As fans, there are certain years that we’re blessed with a premium of amazing music. 2022 is a prime example. Last year, we got albums from heavyweights such as Beyoncé (Renaissance), Kendrick Lamar (Mr. Morale & The Big Steppers), Drake (Honestly, Nevermind AND Her Loss), SZA (SOS), Summer Walker (Still Over It) and Future (I NEVER LIKED YOU). In 20 years when we look back at 2022, it will be difficult for us not to consider it as a standout year for music, with numerous potential classics. An album standing the test of time is not only an indication of how timeless the project is but also how the artist knew their audience and the climate of music.
In 2003, the climate of music was definitely different. People worldwide were still going to stores and buying their favorite artist’s CDs. Album sales seemed to mean a bit more since everything was organic and there wasn’t a real way to “juice the numbers.” One thing that’s still the same as back then though is how great music will always live on and be remembered. We got a bevy of music that fit that bill 20 years ago. While the likes of Alicia Keys, Beyoncé, Ashanti and Mary J. Blige all enjoyed extremely great years, the rap artists also made huge waves with their albums. We got the debut solo album from one of the biggest moguls in the game (50 Cent), saw some established goats further cement their legacies (Jay-Z, DMX and Lil Kim) and witnessed a plethora of groups shake up the game (Outkast, The Diplomats, Ying Yang Twins).
The music was so good that some of the albums released that year are still heavy in people’s rotations to this day. Some of the albums rank very highly among the artist’s discography. No matter where they rank, no one can argue how classic they are. To recognize the greatness of these projects, enjoy a gallery of rap albums that turned 20 years old this year. Let us know which albums are your favorites and if you think we missed any!