XXL 2019 Freshman Class, How Are They Now?


Lucia Auerbach

2020 has been a year of disasters. The world has experienced fires, viruses, floods, angry politicians, murder hornets, among other things. But one thing that has not been a disaster, and frankly a light in this world, has been XXL’s 2020 Freshman Class.

XXL Magazine is a magazine focused upon the music world, specifically hip hop and rap. XXL keeps the world up to date on the world of music, and more importantly, the next steps in what is coming.

Every year, XXL publishes a Freshman Class. In year’s past, they’ve included prominent artists such as Kid Cudi, Kendrick Lamar, Chance the Rapper, Big Sean, Kodak Black, Schoolboy Q, Lil Uzi Vert, among others.

This year, the 2020 Freshman Class includes Polo G, Chika, NLE Choppa, Jack Harlow, Lil Keed, Lil Tjay, Fivio Foreign, Calboy, Rod Wave, Baby Keem, 24kGoldn, and Mulatto. While some of these artists have already had their huge hits (such as NLE Choppa’s Camelot, Jack Harlow’s WHATS POPPIN, Baby Keem’s Moshpit, 24kGoldn’s CITY OF ANGELS, and more), their success has yet to be seen on a large scale. Will they follow in the class of ‘19’s footsteps?

XXL’s 2019 Freshman Class have had their debuts and have been out in the world for a year now. Tierra Whack, Rico Nasty, DaBaby, Megan Thee Stallion, Cordae, Gunna, Comethazine, Lil Mosey, Roddy Ricch, YK Osiris, and Blueface have all had the opportunity to make their big break. And yes, they have done it. Here is a ranking of the 2019 Freshman Class based on what they’ve done in the past year.

1. DaBaby


DaBaby has seen the most popularity and success this past year. From his songs going viral on TikTok, to charting on Billboard, DaBaby knows how to make a good song. His song ROCKSTAR alone has over 380 million streams. Without much thought to it, DaBaby makes songs that are effortless to enjoy.

2. Megan Thee Stallion

TOP HITS: WAP, Savage, Cash S**t, Girls in the Hood

Megan Thee Stallion has revolutionized what it means to be a female rapper. Her songs have taken over popular culture and for good reasons. While not the most prolific (until her album Suga), Stallion has been able to stop time with her music. Her songs take the narrative back from male rappers and put a refreshing and empowering female perspective onto them. Not to mention, her songs have been easy to dance to.

3. Roddy Ricch

TOP HITS: The Box, Ballin’, High Fashion, Walk Em Down

Roddy Ricch, like Stallion and DaBaby, has found his popularity within the realm of TikTok. The For You Page algorithm did Ricch a solid. His songs are poppy and melodic, making them easy to enjoy and easy to make your favorites. Ricch doesn’t touch upon the deepest of subjects but does excite listeners with his references to popular fashion icons and the current political climate in the US.

4. Cordae

TOP HITS: RNP, Gifted, Have Mercy, Broke As F**k

Cordae, previously known as YBN Cordae, has been an artist to watch in the past year. From performing in the national Class of 2020 commencement to collaborating with huge artists (such as Meek Mill and Chance the Rapper), Cordae has made a name for himself. After the August split of the group YBN, Cordae dropped the initials from his name and has started to make a bigger brand for himself. Since the release of his debut album, The Lost Boy, last July, Cordae has been hesitant to put out new music. But when he does, the world will be watching.

5. Rico Nasty

TOP HITS: Smack a B***h, Aqui Yo Mando, iPhone, Guap (LaLaLa)

Like Stallion, Rico Nasty has also changed the game in female rappers. Her music is perfect for screaming to, without having to think much about it. Nasty may not be considered well known for her perfectly sculpted music, but she knows how to produce songs that grab the attention of her audience. Her collaboration on 100gec’s newest album, 1000 gecs and The Tree of Clues, along with her collaboration on the single Aqui Yo Mando with Kali Uchis, Nasty is reaching a broader audience. It will be exciting to see where her music matures.

6. Gunna

TOP HITS: Lemonade, DOLLAZ ON MY HEAD, Baby Birkin, Richard Millie Plain

Gunna made a name for himself with his 2018 collaboration with Lil Baby on Drip Too Hard, winning a Grammy for Best Rap/Sung Performance, among other awards. Gunna has not put on the breaks since. Two studio albums, WUNNA and Drip or Drown 2, have peaked on Billboard at the first and third spots respectively. Gunna consistently collaborates with leading artists in the rap world, such as Travis Scott and Future. Despite the slander about his weight, Gunna has established himself as an up and coming respected rapper.

7. Blueface

TOP HITS: T**tiana, Daddy, Obama, Holy Moly
Blueface and his music are certainly not known for being works of art. That being said, they have a tendency to be incredibly catchy. Blueface’s disparaging lyrics and titles draw listeners in, and they stay for his trumpet and blues beats. Since XXL, Blueface has released two albums, Find the Beat and Famous Cryp, neither of which have received as much attention as his viral singles. However, Find the Beat is an incredibly underrated album, in the sense that it should have received an ounce of recognition instead of none. It’s the use of trumpets and other brass winds allude to the popular mixture of rap and classical instruments, as seen famously with Kanye and Jay Z.

8. Lil Mosey

TOP HITS: Blueberry Faygo, Noticed, Stuck in a Dream, Top Gone

Lil Mosey, similarly to Blueface, is known for being a more catchy artist than a profound one. Adored for his young age and upbeat melodies, Mosey has made quite an impression with his virality. His song Blueberry Faygo peaked on Billboard at number 6, making him one of the most listened to artists out of his class. But, he has yet to repeat that popularity with his other songs. Is Mosey a one-hit-wonder? We will have to see.

9. Comethazine

TOP HITS: Walk, LEAD THE RACE, Bands, Air Max

Comethazine is an incredibly creative rapper, but his lack of popularity has him lower in this ranking. His most popular songs, Walk and Bands, were released prior to his debut on XXL. Since then, he has released a studio album, Pandemic, and two mixtapes, Bawskee 2 and Bawskee 3.5. Popular among the youth, Comethazine has yet to break into a broader audience and seems to be struggling to do so.

10. YK Osiris

TOP HITS: Worth It, Valentine, Ride, Freaky Dancer, Set Me Free

Have you heard of YK Osiris? If you have TikTok downloaded, you may recognize some snippets of his songs. After appearing on XXL, Osiris released The Golden Child and various singles. Beyond Worth It and Valentine, Osiris has yet to have many of his songs. His voice almost mimics the early 2000s Soulja Boy and similar artists, this could possibly be the reason for his lack of popularity.

11. Tierra Whack

TOP HITS: MY POWER, T.D, Hungry Hippo, Only Child

Beyond her collaboration on Lil Yachty’s new album on the song T.D that also features Tyler, the Creator and ASAP Rocky, Tierra Whack hasn’t released any music. Therefore, she takes last. But T.D and her previous singles and albums prove her talents.