In 2003, popular music was dominated by songs that told stories. From the radio-friendly pop of Beyoncé to the alt-rock anthems of Evanescence, artists delivered tunes that were both emotionally powerful and musically complex. Here are twenty of the greatest songs from 2003.
- 1. “In da Club” by 50 Cent
- 2. “In Those Jeans” by Ginuwine
- 3. “Crazy In Love” by Beyoncé featuring Jay-Z
- 4. “Stacy’s Mom” by Fountains of Wayne
- 5. “Right Thurr” by Chingy
- 6. “Intuition” by Jewel
- 7. “Bring Me to Life” by Evanescence featuring Paul McCoy
- 8. “Rock Wit U (Awww Baby)” by Ashanti
- 9. “Baby Boy” by Beyoncé featuring Sean Paul
- 10. “So Gone” by Monica
- 11. “Shake Ya Tailfeather” by Nelly, P. Diddy & Murphy Lee
- 12. “The Way You Move” by OutKast
- 13. “Numb” by Linkin Park
- 14. “Someday” by Nickelback
- 15. “Magic Stick” by Lil’ Kim featuring 50 Cent
- 16. “You Don’t Know My Name” by Alicia Keys
- 17. “Where Is the Love?” by Black Eyed Peas
- 18. “P.I.M.P.” by 50 Cent
- 19. “21 Questions” by 50 Cent
- 20. “Unwell” by Matchbox Twenty
- Final Thoughts
1. “In da Club” by 50 Cent
A birthday party banger, “In da Club” put 50 Cent on the map as a rapper to be reckoned with. The track’s success was thanks in part to its simple, effective hook and production by Dr. Dre. It’s a song that’s guaranteed to get any party started.
2. “In Those Jeans” by Ginuwine
Ginuwine’s “In Those Jeans” is a sensual slow jam that finds the singer admiring a love interest’s curvaceous figure. The song’s sparse, stripped-down production highlights Ginuwine’s silky smooth vocals. This now has over 13 million views on Youtube.
3. “Crazy In Love” by Beyoncé featuring Jay-Z
A song that just begs to be danced to, “Crazy In Love” put Beyoncé on the map as a solo artist. It’s a perfect example of early 2000s R&B, with its thumping bassline and catchy hooks.
The track also features a guest verse from Jay-Z, who adds an extra layer of star power. It has been covered and made into many remixes over the years, one can be heard in the film Fifty Shades of Grey.
4. “Stacy’s Mom” by Fountains of Wayne
“Stacy’s Mom” is a power pop gem from Fountains of Wayne. The song tells the story of a high school boy who is lusting after his friend’s mother. The track is notable for its catchy hooks and tongue-in-cheek lyrics. It has been used in a number of films and TV shows over the years.
5. “Right Thurr” by Chingy
Next on the list is Chingy’s “Right Thurr.” The rapper’s breakout hit peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 2003 and helped put him on the map as one of the most promising new artists of the early 2000s.
The song’s catchy beat and Chingy’s infectious flow made it a club staple and cemented its place as one of the defining songs of the early 2000s.
6. “Intuition” by Jewel
Reaching the No. 20 spot on the Billboard Hot 100, Jewel’s “Intuition” was one of the biggest hits of her career.
The song’s catchy hook and Jewel’s emotive vocals made it a radio favorite and helped the singer-songwriter crossover into the mainstream. You can still stream it on all music platforms out there.
7. “Bring Me to Life” by Evanescence featuring Paul McCoy
Who could possibly forget Evanescence’s “Bring Me to Life?” The song, which features guest vocals from Paul McCoy of 12 Stones, was a massive hit, peaking at No. 5 on the Billboard Hot 100.
The song’s dark and haunting sound made it a favorite among goth and metal fans, and its commercial success helped propel Evanescence to stardom.
8. “Rock Wit U (Awww Baby)” by Ashanti
“Rock Wit U (Awww Baby)” was one of the biggest hits from Ashanti’s second album. With over 55 million views on Youtube, this song is still a favorite among R&B and pop fans. Ashanti’s sultry voice and catchy lyrics make “Rock Wit U (Awww Baby)” a timeless classic.
9. “Baby Boy” by Beyoncé featuring Sean Paul
A song that will have you shaking your hips, “Baby Boy” was one of the biggest hits of 2003. Beyoncé’s sultry voice is paired with Sean Paul’s Jamaican accent to create a sexy and catchy tune. With over 160 million views on Youtube, this song is still a favorite among fans of both artists.
10. “So Gone” by Monica
Monica’s “So Gone” was one of the biggest hits of her career. Her powerful voice and relatable lyrics make this track a timeless classic. You can find it on her After the Storm album which can be found on all music platforms out there.
11. “Shake Ya Tailfeather” by Nelly, P. Diddy & Murphy Lee
“Shake Ya Tailfeather” is a fun and catchy song that will have you up on your feet dancing in no time. This song was a massive hit in 2003, spending weeks at the top of the Billboard charts.
Nelly, P. Diddy, and Murphy Lee’s collaboration is one that will go down in history. This track helped them win a Grammy Award for Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group.
12. “The Way You Move” by OutKast
Another track that will have you grooving, “The Way You Move” is a pure party song. It’s the perfect track to get things started, and it never fails to get people on their feet. Outkast always knows how to bring the heat, and this song is no exception.
13. “Numb” by Linkin Park
For the rock fans out there, “Numb” is a classic. It’s one of those songs that just gets you, and it’s impossible to resist headbanging along. Linkin Park always brings the goods, and this song is hard to top. You can find this award-winning track in their Meteora album.
14. “Someday” by Nickelback
Nickelback is a band that’s notorious for their catchy hooks, and “Someday” is no exception. This song will have you singing along in no time, and it’s the perfect track for a road trip. You can find it on their The Long Road album.
15. “Magic Stick” by Lil’ Kim featuring 50 Cent
If you’re up for a little bit of controversy, “Magic Stick” is the song for you. It’s a sultry track that’s not afraid to push the envelope, and it’ll definitely get you thinking.
Lil’ Kim always knows how to make a statement, and this song is no different. This now has over 10 million views on Youtube so it’s sure to get stuck in your head.
16. “You Don’t Know My Name” by Alicia Keys
Here’s a track for the R&B lovers out there. “You Don’t Know My Name” is a smooth song that’s perfect for a romantic night in. Alicia Keys’ knack for creating beautiful tunes is once again on display with this track. You can find it on her The Diary of Alicia Keys album.
17. “Where Is the Love?” by Black Eyed Peas
A song about social injustice, “Where Is the Love?” was Black Eyed Peas’ response to the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The track is a powerful call for peace and love and features some impressive rap verses from will.i.am and Justin Timberlake. You can find it on their Elephunk album.
18. “P.I.M.P.” by 50 Cent
From the album Get Rich or Die Tryin’, “P.I.M.P.” is one of 50 Cent’s most well-known tracks. The song is an ode to the rapper’s luxurious lifestyle and boasts a hook that is impossible to get out of your head. You can’t help but sing along to this song when you hear it.
19. “21 Questions” by 50 Cent
50 Cent is back on our list with another track from Get Rich or Die Tryin’. “21 Questions” is a slower song that finds the rapper reflecting on a past relationship. The track features some soulful singing from Nate Dogg and is one of 50 Cent’s most popular songs.
20. “Unwell” by Matchbox Twenty
Finishing off our list is “Unwell” from Matchbox Twenty’s More Than You Think You Are album. The track is a testament to lead singer Rob Thomas’ songwriting talent and shows off the band’s softer side. It’s a heartfelt tune that can be enjoyed by both young and old alike.
There you have it, our list of the 20 greatest songs from 2003. These tracks represent some of the best music that was released that year.
From R&B to pop to rap, there is something for everyone on this list. So dust off your old CD’s and take a trip down memory lane with these classic tracks.