Everyone has a cypher of sorts these days. But for years before it became popular by mainstream media, Sway and King Tech were putting together some of the best emcees you have ever heard in a cypher. Continuing with that tradition and carrying it on globally, Sway is always elevating the game and giving a platform to dope young emcees. 2019 saw a host of varying kinds of cyphers with rappers and producers of all kinds of backgrounds. Here is the top ten of the year.
Bonus: Friday Fire Cypher: Jake Summers x Navelle Hice x Earnest
To start this cypher didn’t make the list because we didn’t get that back and forth that we like to see in a Friday Fire Cypher, but it is worth placing here as an honorary mention because Navelle Hice completely took off on the Jake Summers beats. He seized the moment and you will certainly hear more from him in the near future.
10. Friday Fire Cypher: Paris Price and Jacob Bandana Freestyle Over The Arcitype Beats
Coming in at number ten, this cypher’s sound was curated by The Arcitype who has produced music for some major names like Rapsody, Scarface, Royce Da 5’9″ and Skyzoo to name a few. And he set the tone right with two hyenas, Jacob Bandana and Paris Price and Maino observed.
Sway took a trip to South Africa and a cypher broke out. Hip-hop truly has no borders and is proving to be the most popular genre of music known to man. So Castle Lite reaches out to hip-hop’s number one journalist and personality to host a series of events focused around the culture. Sway brought some of the illest emcees in Africa out to hit the stage for the cypher. A Reece, Rouge, Espiquet, Moozlie, J Molley, and The Big Hash came to shut it down. Peep the entire cypher playlist below. Let us know who you were feeling the most.
8. Chinese Rap Group Hip Hop Commune Freestyles on Sway In The Morning
Hip-Hop is global and the genre is on the rise in China. One of the top groups out of China, Number 4 stopped by Sway In The Morning to show they could rhyme too. There was certainly a lot lost in translation, but the energy was there which raised a lot of eyebrows and opened a lot of conversation online. Watch their cypher below.
7. Friday Fire Cypher: Pretty Tsunami and Chanti McCoy Jump on Soultronik Beats
The ladies came through to rep on Soultronik beats. Trenton’s Pretty Tsunami and Brooklyn’s Chanti McCoy came through with bars throwing shots left and right. Press play for our number seven cypher of 2019.
6. Friday Fire Cypher: Domani Harris and Big Bad Kab Jump on Amadeus Beats
Amadeus came back for another one, with more accolades and awards in his bag as he drops adds more gas to the Friday Fire Cypher. Young hyenas Domani Harris and Big Bad Kab stepped into the cypher with some bars to make the cypher complete. Domani is the son of the King of the South, T.I., but you wouldn’t tell because his style is all his own. And Big Bad Kab brought that signature texas flow with everything off the top.
5. Netflix Rhythm and Flow Artists D Smoke, Londynn B, Troyman & Flawless Kill A SITM Cypher with Special Guest Young Devyn
The internet has been buzzing about Netflix’s new show, Rhythm + Flow, so Sway invited the final contestants, Londynn B, Flawless, Troyman and of course the winner of the $250k, D Smoke to come by the show. A cypher broke out where they showed why they were the last ones standing.
4. Friday Fire Cypher: AJ McQueen and King Hoodie Go In on DJ Mentos Beats with A Bonus Round From Oswin Benjamin and Noah O
In this edition of the Friday Fire Cypher, Miami and St. Louis connect pairing King Hoodie and AJ McQueen. DJ Mentos provided the perfect beats for these two emcees to showcase their ability. This cypher featured the rare Tapout round where only the elite emcees trade bars until one can’t go anymore. And when they couldn’t rap any longer we were treated to a special bonus round where Oswin Benjamin and Noah O stepped in!
3. Griselda Records Cypher Light Another Missile on Sway In The Morning
Griselda always got some heat! And in all honesty, it was tough to make a decision because they have several Sway In The Morning cyphers this year. but this one was the one that really took off as Conway The Machine, Benny The Butcher and one of their new recruits Ricky shut it down!
2. Friday Fire Cypher: JWalt, TR3 & Niko Brim Trade Bars In A Bar Setting Tapout Round
What do you get when you link up two Doomsday Cypher alum with one of the hottest young producers in the game? Another dope Friday Fire cypher. JWalt made his way from the Bay area to bless the mic with one of Queen’s finest up and coming emcees, TR3. And Niko Brim couldn’t help but shine, not only on the beats but hopped in with some bars as well.
1. Mass Appeal’s Starting 5 Take On All Beats In Epic Friday Fire Cypher
Ezri, Fashawn, Cantrell, Stro and 070 Phi are Mass Appeal’s Starting 5 for a reason. Every single one of these guys has bars. And they are willing to put it to the test against any other rap crew you know! They dropped in Sway In The Morning to do an epic Friday Fire Cypher mixed with a 5 fingers of death freestyle. This was hands down the top cypher we had in 2019! Hopefully this is the bar everyone is going for in 2020.