2000s, List, Top 10

20 Great Songs from the Early 2000s

Anyone else feeling nostalgic for the early 2000s in the 2020s? Listening to songs on your first iPod, watching TRL on MTV, burning a CD of party tracks - all of which you may have (illegally) downloaded off Napster...good times.

While we can't bring back AIM messaging, MySpace, or the Von Dutch hat trend, we can certainly feel that good ol' early 2000s nostalgia by listening to our favorite Y2K tunes!

For this list, we've compiled 20 of our favorite hit songs that were released between 2000-2009. Keep in mind: these 20 songs are just a small slice of the great jams that came out of the noughties. There are plenty more loveable songs we weren't able to fit in. Do some research on Yahoo - or maybe just listen to a Now That's What I Call Music CD - and discover them yourself.

Without further ado, here are 20 great songs from the early 2000s!

1. "Hey Ya!" - OutKast

While "Ms. Jackson" is another incredible early 2000s' hit by OutKast, we're going with their 2003 jam "Hey Ya!" A lot of people don't know OutKast outside of this party song - which is a pity, considering ATLiens is one of the best late 90s' albums out there. But we digress. With a great thumping beat, recognizable chorus, and hilarious music video greener than the Emerald City, "Hey Ya!" will forever remain a classic.

2. "Bye Bye Bye" - *NSYNC

We've deemed NSYNC one of the greatest boy bands of all time, and this 2000 track is undoubtedly their magnum opus. With a simple-yet-memorable hand waving dance move, a catchy chorus, and all the marionette puppet imagery in the music video, it's no wonder No Strings Attached was the 2nd best-selling album of all time between 2000-2009.

3. "Toxic" - Britney Spears

While "Oops!...I Did It Again" cemented Britney Spears' reign as the early 2000s' pop princess, we think her 2003 song "Toxic" has truly withstood the test of time. The clash of techno, surf guitar, Bollywood strings, dramatic violin notes, and Britney's breathy vocals make this dance track super pleasing to the ear. It's still a relevant song today, as proven by its use in Emerald Fennell's Promising Young Woman. And who can forget Britney as a super spy in the music video! Oh, and did you know "Toxic" was originally written for Kylie Minogue?

4. "Hollaback Girl" - Gwen Stefani

Perhaps the greatest diss track of all time, Gwen Stefani's "Hollaback Girl" is a bass-heavy hit with a whole lotta attitude. The song came after a comment Courtney Love made about Stefani in Seventeen magazine, which compared Stefani to a prissy high school cheerleader. Instead of clapping back, Stefani took the cheerleader comment to heart and made this pumped-up piece of artistry instead, which reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 2005. She also taught a whole generation of kids how to spell the word "bananas."

5. "Crazy In Love" - Beyoncé (feat. Jay-Z)

Queen Bey is one of those incredible artists where there's no difference between her newer and older songs: all of it is straight fire. Fresh off her stint as a group member of Destiny's Child, "Crazy In Love" was the ridiculously successful lead single from Beyoncé’s debut album Dangerously In Love. "Crazy In Love" is the song that began Beyoncé’s legendary solo career, and it also features some bits from Jay-Z back when the two were just dating! Ah, memories.

6. "One More Time" - Daft Punk

Although Daft Punk is now a retired robot duo, their 2000 party track "One More Time" will forever remain a classic. From their critically-acclaimed 2001 album Discovery, "One More Time" masterfully samples Eddie Johns' 1979 disco track "More Spell On You." While we wish Daft Punk could go on tour one more time, we're happy they left us with rockin' songs like this.

7. "Drop It Like It's Hot" - Snoop Dogg (feat. Pharrell Williams)

Before Pharrell was singing with the aforementioned Daft Punk in "Get Lucky," he was featured in this early 2000s' party staple. Snoop Dogg's "Drop It Like It's Hot" somehow manages to make tongue clicks and a spray can sound effect super funky. This song took the popular hip-hop phrase "drop it like it's hot" and gave it a whole new meaning. It's chill yet bouncy, and perfect for a late-night cruise, celebrations, and even iconic Vines.

8. "Get Ur Freak On" - Missy Elliott

Missy Elliott ruled the early 2000s, and she has so many hits from the decade, it's hard to pick one favorite. But for this list, we're going with her 2001 song from So Addictive, "Get Ur Freak On." Its bhangra-meets-jungle beat (produced by Timbaland) and other futuristic sounds make this track impossible not to dance to. And even more: Missy Elliott proved she can still perform this song well (and made Taylor Swift and Halsey bust some moves) at the 2019 VMAs.

9. "Take Me Out" - Franz Ferdinand

Scottish indie rock band Franz Ferdinand may have been something of a one-hit-wonder with this 2004 song, but we think it's still a bop. An underrated party tune you can chill or rock to, "Take Me Out" gets really spicy when the beat drops after the first verse. Plus, the guitar solo in this song is just...perfect.

10. "Yellow" - Coldplay

Can you believe this song is 21 years old already? Coldplay's "Yellow" is the band's longest-enduring hit and full of hope, warmth, and pure love. It's a very romantic, emotional ballad with tinges of rock riffs and a steady drum. It's perfect for a stargazing session or a day on the beach. We also can't get enough of this song's music video with its gorgeous visuals.

11. "Bootylicious" - Destiny's Child

We'd be remiss if we put a Beyoncé song on here and not include Destiny's Child. "Bootylicious" is one of the girl group's most recognizable songs. Like their 1999 standout "Say My Name," it's funky, sassy, and powerful. It also pays homage to Stevie Nicks' "Edge of Seventeen" through the guitar riff. Additionally, "Bootylicious" has a good message, as it celebrates voluptuous body types.

12. "Paper Planes" - M.I.A.

At first listen, you may think "Paper Planes" is just an airy gangster track about robbery and "funny business." But upon closer reflection, you realize M.I.A's 2007 magnum opus is all about the prejudice immigrants from war-torn countries face from U.S. immigration policy. Those notable gunshots have a double meaning: not only do they imply a robbery, but also critique the military-industrial complex that sells guns to developing countries and reaps profits. On a lighter note, this song rose to popularity when it was used in two iconic early 2000s' flicks: Pineapple Express and Slumdog Millionaire.

13. "Mr. Brightside" - The Killers

You can't have early 2000s' emo and scene culture without this beloved bop. Released in 2003, "Mr. Brightside" tells a tale of infedility, paranoia, and jealousy. Written about Brandon Flowers' cheating ex, the single went 2x Platinum in the U.S., selling over 2 million copies, and 6x Platinum in the U.K., selling over 3.5 million. It's like you can hear the sound of Flowers' heart breaking within the instrumentals. Flowers' heart is broken no more with the success of this song though, as "Mr. Brightside" remains a timeless song to sing along to, pretty much everywhere you go.

14. "Umbrella" - Rihanna (feat. Jay-Z)

While Rihanna had many early 2000s' hits, "Umbrella" was the one that put her on the map. A drum-heavy song about support in a relationship, "Umbrella" stayed on top of the U.K. Singles Chart for 10 consecutive weeks, longer than any other single that decade. The single also remained at the top of the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 for seven consecutive weeks. Rainy days may suck, but this song makes them far better.

15. "Yeah!" - Usher

Almost 20 years later, this song still remains a club - and middle school dance - classic. What's not to love about this 2004 song when you've got edgy synths, Lil Jon's energetic party voice, Ludacris's cool rap solo, and Usher's charming tenor voice? It's very hard to stay still when listening to this dance track.

16. "Hot In Herre" - Nelly

Released in 2002, "Hot In Herre" is another classic party anthem that came from the decade. Remember when everyone thought Nelly would be popular forever? While he largely lost that popularity after the early 2000s, this track proves the dude really understood his music history. Many know this as a sexy dance song, but it's actually a direct tribute to the Go-Go sound of the 1970s, especially “Bustin' Loose” by Chuck Brown.

17. "Get the Party Started" - P!nk

Completing the 2004 Pepsi pop star trifecta, we have a song from P!nk on this list. While everything from her 2001 debut album Missundaztood is a bop, her most beloved song off that album is "Get the Party Started." Fun and full of attitude, this song managed to peak at #4 on the Billboard Hot 100 and received Gold-certified status.

18. "Misery Business" - Paramore

Another emo, scene, and punk kid staple, Paramore's "Misery Business" is one of the most energy-infused songs of the decade. Thanks to soaring vocals from "The Great Orange Hope" that is Hayley Williams, "Misery Business" is a perfect song to blast over the car speaker when you and your friends need something to sing along to. While this rage-filled 2007 song is now axed from the band's live shows due to some controversial lyrics, it remains Paramore's biggest success.

19. "Hips Don't Lie" - Shakira (feat. Wyclef Jean)

It's fun to look back at Shakira's beginnings, since her career is still going strong almost 20 years after this 2005 jam. A song off Shakira's seventh album Oral Fixation Vol. 2, "Hips Don't Lie" features the Fugees' Wyclef Jean and samples the trumpets from Jerry Rivera’s “Amores Como El Nuestro.” It topped charts in over 55 countries, including in the U.S. for two weeks. Our hips don't lie when we groove to this awesome song.

20. "Complicated" - Avril Lavigne

Avril Lavigne was part of many young girls' childhoods. While her songs "Sk8r Boi" and "Girlfriend" were early 2000s' classics, her biggest hit was the 2002 debut single "Complicated." It's a great song about the power of being yourself, and the sense of calm that comes with it. The song held the top spot on Billboard’s Adult Top 40 chart for 16 weeks in a row and reached the #2 spot on the Hot 100. Putting this song on this list was the least complicated decision we've ever made.

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Article Image: Gwen Stefani performing the opening of the 2005 Teen Choice Awards. (s_bukley via DepositPhotos.)

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About Kathryn Milewski

  • New Jersey