8. Nasir Jones
Queensbridge native Nas is widely regarded as having made the best hip-hop album of all time, an album which was quintessentially for and about New York. He’s also been recognized outside the hip-hop world: in the summer of 2013, Nas was honored by Harvard University with the Nasir Jones Hip-Hop Fellowship, established to fund scholars and artists who display creative ability in the world of arts. This was a huge move for the culture.
Image: Getty/Paul Marotta