28. The Notorious B.I.G. f/ Puff Daddy, Ma$e & Kelly Price "Mo Money Mo Problems" (1997)
Producer: Steven "Stevie J" Jordan, Sean "Puffy" Combs Album: Life After Death Label: Bad Boy
1997 was the year the jiggy sound exploded. Popularized by Puff and his Hitmen production squad, the sound drew heavily from hit records of the '70s and '80s. dressed them up with hip-hop drums (and those infamous jiggy bells), and flipped them into full-fledged rap tunes.
The era didn't come without its fair share of criticism, though. As the jiggy poster boy, Puff Daddy caught much flack for his blatant jacking of already proven hits. Production snobs cried foul when Diddy simply reused known loops. There was no skill in this – or so they thought.
No song exemplifies the jiggy era better than “Mo Money, Mo Problems.” And despite sniping by hip-hop purists, the record never failed to bring people to their feet and get club patrons spilling their drinks all over the dance floor.
“Mo Money” was also noteworthy for showing the transition from Puff the exec to Puff the rapper as well as serving to introduce Bad Boy's new kid on the block, Mason Betha, whose golden-boy charm quickly won over fans.
Big's closing verse was the icing on the cake as B-I-G/P-O/P-P-A effortlessly flexed over the track, kicking some of the most focused bars of his career. Fifteen years later, the man with no info for the DEA, still has people throwing their Rollies in the sky.