New Music 2016: Hip Hop’s Hottest Tracks

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


Find out which new music from hip hop artists is hot in 2016. We’ll keep you up to date on the latest tracks, so you can be the first to hear the freshest new music.

New Music Releases

We’ve rounded up the best new music of 2016 so far, including tracks from Drake, Kanye West, Kendrick Lamar, and more.

Kendrick Lamar- “untitled unmastered”

After the success of his album To Pimp a Butterfly, Kendrick Lamar releases a new project “untitled unmastered.” The album consists of eight tracks that were recorded during the sessions for To Pimp a Butterfly.

Chance the Rapper- “Coloring Book”

Chance the Rapper’s “Coloring Book” is a must-have for any hip-hop fan. The Chicago rapper’s third mixtape is filled with trippy beats, positive vibes and features appearances from Kendrick Lamar, Lil Wayne, 2 Chainz and more.

Lil Yachty- “Lil Boat”

If you haven’t been introduced to the genius that is Lil Yachty, “Lil Boat” is the perfect place to start. The track is an ode to the rapper’s first car, a little red boat, and it’s as catchy as it is endearing.

Lil Yachty’s debut mixtape, Lil Boat, was released in March of 2016 and “Lil Boat” is the first track on the project. The mixtape quickly gained buzz due in large part to songs like this one, which are infectiously happy and sure to get stuck in your head.

Notable Mentions

There’s no doubt that 2016 has been a big year for music. We’ve seen the releases of some great albums, and some amazing singles. But what about the tracks that didn’t make it onto an album? In this article, we’ll be taking a look at some of the best hip hop tracks of 2016 that didn’t make it onto an album.

Desiigner- “Panda”

16-year-old Brooklyn rapper Desiigner had a breakout year in 2016 with his debut single, “Panda.” The track, which samples the instrumental from Chief Keef’s “I Don’t Like,” was an instant hit, reaching the No. 1 spot on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

Young Thug- “Pick Up the Phone”

“Pick Up the Phone” is the first single from Young Thug and Travis Scott’s collaborative mixtape, Joint Project. The music video for “Pick Up the Phone” was released on June 3, 2016. The song peaked at number 43 on the US Billboard Hot 100.

The song features a guest appearance from Quavo of American hip hop trio Migos. The production was handled by TM88, Southside and Noah “40” Shebib. On May 5, 2016, Scott previewed a snippet of the song on his Snapchat account. The song was officially released on June 3, 2016, along with its official music video.

Drake- “One Dance”

Drake’s “One Dance” is one of the biggest hits of the year, and it’s no surprise that the rapper would want to target the summer with this feel-good track. Featuring Wizkid and Kyla, “One Dance” is a perfect example of Drake’s ability to meld his R&B and pop sensibilities with a distinctly hip-hop edge.

Upcoming Releases

There’s no doubt that 2016 has been a monumental year for music. We’ve seen comebacks from some of our favorite artists, as well as seen new artists emerge and make their mark on the music industry. Hip hop has continued to evolve and grow, and we’ve seen some amazing new tracks released this year. Here are some of the hottest tracks of 2016.

J. Cole- “4 Your Eyez Only”

On December 9, 2016, J. Cole released his fourth studio album 4 Your Eyez Only. The album was released two years after his previous album, 2014 Forest Hills Drive, making it his shortest gap between albums. Upon its release, 4 Your Eyez Only debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200, selling 492,000 album-equivalent units in its first week. Of that sum, 363,000 were pure album sales. It is J. Cole’s second US number-one album. The album was supported by four singles: ” False Prophets”, “Deja Vu”, “Neighbors” and “Change”.

Kanye West- “Turbo Grafx 16”

Release date: February 11, 2016

After much speculation and a few leaked tracks, Kanye West’s new album, Turbo Grafx 16, is finally set to drop next month. The album takes its name from the classic video game console and is said to be inspired by West’s childhood memories of playing games like Sonic the Hedgehog and Super Mario World. If the singles “Real Friends” and “No More Parties in LA” are any indication, Turbo Grafx 16 is shaping up to be one of West’s most experimental and personal albums yet.

Frank Ocean- “Boys Don’t Cry”

Frank Ocean’s “Boys Don’t Cry” is one of the most highly anticipated releases of 2016. The track, which was teased in a trailer for his Apple Music documentary “Endless,” is a haunting ballad that is sure to tug at the heartstrings.

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