Questlove's Top 50 Hip-Hop Songs of All Time

What makes a great hip-hop song? Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson chooses his favorites.

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Black Sheep,
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28. Black Sheep, "The Choice Is Yours (Revisited)" (1991)

In hindsight, I'm sure that Black Sheep really thought they were the N.W.A. of the alt-hip-hop collective Native Tongues. To me, they were more animated and esoteric than their alt-hop brethren – who, ironically, were more center to the right than they actually thought they were. I'mma say straight up, this is the best, most effective remix/facelift hip-hop has ever seen. I mean, the original was a mother as-is. The amount of innovation created in 1991 was staggering. Like, every other song was changing lives. And every single was made trying to one-up what came before it. Because of the jazz floodgates that were opened with Tribe's Low End Theory album, the resulting effect was that an upright bass gave you more "umph!" than a TR-808 drum machine could. So everyone was going jazzy: Onyx, Digable Planets, Pharcyde, Showbiz & AG . . . everyone. But there can only be one winner, and that winner lay somewhere between the opening bass drop of this single and Dres' last verse. Even to this day, everyone bends to the floor recreating its infectious video, only to explode jumping for joy like it was hip-hop's "Smells Like Teen Spirit." Men, women and dancing hamsters in Kias cannot be wrong.

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