2017 BET Awards
Timbaland's 20 Biggest Billboard Hits
Check out this countdown of the "20/20 Experience" producer's biggest hits thus far, from JT to Jay-Z and everything in between.
Much has been made of Justin Timberlake's triumphant return to music with his third solo album, "The 20/20 Experience," but it also marks a return of sorts for its producer, Timbaland, who has laid (relatively) low over the past two years after spending nearly two decades as one of mainstream music's most prolific producers. After cutting his teeth by working with Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott, Ginuwine and Aaliyah, the Virginia native became one of the inescapable pop personas in the 2000s, concocting hits with Justin Timberlake, Nelly Furtado and OneRepublic while staying atop the hip-hop game next to Missy, Jay-Z and Young Jeezy.
To celebrate the release of "The 20/20 Experience," a stellar R&B/pop effort produced entirely by Timbaland, check out Billboard.com's countdown of the producer's 20 biggest Billboard hits. This ranking is based on actual performance on the weekly Billboard Hot 100 chart. Songs are ranked based on an inverse point system, with weeks at No. 1 earning the greatest value and weeks at No. 100 earning the least.
"Oops (Oh My)," Tweet<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 7
Years before Twitter even existed, "Tweet" commonly referred to the R&B singer-songwriter whom Timbaland and Missy Elliott had taken on as a protege. Her slinky ode to self-love, "Oops (Oh My)," led her debut album "Southern Hummingbird" and remains her biggest hit by far.
"Summer Love," Justin Timberlake<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 6
Although Justin Timberlake's sophomore album "FutureSex/LoveSounds" spawned more successful singles upon its release in September 2006, "Summer Love" kept the party going well in 2007, and became one of that summer's most inescapable dance cuts. Here, Timbaland mines a simple, elastic beat and helps JT craft a sequel to "Rock Your Body."
"Make It Hot," Nicole Feat. Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott & Mocha<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 5
A few years after breaking into the mainstream through producing artists like Aaliyah and Missy Elliott, the latter got him in touch with rising R&B singer Nicole Wray. Timbaland's steamy production set the stage for Wray's first (and only) hit single, which went to No. 5 on the Hot 100. In her guest verse, Elliott reps her powerful repertoire with her producer of choice: "Me with no Timbaland is like Puff with no Mase."
"Make Me Better," Fabolous Feat. Ne-Yo<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 8
Brooklyn rhymer Fabolous and charming crooner Ne-Yo rode Timbaland’s knocking bass line and whimpering strings to Top 10 status on the Hot 100 and top position on the rap chart. It’s one of Tim’s simpler productions, but sometimes that’s all that’s needed.
"Get Ur Freak On," Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 7
From the heavy Punjabi influence to the sound of Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott hawking a loogie in your face, "Get Ur Freak On" still sounds revolutionary 12 years after its release. After serving as the lead single to 2001's "Miss E… So Addictive," the song was later re-interpolated at the end of Bubba Sparxxx's Timbaland-produced single "Ugly."
"Pony," Ginuwine<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 6
The earliest hit on this list featured Timbaland's most indelible beats: yearning, cooing and impossibly sexual, the foundation of Ginuwine's "Pony" allowed the R&B heartthrob to notch his biggest hit ever in 1996.
"Dirt Off Your Shoulder," Jay-Z<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 5
With its tooting synths and spacey noises, this track from Jay-Z’s supposed retirement effort “The Black Album” was the set’s most club-ready. Timbo and Jay already had a history of bangers with 2000’s “Big Pimpin’.” This one was a fitting follow-up.
"Cry Me A River," Justin Timberlake<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 3
After playing the bad boy on his debut solo single "Like I Love You," Justin got back in touch with his sensitive side on his second solo offering, along with some pop star drama. Cheating on Justin seems blasphemous to most, but apparently not to the inspiration of "Cry Me A River," long rumored (and in 2011, confirmed) to be Britney Spears.
"Give It To Me," Timbaland Feat. Nelly Furtado & Justin Timberlake<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 1 (2 weeks)
Months after becoming a Top 40 staple by producing monster hits for Justin Timberlake and Nelly Furtado, Timbaland recruited both vocalists for the first single to his "Shock Value" solo album. And, like Timberlake and Furtado's 2006 lead singles, the propulsive "Give It To Me" hit No. 1 on the Hot 100, spending two weeks in the top spot.
"4 Minutes," Madonna Feat. Justin Timberlake & Timbaland<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 3
After JT's "FutureSex/LoveSounds" promotional run finally settled down at the end of 2007, Timberlake re-teamed with Timbaland once again -- this time, with Madge in tow -- for the lead single to 2008's "Hard Candy." Over a squelching beat, the two pop superstars try to save the world in four minutes; you certainly can't claim that they lack ambition.
"Hot Boyz," Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott Feat. Nas, Eve & Q-Tip<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 5
Missy’s tone on this song may be a sexy one, but she’s really scheming on how to drain a fly guy of all his cash, jewels and cars. The lyrics match Tim’s menacing production, which is filled with hard snares and kicks.
"What Goes Around… Comes Around," Justin Timberlake<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 1
After opening the "FutureSex/Love Sounds" cycle with a couple of remix-ready bangers ("SexyBack," "My Love"), JT and Timbaland slowed things down for single number three. In what many called an updated take on "Cry Me A River," a down-but-not-out Timberlake shed some tears but promised his ex wouldn't escape the bad karma.The track thrives in edited-for-radio format, but even better in its pure, seven-and-a-half-minute album form, majestically bridging "LoveStoned" and "Damn Girl."
"Say It Right," Nelly Furtado<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 1
The first two singles from Nelly Furtado's "Loose" album, "Promiscuous" and "Maneater," were profoundly uninhibited and explicitly sexual; the third radio offering, "Say It Right," scored by peaking into the singer's vulnerable side. Timbaland's production is all distant call and harrowing percussion, and takes center stage after the abrupt end of the third verse.
"My Love," Justin Timberlake Feat. T.I.<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 1 (3 weeks)
"Ain't another woman that can take your spot my --" begins one of JT's most undeniable dance tracks, immediately turning on Timbaland's unhinged synth riffs and snappy beats. Combined with "Sexyback," Timberlake's first two "FutureSex/LoveSounds" singles spent 10 weeks atop the Hot 100 in 2006.
"Try Again," Aaliyah<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 1
The highlight of the “Romeo Must Die” soundtrack, this Aaliyah jam carries a knocking beat, and the scrambled noise pleasantly smeared throughout the cut exhibits TImbaland’s ability to showcase odd sounds within a hit song.
"Work It," Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 2 (10 weeks)
Timbo, with Missy in tow, takes hip-hop to a realm it hardly travels. The "Under Construction" singles finds Elliott being as sexually aggressive as a male rapper would be, anxious to hop in bed with a man and show him what’s she’s made of. The siren blaring should be annoying; instead, fans cranked “Work It” up.
"Sexyback," Justin Timberlake<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 1 (7 weeks)
While recording his second solo album, Justin Timberlake grew tired of the sound dominating pop radio and recorded something a little different. On "SexyBack" -- the first single from 2006's "FutureSex/LoveSounds" -- JT ditched much of his pretty boy persona and sang like a rocker. With one of Timbaland's most recognizable beats and some instantly-quotable lyrics, Timberlake sounded sexier than ever. Take it to the chorus!
"The Way I Are," Timbaland Feat. Keri Hilson<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 3
Excuse the poor grammar and just bounce to that ascending-then-descending beat: after scoring a hit with "Give It To Me," Timbaland unearthed a bigger one with the second radio offering from his 2007 "Shock Value" album. Long before "Turnin' Me On," "Knock You Down" and "Pretty Girl Rock," Keri Hilson was effectively introduced to the world on this cut.
"Promiscuous," Nelly Furtado Feat. Timbaland<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 1 (6 weeks)
For Nelly Furtado's 2006 album "Loose," Timbaland took the one-time pop-folk singer and made her a bit more… promiscuous. On the first of the album's many smash singles, Tim and Nelly play the parts of a just-met couple, trading come-ons and feeling out each other's motives.
"Apologize," Timbaland feat. OneRepublic<br>Hot 100 Peak Position: 2 (4 weeks)
Timbaland's biggest hit to date is… a downcast alt-rock anthem? As crazy as it sounds, the R&B/hip-hop specialist delivered his most successful Hot 100 track when he teamed up with OneRepublic and frontman/songwriter Ryan Tedder for a track buried at No. 16 on his "Shock Value" album. Although it never made it to the No. 1 spot, the song enjoyed a 47-week run on the Hot 100.