Idioms and Slang Words for Money with Examples from Hip Hop Songs

I have created a series of picture dictionaries based on particular hip-hop songs and themes, and I just made one for slang words about money!

It hasn’t been published before, and I’m sharing it for the first time with!

Rappers often discuss and sing about making money, their financial hardships and becoming successful. Learn 26 new slang words for money today! See the whole explanation with examples under the illustration.

Slang words for money by

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A piece of the pie – a share of something like money or profits. 

– If you invest in my company, you will get a big piece of the pie.

– I just found $20 on the street, so do you want a piece of the pie?

Smackers/clams/bucks/bones (noun, always plural) – money, especially American dollars.

– What would you do if you had 20 million smackers?

– That dude owes me 500 smackers, so I’m going to pay him a visit tonight!

Paper/cream/grip/dough/bread/bank/bacon/cheddar/cheese/gravy (noun, always singular) – money.

– You need a lot of paper to buy a new car. With your bad credit, no bank is gonna lend you paper.

Make paper / make bank (idiom) – to make a lot of money.

– Look at me now! I’m making paper! They girls didn’t like me in middle school, but now they can’t get enough of me because I’m making bank.

Make coin (idiom) – to make money, but not necessarily a lot of money.

– I make some good coin at the restaurant. I’m not wealthy, but it’s enough.

The letters K and G – $1,000.

– A new car cost about 30 Gs. 

Gravy train (noun) – a situation where a person makes a lot of money.

– I have been selling towels to tourists, and it is a huge gravy train!

– You are not living rent-free any more. The gravy train stops rights here and you will pay rent!!

Bring home the bacon (idom) – to make money for your family to live on; to be very successful.

– Because John’s been in the hospital for 2 months, his wife has been bringing home the bacon.

– My university degree got me a great job, and I can finally bring home the bacon and support my family.

Benjamins  – $100 USD bill.

– It’s all about the Benjamins baby! 

About Author:

Stephen Mayeux has been an ESL/EFL teacher in Asia and North America for five years. He currently teaches general and academic ESL courses at the University of California Davis Extension. When he’s not lesson planning or grading essays, he’s writing content for his blog You can find him on Facebook, Twitter.

Stephen Mayeux Eslhiphop

I launched nearly two months ago, and the response and support from the ELT community has been tremendously positive! I am so grateful for my followers on Facebook and Twitter and also for the fact that many English teachers and students are trying hip-hop and rap music for the first time.

Occasionally, teachers will approach me and admit that they are unfamiliar with the genre. Because they lack enough background knowledge of rap music, they feel uncomfortable using it in class, especially because there is a lot of cryptic slang words that seem to constantly change and evolve.


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Written by: Anastasia Koltai

Founder of Ana is a fan of giving away free and useful materials both for English learners and teachers. In her free time she loves biking and playing with her dog.