34. Dr. Dre "Still D.R.E." (1999)
Producer: Dr. Dre, Mel-Man, Scott Storch
Label: Aftermath, Interscope
It’s difficult to choose a single track from Dr. Dre’s 2001. How do you pick between “Xxplosive”’s unforgettable guitar lick, “The Next Episode”’s clubbing grandeur, or “Fuck You”’s tense restraint? But “Still D.R.E.” is the standout for a reason. It isn’t just because of the Jay-Z-written Dre comeback verse, Mel-Man’s co-production or the piano premiere of a young, post-Roots Scott Storch. The four-times-platinum single truly transcends because with a tight, minimal beat—just a few grace notes, some strings and the hardest drums in rap—Dre was able to redefine the sound of an entire city for the second time. “Still D.R.E.” is a perfect example of what Dre does well, particularly his ear for detail, like the echoing arpeggios during the chorus that grant the song its sunset mystique.
Related: The 100 Best L.A. Rap Songs