This post was all the rave Valentine’s 2011 on 66Raw.com. I hope you guys enjoy it as well.
On the surface, rap music and love songs seem to be polar opposites. Seriously, I think T-Pain was the ONLY one who thought it would be a good idea to “make love to a rap song”…especially those he named in “Rap Song.” However, with some help from my TweetFam and many hours of pondering, I have come up with a list of the top 10 hip hop love songs.
#10—“21 Questions” by 50 Cent featuring Nate Dogg
True love is about being there in the good times and the bad ones. 50 wanted to make sure his girl was down for it all. Can your love pass the test?
#9—“Put It On Me” by Ja Rule featuring Vita and Lil Mo
After all the hell Ja Rule caught for singing love songs, it would be disrespectful to have a list of hip hop love songs without featuring him. In the early 2000s, Ja reigned as the ghetto love song king with help from Vita, Lil Mo, Ashanti, J. Lo and Charli Baltimore. I know it’s hard to tell right now, Ja, but hip hop thanks you.
#8–“Me and My Bitch” by Notorious BIG
Raw. Honest. Insecure. Dysfunctional. All words that can be used to describe thug love. On this track from his first album, Ready to Die, Biggie uses his artistic gift of storytelling to illustrate just how gully love in the hood can get. As childish, immature, and dysfunctional as this couple may sound at times, you definitely can’t doubt their love for each other.
#7–“International Players Anthem” by UGK featuring Outkast
Marriage and hip hop are oxymoronic. That’s why it’s a really big deal when a player chooses and actually settles down. This video proved that! It takes a focused man who’s truly in love to ignore his boys and still wife up the woman of his dreams.
#6–Love of My Life by Erykah Badu featuring Common
In any love story, you have growing pains. You grow, you change, and every now and then you breakup before permanently reuniting with the love of your life. This love story, courtesy of Ms. Badu and Common, teaches us to enjoy the journey AND the destination.
#5—“Beautiful Skin” by Goodie Mob
Hip hop has the reputation of being misogynistic and secretly hating black women, so it’s refreshing to hear Goodie Mob explore the holistic beauty of a black woman. It’s also refreshing to hear hip hop artists point out a hard to swallow truth: true love starts with you loving you, or as Cee-Lo puts it, “You’ve gotta respect yourself before I can.”
#4—“Prototype” by Outkast
Love, no matter how deep it is, isn’t guaranteed. Andre 3000 reminds us of this in “Prototype.” However, not making it to happily ever after doesn’t belittle the love shared. You ultimately become the prototype.
#3—“Come Close” by Common featuring Mary J. Blige
Every now and then hip hop gets really grown and mature. That’s exactly what Common and Mary J. do on this track from Common’s fifth studio album, Electric Circus. There are no games here. Yes, hurt, pain, and jealous may make appearances in relationships, but “I’m going to do the best I can do, cause I’m the best when I’m with you.” I think I just fell in love with Common. 🙂
#2—“All I Need” (remix) by Method Man featuring Mary J. Blige
Judge me all you want, but this song WILL be played at my wedding!!! This is the epitome of a hip hop love song: hard beat, grimey flow and Mary J. on the hook. It’s the perfect hood love story featuring hustling, self-sacrifice, a ride or die chick and “thousands of kids.” Bonnie and Clyde have NOTHING on a hip hop love duo, and this 1995 classic proved it.
#1— “I Need Love” by LL Cool J
This song is love in its purest form. Can’t you just imagine a teenage boy, staring at his bedroom wall, daydreaming about his future love? Ahhhh, if only we weren’t too old, jaded and damaged to dream of a love this pure and innocent. *sigh*