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Beats Per Millennium - VH1's 100 Greatest Hip Hop Songs: 40-21

VH1's 100 Greatest Hip Hop Songs: 40-21

Hip Hop Honors Week continues with numbers 40-21 of VH1’s top hundred.

“It’s Like That”
We’re getting into the heavy hitters now. Fab 5 Freddy just called them “hands-down the most influential group in hip hop.” I don’t see how you judge something like that but he may be right. Run-D.M.C. proved that hip hop had commercial value. It could be bottled and sold. I’m sure there are some people out there who will still argue that this isn’t a good thing….but they are just being naïve.

“Wild Thing”
I had no idea that this song was the highest selling record of all time for a while. The video was apparently made for $500.

“Gangsta’s Paradise”
Coolio (feat. L.V.)
This is one of the first rap songs that I ever got into. I was just getting into high school and EVERYONE loved this song…even the metal kids. And then “Amish Paradise” came out. I had forgotten about all the Weird Al vs. Coolio drama.

“It Takes Two”
Rob Base and DJ EZ-Rock
We need some happy rap to come out RIGHT NOW.

“Hot In Herre”
Boo. I would have been okay with “Country Grammar” making this list. But this song is just bad.

“Ladies First”
Queen Latifah (feat.Monie Love)
I love how Fab 5 Freddy (who is incidentally narrating the show) let’s us know whenever he directed a video that is featured. I am moderately excited that Queen Latifah will be returning to rap for her new album.

“Insane in the Brain”
Cypress Hill
HA! B-Real is a professional paintball player!

“The Crossroads”
Bone Thugs-N-Harmony
I thought this album was extremely underrated. I was really into them when I was in high school. The song and the video are so emotional, especially the part with Eazy-E.

“It’s All About the Benjamins”
Puff Daddy (feat. Lil Kim, The Lox, and The Notorious B.I.G.)
Diddy does not get the credit he deserves. Writing him off as a bad rapper is naïve. Puff Daddy was an influential force in hip hop in more ways than one. The production on this song, and throughout the album, is phenomenal. And the moment when Biggie comes in is just splendid. Those who remember hearing this song for the first time, just weeks following his death, remember how they felt the first time they heard that.

“How Ya Like Me Now”
Kool Moe Dee
I like how back in the 80s rappers were already talking about the emptiness of the newer rappers. KMD wrote a book called There Is A God On The Mic. It is a list of his top 50 MC’s. The best part is that he ranks himself number 2.

“The Humpty Dance”
The Digital Underground
Back to the fun stuff.

“Check the Rhime”
A Tribe Called Quest
I can’t think of many rappers who work better together than Phife and Tip. I was so happy to get to see them last summer.

“It Was A Good Day”
Ice Cube
Haha, Someone just said, ”Most of the stuff in this song is stuff that could happen to anybody…except the blimp thing.” And then a woman said, “It’s amazing how fast Ice Cube went from shooting you to taking your daughter on a road trip.” Sorry, I don’t know who was who because I’m typing too fast.

“Hold It Now, Hit It”
Beastie Boys
Ice-T called the Beasties as good as any rap group out ever. Good for him. The Beasties just never get their due in hip hop circles. They are considered rock for some ridiculous reason. There is no reason why this song should be played on rock stations but Run-D.M.C. isn’t.

“U Can’t Touch This”
MC Hammer
Hammer deserves more love than he gets. He is what he is. A dancer and a pop star.

“Killing Me Softly”
The Fugees
This is one of my favorite rap albums of all time and the inclusion of this track is one of the biggest reasons. She pulls this song off so well. The album put Lauryn, Pras, and Clef on the map as rappers, but this song showed the world that she was multi-talented and we got a lot more of that on Miseducation. Come back Lauryn!

“Paid in Full”
Eric B. and Rakim
One of the dopest verses in history. I went to a panel discussion with Public Enemy last summer and Chuck D talked about how “Paid In Full” just fucked everybody up in the head because Rakim pulled off a classic with just ONE verse at a time when more verses were considered better. Best MC of all time.

“Bombs Over Baghdad”
Biz Markie speechless trying to describe this song is priceless. How crazy is this song? Outkast need to get to work on some rap.

Naughty by Nature
I could have sworn they already did this one. I must be thinking of the Naughty by Nature commercial they keep airing for Hip Hop Honors.

“Planet Rock”
Afrika Bambaataa
Should be higher.

Posted by Mike Denslow at Oct 03, 2008 12:39 PM


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