Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter went from the guy that everyone slept on to the guy that every rap artist wants to be. Jay-Z has been in the rap game since the 80s and after the passing of The Notorious BIG has become the undisputed King of New York.
He currently has the baddest chick in the game Beyonce wearing his wedding ring. If that is not enough he is one of few rappers to go on the Oprah Winfrey show. Jay-Z has given us several hit albums but if you ask me his best work has come from his earlier projects. However, here is a list of Jay-Z’s top ten songs spanning his career.
Big Pimpin- was for sure the jam and the video made it even better or did Dame Dash make the video better. UGK Bun B and Pimp C added that dirty south flow, making it a hit on more than just the east coast.
Ain’t No Nigga- How could we forget this hit from the Nutty Professor movie soundtrack. I guess you can say this is what help cross Jay-Z over into the mainstream world of hip hop. We can’t forget Foxy Brown, 16 at the time who had a verse we thought would never end.
Can’t Knock The Hustle ft. Mary J Blige- I know we all love this one and we all love when Jay-Z has a concert and Mary comes out with her classic two step.
Brooklyn’s Finest (feat. The Notorious B.I.G.)- One of my favorite hip hop songs of all time. I think there was no question who’d be the next in line after Biggie past away. This record is beyond dope.
New York State of Mind (feat. Alicia Keys) Even people not from New York are acting as if song is their anthem. And anyone with enough swagger to bump Frank Sinatra off as the theme song of choice for sports celebrations has a winner on their hands.
Hard Knock Life- The song that took Jay-Z to superstar status and his highest selling album. Who would think that a sample of Annie would become so infectious?
Where I’m From- was the hood anthem for sure when it released and seemed to be the Marcy projects anthem. They had no problem reciting these lyrics to you if you did not respect their gangster.
99 Problems- The Rick Ruben produced track mixed with that rock and roll feel gave this the perfect blend. The music video was also one Jay-Z’s best as well.
Do It Again (Put Ya Hands Up) (feat. Beanie Sigel & Amil) Now this was like the party jam for New York City. Everybody had three cuts in their eyebrows trying to wild out.
Money Cash Hoes- I don’t know if the original was the business or the remix with Beanie Sigel and Memphis Bleek. I just remember when this track came on my crew was live at all the parties.