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Jennifer Lopez's Best Hip-Hop Songs And Moments, Ranked

In celebration of Jennifer Lopez's 49th birthday this week, VIBE Viva ranked her greatest hip-hop tracks and moments throughout the decades. 

Before Jennifer Lopez landed the “role of a lifetime” in 1997 as the late Selena Quintanilla-Pérez in the biopic Selena, we were introduced to the aspiring singer-actress as Janet Jackson’s backup dancer in the video for “That’s The Way Love Goes” and as a Fly Girl on In Living Color, which was rooted in hip-hop culture.

Naturally, when Lopez ventured off into music, those influences followed her as an artist. “I love the hip-hop, I love the R&B; it’s gonna manifest itself in my music,” she told MTV News in 2013. Nearly 20 years after the release of On the 6, Lopez’s hip-hop collaborations have made her a familiar face within the community.

In celebration of the multi-faceted star’s 49th birthday this week, VIBE Viva ranked her greatest hip-hop tracks and moments throughout the decades.

Check it out below.

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13. “I’m Glad” (2002)

Don’t let the elegant harp strings on “I’m Glad” fool you. The mid-tempo track samples Schoolly D’s “P.S.K. What Does It Mean?” Schoolly D has been recognized as the OG gangsta rapper; therefore, sampling anything from his discography proves that the World of Dance judge is a real G.

Co-written by Lopez herself, “I’m Glad” still goes hard to this day, and the accompanying Flashdance-inspired video ranks among her best.

12. “I’m Into You” feat. Lil Wayne (2011)

The island-flavored “I’m Into You” is hands down one of the most underrated songs of Lopez’s discography. And Lil Wayne’s clever wordplay is impressive, e.g., “You’re way too fly, I could be your jet fuel.” The second single released off Love? failed to crack the Top 40 in the U.S., which is absurd since “I’m Into You” is the perfect soundtrack for sipping piña coladas with the crew all summer. Reaching No. 9 on the U.K. Singles Chart, the Stargate-produced track further solidified Ms. Lopez’s international appeal.

11. “Get Right” (Remix) feat. Fabolous (2005)

Without a doubt, the lead single off Rebirth brought the funk, but Fabolous’ verse took it to the next level. “I ain’t Mr. Right, I’m Mr. Right Now,” he raps over those infectious horn riffs. Co-produced by On the 6 collaborator Corey Rooney, “Get Right” was a bit unorthodox at the time, but it translated into a classic J.Lo sound. Bonus points for the multiple characters (from a DJ to busy bartender to an exotic dancer) Lopez portrayed in the original video.

10. “Dinero” feat. Cardi B and DJ Khaled (2018)

Music lovers nearly lost their minds when rumors started swirling that J.Lo and Cardi B were joining forces for a dream collaboration and they did not disappoint when the single officially dropped. In a nutshell, “Dinero” is the ultimate hustler’s anthem, with production notes from DJ Khaled.

On the fiery track, Lopez flaunts her millions and flexes her rapping skills at the same time. “They say money talk/but my talking bilingual,” she declares in the second verse. As expected, Ms. Belcalis Almanzar does her thing, offering fans a glimpse into her fabulous life. But the former Love & Hip-Hop: New York star stays true to her roots, e.g., “Two bad bitches that came from the Bronx/Cardi from the pole and Jenny from the block.” Iconic.

9. “Control Myself” with LL Cool J (2006)

J.Lo and Uncle L’s musical chemistry was so amazing the first time around in “All I Have” in 2002 that the duo reunited four years later on “Control Myself,” an homage to hip-hop’s golden era. Case in point: The beat samples and the vocals interpolate Afrika Bambaataa & Soulsonic Force’s “Looking for the Perfect Beat” and “Planet Rock,” which automatically places this collab in the Top 10.

8. “Jenny From the Block” (Trackmasters Remix) feat. Jadakiss and Styles (2002)

By the time Jenny’s This Is Me… Then hit store shelves, the Bronx-bred superstar was still riding high off the success of making history as the first entertainer to have a No. 1 movie and album in the same week with The Wedding Planner and J.Lo, which produced the hits “Love Don’t Cost A Thing,” “I’m Real” and “Play.”

However, Lopez set out to prove that fame and fortune haven’t changed her. She enlisted Jadakiss and Styles from The L.O.X. to create the now-iconic “Jenny From the Block” — a precursor to 2014’s “Same Girl” — which utilizes Boogie Down Productions’ “South Bronx.” “I stay grounded as the amounts roll in,” she insists on the first verse. It’s impossible not to sing into your hairbrush whenever this bop comes on.

7. “All I Have” feat. LL Cool J (2002)

Lopez’s dazzling Las Vegas residency is fittingly named after her smash hit “All I Have,” which stayed at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for four consecutive weeks. Built around a sample of Debra Laws’ classic R&B ballad “Very Special,” Jen and LL deserve an award for their superb portrayal of soon-to-be ex-lovers as they go back and forth over calling it quits. When the rap legend pleas, “Pride is what you had, baby girl, I’m what you have,” Jennifer’s reaction is savage AF: “You’ll be needing me but too bad.”

6. “I’m Gonna Be Alright” (Trackmasters Remix) feat. Nas (2002)

Containing replayed elements of Luniz’s “I Got 5 On It,” the third and final single off J to tha L-O! The Remixes isn’t your average breakup anthem. The entertainer shows resilience on “I’m Gonna Be Alright,” which features rap titan Nas. The Trackmasters remix peaked at No. 10 on the charts during the summer of ‘02, and it went on to become Lopez’s sixth Top 10 hit. With its haunting melody and lyrics depicting an unhealthy relationship, the slowed down tempo on “I’m Gonna Be Alright” allows listeners to get deep in their feelings.

5. J.Lo and Diddy’s VMA Red Carpet Appearance (2000)

Lopez and then-boyfriend Diddy became the most stylish VMA couple of all time when they walked the red carpet on Sept. 7, 2000. The Bronx Barbie turned heads in an all-white ensemble that included big hoop earrings, a bedazzled bandana and a Sean John crop top. On the brink of becoming a global phenomenon, Lopez walked away with her first Moonman that night, but the actress-turned-singer’s appearance with the hip-hop mogul gave her street credibility.

4. Cameo in Diddy’s “Been Around the World” with The Notorious B.I.G. and Mase (1997)

J.Lo knows how to make an entrance. When the Nuyorican bombshell appears as Princess of Tunisia (a fictional country) in then-Puff Daddy's “Been Around the World” video, the storyline suddenly becomes more interesting. The pair’s sultry dance sequence (skip to 8:12) went on to become an unforgettable moment in pop culture.

3. “Ain’t It Funny”(Murder Remix) feat. Ja Rule and Caddillac Tah (2002)

Craig Mack’s “Flava In Ya Ear” turns 25 next year, but it’s still one of the most recognized tracks in hip-hop history. It also laid the foundation for the “Ain’t It Funny” remix, which was released as the lead single off 2002’s J to tha L-O! The Remixes. The original version first appeared on Lopez’s sophomore album, and it took a Latin approach.

“This song was totally different, but it was still about the same thing,” Lopez explained to Sway Calloway during an interview that was featured in 2003’s The Reel Me. “Ain’t it funny that you wanted this and now fate has brought us to the point where I don’t want you no more.” The latter served as the premise for the remix, which became her third chart-topper. Within the first five seconds, Ja shouts “It must be the a** that got me like that,” referring to J.Lo’s famous derriere, which set the tone for the entire record.

2. “I’m Real” (Murder Remix) feat. Ja Rule (2001)

The original and the remixed versions of “I’m Real” are as different as day and night, but it’s also the secret sauce behind the massive success that followed both songs. Featured on the reissue of 2001’s J.Lo, the remix marked Lopez’s foray into hip-hop music. Jen’s soft coos and "R-U-L-E’s" gruff flow are a surprisingly perfect match on “I’m Real,” which samples Rick James’ “Mary Jane” and Mary Jane Girls’ “All Night Long.” The formula worked because it instantly became a summer anthem. Oh, and Lopez’s Juicy Couture pink velour tracksuit was (and still is) epic.

1.“Feelin’ So Good” feat. Fat Joe and Big Pun (1999)

Before #GoodVibesOnly was a hashtag, “Feelin’ So Good” was all that and then some. The hip hop-coated track brought balance to On the 6, which mainly consisted of ballads and mid-tempo songs. It borrows from Strafe’s popular 1984 hit “Set It Off,” giving the record its old-school hip-hop vibe. Furthermore, Fat Joe and the late Big Pun’s verses are nothing short of rap perfection. J.Lo, Pun and Joey Crack coming together on one track is a moment to cherish, especially since Pun died a few days after the single was released.

Produced by Sean “Diddy” Combs, the feel-good song only reached No. 51 on the Billboard Hot 100, but it paved the way for Lopez to be able to work with the likes of other high-profile rappers, including Rick Ross, T.I., Flo Rida, Pitbull and French Montana. “Feelin’ So Good” is a quintessential J.Lo record because it’s all about living life to the fullest, which seems to be Lopez’s personal motto.

 

Princess Gabbara is a multimedia journalist and storyteller. She’s a former reporter for the Lansing State Journal, part of the USA TODAY Network, who has written for outlets such as BitchMedia.org, Shondaland, Bustle, The Boombox, Ebony magazine, Jetmag.com, Essence, Sesi, and Greatist. Follow her on Twitter/Instagram: @PrincessGabbara.

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Issa Vibe: The Best Songs To Fit Your Different 4/20 Sessions

April 20th isn’t a national holiday, but it might as well be.

Although recreational marijuana use is only legal in 10 states, the U.S. is home to approximately 35 million regular users of cannabis, according to a survey done by Yahoo News and Marist University. That's 10.6 percent of the American population and while that may seem minuscule, the numbers are growing daily and it's understandable.

Weed has now become a staple of American culture; it's become a legitimate business in the states where it's legal, it's now part of the way people socialize, and better yet it's a theme in some of the hottest music out today. "Kush" has been included in some of the hardest verses that millennials and generation-z kids have heard in their lifetime.

Wiz Khalifa and Snoop Dogg, amazing emcees in their own right, are also widely known for their love of the green plant. Wiz's biggest album, Rolling Papers is clearly influenced by weed and along with the Snoop Dogg-assisted "Young, Wild & Free" is all about that green positivity.

There's an endless list of hits about rolling up a joint, hitting it and passing it, but what about moods? Whether it's a bowl, a blunt or an edible weed, can leave people feeling a variety of ways and that all can be traced to a certain strand of weed someone's inhaling, or the mood they're already.

Regardless, it's important to be prepared and have music ready to match whatever feelings marijuana concocts; and that's why VIBE compiled an adequate list of songs for each of the main pot moods.

So on this 4/20, sit back, relax, smoke and find the songs that suit the vibe.

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The "Let Me Chill Out" Mood 

Sometimes the best way to come down from an over the top high is to play some tunes with a soft beat and a light voice. The best artists in the game right now, like Jhené Aiko for instance, have created that sound that's perfect for when relaxation is needed, so of course, she made the list.  These are the top four songs that can help anyone kick back and relax if a pull from a joint just isn't hitting the right way.

"Blue Dream" by Jhené Aiko "Muse" by Afro Nostalgia "Summer Games" by Drake "LOVE." by Kendrick Lamar (feat. Zacari) The Bad B*tch Hours or "Top Two and I'm Not Two" Mood 

You look around the room and realize: you're top two and you're not two in it. All it took was one or a couple of puffs and then a pass to make you feel pretty good about yourself. One of the main upsides to smoking that's constantly mentioned in the media is that it can help alleviate chronic pain, well, another positive to it is that it can leave you feeling sexy, sensual and everything in between.

This is that high that can make you feel that you're significant other is lucky to have you, and subsequently makes you hit them up, that tells you: you're single and ready to mingle. It's a smoking session that lets you know: if you shoot your shot now, you'll score and it's a session that you want music playing that only affirms how sultry and seductive you feel. If this is how 4/20 leaves you feeling, putting on some RiRi or even Young Thug can effectively get you 'in your bag.'

"Same Ol' Mistakes" by Rihanna "Tyrant" by Kali Uchis (feat. Jorja Smith) "Worth It" by Young Thug "Smoke Break" by Chance the Rapper (feat. Future) The "Head in the Clouds" Mood 

More often than not, edibles have the power of leaving people spaced out and speaking slowly, after consuming them. Sometimes smoking weed, or hotboxing with friends is a silent event. Either everyone's consumed by their phones, or every other person has been looking at a nonexistent spot on the wall for the past 15 minutes.

Regardless this isn't the high where people want to hear "Act Up" by City Girls, no matter how much they love them. No, this is the high where people need music that takes them on a journey. Songs where the production is out of this world and it seems like the artist specifically made the song for a smoke session like no other. Travis Scott's ASTROWORLD is full of tracks with that vibe, and Lil' Wayne, a weed connoisseur of his own, has songs that fulfill that need too. Smoke a bit and let the weed do its thing.

"ASTROTHUNDER" by Travis Scott "I Feel Like Dying" by Lil' Wayne "Hyyer" by Kid Cudi "St. Tropez" by J. Cole The "Got the Giggles" Mood 

This is when the blunt hits perfectly and there's nothing wrong in the world or when the bowl did its' job and leaves everyone feeling silly. A "feel good high" is the best way to describe and the best way to live through that kind of smoke session is to listen to some "feel good music." These are the songs that can have people swaying unknowingly to its' beat, or the tracks that leave people smiling from ear to ear. This is the session that lets people know that "this is it chief," and here are the best songs to go along with it.

"Pass the Vibes" by Donnie Trumpet & The Social Experiment "Dreamcatcher" by Metro Boomin' (feat. Swae Lee & Travis Scott) "It's a Vibe" by 2 Chainz (feat. Ty Dolla $ign, Trey Songz & Jhené Aiko) "Binz" by Solange
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Kush & Splendor: 5 CBD Beauty Products That’ll Take Your Self-Care Routine From 0 To 100

Lotions, creams, and salves—oh my! With cannabidiol (CBD) popping up in just about every product you can imagine, the cannabis-infused beauty industry is clearly on the come-up. In fact, analysts predict that the “wellness” movement—as well as the legalization of Mary Jane across the world—will help rake in $25 billion globally in the next 10 years, according to Business Insider. That’s 15 percent of the $167 billion skincare market.

And what better way to up the ante on one’s wellness routine than with all-natural CBD? Just ask Dr. Lana Butner, naturopathic doctor and acupuncturist at NYC’s Modrn Sanctuary, who incorporates CBD in her treatments.

“CBD is a fantastic addition to acupuncture sessions for both its relaxation and anti-inflammatory, pain-relieving effects,” Butner shares with Vixen. “The calming effects of CBD allows for patients to deeply relax into the treatment and really tap into the parasympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for rest, digestion and muscle repair/regeneration.”

She adds that CBD’s pain-relieving effects are “far-reaching,” from muscular and joint pains to migraines and arthritis—and even IBS and indigestion.

The magic lies in CBD’s ability to impact endocannabinoid receptor activity in our bodies. Without getting too wordy, our bodies come equipped with a system called the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which is the HBIC over our sleep, appetite, pain and immune system response. Also known as cannabidiol, CBD teams up with this system to help reduce inflammation and interact with neurotransmitters. According to Healthline, CBD has also been scientifically shown to impact the brain’s receptors for serotonin, the neurotransmitter responsible for regulating our mood and social behavior.

All that said, it’s important to note that not all CBD products are created equal. Many brands cashing in on the green beauty wave use hemp seed oil, sometimes referred to as cannabis sativa seed oil, in place of CBD... which doesn’t make them any less great! Hemp seed oil is actually high in antioxidants, amino acids, and omega-3 and -6 fatty acids—all of which are thebomb.com for your skin.

“It’s generally viewed as a superfood and is great for adding nutritional value to your diet,” Ashley Lewis, co-founder of Fleur Marché, told Well and Good last month. “In terms of skin care, it’s known as a powerful moisturizer and skin softener that doesn’t clog pores or contribute to oily skin.”

However, when companies start marketing CBD and hemp oil as one-in-the-same, that’s when things get a bit tricky.

“The biggest issue is that hemp seed oil and CBD are two totally different compounds that come from different parts of the hemp plant, have different makeups, and different benefits,” Lewis added. “Marketing them as the same thing just isn’t accurate and does a disservice to consumers who are expecting certain benefits that they won’t get from hemp seed oil and who are often paying more for what they think is CBD.”

So if you’re looking to benefit from the perks specifically attributed to CBD, make sure you’re reading labels before buying, and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Hell, ask for a product’s test results, while you’re at it. It never hurts to be sure.

Now that we’ve got that out of the way, are you ready to see what all the hype is about? For this 4/20, we rounded up a few CBD (and hemp!)-infused products to help give your self-care routine a bit of a boost. Looks like your holiday just got that much kushier. You’re welcome!

Note: Data and regulations surrounding CBD and its use are still in development. That said, please don’t take anything written in this post as medical or legal advice, and definitely double check the laws in your state. Also, please do your body a favor and hit up your doctor before trying any new supplements. We’re just tryna look out for you. Okay? Okay. Read on.

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Beyoncé performs onstage during 2018 Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival Weekend 1 at the Empire Polo Field on April 14, 2018 in Indio, California.
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Homecoming: The 5 Best Moments Of Beyoncé’s Documentary

Once Beyoncé became the first African-American woman to headline in its nearly 20-year history, we knew Coachella would never the same. To mark the superstar’s historic moment, the 2018 music and arts festival was appropriately dubbed #Beychella and fans went into a frenzy on social media as her illustrious performance was live-streamed by thousands. (Remember when fans recreated her choreographed number to O.T. Genasis’ “Everybody Mad”?)

With a legion of dancers, singers and musicians adorned with gorgeous costumes showcasing custom-made crests, the singer’s whirlwind performance honored black Greek letter organizations, Egyptian queen Nefertiti, and paid homage to historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs). Aside from the essence of black musical subgenres like Houston’s chopped and screwed and Washington D.C.’s go-go music, the entertainer performed “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” also known as “The Black National Anthem,” and implemented a dancehall number, sampling the legendary Jamaican DJ and singer, Sister Nancy, to show off the versatility of black culture.

One year after #Beychella’s historic set, the insightful concert film, Homecoming, began streaming on Netflix and unveiled the rigorous months of planning that went into the iconic event. The 2-hour 17-minute documentary highlights Beyoncé’s enviable work ethic and dedication to her craft, proving why this performance will be cemented in popular culture forever. Here are the best moments from Beyoncé’s Homecoming documentary.

The Intentional Blackness

“Instead of me bringing out my flower crown, it was more important that I brought our culture to Coachella.”

Throughout the documentary, Beyoncé made it known that everything and everyone included in the creative process leading up to the annual festival was deliberately chosen. “I personally selected each dancer, every light, the material on the steps, the height of the pyramid, the shape of the pyramid,” says Beyoncé. “Every tiny detail had an intention.” When speaking on black people as a collective the entertainer notes, “The swag is limitless.” Perhaps the most beautiful moments in Homecoming are the shots that focus on the uniqueness of black hair and its versatility. What’s appreciated above all is the singer’s commitment to celebrating the various facets of blackness and detailing why black culture needs to be celebrated on a global scale.

Beyoncé’s Love And Respect For HBCUs

#Beychella — which spanned two consecutive weekends of Coachella’s annual festival — was inspired by elements of HBCU homecomings, so it was no surprise when the singer revealed she always wanted to attend one. “I grew up in Houston, Texas visiting Prairie View. We rehearsed at TSU [Texas Southern University] for many years in Third Ward, and I always dreamed of going to an HBCU. My college was Destiny's Child. My college was traveling around the world and life was my teacher.” Brief vignettes in the film showcased marching bands, drumlines and the majorettes from notable HBCUs that comprise of the black homecoming experience. In the concert flick, one of the dancers affectionately states, “Homecoming for an HBCU is the Super Bowl. It is the Coachella.” However, beyond the outfits that sport a direct resemblance to Greek organizations, Beyoncé communicated an important message that remains a focal point in the film: “There is something incredibly important about the HBCU experience that must be celebrated and protected.”

The Familiar Faces

Despite being joined by hundreds of dancers, musicians and singers on-stage, the entertainer was joined by some familiar faces to share the monumental moment with her. While making a minor appearance in the documentary, her husband and rapper/mogul Jay-Z came out to perform “Deja Vu” with his wife. Next, fans were blessed by the best trio to ever do it as Kelly and Michelle joined the singer with renditions of their hit singles including “Say My Name,” “Soldier,” and more. On top of this star-studded list, Solange Knowles graced the “Beychella” stage and playfully danced with her older sister to the infectious “Get Me Bodied.”

Her Balance Of Being A Mother And A Star

Originally slated to headline the annual festival in 2017, the singer notes that she “got pregnant unexpectedly...and it ended up being twins.” Suffering from preeclampsia, high blood pressure, toxemia and undergoing an emergency C-section, the entertainer candidly details how difficult it was adjusting post-partum and how she had to reconnect with her body after experiencing a traumatizing delivery. “In the beginning, it was so many muscle spasms. Just, internally, my body was not connected. My body was not there.” Rehearsing for a total of 8 months, the singer sacrificed quality time with her children in order to nail the technical elements that came with the preparation for her Coachella set. “I’m limiting myself to no bread, no carbs, no sugar, no dairy, no meat, no fish, no alcohol … and I’m hungry.” Somehow, throughout all of this, she still had to be a mom. “My mind wanted to be with my children,” she says. Perhaps one of the most admirable moments in the film was witnessing Beyoncé’s dedication to her family but also to her craft.

The Wise Words From Black Visionaries

Homecoming opens with a quote from the late, Maya Angelou stating, “If you surrender to the air, you can ride it.” The film includes rich and prophetic quotes from the likes of Alice Walker, Nina Simone, Toni Morrison, and notable Black thinkers, reaffirming Beyoncé’s decision to highlight black culture. The quotes speak to her womanhood and the entertainer’s undeniable strength as a black woman.

Blue Ivy’s Cuteness

Last, but certainly not least, Blue Ivy‘s appearance in the concert film is nothing short of precious. One of the special moments in the documentary zeroes in on the 7-year-old singing to a group of people whilst Beyoncé sweetly feeds the lyrics into her ears. After finishing, Blue says: “I wanna do that again” with Beyoncé replying with “You wanna be like mommy, huh?” Seen throughout Homecoming rehearsing and mirroring Beyoncé’s moves, Blue just might follow in her mother’s footsteps as she gets older.

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