2014 was an amazing year for music. Some of our favorite artists here at G-Posters finally made it into the spotlight and this post aims to rank the artists who really made a name for themselves within the last 12 months. This is not a list of the artists who had the most views or topped the 2014 charts, but rather the artists who came the furthest in 2014.
11. Mike Stud has had about as quick as ascent as one can possibly have. Originally a pitcher at Duke University, an elbow surgery derailed his career and his rap career was born during his sophomore year in college. Since then, in just a couple years, he has managed to really make a name for himself in the industry. His third album, Closer, came out in July and did not disappoint. Peaking at number 2 on the Billboard US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Charts, Closer only propelled Stud on his climb to the top and big things are ahead for the "Young King".
Listen to Mike Stud on SoundCloud here
10. GoldLink is one of only three artists on both our "Artists Who Dominated 2014" and "Artists To Watch In 2015" lists, which says a lot in and of itself. Perhaps most well-known for his unknown identity and mysterious persona, his music is the reason he is well on his way to fame. 2014 was huge for him, as he really came out of the woodwork to absolutely crush with his debut album, The God Complex. After releasing the album, he followed it up with Soundcloud hit Sober Thoughts, which has already accumulated almost 1.5 Million plays. GoldLink had a huge 2014, but look for even bigger things from him in 2015.
Listen to GoldLink on SoundCloud here
9. Niykee Heaton, in the words of the wise Skizzy Mars, "won 2014 pretty much". Pretty accurate. After first releasing several solid covers of mainstream songs, she really came into her own with the Bad Intentions EP, released in September. With almost 3 million views on "Bad Intentions", the title track music video on YouTube, it is safe to say Niykee has come a long way in 2014.
Listen to Niykee Heaton on SoundCloud here
8. Iamsu! 2014 was a good year for The Bay, with two artists on this list! It was only a matter of time until Iamsu! blew up. After being featured in Sage the Gemini's hit song, "Gas Pedal" in 2013, Iamsu! really came into his own in 2014. With singles "Only That Real", "Ayo (Remix)", and "Next Season", the hits just keep coming. Iamsu! started to gain a lot of attention in 2014 and is not slowing down any time soon.
Listen to Iamsu! on SoundCloud here
7. Jon Bellion, under Visionary Music Group, seems to have a vision, and it's not a small one. Everyone under Visionary Music group is going up, and Jon is definitely not an exception. The Definition, his album which he released in September was fire. "Munny Right" has accumulated more than a million plays, and Bellion is finally starting to gain the recognition he deserves. Even Toronto Blue Jays pitcher, Marcus Stroman (@MStrooo6), loves what he's hearing from the VMG artist, tweeting "Just found out about this dude @jonbellion! He's from Long Island too. Dude is seriously talented. #DOPE".
Listen to Jon Bellion on SoundCloud here
6. Skizzy Mars is another artist on both lists, and there is good reason. Skizzy first came onto the scene a couple years ago when he did "Pay For You" with G-Eazy, and since then he has really taken off. His unique, relaxed flow, combined with cool, smooth beats makes his music one-of-a-kind and is the reason he is one of my personal favorite artists. However, until his album, Pace, came out last spring, he was still relatively unheard of. Pace and more recent releases like "Lucy (Olivver Remix)", "Way I Live", and "Like This" have really brought Skizzy to the next level and put him on a lot of peoples' radars. Skizzy Mars has been dope for a while, but finally started to blow up this year, and you can expect more of the same dopeness in 2015.
Listen to Skizzy Mars on SoundCloud here
5. KYLE aka "Super Duper KYLE" is one of the most entertaining and inspiring artists right now. With a seemingly never-fading smile, listening to KYLE rap is sure to brighten up your day, and he has been brightening more peoples' days now than ever. Accompanied by the "Super Duper Team", this crew puts on one of the best live shows you will find, complete with blow up palm trees and crowd-surfing on boogie boards! However, KYLE's music is the real reason he is well on his way to the top. He really started to gain recognition this year after his debut album, Beautiful Loser. Full of fun, catchy beats and upbeat bars, this album is hard not to like. KYLE had a super duper 2014, and it will be fun to watch him this coming year.
Listen to KYLE on SoundCloud here
4. PARTYNEXTDOOR is a star in the making. The 21-year-old is signed to OVO (Drake's record label), released his first extended play, PARTYNEXTDOOR, in July, 2013, and already has almost 600K followers on SoundCloud. His ascent to fame has been ridiculously fast, partly due to Drake's promoting him, but largely due to the great music he continues to put out. 2014 was the year he seriously started to blow up after releasing PARTYNEXTDOOR TWO and hit single, "Recognize", featuring Drake. His music is very diverse, no doubt influenced by Drake, but he has his own unique style and flow. PARTYNEXTDOOR was one of my favorite artists I found out about this year and the sky is the limit for this talented rapper.
Listen to PARTYNEXTDOOR on SoundCloud here
3. ILoveMakonnen had an unreal 2014. There's no other way to put it. His EP, named ILoveMakonnen was huge, and even caught the attention of Miley Cirus who Instagrammed one of his songs. However it wasn't his EP that made his year unreal; it was a remix Drake did of his song, "Club Goin' up on a Tuesday" that made his year unreal. Named "Tuesday", Drake's remix put ILoveMakonnen on the mainstream spotlight overnight, as the song went viral and has accumulated almost 36 million plays on both SoundCloud and YouTube. And to top it all off, ILoveMakonnen signed with OVO in September... Doesn't get much better than that.
Listen to ILoveMakonnen on SoundCloud here
2. Logic. As good as ILoveMakonnen's 2014 was, Logic's may have been even better. Logic had been around for a while and after four quality mixtapes, you just had a feeling it was a matter of time until he finally hit it big-- all it would take was a good break... or a Billboard number four overall album that sold over 73,000 copies in a week. Under Pressure was what Logic fans had been waiting for for years. With quality beats, straight bars, and a crazy background and story to tell, Logic is a rap legend and nothing represents him as an artist better than his debut album Under Pressure, released in October. The album is strong track 1 through 15 and proves that Logic is one of the best lyricists in the rap game today. Logic finally hit it big in 2014 and his amazing album is a large reason he is near the top of our list of artists that dominated the year. Make sure you check out our Logic posters here!
Listen to Logic on SoundCloud here
1. G-Eazy dominated 2014. There's absolutely no getting around it. One of my personal favorite artists, Young Gerald completely went off this year. From the beginning of the year, with the gradual unveiling of his debut album, These Things Happen, through December 30th, with the release of "Show You The World", "I Might", and "Why Thank You", G proved he is for real, making as large strides as you would expect from his 6'6" frame. While he might be "Almost Famous" now, it's not long until the "almost" will be replaced by "very". With features from E-40, A$AP Ferg, Too $hort, K-Camp, Hit-Boy, and French Montana, G-Eazy is truly making rap look easy and turning every track he touches to gold. His slicked back hair and 60's rock influences make him hard to miss appearance-wise, but with every unique track released, his music is getting harder and harder to miss. The Bay Area rapper is well-deserving of his new fame and came further in 2014 than anyone.
Listen to G-Eazy on SoundCloud here
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