37 Best Songs From 2002

The early 2000s were a time of change for the music industry, with digital streaming becoming more common and the rising popularity of pop, hip-hop, and R&B.

Whether it’s Eminem’s album The Eminem Show, Alicia Keys winning a Grammy Award, or the premiere of American Idol, 2002 had some memorable music related moments moments.

Let’s take a walk down memory lane with some top songs from 2002.

“Without Me” by Eminem

Song Year: 2002

Marshall Mathers cemented his status as a rap legend with his fourth studio album, The Eminem Show, released in 2002.

“Without Me” takes a dig at public figures like Dick Cheney, who criticized Eminem previously. It also raps about the artist’s rise to success and his undeniable influence on the music industry in the early 2000s.

“Complicated” by Avril Lavigne

Song Year: 2002

This energetic pop rock ballad turned Avril Lavigne into a superstar, only two years after she signed her first record deal.

The lyrics talk about hiding one’s true feelings and remain relatable to this day, making “Complicated” one of the most memorable songs of 2002 and possibly one of the best pop songs of all time.

“Foolish” by Ashanti

Song Year: 2002

“Foolish” was Ashanti’s debut single, a moving soul and R&B track about a painful breakup that remains one of the best songs of 2002. The song stayed at the top of the Billboard charts for ten consecutive weeks and the music video earned three nominations at the 2002 MTV Video Music Awards. Watch it to see how many celebrities you can spot!

“Luv U Better” by LL Cool J

Song Year: 2002

This catchy single climbed to the top of the R&B and hip-hop charts towards the end of the summer and proved that LL Cool J, one of the best rappers of the 90s, was still relevant. The touching love song is the result of a collaboration between songwriter Case Woodard and the Neptunes, a production duo that includes Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo.

“Like I Love You” by Justin Timberlake

Song Year: 2002

“Like I Love You” was Justin Timberlake’s debut solo single after ‘N SYNC went on a permanent hiatus. This commercial success helped launch Justin Timberlake’s solo career.

“The Game of Love” by Santana (feat. Michelle Branch)

Song Year: 2002

“The Game of Love” was an international success for Santana. Michelle Branch’s vocals infuse the song with a sense of longing that complements Santana’s legendary guitar-playing skills.

Fun fact: Tina Turner was the original female performer for this song.

“Freak Like Me” by The Sugababes

Song Year: 2002

With its fun lyrics and catchy beat, “Freak Like Me” remains one of the quintessential dance songs of the early 2000s. This 2002 song is actually a cover of an Adina Howard song released in 1995.

“Clocks” by Coldplay

Song Year: 2002

This alt rock track reached Billboard’s top ten modern rock charts in 2002. The catchy piano melody turned the song into a popular tune for samples.

“Stole” by Kelly Rowland

Song Year: 2002

“Stole” still feels relevant today with its lyrics that discuss difficult topics like teenage pregnancy and gun violence. The song was a worldwide success and played a significant part in launching Kelly Rowland’s post-Destiny’s Child career.

“Work It” by Missy Elliott

Song Year: 2002

With its raunchy lyrics, animal noises, and reversed vocals, Work It remains a unique artistic creation that celebrates female sexuality. The song quickly rose to the top of the charts but proved to be less popular than Eminem’s “Lose Yourself.”

“Hot in Herre” by Nelly

Song Year: 2002

“Hot in Herre” remains one of the most memorable party songs of the early 2000s. This single won a Grammy Award and set one of the first online streaming records on AOL Music.

“A Thousand Miles” by Vanessa Carlton

Song Year: 2002

We can’t talk about good music from 2002 without mentioning “A Thousand Miles.” The pop song features one of the most recognizable piano hooks.

Fun fact, this was one of the most requested songs from U.S. troops stationed abroad in 2002.

“Gangsta Lovin’” by Eve (feat. Alicia Keys)

Song Year: 2002

“Gangsta Lovin’” was Eve’s second chart-topping hit for 2002 following her collaboration with Missy Elliott on “4 My People.” Featuring Alicia Keys, this July release remains one of the most recognizable songs of the summer of 2002

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