XXL Top 250 songs of the 90's

So XXL magazine released a special edition where they ranked the top 250 songs of the generation that has defined my view of hip-hop and rap music. The first thing about these lists is that they always seem to be politically motivated to some extent. It's way too much information to digest and re-rank every pick and ranking but there are some glaring issues that I have with this list.

The number one song is "Nothing But a G Thang" and I don't have too much of an issue with that I guess. I mean it has to be in the discussion, it had both a commercial appeal, introduced the world to the West Coast feel, and was still hard as shit. But number 2 being the "Benjamins Remix". nope, sorry, I understand it was the first hot shit from Bad Boy after the death of Biggie but someone tell me what you remember before the beat switch and Big's verse? Not much because all of those verses were forgettable and while Kim stood out making sounds, you're not gonna say she was spitting are you?

Now is it a top 25 song? Very very likely but number two is way too high. Now the biggest issue I have is with the Tupac songs and the order in which they are presented. In the top 10 you have "California Love" which rocked, and number 11 was "How Do You Want it", 21 is "Dear Momma" and "Keep Ya Head up" is number 43. How does that shit even happen? You're telling me that so called hip-hop editors and reporters thought that "How do you Want it" was better than "Brenda's Got a Baby", "Keep Ya Head Up", "Dear Momma" and "I get around". if only you could see my face when I looked at this.

I still want to cry when I hear this song and watch the video. They played this on the radio, let me know when the last time you heard some actual content on the radio was.

Then I have a big problem with the Luniz and "I Got 5 on It" being number 19 ahead of Will Smith's "Summertime" as well as Black Sheep's "the Choice is Yours" being ranked number 5. Summertime is the ultimate song. The amount of royalties that the former Fresh Prince gets every year just based upon his May spins could pay off my kid's college educations. There are some things that are just iconic, on my old street it wasn't summer until Mr. June lit up his grill and summertime was on the radio. It doesn't matter where you live at, it is not official until you hear this song and it was only considered number 20? Please...in fact...Drums Please...

My final gripe with the list is the fact that MC Hammer didn't make the list until number 115 with "U Can't Touch This". Face it, Hammer was one of the icons of both success and failure that lasts from that era. He was also the first hip-hop artist to get that big, have that many endorsements, and just seem commercial. This song was the one that jumped him off and everyone knew it. Who wasn't trying to do the Chinese typewriter at several points in their life? "Two Legit Too Quit" couldn't crack the top 100? that is a travesty of justice to be placed behind "Doggy Dogg World" and like half of the 36 Chambers album.

All I can say is that people don't seem to be pragmatic when it comes to making these lists. Songs like "Hard Knock Life" make the top 10 and joints that had massive hype behind them but which really aren't that great, like anything from Pac's Death Row days got the nod just off of marketing alone it seems.


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