Richmond Hip-Hop Guide for Your Virginia Trip

Richmond is the capital of the state of Virginia and a city erupting with style and character. From its vast history to its masterfully painted murals scrawled across the city’s buildings, Richmond offers travelers a little bit of everything. My favorite aspect of Richmond’s rich culture is its exciting hip-hop scene. The scene has been cultivating for many years and is currently blossoming. Hip-hop enthusiasts traveling to the city will find plenty to see and do through this Richmond hip-hop guide.

Richmond Hip-Hop Guide

Artists and Live Music Venues

Richmond Hip-Hop Guide, Black Liquid
Black Liquid

There are plenty of amazing artists within Richmond and two of its pioneers include Black Liquid, and Radio B. These men have positioned themselves as irreplaceable cornerstones within the Richmond music scene.

The former puts on shows called “Face-melt Friday” at the Strange Matter located at 929 W. Grace St. It’s across the street from the famous Richmond Village Café, a local café/bar that was featured on Guy Fieri’s show Dinners, Drive-ins, and Dives. During a Face-melt show, travelers can listen, sing along and dance to a variety of music genres – from hip-hop to R&B. Shows start at 8 p.m. but plan to get there no later than 10 p.m. to get prime viewing spots. Tickets are $6 per person.

Richmond Hip-Hop Guide, Secret Bonus Level Artists
Secret Bonus Level Artists

Another place to check out local hip-hop artists is at WRIR, 97.3 FM radio station studio. Here, you can listen to veteran musicians and emerging rappers freestyle during Black Liquid’s show on early Sunday mornings from 1am-3am, and during the Secret Bonus Level hosted by Frankenstein Reyes and Noah Page (Thursdays from 1am-3am). These radio shows are free for anyone looking for some late night fun but not wanting to spend too much money.

Richmond Virginia Lyricist Lounge

Richmond hip-hop guide. Radio B. and Michael Millions at RVALL
Radio B. and Michael Millions at RVALL

Another cornerstone to mention in this Richmond hip-hop guide is the RVA Lyricist Lounge (RVALL) that occurs monthly. RVALL was started by Radio B and soon became one of the city’s most anticipated events. It pits some of Richmond’s best rappers against one another in a massive cypher where each rapper performs their best 16 bar verses in front of live crowds. This event tends to bring some of the best musical entertainment the Richmond area can offer.

An RVALL event is a must-see for any live music aficionado visiting the city. The energy at these events is phenomenal. The crowds are lively and the MC’s are top of the line. The next event will be on September 22nd. The show starts at 7pm and will be held at Strange Matter. Tickets are $10 per person.

Richmond Beyond Hip-hop

In addition to the must-see musical locations mentioned in this Richmond hip-hop guide, visitors will find that there’s more to discover in Virginia’s state capital. Stay in this historic Virginia city and explore attractions such as the State Capitol and the various Civil War battlefields.

When traveling to this area, rent a car to help you get around and I suggest staying near Downtown or Shockoe Slip to ensure you can experience all that Richmond has to offer.

Written by Vos Tyler and edited by Iris A.

About Iris A


Born in the Philippines, but grew up in Texas, Iris has been traveling and writing about her experiences for well over a decade. Her work has been published on well-known travel sites like Hipmunk (#hipmunkcitylove) and D Magazine Online Travel Club. She has been all over Europe, the US, and has recently started exploring Latin America. She loves trying local cuisine and visiting UNESCO deemed World Heritage sites. Her favourite city is New York, with London, following a close 2nd. You can follow her on Twitter @sundeeiris or through her travel blog, Traveling With Iris.

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