The debates rage on day in and day out, as hip hop fans contemplate who the greatest rappers alive today are. With the untimely deaths of Notorious B.I.G. and 2Pac, other artists started to emerge at the forefront. So who are the best emcees in the rap music scene today?

There's a handful of rappers who always seem to get mentioned in talks of "greatest rappers around". One of those is the legendary Jay-Z who has been making great rap music for several decades. Jay-Z has several classic albums to his credit including his first "Reasonable Doubt" and 2001's "The Blueprint" which was critically acclaimed. He's worked with a who's who in music including Beyonce, Kanye West and even Coldplay. In addition, Jay-Z buys and runs companies, owns part of the New Jersey Nets, is worth almost a quarter of a billion dollars, and is married to one of the most beautiful women in all of music, Beyonce Knowles. While those things don't necessarily make him a great rapper, they definitely add to his overall legend. Jay-Z continues to deliver great lyrics and hit records, and he's able to do it all without writing anything down. That in itself is a great feat, and he's almost 40 years old, yet still bringing it.

Another rapper you'd have to consider right now is rap star Lil' Wayne, who in the past few years has really propelled himself to the forefront of rap. A few years ago on MTV he was being discussed among the top emcees, but they said he didn't have that solid album yet to back it up. Well as of a year or so ago, Wayne has that album with "Tha Carter III". He pushed into the mainstream music scene and became more of a household name with his more radio-friendly songs. Lil' Wayne has also won several Grammy Awards as of 2008 to further back up his stature as a top star in the rap industry. Lil' Wayne's next album after Tha Carter III is supposed to be his first ever attempt at rock music, showing his willingness to experiment beyond his genre of music. Wayne continues to innovate in music and he's always considered at the top of the rap game when his newest rap lyrics emerge.

Several other names you'd have to include in a discussion of the top rappers today would be Nas, Kanye West, Eminem and 50 Cent. Each of these rap stars has their own unique style and the ability to release hot songs at any given moment. In addition, all of the rappers mentioned here are constantly trying new directions with their music to keep it fresh. You may not be a fan of a few of these rap stars, but it's hard to deny that they are the ones truly innovating in the rap music world today.