spotify, Apple Music, Tidal

Standout tracks: “Best Day Ever,” “Donald Trump,” “I’ll Be There,” “Keep Floatin’,” “Oy Vey”

1999

2012

Artist: Joey Bada$$

Available On: Spotify, Apple Music, Tidal

Standout tracks: “Survival Tactics,” “Daily Routine,” “World Domination,” “Snakes,” “Don’t Front”

Dreamchasers 2

2012

Artist: Meek Mill (With DJ Drama)

Available On: Spotify, Apple Music, Tidal

Standout tracks: “Ready or Not,” “Amen,” “A1 Everything,” “Everyday,” “Racked Up Shawty,” “Lean Wit It”

Monster

2015

Artist: Future

Available On: Tidal

Standout tracks: “Fuck Up Some Commas,” “Throw Away,” “2Pac,” “Showed Up,” “Codeine Crazy,” “After That”


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