One of my favorite things about music is when two seemingly different artists combine to make one killer song. And I’m not talking Eminem and Rihanna here. I’m talking about the crazy, the wacky, the original. Without further ado, I present to you my list of the best and worst music collaborations (Click the songs for the hyperlinks).
Coldplay ft. Rihanna, Princess of China: Let’s start it off with something basic here. When I first heard that Coldplay had a song on Mylo Xyloto with Rihanna, I thought it was going be terrible. I thought they had sold out. How dare I underestimate Coldplay like that! This song actually turned out to be one of my favorites on the album. Rihanna brings just the right amount of flare and her harmonization with Chris Martin is magical. Overall, the song has that tense boyfriend/girlfriend dichotomy going, and I dig it. Job well done.
Kanye West & John Mayer, Bittersweet or Bittersweet Poetry (explicit): Talk about an unlikely combo. Honestly, I have no idea why these two decided to make a song together, but I’m glad they did. Mayer only really jumps in during the chorus, so this track is mostly Kanye doing his thing. Songs like these really give me hope for cross-genre collaborations.
Black Eyed Peas ft. James Brown, They Don’t Want Music: Ladies and gentlemen, it’s time to get in your time machines. We’re throwing it back to 2005 when the BEP were The Truth. Before the days of Boom Boom Pow and Imma Be. Back then, the BEP were the perfect blend of hip hop, funk, soul, and a bunch of other unique influences. They Don’t Want Music embodies this perfectly. Basically, the BEP are jamming with James Brown for 7 minutes. The beat is actually based off the James Brown song Mind Power. It’s got horn solos, a funky groove, and did I mention it has horn solos? What else do you need?
Billy Joe & Norah Jones, Foreverly: To conclude the Best category, we turn to an album composed by Billy Joe Armstrong, the lead singer of Green Day, and solo star Norah Jones. Once again, a pretty interesting combination. What makes it even more awesome is that they cover an entire album by the Everly Brothers, called Songs Our Daddy Taught Us. If you’re looking for an upgraded version of some 1950’s music, this album is for you. It’s got that nostalgic old time sound, but infused with some extra layering as not to bore you to death. The whole album is definitely worth a listen.
Weezer ft. Lil Wayne, Can’t Stop Partying: Unfortunately, we must now turn to the worst of the worst. And really, there’s no better way to start it off than with this song by Weezer and Lil Wayne. Considering Weezer is one of the greatest rock/alternative bands of the 90’s and 2000’s, I was greatly disappointed when I first heard this song. However, I now think this song is hilarious. Terrible? Yes. But funny nonetheless. If you follow Weezer, you realize that they’re one of those bands that does whatever they want. That’s part of what makes them awesome. I actually believe they made this song just so they could include the line “it’s Weezer and it’s Weezy”. So while this song is absolutely an embarrassment to rock and roll, let’s take it with a grain of salt.
Nelly ft. Tim McGraw, Over and Over: What’s with Nelly and collaborations with country artists? First it was Tim McGraw, now it’s Florida Georgia Line. Get your act together, Nelly. The sad thing is, this could actually be a good song. Really, Tim McGraw adds nothing to it. He doesn’t even need to be in it. He has like 5 lines. But every time he sings one of those lines, I do a double take. He just doesn’t fit with the song at all. Alright, my rant is over. Moving on.
Slash ft. Fergie, Sweet Child Of Mine: Oh, Fergie. You were doing so well, living it up in the Best category with the Black Eyed Peas. Why’d you have to go and ruin one of the most iconic songs of all time? Shame on you. Fergie is doing all sorts of weird stuff with her voice in this song, particularly in the “where do we go” section. She can definitely sing, but she’s just trying too hard. Also, we do need to put some of the blame of Slash here. After all, he was the one who brought Fergie in on the whole thing. They even do another song together, Beautiful Dangerous. The potential is there for Fergie to be a badass rock and roll singer, but for now, she has gone and ruined a great song.
There you have it, my thoughts on some of the best and worst music collaborations. Feel free to share your favorites- and least favorites- in the comment section below.