The Aughts Hot or Not

Photo: All Music

New recurring blog alert!

For those of us in our late 20’s to mid 30’s, the aughts (2000-2010) was an incredible time for entertainment. Britney was doing weird stuff with snakes at the VMAs (#FreeBritney), we were all squeezing enormous iPods into our baggy jeans, and Chapelle Show was the best thing on television. It was truly a time to remember, and unbelievably over a decade ago.

As terrible as some of it was, I am still in love with the music from the aughts. I’ll throw any 2000’s playlist on Spotify and be entertained for hours. So, what I wanted to do with this new recurring blog is review some of the bangers that came out of this decade. There were some post-2010 songs that also slapped, so I’m giving myself some room for decade hopping. However, we’re here to focus on the incredible time in music that was 2000-2010.

I was thinking of what would be the quintessential, early aughts song that would be generally loved and remembered. After throwing a few ideas around, there was really only one choice…

Photo: Complex

Go! Go! Go! Go! Go! Go! Go shaaaaawty, it’s ya birthday. How many friends have you drunkenly yelled this to on their birthday since this all-time banger dropped in in 2003? This song was an absolute monster introduction for 50 Cent, and the guy has been relevant since then. I remember this CD being of the first “parental advisory” CDs I was allowed to have, and wow what a choice. I don’t think I knew what “the X” 50 was referring to was at the time, turns out I wasn’t into takin’ drugs.

Music Video

The intro to the music video is just dripping with 2003-ness. The neon green font setting the scene at the “Shady/Aftermath Artist Development Center,” generally terrible CGI, and of course Eminem & Dr. Dre playing the doctor role and creating the next great rapper. It is *chef’s kiss* perfect. That leads us to 50 dropping into the frame upside down (apparently he can stand on the ceiling?). From there, we’re off to the races to one of the most successful music careers we’ve ever seen.

Naturally, we’re treated to plenty of scenes in the club (with a Xzibit cameo! Pimp My Ride, also suuuuper 2000’s), bottles pouring, and plenty of shots of G-Unit and D12 grinding with the other fine patrons in the club. We have a break closer to the end of the video that 50 is taking a polygraph test? Not exactly sure what was going on there, but it was 2003 and there were no rules.

Best Lyric

“When my junk get to pumpin’ in the club it’s on
I wink my eye at ya chick, if she smiles she gone.”

A classic “Mr. Steal Your Girl” line. The top line really put my 15 year old brain in a pretzel: “I would assume 50’s proud of his music, why is he calling it junk? Further, if he believes his music is junk, why would it provide him the confidence to wink at another man’s chick in hopes of stealing her away?”

Worst Lyric

“I’m feeling’ focused man, my money on my mind
I got a mill out the deal, and I’m still on the grind.”

Listen, 50…you’re a man who knows about money, clearly. Of course you’re still on the grind after making $1 million dollars! That’s a good chunk of change, but let’s be honest with ourselves. Even with inflation, a mill isn’t getting you very far these days. Our guy 50 did indeed stay on the grind, as his current net worth is estimated at $30 million.

Rating

The rap game forever changed with “In Da Club.” 50 went ahead and dropped this my freshman year of high school, and I ran that CD into the ground until graduation day. He has had plenty of other hits since then, but I’m not sure anything reached the level of his debut hit.

I’m going to try and rate each song on a scale of 1-10. No one’s ever thought of a rating system before; I know, pretty ingenious. The only appropriate way to rate any song from the early aughts, Mr. TRL himself…

Rating: 8 Carson Daly’s

Photo: USA Today

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