Our Favorite Songs From 2017

Another year has come and gone, and 2017 was no joke. Amongst all the bullshit (Looking at you, Donny) hip-hop managed to have one of its most successful years EVER! This is not hyperbole, either. Hip-hop is officially America’s most popular genre of music as of last year. So it was a great year. In honor of that, a few of our writers chose some of their favorite songs to commemorate the jams of 2017:

Lil Uzi Vert – The Way Life Goes Feat. Oh Wonder

Uzi sampling Oh Wonder is one of the sickest and most unique moves that’s been made in rap in a long time. First off, Oh Wonder is amazing. Secondly, Uzi actually did it justice and put a great spin on the original. I fell in love with the melancholy mood Uzi created. “It’s a banger” as my 15 year old sister would say. – Isaac Biehl

Spacejam Bo – She Wanna Feat. Money Man

Spacejam Bo is my favorite find of last year. “She Wanna” is one of the hottest songs that dropped in 2017, and will find a way to stay in your head long after it’s over. –Quentin Yarolem

Cousin Stizz – Living Like Khaled

This is undoubtedly my song of the year. Cousin Stizz has consistently been producing bangers, and the production on this song keeps me coming back time and time again. I slap this shit on my subs in my ’99 Eddie Bauer Expedition and am bulletproof. Nothing else needs to be said. – CJ Maruyama

Future – Incredible

For me Future has always been his most evocative when he’s been tortured (See “Codeine Crazy,” or “Thought it was a Drought”). And while his catalog is littered with the cliched showmanship of the various hedonistic aspects of his life, Future has never sounded happy. HNDRXX, and specifically the song “Incredible,” signaled a pivot: he presents himself as an R&B heartthrob finally recovering from a breakup. The tropical vibes bring you to the beach with a bad bitch, and even if it doesn’t sound like lust is sustainable, it sounds like Future’s perfect moment. – Michael Charlebois

Z Money – Two 16’s Feat. Valee

Now we can talk some shit. This song is insane. The beat that ChaseTheMoney provides on “Two 16’s” absolutely slaps. Z-Money and Valee don’t disappoint, trading 16’s each. No hooks, just bars. – Quentin Yarolem

Aminé – Beach Boy

Good For You was one of my favorite albums of 2017 and Aminé is now one of hip-hop’s funnest players. “Beach Boy” is high octane and makes me feel alive. New Years resolution? Eat more bananas. – Isaac Biehl

Frank Ocean – Biking

Frank Ocean went from complete hibernation to regular output in 2017, which was obviously a welcome change. Of these three singles (“Lens,” “Chanel,” and “Biking”) a song about riding your bike is the happiest Frank has sounded in maybe his whole career. Jay-Z kicks it off over a desolate piano, before the song resolves into a beautiful verse-chorus by Frank, and Tyler gets a guest spot and delivers a fantastic verse: “That’s myyy problem / Yeah I-iiii got ’em.” There’s a euphoric vibe that Frank can come across so naturally when he wants to, and that third Young Thug-esque verse with the chorus underneath is one of the best moments of last year. – Michael Charlebois

Kendrick Lamar – YAH.

K Dot might have dropped the album of 2017 with DAMN. One of the lesser played songs on the album is my favorite, that being “YAH.” The chill song compliments any smoke session as Kendrick speaks in a low key but confident manner. And as fellow True Too writer Keelen Wolfe mentioned, it’s not everyday a rapper casually drops mention of the book of Deuteronomy in a rhyme. – CJ Maruyama

Joseph Chilliams – Kale Feat. Noname and Supa Bwe

Joseph Chilliams’ Henry Church is one of my favorite projects of 2017. He produces some of the most creative bars, and while his persona may be a tad on the silly side, he manages to tackle some extremely heavy topics. “Kale” is anti-establishment, anti-gentrification, and anti-whitewashing. Noname drops one of the most ferociously aggressive verses of 2017, while Joe and Supa shine throughout the track. – Quentin Yarolem

Brockhampton – Gummy

The boyband from LA, Brockhampton owned the second half of 2017 by releasing three damn albums in about 6 months. The lead song on the second Saturation instalment was a turning point for me and probably many others. The squelchy sine synth resurrected from Dr Dre’s Chronic closet makes an enthralling appearance over band leader Kevin Abstract’s verse, and the three remaining verses follow suit with the same intensity. Their diversity in concepts and values is epitomized by Abstract’s verse “Cash don’t last my friends they ride with me.” And a fucking mind-blowing outro caps it off. An incredible song, an incredible year for Brockhampton. – Michael Charlebois

Travis Scott – Butterfly Effect

Normally when a song is constantly spinning on the radio, it’s been watered down, generic, and scientifically produced to have catchy elements. Travis Scott is one of those artists few and far between that are mainstream for an actually reason: They’re extremely talented.

“Butterfly Effect” is a straight banger. La Flame can tote the line between making widely appealing music while still growing artistically. – CJ Maruyama

Future – Fresh Air

Future’s best song on his best album. Ever. Do you not hear those drums?! – Isaac Biehl

Action Bronson – The Choreographer

Not many can flow so seamlessly over a vocal sample like the one on this track. A braggadocio chef d’oeuvre (pun completely intended), it has THE smoothest rap hook of the year, courtesy of the wordplay artist himself Bronsolino.– CJ Maruyama

Sahbabii – Marsupial Superstars Feat. T3

When I was first introduced to Sahbabii he was described to me like this: “He’s like if Prince and Thugger had a love child.” With such big shoes to fill, I was blown away when Sahbabii exceeded my expectations. “Marsupial Superstars” perfectly showcases his unique style, and is easily one of my songs of the year. – Quentin Yarolem

Kendrick Lamar – LOVE. Feat. Zacari

No one had ever heard Kendrick like this until “Love” came out. And now it’s all I ever need to hear because he and Zacari made one of hip-hop’s greatest love songs of all time. – Isaac Biehl

Ear candy. After dealing with a lot of obtuse and abstract concepts on his previous albums, K.dot leaves himself room to dedicate a song to the most powerful human emotion. “LOVE” is the coziest cut on DAMN and perhaps the most snug song of 2017. The warm synth-work gives it an 80s feel and Zacari’s absolutely gorgeous voice ties it all together. – Michael Charlebois

Offset x Metro Boomin – Ric Flair Drip

What a badass album cover. And the beat on this track is incredible. Now I’m not normally the biggest fan of Migos but Offset’s flow on “Ric Flair Drip” perfectly compliments Metro Boomin’s production. Plus, it pays homage to Ric Flair. What else could we possible want? WOO! – CJ Maruyama

Smino – Anita (Remix) Feat. T-Pain

Smino takes “Anita,” a damn near perfect song, improves it tenfold by adding the OG, T-Pain, who somehow is able to add even more personality to the song. If that wasn’t enough, the song is accompanied by one of the videos of the year. Nothing makes me happier than hearing T-Pain yell “Boop!” – Quentin Yarolem


Tyler, the Creator – 911/Mr. Lonely

“CALLLLL MEEEEE:” The best song from the masterpiece Flower Boy epitomizes everything Flower Boy is. The song’s first half is bright and bouncy with proficient rapping and beautiful vocals. The second half is introverted and introspective, and forces you to listen to Tyler’s words. The general sense of malaise that hangs over this song gets you to relate, but it gives you the space to dance. I can’t think of a better way to engage with music.– Isaac Biehl


Brockhampton – Sweet

The greatest boyband of all time dropped the first Saturation, Saturation II, and the THIRD all in 2017, all of which were three of the top albums last year. The hook and beat on “Sweet” is absolutely bonkers. There’s no wave I want to ride harder in 2018 than Brockhampton’s. – Isaac Biehl

Let’s hope 2018 brings us even more tracks to love.

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