As a kid, I'd get so irritated when my mom and aunt got together and played the music from their childhood. Sure, there were some tracks that I enjoyed every now and then, but there were some songs that were as weird as the stories that accompanied them. But now that I'm an adult, I'm realizing how great it is to share the songs from our youth, and there are definitely some songs from the '90s you should force your child to listen to, just as our parents did with the music from their era.
And not just so you can relive your youth. Playing this music gives your kids some retro tunes to add to their playlist. I'm sure my mom vividly remembers my sister and I begging her not to play some of her old records every weekend. Now that I'm older though, I have those same songs tucked away in my own iTunes library and find so much joy in playing them. Perhaps it's simply because I love to relive the greatest memories and moments from my childhood, but I find that there's a sense of importance of exposing the younger generation to the music that you listened to during your era.
Whether you're ready to dish out a few history lessons or just want to prove how great music was in the '90s, these 19 songs will surely do the trick.
1. "The Boy Is Mine" by Brandy and Monica
Before being a "side chick" was an actual thing, Brandy and Monica taught listeners a valuable lesson in dealing with men who wanted to have their cake and eat it too. This is a big part of history, here.
2. "...Baby One More Time" by Britney Spears
Making kids understand the amazingness of Britney Spears can be accomplished with this one video.
3. "Tearin' Up My Heart" by 'N SYNC
Before Justin Timberlake flew solo, he was known as the blonde curly haired lead singer of 'N SYNC. Playing this song will remind them that even though JT may be a crush of theirs now, he was definitely yours first.
4. "No Scrubs" by TLC
Kids today will never know the importance and impact of the word scrub, but maybe letting them hear TLC's hit single will give them a little insight.
5. "Country Grammar" by Nelly
Nelly easily changed the rap game when he dropped "Country Grammar" in the '90s.
6. "Thong Song" by Sisqo
Aside from the fact that this song is still relevant today, showing off your ability to hit high notes like Sisqo is enough to force the kiddies to listen to this song.
7. "U Can't Touch This" by MC Hammer
When I was a kid, my sister and I actually had the MC Hammer doll. If not just for reason to brag about that to my kids, "U Can't Touch This" is surely a forceable listen.
8. "Honey (Remix)" by Mariah Carey feat. Mase & The Lox
Mariah Carey is one of the most talented artists out, but let's not forget the transition she was going through at this point in her life. Shedding the "good girl" image and hooking up with Bad Boy, the remix to "Honey" will always remind me of the moment I knew I was a fan for life.
9. "Gin & Juice" by Snoop Dogg
Before Snoop Dogg was hanging with Miley Cyrus, he was just sipping on gin and juice in his parents house. If the kids don't know this one by now, they deserve to hear it.Though you may want to wait till they hit the teens to do so.
10. "Men In Black" by Will Smith
Although it seems a little corny now, Will Smith's hit single "Men In Black" and its accompanying dance is the perfect way to show off your moves to the kids.
11. "Livin' La Vida Loca" by Ricky Martin
No one left the '90s unaffected by Ricky Martin's infectious single. Why not share it with the younger generation?
12. "Losing My Religion" by R.E.M.
Perhaps one of my favorite R.E.M. songs ever, "Losing My Religion" will be listened to even if the kids fight it.
13. "Bitter Sweet Symphony" by The Verve
The Verve had me hooked when I heard "Bitter Sweet Symphony" in Cruel Intentions. Even if I never play the entire song for them, my kids will know it based off of how many times I watch the movie.
14. "Smooth" by Santana feat. Rob Thomas
Because who doesn't want to hear Rob Thomas and Santana give you something smooth to vibe to?
15. "Virtual Insanity" by Jamiroquai
I'm not quite sure where Jamiroquai is today and if he's still living in a virtual insanity, but your kids might be after you force them to listen to this on repeat.
16. "Dreaming Of You" by Selena
Selena. Enough said.
17. "Ruff Ryders' Anthem" by DMX
With all the trouble DMX has been in over the years, one thing that can't be taken away from him is the impact he had on music and fashion in the '90s. He's arguably a legend.
18. "I'll Be Missing You" by Puff Daddy & The Family
With the "Bad Boy Reunion Tour" making its rounds, showing the kids where it all started and why Puff Daddy is so dope today makes this a guaranteed listen.
19. "Hail Mary" by Tupac
Noted as one of the greatest rappers of all time, exposing your children to any of Tupac's material before his death is enough to put their current favorite rapper to shame.