Jay Z, LL Cool J, Outkast, Snoop Dogg & Lil Wayne Cover XXL


5 Covers. 40 Years.

In celebration of Hip-Hop’s 40th anniversary, XXL is taking their readers down memory lane with their top 10 most influential albums and songs in the last four decades. The magazine, which comes in five covers hits newsstands December 31.





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  • BillyBobJohn

    why have you put jay z on the front over the others COME ON GET HIS DICK OUT YA MOUTHS

    • NIGGA WHUT????? You Pinocchio nose ass havin nigga!
      How the fuck could you NOT have Hov on the cover over everyone else?

      You one o’ those dumbass niggas that REALLY thought Em was a god when he released Rap God! Walking into your church on Sunday like;

      • Trillionare

        I hate Jay-Z and I know he deserves a cover… Its just some comments you have to skip over and keep it moving

  • ayeecee

    wheres nas?

    • Young foreign

      In the projects on benches smoking a bone filled wit weed!!

  • WhatYouNeed

    Magazine ready

  • mrdope

    Where the fuck is Em & Nas???


    I am Brazilian and I love Hip Hop and I think could have a cover with 2pac


    I am Brazilian and I love Hip Hop and I think could have a cover with 2pac, because it is the best rapper of all time

  • The Association of Chronos

    My boy Em can’t get a throwback cover? Yet, Wayne and Motherfucking Snoop get one? Did y’all forget the last time y’all were hot and had all eyes on you was during the Shady / G-Unit vs Murder Inc beef? I’m pretty sure it hasn’t been the same since those days. Yes, the Internet kill everything in its way but, still. That magazine hasn’t been hotter since that beef. Anyway, whatever. I just had to get my Stan on right quick…

    • ggogins

      Em didn’t change the industry like Snoop, Wayne, LL, and Outkast. Sorry…facts. Em is a dope rapper, but not polorizing

      • Jburg

        Eminem isn’t POLARIZING? How old are you? 12? Do you even know what that means? Obviously not….Em’s albums especially around the early 2000s caused great debates and stirs. What exactly did Wayne change about the industry? He isn’t the first rapper to gain success after leaving a group (Ice Cube, Dr. Dre, Q-Tip, Busta, etc) He isn’t the first rapper to have a successful record label (Rocafella, Shady, Aftermath, G-Unit). So I ask again, What has he done to warrant so much praise? NOTHING.

        • ray

          absolutely NOT true, lil wayne went from being a two-bit new Orleans/southern rapper. to coming out of the shadows above his peers (Juvie, Hot boys) and became an international popstar, then he brought 2 of the hottest current rappers (nicki minaj, Drake -especially Drake) to the game so yeah deserves a cover. get over it, Wayne, Hov, Outkast, LL, Snoop, are the trendiest MC’s of all time plus they’ve proven they actually have lyrical skill (not so much snoop, but…still….Doggystyle is classic)

          • Jburg

            Lmao!! You can’t be serious with that comment. You’re not even worth going on and on about. You Wayne Stans are clueless and think hip hop was credited by him.

        • ggogins

          1st off, I’m 35, and have lived through all of the hip hop stages. Em wasn’t the only controversial rapper. Wayne changed the game with the mixtape game. Nobody worked that hard and produced that many studio quality albums for free. Hard work made him relevant, not his label. He made himself a household name purely on flooding the market by jumping on so many features. And as a result, that’s now the BLUEPRINT for hip hop. NOBODY drops an album w/o a couple mixtapes now (except vets like Jay). Yea, Em is def one of the GOAT, but still wasn’t a game changer in my opinion. Look at all those covers. Everyone of them are now part of the blueprint for success in hip hop b/c they did things different, or POLARIZED the game by going the opposite direction

          • Jburg

            Bull*hit, the mixtape game was revolutionized by 50 cent. That’s well documented. 50 gave hip hop the blueprint of that success. Wayne and other just followed his lead. Do your research. To say EM wasn’t a game changer is just crazy. White rappers were frowned upon forever since the Vanilla Ice debacle. That was until Dre brought Em to the forefront and changed the way people viewed white rappers. His record sales speak for themselves and are unlikely to be duplicated. He gained a following of not just whites but even blacks who were skeptical of whites in a black art form. His lyrical prowess can’t be touched by most his peers. But he wasn’t a game changer. GTFOH.

          • ggogins

            So you are saying Em had a BIGGER impact than Wayne??
            And yea, 50 played a part in the mixtape revolution, but Wayne brought it to another level. NOT A SINGLE MAINSTREAM RAPPER had the QUANTITY with quality Wayne had b4 Carter 3 dropped #fact. After CMB looked like they would crumble after everybody left, dude morphed into a beast on the mike. There’s NO denying that!
            Yea, Em showed white people could rap…..BUT NAME ME 5 GREAT WHITE RAPPERS THAT FOLLOWED SUIT! Don’t worry I’ll wait…..
            On the other hand, there are 1000 successful Lil Wayne’s running around. #gamechanger

          • Jburg

            Dude take your glasses off seriously, to say that Wayne will go down in hip hop history as more important and influential is silly as hell. Saying that there are 1000 lil Wayne’s running around makes him impactful? That makes him watered down. He’s easily duplicated if that’s the case. Which in part makes him less important. In 20 years no one is going to mention Wayne with IcE Cube, Jay-Z, Nas, and Em. Matter of fact people won’t mention more than half these guys that talk about nothing. That mixtape #fact, that’s actually not fact it’s opinion. Wayne didn’t do anything 50 didn’t already do. 50s mixtape a WERE albums. Anything done after that was a product of his blueprint. Wayne did nothing but copy the formula. I get it, you’re a fan so you can’t see past it. It’s ok. We all know the truth though.

          • LI

            influential as in niggaz rockin leggings then yea….

          • ggogins

            I still didn’t get that list of great white rappers that followed Em because he was so impactful people used his methods as a blueprint to success …jus sayn

          • Trillionare

            50 changed the game with the mixtapes, thats not even up for argument!!!

          • ggogins

            I never said he didn’t. But are you saying that because you think 50 should be on the cover instead of Wayne???? If not, your comment is irrelevant

          • errit

            i know you know what your talking about i can tell i seen the same impact wayne did right when c2 came out. im only 24 but when wayne came out and brought up his whole label without juve,bg,turk and made cash money a buzzing empire for the second time alone..thats impact in its self. shit wayne is the reason why datpiff is off the ground

          • intelligentsoul

            the datpiff line at the end is SOOOOOO true. There was a time when there was at least 50 lil wayne mixtapes dropping a day

        • dizzyb230 .

          lol shady wasn’t a successful label haha who not named em or 50 (which was a joint venture anyway) sold on that label? NO ONE

          • Jburg

            How is it lnt a successful label when the guy that runs it is one of the most successful of all time. Obie Trice and D-12 went platinum on Shady Records. Matter of fact most of the albums released on the label went platinum.

          • ggogins

            kmsl. Dude… you seriously just mentioned Obie Trice and D-12?? Did you lose focus of this whole debate? Them fools sold records strictly on the strength of Em’s name!! Not b/c they were dope! I’m with you homie, Em is nice….But Wayne gets the crown for most impactful. Em has no where near the accomplishments of Wayne. Its bigger than just spitting. Shady records artist sales can’t touch YMCMB’s. And thats not even including CMB’s

          • Selorm Amuzu

            Em is a better than Wayne all day everyday but Wayne was way influential… I think ppl like to downplay Wayne like he wasn’t the one at some point and as much Em has been successful stans, he hasn’t had that impact that Wayne did .

          • ggogins

            And Em only have a couple relevant artist left….Yelawolf and Slaughter House, and neither sell large volume (I’m a fan of them too by the way).
            The rest are goat booty!!

  • room2roam

    weezy been doin this haterz!!

    • LI

      wtf…u think future can rap too huh…

  • Flo Jo

    Fuck is Rae and Ghost?!?!?!?!

    • ggogins

      The covers don’t rep good rappers, they rep GAME CHANGERS. Rae and Ghost didn’t change anything

  • inthestudyo


  • ¥Serino¥

    check my music out! https://soundcloud.com/serino


    YN editorials were legendary like I told him on twitter #yellownig lol he was keepin it 100 about the G unit covers, I think that era was their best run, I dunno about Vanessa though, times are rough!

  • drewsmit24

    L cover pretty fuckin dope

  • Common Now XXL

    Eminem is the one who holds the crown for the 2000s.. not Lil Wayne. That’s seriously a joke. You’re trying to tell me the “Pussy Monster” changed the game more than Eminem? lol…

  • Myke Wayne

    Give me Snoop’s cover

  • Trillionare

    WOW!!! So these clowns decide to put LL Cool J, OutKast, Lil Fucking Wayne instead of Pac or Nas??

  • errit

    hahaha people love to hate wayne because everyone else be hatin on him lol
    yall need to smoke some loud and listen to hot boys,squad up, dedication 1,2 drought 2,3,4 no ceilings, demolition 1,2 told yall , ima go getta, im me, tha mobb, bm jr, outstanding, mike tyson flow, all of cant feel my face…cmon now im probley still missing 500 more songs lol

  • ghostface52

    not even tryin to be a hater but can someone explain how snoop dogg and ll cool j changed the game i know snoop rapped about weed and fuckin chicks but i dont see how that changed the game and i nver really heard someone talk about ll cool j like that

    • Da Business

      U’re kidding right? It’s more so about influence than anything. Snoop and LL r 2 of the most influential emcees of all time.

  • AceBoogie