Ukrainian hip hop

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Ukrainian hip hop, also known as Ukra-hop or Ukr-hop is a major part of the Ukrainian music scene. Refers to all genres of hip hop music in the Ukrainian language. The term Ukr-hop is also sometimes used to refer to any hip hop music made by Ukrainians, including instrumental hip hop, as well as rap songs by members of the Ukrainian diaspora.


In Ukraine hip hop began to develop in 1990s. In 1989 started their activities two biggiest hip hop groups at that time - TNMK and V.U.Z.V. The pioneers of Ukrainian hip hop were TNMK (Kharkiv), V.U.Z.V (Kyiv), Osnovnyy Pokaznyk (Luts'k), Tartak (Lviv) and GreenJolly (Ivano-Frankivs'k). At the end of the 1990s and beginning of the 2000s audience considered Kharkiv and Lviv as the main center of the Ukra.hop subculture. Many groups successfully performed at festivals such as Chervona Ruta and Tavriyski Ihry. At the mid-2000s a lot of underground bands and artists from another cities in Ukraine began to appear and became popular: DaHok (Drohobych), Zахідна Коаліція (Stryi), Kryzhyk (Uman), Sheksta (Stryi), Sirius MC (Kalush) and Freel (Kyiv).

In 2005, Ukraine's entrant in the Eurovision Song Contest, GreenJolly's "Together We Are Many", was also the unofficial anthem of the Orange Revolution. Eurovision demanded the lyrics to be changed for the contest (because it did not correspond to contests rules due to political content). Also this song was remade by Polish hip hop artists.

In 2008 hip hop group LEZO released their fourth studio album, Gostroslovy (Ukrainian: Гострослови). Many critics consider it one of the best in Ukrainian hip-hop industry. The same year KyLЯ and RYLEZ created group Tulym - one of the most successful Ukrainian boom bap group.

March 11, 2011, Ukrainian rapper Ivan Buyan presented his first music video filmed in New York.

June 19, 2014, PVNCH presented their new album - Golodnyy (Ukrainian: Голодний, translation: Hungry). According to voting results Golodnyy was named the best hip-hop album of 2014. April 18, 2015, Tulym from Kyiv had a concert with legendary hip-hop band from New York - Onyx in Sofia, Bulgaria.


Musically, Ukrainian hip hop is heavily influenced by Jamaican reggae and Ukrainian folk music, resulting a very tuneful and mellow sound, which makes it quite different from both Russian and American counterparts.

Famous rappers[edit]

Name Site SoundCloud YouTube Facebook
TNMK No TNMKYouTube TNMKFacebook
Tulym TulymBandcamp TulymSoundCloud TulymYouTube TulymFacebook
Glava 94 Glava94SoundCloud Glava94YouTube Glava94Facebook
KicKit KickitSoundCloud KickitYouTube KickitFacebook
VovaZIL’Vova VZLSoundCloud VZLYouTube VZLFacebook
Ivan Buyan BuyanSoundCloud BuyanYouTube BuyanFacebook
Freel No FreelSoundCloud FreelYouTube FreelFacebook
Dee the Conscious One No DeeSoundCloud DeeYouTube DeeFacebook
BUK No BUKSoundCloud BUKYouTube BUKFacebook
Sirius MC No SiriusMCSoundCloud SiriusMCYouTube SiriusMCFacebook
AsQuette No AsQuetteSoundCloud No AsQuetteFacebook
Crazy Lazy No CrazyLazySoundCloud No No
5 ESHELON No 5 ESHELONSoundCloud No No
ALCO Brothers No ALCO BrothersSoundCloud No
Nazar No No NazarYouTube No

Biggest rap battles[edit]

  • Banderstadt Battle (VERSUS) - Lviv
  • Red Bull Battle - Kyiv

External links[edit]