The 10 best rap videos of the 2000’s are a feast for the eyes. Ever since the dawn of MTV, videos have been integral components in marketing a song. In the 2000s, rap music took this visual art form to new heights, creating some of the best videos ever.
- “The Real Slim Shady” – Eminem The 2000 album “The Marshall Mathers LP” contains this rap song, a verbal onslaught against manufactured pop music. In the video, Eminem plays on this premise, starring alongside exaggerated caricatures of the celebrities he lampoons in the song.
- “Ride Wit Me” – Nelly On his breakthrough 2001 album “Country Grammar,” St. Louis rap artist Nelly shows off his flowing style and outlandish sensibilities. The rap video for “Ride Wit Me” is no exception to this formula. Containing references to numerous car chase films and TV shows, it’s an action enthusiast’s dream.
- “Who We Be” – DMX The rap video for this song, from the 2001 album “The Great Depression,” is as gritty and intense as you’ll ever see. Footage of DMX rapping from a jail cell is interspersed with black-and-white images of poverty and the American civil rights movement. It’s far and away the most haunting entry of the ten best rap videos of the 2000s.
- “99 Problems” – Jay Z Producer Rick Rubin helped to bring out a new side of Jay-Z on “The Black Album” in 2004. This newfound wave of creativity spread to Jay-Z’s visual artistry as well. In this black-and-white rap video, he hits the streets, mouthing the song in front of housing projects and during an unjustified traffic stop.
- “My Band” – D12 Humor plays a large part in this rap video, created for the song from 2004’s “D12 World.” The video parodies band member Eminem’s celebrity status as compared to the relative anonymity of the rest of D12. Later scenes make heavy use of satire, deftly utilizing imagery from other popular videos to drive their tongue-in-cheek point home.
- “In Da Club” – 50 Cent Since this 2003 song from the album “Get Rich Or Die Tryin” is about being in a club, it only makes sense that most of the rap video takes place inside one. Intermingled with the scenes of wine and women are shots of 50 Cent training in a secret facility, showing off his physique and confident swagger.
- “I Love College” – Asher Roth On his 2009 major label debut “Asleep in the Bread Aisle,” Asher Roth shows his playful demeanor and unique sense of creativity. Both are on full display in the rap video for this song. Roth cavorts through a frat house during a party, and the activities taking place are every bit as depraved and awesome as you could ever hope.
- “Hey Ya!” OutKast Taking familiar images from The Beatles’ appearance on “The Ed Sullivan Show” and applying a fresh take is this rap video’s recipe for success. From a song contained on the 2003 double album “Speakerboxx / The Love Below,” this rap video is one of the 2000s most creative. It features singer Andre 3000 performing as different characters in a fictional band, using technology and angles to create the illusion of multiple people.
- “One Mic” – Nas From a song featured on the 2002 album “Stillmatic,” this rap video is raw and unapologetic. Rapping from a darkened room, Nas combines street-level scenes of city life with a realistic take on poverty, violence and economic suffocation.
- “Stan” – Eminem In his third appearance on the list of the ten best rap videos of the 2000s, Eminem takes a dark turn. From the song featured on 2000s “The Marshall Mathers LP,” this rap video is a lesson in intensity. It follows the declining mental state of an obsessed fan, culminating in a murder-suicide at the video’s climax.
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