When it comes to establishing yourself as a superstar hip hop producer, branding is everything. Unlike the MCs and vocalists these people work with, gaining exposure can prove a much more difficult task when most of your work remains behind the scenes.

As a result, some of these track masters took matters into their own hands and began showing up in videos and contributing vocals. From Pharrell -- who was one of the most ubiquitous figures in hip hop in the early 2000s -- to Timbaland, who inserted himself in other artists’ songs and videos until his voice became a part of the beat.

Most producers don't achieve this degree of the limelight, and while they’re every bit as qualified as their more famous cohorts, they move like bad boys, in silence. Hip hop’s sonic landscape has changed quite a bit over the years and with every generation there’s a crop of producers that fly under the radar. At HotNewHipHop we like to give props where props are due.