The 30 Best Songs of the 2000s, Ranked

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It's no easy task to rank the 30 best songs of the 2000s, but we're gonna give it our best shot. The 2000s were a golden era of music, giving us a blend of genres and influences that shaped the landscape of modern music. From hip-hop, R&B and pop to rock, country, and electronic, the 2000s produced a spectrum of memorable tunes that we're still humming today. As we take a trip down memory lane, let's count down the 30 best songs of the 2000s that defined a generation.

RELATED: The 25 Best Albums of the 2000s, Ranked

30. "Teenage Dirtbag" - Wheatus

Year Released: 2000

"Teenage Dirtbag" tapped into the adolescent angst of the early 2000s. The song's catchy chorus and relatable lyrics resonated with a generation of misunderstood teens. While Wheatus isn't necessarily a household name, this song is one that just about everyone knows - even just a little bit. What better way to kick off our list?

29. "Last Resort" - Papa Roach

Year Released: 2000

Papa Roach's "Last Resort" was a cornerstone of the nu-metal movement, combining raw, introspective lyrics with heavy guitar riffs and driving beats. "Cut my life into pieces, this is my last resort" was such a memorable lyrical moment in the rock landscape at the time. It even landed the lead singer a role on MTV's show, "Scarred," especially since they were so aligned aesthetically with the show.

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

Year Released: 2001

P!nk's "Get the Party Started" was a high-energy, dance-worthy anthem that exemplified her rebellious pop persona and musical versatility. P!nk would go on to have many more memorable moments beyond this one, but it's impossible to overlook this absolute classic from the noteworthy talent.

27. "Toxic" - Britney Spears

Year Released: 2003

The sultry pop tune, "Toxic", became Britney's second number-one single on the Billboard Hot 100. Its infectious beats, tantalizing melody, and Britney's seductive vocals set it apart from her other hits. Britney was on a roll at the time, and showed no signs of slowing down - regardless of any behind the scenes drama that was going on at the time.

26. "The Scientist" - Coldplay

Year Released: 2002

With its emotionally-charged lyrics and haunting piano melody, "The Scientist" became one of the most recognized songs from the British band, highlighting their knack for creating poignant, evocative tracks. Coldplay was having quite a moment in this particular decade. The 2000s was their time to shine, and shine they did.

25. "Seven Nation Army" - The White Stripes

Year Released: 2003

An anthem for the ages, "Seven Nation Army" with its iconic riff and anthemic chorus, solidified The White Stripes as torchbearers of the garage rock revival movement. From the entrance of the unforgettable bass riff to the vocals that perfectly match it, everybody knows and loves this particular classic of the 2000s.

24. "Hollaback Girl" - Gwen Stefani

Year Released: 2004

Gwen Stefani's cheerleader anthem "Hollaback Girl" showcased her unique brand of pop, blending elements of hip-hop and marching band instrumentals to create a track that was as catchy as it was unique.

23. "Rehab" - Amy Winehouse

Year Released: 2006

Amy Winehouse's "Rehab" with its vintage jazz and soul vibes resonated with many, marking her as a formidable talent and establishing her signature sound.

22. "Boulevard of Broken Dreams" - Green Day

Year Released: 2004

Green Day's "Boulevard of Broken Dreams" struck a chord with listeners, speaking to feelings of loneliness and disillusionment. Its distinct melody made it an instant classic.

21. "Bad Romance" - Lady Gaga

Year Released: 2009

With "Bad Romance", Lady Gaga solidified her position as a pop icon. The dramatic song with its catchy chorus and bold music video was both a commercial success and a cultural phenomenon.

20. "I Gotta Feeling" - The Black Eyed Peas

Year Released: 2009

"I Gotta Feeling" became the ultimate party anthem of the 2000s, a testament to The Black Eyed Peas' knack for creating infectious, upbeat tracks that bring the dance floor to life.

19. "Poker Face" - Lady Gaga

Year Released: 2008

"Poker Face" was a defining moment in Lady Gaga's career, with its synth-pop sound, catchy hook, and enigmatic lyrics. It set the tone for Gaga's boundary-pushing style.

18. "Crazy in Love" - Beyoncé ft. Jay-Z

Year Released: 2003

Next up on our list of the best songs of the 2000s is "Crazy in Love." With its high-energy horn sample and catchy chorus, "Crazy in Love" was the perfect launchpad for Beyoncé's solo career. It's a sultry, irresistible track that's still as fresh today as it was in the early 2000s.

17. "Yellow" - Coldplay

Year Released: 2000

"Yellow" was the song that put Coldplay on the map. With its romantic lyrics and unforgettable melody, it's a track that remains one of their most beloved. "And it was all yellow" proved to be able to cut through any listener's thick skin, and hit them right in their feels.

16. "Since U Been Gone" - Kelly Clarkson

Year Released: 2004

"Since U Been Gone" showcased Kelly Clarkson's vocal prowess and firmly established her as a leading lady in pop-rock. It was yet another demonstration from the talented vocalist showing that she had everything it took to be a household name in music. If you hadn't already known, this particular songstress won the very first season of American Idol in 2002, and proved to be one of the only winners to create a lasting legacy out of their victory on the show.

15. "Numb" - Linkin Park

Year Released: 2003

"Numb" blended elements of rock, electronica, and rap to produce a powerful anthem of alienation and identity that defined Linkin Park's unique sound. Linkin Park was breaking barriers in the early 2000's - ones that hadn't properly been broken since long before with Run DMC and Aerosmith.

14. "Complicated" - Avril Lavigne

Year Released: 2002

"Complicated" resonated with audiences for its honest depiction of teen angst. Avril Lavigne's pop-punk anthem made her the voice of a generation. This song would go on to be an ear-worm for years and years to come.

13. "Yeah!" - Usher, Lil Jon, and Ludacris

Year Released: 2004

"Yeah!" was a cultural milestone for the 2000s, blending R&B and crunk to create an undeniably infectious track. Usher's smooth vocals, coupled with Lil Jon's distinctive hype-man style, made this a chart-topper. This song was absolutely inescapable in the club scene of the 2000s.

12. "Empire State of Mind" - Jay-Z ft. Alicia Keys

Year Released: 2009

"Empire State of Mind" is a soulful ode to New York City, with Jay-Z's storytelling prowess perfectly complemented by Alicia Keys's soaring chorus. It's a testament to the magic of the Big Apple. To this day, the song still remains a celebrated anthem of New York City and its diverse population.

11. "Hot in Herre" - Nelly

Release Date: 2002

Nelly's "Hot in Herre" gave us a catchy chorus and dance-worthy beats that made it a club favorite. The hip-hop track was a staple on the airwaves and party playlists alike. It would go on to be featured in films, TV shows, and much more. It's another one of those classics that you absolutely have to know the lyrics to.

10. "Gold Digger" - Kanye West ft. Jamie Foxx

Year Released: 2005

We've now reached the number 10 spot on our list of the best songs of the 2000s. "Gold Digger" showcased Kanye West's ingenious sampling skills, turning Ray Charles's "I Got a Woman" into a catchy anthem about love and money. It is one of Kanye West's most popular songs, if not the most popular - which really says a lot, considering the depth of his music catalog.

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

Year Released: 2007

M.I.A's "Paper Planes" was a genre-defying masterpiece, blending elements of hip-hop, reggae, and electronica to create a provocative and unforgettable hit. It's safe to say everyone remembers their first time hearing the initial surprise of "all I wanna do is..." It was an absolutely unforgettable moment in music, no matter what kind of tunes you were into at the time.

8. "Drop It Like It's Hot" - Snoop Dogg ft. Pharrell Williams.

Year Released: 2004

At the number 8 spot on our list of the best songs of the 2000s, we've got "Drop It Like It's Hot" by Snoop Dogg and Pharrell Williams. "Drop It Like It's Hot" proved Snoop Dogg was a master at creating minimalist hip-hop tracks. Pharrell's production and infectious hook made this a hip-hop classic. If you take the time, you'll notice just how crucial of a role Pharrell played in the culture of the 2000s, from music to fashion and more.

7. "Umbrella" - Rihanna ft. Jay-Z

Year Released: 2007

"Umbrella" marked Rihanna's transition from a pop sensation to a global superstar. Its catchy chorus and the iconic 'ella-ella-eh-eh' refrain ensured it was firmly lodged in our minds. It was yet another proven collaboration between two of the most popular acts of our time; another reminder of exactly why they're at where they are to begin with.

6. "Crazy" - Gnarls Barkley

Year Released: 2006

The genre-blending "Crazy" brought soul music back into the mainstream in a big way, showcasing the unique vocal range of CeeLo Green and the creative genius of Danger Mouse. It was an absolute banger that still continues to be considered as such to this very day. It was original, yet felt so familiar from the first listen.

5. "Hey Ya!" - Outkast

Year Released: 2003

At the number 5 spot on our list of the best songs of the 2000s, we've got what is arguably Outkast's biggest hit ever, "Hey Ya!" The song marked a significant moment in Outkast's career, steering away from their traditional hip-hop sound and leaning into pop and funk influences to create a hit that still gets us shaking like a Polaroid picture.

4. "Lose Yourself" - Eminem

Year Released: 2002

The intense lyrics and beats of "Lose Yourself" have made it a timeless anthem for self-belief and determination, not to mention a showcase of Eminem's unrivaled storytelling and lyrical skills. From the film 8 Mile, the song was woven into culture seamlessly, giving fans plenty of reason to love it right out of the gate. Eminem showed off his best qualities on this one, and it will always manage to stand the test of time from here on out.

3. "Viva La Vida" - Coldplay

Year Released: 2008

The symphonic "Viva La Vida" showed us a different side of Coldplay, with its uplifting string section, choral background, and Martin's emotive vocals. It was arguably their greatest contribution to the culture to date, and it still manages to be a relevant soundscape up to this very day. Everyone can recognize this song from the first few seconds after pressing play.

2. 50 Cent - "In Da Club"

Release Date: 2003

"In Da Club" served as a breakout single for 50 Cent, with its hypnotic beats, catchy hook, and raw lyrics becoming a staple in clubs worldwide. Everything about it made it a clear-cut hit, and even in the current landscape of music, it's proven to be a worthwhile track to play in any atmosphere: the club, at home, with friends, and even in the car.

1. "Mr. Brightside" - The Killers

Year Released: 2004

At the number one spot on our list of the best songs of the 2000s, we've got a remarkably special record: "Mr. Brightside" by The Killers. "Mr. Brightside" with its infectious melody, relatable lyrics, and soaring guitars, became an anthem of heartache and unrequited love, leaving its mark on the decade's indie rock scene. To this day, it's one of the only songs that could be played in a bar with every single occupant knowing every last word. It's that much of a classic.

Thank you for tuning into our list of the best songs of the 2000s, and stay tuned for even more music takes from the ONE37pm Music Team.

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