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Top 25 best lyrical songs in the Hip-Hop genre

In this list, we've rounded up the top 25 Hip-Hop lyrical songs from the 80s-00s.

Best Lyrical Hip-Hop Songs: Official Videos, Track Descriptions

Love has been the driving force behind popular music for centuries, resulting in a wide variety of genres. - from R&B to lyrical ballads. But what about hip hop? While rap musicians often had controversial relationships with those who wanted to express their softer stance, some of the best love songs did become hits.

25:2Pac: Can U Get Away (1995)

Despite all his "Thug Life" and controversial reputation, 2Pac made the lyric single on his "Me Against The World" album. It can be stated that 2Pac was able to record a sentimental composition, which earlier in his performance it was impossible to hear.

24: Mos Def: Ms Fat Booty (1999)

Yasin Bey (or the artist formerly known as Mos Def) made a big splash at the end of the millennium with his introspective lyrical content. However, 1999's Black On Both Sides was not entirely made up of socially conscious rap. An example lyrical works on the album is the track "Ms. Fat Booty, which tells the simple story of how the MC met an incredibly attractive woman named Sharis, dated her for a while, and then was heartbroken after breaking up with her for good. Mos Def story ends on an ambiguous note: his friend spots Sharis dancing with another woman at a strip club.

23: MC Lyte: Poor George (1991)

MC Lyte has the distinction of being the first female solo rapper to release an album. In "Poor Georgie", Light tells the story of meeting a man who changes her, but she turns a blind eye to it. Then her man finds out he has cancer, drives drunk and dies. Moral of this story: 

If you love someone, you must say it often / You never know when he will be in a coffin

22: Jay-Z: Excuse Me Miss (featuring Pharrell) (2002)

Using Farrell's falsetto vocals for the single and "The Neptunes" as a producer, Jay-Z created the love track "Excuse Me Miss". In this song, the artist goes from rapper to mogul as he dresses costume from Armani and flying helicopters and dining with the object of his affection. 

21: Method Man: I'll Be There For You/You're All I Need To Get By (featuring Mary J Blige) (1995)

Method Man did well with their 1994 album Tical (the first of many members' solo endeavors since the group's Wu-Tang Clan debut), but it took a feminine approach to remix his songs "All I Need" to propel him into the pop charts. Mary J. Blige was one of the first R&B superstars to start her musical career in hip hop, singing on Father MC, Grand Puba and Prince Mark D records, and releasing many collaborative tracks with other rappers. Method Man and Mary were perfect for each other, which allowed them to record sensual lyrical composition "You're All I Need To Get By", which became a hit in 1995.

20: Puff Daddy - I'll Be Missing You (featuring Faith Evans & 112) (1997)

Not all lyrical rap songs make love tracks. Puff Daddy's sonnet is dedicated to him deceased to fellow Biggie, who was killed two months before the release of the song. With the help of Biggie's widow, Faith Evans, and the R&B stars of 112, the idea was brought to fruition. The song is similar in structure, chorus, and verses to The Police's 1983 hit "Every Breath You Take".

19: UTFO: Ya Cold Wanna Be With Me (1987)

New York hip-hop group UTFO (Untouchable Force Organization) became a whole producer a team that worked on several albums in the 80s, including Lethal (1987), which featured the track "Ya Cold Wanna Be With Me". Dr. Ice, Educated Rapper, and Kangol Kid openly ask the question: "do women want to be with them because of their status or because of sincere love?" The song ends with the following line:

Everyone knows that I wanted to kiss you / Hey girl, here's the place you missed.

18: Raekwon: Ice Cream (featuring Ghostface Killah, Method Man, and Cappadonna) (1995)

Following the success of the Wu-Tang Clan's first album, a number of solo compositions by the band members followed. It was part of producer RZA's master plan. Although technically this solo work, Raekwon's 1995 album "Only Built 4 Cuban Linx ..." did not do without the voices of other artists and the track Ice Cream was no exception. Featuring fellow band members Ghostface Killah and Method Man, as well as Cappadonna, the Staten Island MCs draw women into their track by comparing them to ice cream flavors. The idea seems crazy, but it worked.

17: Gang Starr: Lovesick (1990)

Brooklyn hip hop duo Gang Starr, consisting of a Boston MC named Guru and producer from Houston DJ Premier, created successful tracks from the late 80s, right up to the early 00s. From their second album Step In The Arena, Lovesick, Guru laments the jealousy of his significant other.

16: Fat Boys: Don't You Dog Me (1984)

By 1983, East New York teenagers Prince Marky D, Cool Rock Sky, and Buff Love were one of the two biggest hip-hop groups in the world (the other was Run-DMC), and their debut album, produced by hip-hop legend Curtis Blow, went gold by May 1985. "Don't You Dog Me" refers to the drum machine era of hip hop. The Fat Boys in the 1985 film Crusch Grove sing the song "Don't You Dog Me" in high school after being kicked out of science class.

15: Spoonie Gee: Love Rap (featuring The Treacherous Three) (1980)

If anyone can be called the father of love rap songs, it's Spoonie Gee, along with The Treacherous Three, who appears in the intro to "Love Rap". In 1980, hip-hop was still in its infancy, and Spoonie Gee released one of the first singles the Spoonin' Rap genre the previous year. As a living phenomenon, hip-hop has not had songs with prominent verses and choruses or even consistent themes, and "Love Rap" reflects this. Harlem MC almost six minutes contract rhymes about his love to live drums and congas provided by Pumpkin and Puig Costello respectively. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IydP1lUzFWQ

14: Biz Markie: Just A Friend (1989)

Biz Markie went from beatboxing for MC Shan and Roxanne Shante to being an artist with the Juice Crew. Biz created this ballad inserting it features the chorus of Freddie Scott's 1968 song "(You) Got What I Need" over the drums from Lee Dorsey's "Get Out Of My Life, Woman". Biz's singing is "so bad it's good". Marca's second album, "The Biz Never Sleep", went gold, and the single "Just A Friend" became platinum, peaking at number 9 on the Billboard Hot 100. Cold Chillin' Records was one of the most successful labels.

13: MC Shan: Left Me Lonely (with TJ Swan) (1987)

Inspired by Larry Smith's work on Wadini's "One Love", producer Marley Marl created this ballad with his longtime friend, keyboardist Andre Booth. Their Queensbridge neighbor MC Shan raps about broken heart while the original hip-hop singer TJ Swan sings. Shan and Swan soon found themselves opening gigs for far more established R&B bands in 1987, blowing them off the stage at times.

12: The Roots: You Got Me (featuring Erykah Badu and Eve) (1999)

Over the classic beat of Scott Storch, The Roots performed one of the best rap love songs, You Got Me, which became part of turning point in the career of artists of the album "Things Fall Apart". The music video for "You Got Me" was directed by Charles Stone III. The band received a Grammy Award for Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group in 2000.

11: A Tribe Called Quest: Bonita Applebum (1990)

Q-Tip falls head over heels in love with a woman with an extreme hourglass figure (38-24-37 to be exact). If you're lucky, there will be interest mutual – though we will never know. He is willing to kiss her "where some brothers won't" and has "crazy experience" if need be. A Tribe Called Quest quickly became one of the most loved hip-hop groups of all time, having grown up just blocks from LL Cool J in St. Albans, Queens. 

10: Whodini: One Love (1986)

Before hip-hop broke into the mainstream, the Brooklyn boys Whodini were one of the first bands to go gold and platinum. Taken from their third album "Back In Black", "One Love" formed the basis of of the same name songs "Nas" in 1994.

9: Eric B & Rakim: Mahogany (1990)

The God MC Rakim Allah isn't usually the first moniker that comes to mind when it comes to lyrical rap songs and artists. But during his career, Rakim created several love works. From the third album of Eric B and Rakim "Let The Rhythm Hit 'Em" - "Mahogany" tells the story of a rapper who met a girl before a performance in New York, massaged her brain with his intimate knowledge, "rocked the mic" and then walked home with her. Straightforward, no plot twists.

8: Beastie Boys: Netty's Girl (1992)

"Netty's Girl" is the sequel to Eddie Holman's 1969 hit "Hey There Lonely Girl". In a cheerful musical video without a budget, Mike D sings in falsetto about a girl riding a catamaran alone on Echo Park Lake in Los Angeles. "Netty" in question - this is a non-existent restaurant in the neighborhood, where the artist met his chosen one. Mike's wife was present at the shooting of the video.

7: Heavy D & The Boyz: Nuttin' But Love (1994)

"Nuttin' But Love" - one of many hip-hop songs about a woman using a man for financial gain, but in this particular case, Hewster's response was:

I have to admit, I really like your work. The title of the song itself has a double meaning: he has no money…in fact, he has nothing to offer but love.

6: The Pharcyde: Passin' Me By (1992)

Playful rap style Pharcyde more reminded East Coast's Native Tongues than anything Ice Cube and Dr. Dre, being only a few miles away. In the song "Passin' Me By" from their debut album "Bizarre Ride II the Pharcyde", MCs Buti Brown, SlimKid3, Imani and Fatlip flirt with women they don't stand a chance against, including school teacher. Poor Booty Brown, he just can't get enough rest.

5: Pete Rock & CL Smooth: Lots Of Lovin' (1992)

When an unknown teenage DJ calling himself Pete Rock added scratch marks to his older cousin brother of Heavy D in 1989, few knew that he would one day be considered one of the greatest hip-hop producers of all time. "Lots Of Loving" - song from Rock Clive's debut album, which CL Smooth helped compose. Composition received acknowledgement critics in 1992. 

4: Slick Rick: Teenage Love (1988)

Slick Rick's story of a torrid romance between two teenagers in love was originally recorded in a dance style in average tempo, but due to the success of labelmate LL Cool J with "I Need Love" last year, "Teenage Love" was reworked by Eric "Vietnam" Sadler and Hank Shockley of The Bomb Squad, who gave it a ballad quality. IN lyrical In terms of the song, it perfectly describes the gradual deterioration of relations due to the fact that one person fell out of love with another.

3: The Roots: Act Too (The Love Of My Life) (featuring Common) (1999)

In the follow-up to Common's I Used To Love HER, The Roots' Black Thought exchange verses with Common, who refers to his feud with Ice Cube and shoots Puff Daddy ("Her dad beat HER, her eyes were all swollen"). The consensus between Common and The Roots seems to be that hip-hop has continued to lose its way during the five-year span between both songs, but he continued to be the love of their lives.

2: Common: I Used To Love HER (1994)

As the listener follows this mini-saga of the hardships of a girl who in love Chicago rapper Common (then known as Common Sense), it becomes apparent that the protagonist actually means hip-hop. Using the acronym HER, which stands for "Hip-Hop in its Essence is Real," Common responded to Los Angeles-based rapper Ice Cube for insinuating that Western coast ruined the genre, which led to the feud. The confrontation culminated in a series of diss tracks from both sides. It's almost as if they were fighting over a woman.

1: LL Cool J: I Need Love

LL Cool J is hard as hell in his tracks, which is why this 1987 ballad stands out Among the rest. This work propelled his second album, Bigger And Deffer, to double platinum when the rapper was only 19 years old. "I Need Love" - is the song that gave impetus to the creation of thousands of rap love songs of varying quality, written by thousand rappers over the next few years. 

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