Best Songs From 2004

While some previous years charts are dominated by one or two genres, you can see that in 2004, songs were very varied. There were top hits in the indie, rock, country, pop, R&B, and rap genres.

These were the best songs from 2004.

“Yeah!” by Usher

Song year: 2004

“Yeah!” by Usher featuring Lil Jon and Ludacris, continues to get remixed and replayed in clubs and radio stations today. “Yeah!” is from Usher’s album Confessions and is the ideal song for a party playlist.

This dance song is about meeting someone at the club and getting together. The music video showcases Usher’s exceptional dance skills getting him nominated for Best Choreography in a Video at the 2004 MTV Video Music Awards for “Yeah!”

“Somebody Told Me” by The Killers

Song year: 2004

The Killers debuted their first album, Hot Fuss, in 2004 and instantly spoke to a generation of listeners. Even almost two decades later, “Somebody Told Me” by The Killers is heavily featured on radio stations and continues to be one of the Killer’s most popular songs.

“Somebody Told Me” is one example of good music from 2004 with a catchy chorus, cheeky lyrics, and instantly recognizable instrumentals.

“Lean Back” by Fat Joe feat Remy Ma

Song year: 2004

The opening instrumentals of “Lean Back” by Fat Joe, featuring female rapper Remy Ma are enough to get anyone bobbing their heads or tapping their toes. This is an amazing song that bumped in clubs from 2004 and onwards.

The song and music video inspired a dance move that everyone can break out next time they step on a dance floor. All you have to do is follow Fat Joe’s directions in the chorus.

“American Idiot” by Green Day

Song year: 2004

Green Day released their classic hit “American Idiot” on the album of the same name in protest to the Bush Jr. administration. This punk, rock, and pop song has simple lyrics that look down on American culture and the idiocy of striving for the American dream. The music video features the band energetically playing in front of a grungey-looking American flag.

The next year in 2005, the song got nominated for several Grammy Awards, but the album American Idiot won Best Rock Album.

“My Boo” by Usher & Alicia Keys

Song year: 2004

While Usher’s album Confessions saw huge success with “Yeah!” the album also included another of the best songs from 2004, the smash hit “My Boo” with female vocals by Alicia Keys.

This smooth R&B duet has an iconic chorus about two former partners remembering the good times and the love shared in the old days.

In 2004, “My Boo” by Usher and Alicia Keys peaked at number one on the US Billboard Hot 100 weekly music charts.

“Somewhere Only We Know” by Keane

Song year: 2004

Next is “Somewhere Only We Know” by the English band Keane. This alternative rock song is an emotional piece with beautiful piano background instrumentals. The lyrics speak about searching for a place that can feel like home and remind him of what it feels like to be young again.

“Somewhere Only We Know” went Platinum twice in their native UK and peaked at number two on the Billboard US Adult Alternative Songs weekly charts.

“Pieces of Me” by Ashlee Simpson

Song year: 2004

While Jessica Simpson was living married life on national television, her sister Ashlee was releasing one of the hit pop songs of 2004. “Pieces of Me” by Ashlee Simpson was the first single from her debut album Autobiography. It was a pop antithesis to her sister’s style of music with more rock elements to Ashlee’s music.

The song “Pieces of Me” describes being with someone who can love your many facets. In 2004, Ashlee Simpson saw her song rise to the number-one spot on the US Billboard Hot 100 list. 

“Drop It Like It’s Hot” by Snoop Dog feat. Pharrell Williams

Song year: 2004

 “Drop It Like It’s Hot” by Snoop Dog featuring Pharrell Williams might be one of the best songs of all time. In fact, in 2009, Billboard named this song the most popular rap song of the decade.

When someone thinks of Snoop Dog, this song with the iconic clicking background loop instantly comes to mind. “Drop It Like It’s Hot” features Snoop Dog and Pharrell Williams rapping and singing repetitive lines about what to do in different circumstances.

“Slow Hands” by Interpol

Song year: 2004

“Slow Hands” by Interpol is one of the examples of good music from 2004 that got featured on several TV soundtracks throughout the 2000s.

Though this indie song didn’t make history on music charts, it captures the sound of the 2004’s music scene. Listen to this song alongside songs off Hot Fuss by The Killers, and you’ll hear why the two bands were well-received by audiences in 2004.

“Welcome to My Life” by Simple Plan

Song year: 2004

Canadian pop-rock band Simple Plan’s popular song “Welcome to My Life” was an anthem for underdogs in the pop/emo genre. This song was the band’s first number-one hit on the Canadian Hot 100 music charts and peaked at number 40 on the US Billboard Hot 100.

Simple Plan sings about feeling misunderstood in their suffering. As the song speaks about life’s hardships, the chorus reminds listeners that’s what life is like for the main character of the song.

“Vindicated” by Dashboard Confessional

“Vindicated” by Dashboard Confessional

Song year: 2004

“Vindicated” by Dashboard Confessional was a song written for the 2004 Spider-Man 2 movie with Tobey Maguire. This popular song brings nostalgia for the early 2000s with a dramatic chorus and lyrics. It will definitely bring you back to the days of the early teenage angst.

The song is about feeling vindicated and finally realizing that you don’t need to feel guilty or apologize for who you are. Upon its release in 2004, “Vindicated” peaked at number two on US Billboard alternative music charts.

“My Prerogative” by Britney Spears

Song year: 2004

Britney Spears faced a lot of media attention in the early 2000s, and “My Prerogative” spoke directly to her haters.

The song got released in a collection of her greatest hits called Greatest Hits: My Prerogative. “My Prerogative” is all about Britney expressing that she has a right to her own opinions and way of living. Meanwhile, it expanded the vocabulary of millions of listeners.

“1985” by Bowling For Soup

Song year: 2004

American indie-pop band Bowling For Soup looked back to the past in their hit song “1985” on their 2004 album A Hangover You Don’t Deserve.

The song tells the story of a woman named Debbie who feels out of touch with her wild side now that she’s a mom and has grown older. The moment the opening “Oohs” start with this song, listeners will want to sing along to the memorable lyrics and chorus about being stuck in the past.

“Don’t Tell Me” by Avril Lavigne

Song year: 2004

Canadian singer and songwriter Avril Lavigne released the angsty break-up smash hit “Don’t Tell Me” in 2004. This pop-punk song is from Avril’s second album, Under My Skin.

“Don’t Tell Me” won two awards at the 2004 MuchMusic Video Awards for Best International Video By A Canadian and People’s Choice Favourite Canadian Artist.

“Live Like You Were Dying” by Tim McGraw

Song year: 2004

One of the best country songs from 2004 is Tim McGraw’s “Live Like You Were Dying.” This emotional song shares the story of someone who is diagnosed with a terminal illness and given an expiration date. Instead of being disheartened, the inspiring song shares that they do everything they ever wanted that they were too afraid to try before.

If you’re looking for an emotional country song from the 2000s, “Live Like You Were Dying” is a must-hear.

“Lose My Breath” by Destiny’s Child

Song year: 2004

Before Queen B was a solo artist, she was part of the girl group Destiny’s Child, and “Lose My Breath” is one of their most popular songs from 2004.

This classic dance song has intricate and hypnotic marching band drum beats alongside the iconic vocals of Kelly, Michelle, and Beyonce. The song peaked in the top five on music charts globally as a dance anthem of the decade.

“Just Lose It” by Eminem

Song year: 2004

Eminem was incredibly popular in the early 2000s. “Just Lose It” was a controversial song from his 2004 album Encore. The song and music video both begin by ripping on Michael Jackson and continue to make obscene comments, in typical Eminem fashion, throughout the song.

“Just Lose It” is one of the best songs from 2004, with fast-paced lyrics and witty rhymes that listeners and rappers still try to emulate today. The controversial music video was not well received by Michael Jackson and his fans, leading BET to drop the video from their rotation momentarily.

“Goodies” by Ciara feat. Jive

Song year: 2004

Ciara released her debut album and single of the same name, Goodies, in 2004. “Goodies” is one of the best crunk dance songs from 2004. The song features synthesizer background instrumentals with Ciara’s angelic voice and Jive’s raps.

In 2004, “Goodies” by Ciara and Jive peaked at number one on the US Billboard Hot 100 and Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs weekly music charts.

“Rich Girl” by Gwen Stefani feat. Eve

Song year: 2004

Gwen Stefani debuted her first solo album in 2004 after a long career as the lead singer for No Doubt. “Rich Girl” is from Stefani’s Love. Angel. Music. Baby. album and was a massive success in the early 2000s.

Stefani took inspiration from Fiddler on the Roof when writing this song about all the things the pop star would do with her millions. Eve comes in on the bridge with a flawless rap before Gwen dives back into the catchy chorus. The music video features the two as pirates on a ship filled with gold and jewels.

“Mr. Brightside” by The Killers

Song year: 2004

2004 was an amazing year for The Killers with the successful hits “Somebody Told Me” and “Mr. Brightside” from their debut album Hot Fuss.

“Mr. Brightside” is one of the best songs from 2004 and continues to get ample airplay on radio stations internationally. With an upbeat tempo and fun-to-sing lyrics, this happy tune is a must-have on a 2000s-themed music playlist.

“I’m Not Okay (I Promise)” by My Chemical Romance

Song year: 2004

My Chemical Romance were the heroes in emo culture, and their second studio album, Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge, embodied everything 2004 listeners wanted in angsty music. “I’m Not Okay (I Promise)” was a huge success with lyrics and a catchy chorus that are a clear cry for help.

“I’m Not Okay (I Promise)” is an example of good music from 2004 that peaked in the top five of the US Billboard Alternative Airplay weekly charts. The music video features the band donning emo attire and makeup while singing at a stereotypical high school.

Top Songs From 2004, Final Thoughts

Listen to these top songs from 2004 to relive the musical moments that shaped a generation.

From Britney to Snoop Dog to My Chemical Romance, this list includes remarkable examples of good music from 2004 for all types of music listeners. Many of these popular songs still get radio play and have returned to the limelight in recent years as trending TikTok sound bites.

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