A lot music came out in 2010 — good, bad, annoying, ignorant, pop, hip-hop, dubstep, electro, dance, etc. It’s hard to keep up with all the new music coming out these days, but The Campus Socialite has a you covered for all the best mixtapes that came out in the past year. From Wiz Khalifa to Chiddy Bang to Hoodie Allen, we’ve organized a comprehensive list of 20 mixtapes you can download for free! Check to see if your favorite artist made the cut.
1. DJ Greg Street Presents: The Cataracs – I Thought They Were Black
DJ Greg Street struck gold when he linked up with a couple of kids from Berkeley, California to do a mixtape. Every song on this tape is a smash. How can you deny a mixtape that featured “Like a G 6” six months before it hit the radio? Pure Genius.
Notable Songs: “Like a G 6” “Sippin’ Champagne” “This is All I Do” “Bad Boys With Money”
2. Mac Miller – K.I.D.S.
K.I.D.S. is the perfect example of what a dope mixtape can do for an up-and-coming artist. After releasing K.I.D.S. in August, Mac Miller has gone from your typical up-and-coming (white) rapper to one of this year’s most promising young talents. 2011 will be a big year for the kid from Pittsburgh.
Notable Songs: “Nikes On My Feet” “Don’t Mind If I Do” “Knock Knock” “Kool Aid & Frozen Pizza”
3. Big Sean – Finally Famous Vol. 3
Big Sean’s slogan for 2010 was “Finally Famous Over Everything, Boi!” Indeed this year was a big one for Sean, from Kanye West’s G.O.O.D. Fridays to the mixtape, but this is just the tip of the iceberg. With a gang of featured artists and a new lyrical swagger, Finally Famous was Big Sean’s coming out party.
Notable Songs: “Supa Dupa Lemonade” “Too Fake” “Fat Raps Remix” “Ambigous”
4. Wiz Khalifa – Kush & Orange Juice
2010 was finally Wiz Khalifa’s breakout year, and what a year it has been. Since leaving Warner Bros. in 2009, Wiz has landed the cover of XXL Magazine, dropped Burn After Rolling and Kush & Orange Juice, signed with Atlantic Records, and released “Black and Yellow,” which was just certified platinum. Taylor Gang or die.
Notable Songs: “Mezmorized” “The Kid Frankie” “In the Cut”
5. Wale – More About Nothing
Wale is an artist you can count on to constantly release good music from January to December. More About Nothing was the result of his “no days off “ campaign. The mixtape’s sitcom theme, complete with Seinfeld clips and references, adds a clever touch to brilliant body of work.
Notable Songs: “The Work” “Black N Gold” “Guilty Pleasure (No Hands)”
6. Sam Adams – Party Records
After months of pushing back the release date, Sam Adams finally dropped Party Records in September. The mixtape is exactly what you would think it would be: a compilation of party records. Sam Adams raps over some of this year’s hottest house/ electro/ dance/ dub step tracks and makes them his own.
Notable Songs: “Heads Will Roll” “Hold On” “No Speak Americana”
7. XV – Vizzy Zone
XV has a lot to prove as an emcee from Kansas. Last year he released an impressive mixtape, which caught the attention of mainstream bloggers and even raised a few eyebrows at major record labels. XV dropped Vizzy Zone shortly after signing with Warner Bros. this past summer and he’s been touring all over country ever since.
Notable Songs: “Getting’ Bizzy” “She Go, I Go” “We Zonin’”
8. Rick Ross – The Albert Anastasia EP
The Albert Anastasia EP was the prelude to Rick Ross’s studio official release, Teflon Don. A few of the tracks featured on the mixtape actually made the album, which came out shortly thereafter. It’s hard to call a project like this a mixtape because it could be an album on its own. But nevertheless it still makes the list at #8.
Notable Songs: “MC Hammer” “Blowing Money Fat (B.M.F.)” “Super High”
9. Mansions on the Moon – Paradise Falls
A lot of you are probably asking, “Who the hell is Mansions on the Moon?” Well, they quietly dropped one of the best mixtapes of the year. It’s difficult to describe their sound, but it’s an eclectic mix of sounds that somehow make sense. One listen and you’ll understand why Pharrell,, Diplo, and Benzi co-sign.
Notable Songs: “Glimpse Into the Future” “Satellite” “She Makes Me Feel”
10. Childish Gambino – Culdesac
Childish Gambino aka Donald Glover is one of the mot talented people in Hollywood. He’s got the triple threat—actor, comedian, and rapper—and he has superstar potential in all three genres. Culdesac showcased his lyrical genius and gave us a glimpse into the mind of Donald Glover.
Notable Songs: “Let Me Dope You” “I’m Alright” “I’m On It”
11. B.o.B – No Genre
B.o.B has a knack for supplying us with quality music, and No Genre was no exception. In fact, it was arguably one of his best bodies of work.
Notable Songs: “Cold As Ice” “Grand Hustle Kings”
12. Chiddy Bang – Air Swell
Between touring all over North America, Australia, and Europe Chiddy Bang somehow managed to drop a crazy mini-mixtape full of insane beats and dope rhymes.
Notable Songs: “Hey London” “Pass Out”
13. Hoodie Allen – The Pep Rally
Around this time last year Hoodie Allen was just making waves in the music industry. He dropped this gem of a mixtape back in September and hasn’t looked back since. Check out The Campus Socialite’s Interview with Hoodie Allen.
Notable Songs: “Swimming With Sharks” “You Are Not a Robot”
14. J. Cole – Friday Night Lights
J. Cole is being touted as hip hop’s heir to the throne. It’s an impossible amount of hype to live up to, but he delivers under pressure with this mixtape.
Notable Songs: “Villematic” “The Autograph”
15. OnCue – Cuey Sings the Blues
OnCue pleasantly surprised a lot of people with this mixtape. The samples he chooses to rhyme over is something we haven’t heard before. Could he be pioneering a new sound?
Notable Songs: “For the Moon” “Crashing Down”
16. Curt@!ns – Killer Tape
A late entry that must be mentioned. Curt@!N$ jacked a bunch of beats and demonstrated why he has the potential to be a breakout artist in 2011.
Notable Songs: “God Bless” “A Song For You”
17. Big K.R.I.T. – Before There Wuz Here (The Excavation)
Big K.R.I.T.’s southern twang in undeniable. Any critics, haters, or naysayers who weren’t feeling his debut album were silenced after this mixtape dropped in November.
Notable Songs: “Children of the World” “Hometown Hero”
18. Aaron Smith – Love Stoned
Remember Shwayze? Yeah, the group that consisted of Cisco Adler and Aaron Smith. Well, while Cisco Adler was hanging out courtside with Jack Nicholson, Aaron Smith decided to drop a pretty dope mixtape.
Notable Songs: “Love Letter” “Said It All B4”
19. Joe Budden – Mood Muzik 4
Joe Budden hit us with the fourth installment of his Mood Muzik series of mixtapes and he certainly did not disappoint. After almost a decade in the rap game, Joe Budden continues to grind day in and day out.
Notable Songs: “Dessert For Thought” “Stuck in the Moment”
20. All Out – All Out Everything
All Out often draws comparisons to 3Oh!3 and The Ready Set. The mixtape features a few songs that are ready for the radio. Look for All Out to breakout in 2011.
Notable Songs: “Lights” “Get You To Move”
Asher Roth & Nottz – Rawth EP
Chris Webby – Best in the Burbs
Diggy – Past, Present(s), Future
Dom Kennedy – From the Westside With Love
Kyle Lucas – It’s Always Sunny in Marietta
The Cool Kids – Tackle Box
The Dean’s List – Undeclared
The Kid Daytona – The Interlude