Celebrating Cultures, Promoting Integration
We’ve taken a short hiatus but the Hip-hop series is back!
This time we’re hitting up Galway to check out the small but strong hip-hop scene.
Disclaimer: Not all of the artists are from or currently based in Galway, however they all are influenced by life in the city.
Without further ado, here’s Babylon Radio’s Top 4 Rappers in and around Galway!
One of the most recognised names in exported Irish hip-hop, Celaviedmai (aka Maimouna Salif) is taking Ireland’s rap scene by storm.
The epitome of a bad bitch, Celaviedmai presents what has been called ‘[an] explicit and self assured brand of rap’ by Vice – a reflection of her biggest inspiration, Lil Kim.
Despite having opened for the likes of Lil Wayne, Mac Miller, and Hoodie Allen, Celaviedmai hasn’t received nearly as much coverage within Ireland as she has abroad.
While this may be due to the more explicit content within her pieces, her music is nonetheless a valid narrative that deserves a platform.
What’s more, it’s also just really good music. Her style is very intentional: rhythm, the texture of backing, even the inflection she uses while she raps really drives the lyrical content, creating motion within the piece.
Celaviedmai is one of only a handful of women rappers in Ireland and her bold, unashamed, and commanding attention.
Long story short, Celaviedmai has more than earned her place on out top 4 rappers in Galway!
Next on our top 4 rappers in Galway is writer, rapper, producer, graphic designer, and the founder of Big Entertainment, Bigsnap (aka Dylan Reegan Jackson).
A jack of all trades (and a master of all of them) Bigsnap has made quite an impression on the hip-hop scene, particularly in terms of videography and graphics.
To date, he’s worked on graphics for the likes of Tay Dism, Bobby Brackins, and Steven Jo. While he’s had much success in the realm of visual production, there’s been little coverage on his own music.
His style is free-flowing, and organic paired next to a relaxed, deep and somewhat raspy voice – for example, his song ‘Nice to Meet You’ has a slick rick-style love ballad.
While it carries some of the familiar tropes concerning women’s bodies/appearance, the presentation is appreciative and respectful making his music quite refreshing and perfect for a night in with that special someone.
Bigsnap is the epitome of less is more and the music speaks for itself.
Check out our favourite hits below!
Aaron J Hart
One of the most extensively covered artists on our top 4 rappers from Galway, Aaron J made quite the impression on Ireland’s Got Talent in 2018 with his performance of ‘Show Pain’ – a piece concerning hismental health struggles.
This sort of honest personal narrative on mental health is a relatively recent phenomenon among Irish rap artists.
Increasing intensity and texture opunctuates the rawness of ‘Show Pain.’
His tone throughout heightens as the depth of his despair reveals itself.
This makes for a heart-wrenching and earnest performance.
Unmasked emotion is also present within his piece ‘Anxiety’ as well.
What’s most interesting about Hart however is the spectrum of emotions across his discography.
While he is most famous for these heart wrenching tracks, Hart also has a collection of more lighthearted, country-style pieces such as ‘Nothing Better’ and ‘Daddy’s Girl’ creating a balance across his music.
Check out our favourite tracks below!
One of the most ambitious young performers in our Hip-Hop series, Leon Holmes (aka. Holmes) shows a great amount of potential in the scope of rap in Galway.
Despite the fact that Holmes resides in Gort, he references Galway throughout his discography.
Therefore it is appropriate to include him within this article.
Citing influences like Eminem, Machine Gun Kelly, Hopsin, and Marilyn Manson, Holmes offers emotive lyricism and intentional delivery.
His lyrics concern a balance in the progression of his artistry along with characteristic youth experiences such as love, embattled emotion, etc.
His style is smooth – The modulation of his voice punctuates his smooth, rhythmic flow creating a sort of rocky, wave-like pattern.
Additionally, the depth, subdued musicality of his voice makes for an interesting juxtaposition against his harder lyrical content.
Check out some of our favourite tracks below!
Want more Irish rap? Check out more of the Hip-hop Series below!