What follows is a list of ten rap songs that will either tug at your heartstrings or cause you to reminisce this Valentine's Day.
"Bonita Applebum" finds ATCQ romanticizing a calm, thumping drumbeat. With his nasal flow and soothing delivery, Q-Tip spills poetic excerpts, masterfully pausing between lines for effect.
Just when you thought Hov was all about money, cash, and girls (he actually is), he pulls out his storytelling hat. Though Jay's defiant persona is still alive here (instead of shedding the tears himself, he makes the song cry), he's sentimental enough to concede being called "ugly" by the gold-digging female in his story.
This jazzyfied hip-hop crew was the first to rhyme about daisies and dames and make it sound, oh so sweet. De La's candy-coated musings over lush soulful samples (notably from Otis Redding's "(Sittin' on) the Dock of the Bay") made it trendy to declare sweet affection for that "special person" without losing credibility.
Ditching the conventional 32-bar structure for a long-running verse, Ghost drops genuinely emotional lyrics about crashing in a congested apartment with his mom and plucking roaches out of cereal boxes. No hard-hitting drums, no anti-swine-eating vignettes. Just Mary J. Blige's tear-jerk crooning and GFK's emotion-laden words.
Method Man hesitated at first. But when his record label offered up a Benz and an opportunity to craft one of the greatest hip-hop and R&B collaborations of all time, he couldn't resist. Every rap/r&b collabo released in the 2000s owes a royalty check to Meth and Mary.