(Credit: Bobby)

Decade

25 best hip hop songs of the 2000s

The 2000s were a relatively fun and carefree era for hip hop and rap music, coasting on some of the quite frankly revolutionary beats of the 90s, and heading into radio-friendly territory, the 2000s birthed some of the most revolutionary names in hip hop, and arguably directed the genre to a blend of mainstream popularity.

Now, rap and hip hop are near-synonymous with pop music, and that wasn’t always the case. In the ’80s and ’90s, it was relegated to its own genre and nearly never crossed party lines, which can be easy to forget.

The ’90s are a tough era to beat, which is probably why so many people have sour feelings towards 2000s rap and hip hop music. If there’s one thing that defines the shift, it’s fun. While the ’90s made a lot of serious, poetic rap with banging beats, the 2000s lingered on some of that, but made music for the club. 2000s hip hop and rap are, more often than not, music to dance to.

By now, a lot of the best songs of the era are meme-content, or merely so iconic and recognisable that they almost don’t count towards the wider conversation (‘Gold Digger’, ‘Lose Yourself’, ‘Milkshake’, etc.). However, there are so many songs from 2000s hip hop that maintain their relevance, almost to the point that they don’t seem all that old. 

Although serious rap is still in there, there’s a carefree and party-ready air to so much of the hip hop that came out of the 2000s. While this has always been the case a little bit, this was the decade that took it to a new level. If you want to party with a bit of a throwback, these are some of the bangers you might want to hear.

25 best hip hop songs of the 2000s:

  • ‘Pursuit of Happiness’ – Kid Cudi
  • ‘Clap Back’ – Ja Rule
  • ‘It’s Goin’ Down (feat. Nitti)’ – Yung Joc
  • ‘Lip Gloss’ – Lil Mama
  • ‘All Falls Down’ – Kanye West
  • ‘Back In the Game’ – Wu-Tang Clan
  • ‘What We Do’ – Freeway, Jay Z, Beanie Sigel
  • ‘Paper Planes’ – M.I.A.
  • ‘Whatever You Like’ – T.I.
  • ‘U Remind Me’ – Usher
  • ‘Magic Stick’ – Lil’ Kim
  • ‘Drop It Low’ – Ester Dean
  • ‘Get Ur Freak On’ – Missy Elliott
  • ‘The Real Slim Shady’ – Eminem
  • ‘Badd’ – Ying Yang Twins, Mike Jones, Mr. Collipark
  • ‘This Is How We Do’ – Big Tymers
  • ‘Tipsy (Club Mix)’ – J-Kwon
  • ‘Hey Ma’ – Cam’ron, Juelz Santana, Freekey Zeekey, Toya
  • ‘Lollipop’ – Lil Wayne
  • ‘Take It To The Top’ – Freeway, 50 Cent
  • ‘Cupid’s Chokehold’ – Gym Class Heroes
  • ‘Come Around’ – M.I.A.
  • ‘Blueberry Yum Yum’ – Ludacris, Sleepy Brown
  • ‘Work It’ – Missy Elliott
  • ‘Ms. Jackson’ – Outkast