Review: Top Ten Turning Fifteen

Jacob Jardel
Voices Editor
@JJardel_Writing

The turn of the millennium brought with it many memorable moments in entertainment.

In film, many major movie series made their debuts, including “Harry Potter” and “The Fast and the Furious.” On television, favorites like “Scrubs” and “Smallville” launched their pilot seasons.

However, some of the most lasting remnants of the early 21st century are the songs that came out.

What follows is a list of ten of the best songs from the year 2001. To qualify, tracks must have had an initial release within the calendar year, regardless of chart performance.

These tracks will appear in no particular order, though each entry is the best song of an arbitrary category. Also, remember that this list is highly subjective.

Here are ten of the best songs turning fifteen this year.

“Wherever You Will Go” – The Calling
Starting off the list is the best one-hit wonder from the year 2001. The Los Angeles outfit hit number five on the Billboard Hot 100 charts with this song, their debut single. However, none of their other follow-ups had much success.

“Whenever, Wherever” – Shakira
Next up is arguably the best debut single from an artist in this year. Catchy and eclectic, this track brought the Colombian songstress into the public eye. With a catchy hook and a hypnotic voice, Shakira launched a career with one of her first mainstream U.S. hits.

“Pop” – NSYNC
Boy bands and teen pop dominated the landscape of the music scene at the turn of the century, and this hit off the Justin Timberlake-led quintet was one of its quintessential tracks. Coming off the band’s third album “Celebrity,” everything about this track literally and figuratively screamed “pop music.”

“Ride Wit Me” – Nelly
Many Nelly songs definite earworms, but some stick in people’s heads without real knowledge of words outside of the chorus or first line. Such is true with this third single from the St. Louis rapper’s debut studio album. A catchy hook and chill vibes helped propel this song to the top three of the Billboard Hot 100.

“How You Remind Me” – Nickelback
In arguably the most arbitrary category of this list, we have the debut track from the Canadian outfit representing the best song from a heavily disliked band.

While many of their songs rely heavily on cliché and the deep rasp of lead singer Chad Kroeger, this track was one of their best.

“Survivor” – Destiny’s Child
While Beyoncé virtually runs the R&B world now, Queen Bey started her domination as part of Destiny’s Child, who put out smash after smash in 2001. Their best, though, was this empowering song with fantastic arrangement vocally and musically.

“Lady Marmalade” – Christina Aguilera, Pink, Lil’ Kim and Mya
The R&B mega collaboration was one of the most successful songs in the year. Released for the “Moulin Rouge” soundtrack, the song shot to the top of the charts with sultry vocals that brought a new life to the Labelle smash hit.

“Because I Got High” – Afroman
This lone hit from the California rapper made its rounds as an early viral success before making sparse radio play – despite the fact that the most memorable lyrics in the song are the titular ones. No matter, the slow drawl of the song makes for a fun track, regardless of drug intake.

“You Rock My World” – Michael Jackson
The biggest hit of the King of Pop’s final studio album, “You Rock My World” blended modern R&B sounds with many of the elements of pop and soul that made Jackson a household name in the 1980s. That alone gives the song an edge over other songs from artists whose best work came in 20 years prior.

“In the End” – Linkin Park
The final category singles out the best song from the nu metal band’s smash debut album “Hybrid Theory.” In the true spirit of the title, “In the End” seamlessly mixed Mike Shinoda’s raps with Chester Bennington’s gritty vocals on top of a memorable piano riff.

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