Travis Scott and Drake, JAY-Z and Beyonce & More: 10 Best Hip-Hop Collaborations of 2018
It was another great year for fans of hip-hop team-ups. The genre was blessed with an array of albums from some of the best rap has to offer and collaboration was once again the name of the game, as fans received long-awaited joint projects from Beyoncé and Jay-Z and Kid Cudi and Kanye West.
Travis Scott, Drake, and Swae Lee got together for the anthemic "SICKO MODE" -- which recently hit No. 1 -- breaking the mold of what a typical radio hit has to sound like. With an abundance of joint efforts pushing rap's boundaries, here are the top 10 collaborative tracks in hip-hop from this year.
Many counted Tyga out in 2018 following his Kyoto album, but T-Raww shocked the world by taking it back to basics and catching fire with "Taste," featuring one-third of the hottest crew in rap. The D.A Doman-produced strip club anthem would be a mainstay of the Hot 100's top 15 over the summer, pushing the California native back into the mainstream and critics' radars. "Taste" provided the soundtrack behind T-Raww's Comeback Rapper of the Year campaign.
It all started with Dicky watching the Lindsay Lohan 2003 classic Freaky Friday, when the genius idea dawned on him. Dicky crafted the cinematic visual treatment for a track that would find him and Brown switching bodies. The DJ Mustard production is a textbook beat you'd hear Breezy singing over around the 2015 era. To complete the star-studded affair, Dicky enlisted DJ Khaled, Ed Sheeran, and supermodel Kendall Jenner for cameos.
"King's Dead" would kick off what went on to be a prolific year for Jay Rock. The Watts rapper connected with fellow TDE running mate Lamar, Future, and British crooner Blake for this Black Panther soundtrack standout. The track's momentum carried Rock into his acclaimed Redemption album. Perhaps the most memorable part of the tune is when the "March Madness" rapper references a combination of Doug E. Fresh and Slick Rick's "La Di Da Di" alongside Juicy J's "Slob On My Knob" to complete the bridge. "King's Dead" looks to take home some hardware next year, where the ensemble is nominated for Best Rap Performance and Best Rap Song at the Grammys.
7. Lil Baby & Gunna, "Drip Too Hard"
Burgeoning ATL natives Lil Baby and Gunna proved to be the leaders of the new school with their Drip Harder collaborative project. "Drip Too Hard" was the lead single off the effort and the Turbo-produced track broke through nationwide barriers to become a mainstream radio hit, peaking at No. 4 on the Hot 100. There's no telling what the future holds for the pair of emerging stars.
6. Kodak Black Feat. Travis Scott & Offset, "Zeze"
In this snippet era of music, a seconds-long preview of "Zeze" went viral thanks to Kodak Black hitting his signature dance in the studio. D.A. Doman continued his hot streak with catchy steel drum-fused production, paired with lethal verses from the versatile Scott and Migos' Offset to complement Kodak's flow. "Zeze" would debut at No. 2 on the Hot 100 thanks to the building anticipation.
Meek made his return to close out November with his Championships album. The colossal "What's Free" calls on rap heavyweights in MMG boss Ross and Hov for bristling assists. The Philly native rhymes about his time behind bars and issues within the prison system over production that samples Biggie's "What's Beef?" Jay actually sent out a tweet to clear up that his Kanye West reference clearly wasn't a diss, rather a message to the media to not pit them against each other.
4. The Carters, "APESHIT"
Jay-Z and Beyoncé dropped their joint project, EVERYTHING IS LOVE, out of the sky over the summer. Bey puts her rapping cap on and exchanges opulent bars with her husband about their lavish lifestyle. The Pharrell-produced hit was originally a reference track taken from the Migos, hence the ad-libs heard from Quavo and Offset left on the song.
3. Kanye West Feat. PARTYNEXTDOOR, Kid Cudi & 070 Shake, "Ghost Town"
One of the golden moments out of Kanye's famed Wyoming sessions has to be the birth of "Ghost Town," which was finished the same day Ye was released. Built around a Shirley Ann Lee sample, West got the most out of his collaborators on the uplifting tune. "Ghost Town" would serve as a launching point for G.O.O.D. Music signee 070 Shake's career, who closes out the track.
Rumors of Thug collaborating with John began when the pair were photographed back in March of 2016. Two years later, the world's ears were finally blessed with a glorious remix to John's 1972 hit "Rocket Man" following a leaked version making rounds on the internet. The glorious track lived up to the hype and landed on Thugger's On The Rvn EP.
1. Travis Scott Feat. Drake & Swae Lee, "SICKO MODE"
"Who put this shit together, I'm the glue," Scott emphatically raps to close out his second verse. The three-piece composition served as a standout cut off of Astroworld and once again proved La Flame's ability as the ultimate collaborator in hip-hop. The song of the summer candidate enjoyed an organic slow burn up the Hot 100, where it eventually claimed the top spot earlier in the month (Dec. 3), becoming one of the most atypical hit rap songs in recent memory. "SICKO" is up for a pair of Grammy nods at next year's awards.