According to Spotify, and just the common knowledge of anyone that knows me, Drake is my top artist of the decade. Although I’ve been familiar with Drake’s music since his video from “Replacement Girl” played during Degrassi commercial breaks in 2007, I will say he’s been a real heavy hitter this past decade, putting out a ton of music that I listen to frequently. I highlighted what I felt was his best song from each year of this decade, from non singles like “Karaoke” to popular songs like “0 to 100.”
2010 was the year that Drake’s debut album, Thank Me Later, came out. “Karaoke” is a different vibe than Drake was doing before and after and introduced Francis and The Lights to hip hop before Chance The Rapper and Kanye worked with him later in the decade.
2011: “Free Spirit”/”Marvin’s Room”
Drake released a lot of one offs songs before releasing his second album Take Care. While “Marvin’s Room” was the most popular and eventually went on the album, my favorite was “Free Spirit.” The iconic chorus, “tatt my name on it so I know its real” was so fun and provocative, and eventually led to a woman getting “Drake” tattooed on her forehead.
2012: “Girls Love Beyonce”
With a title like “Girls Love Beyonce,” you aren’t sure what to expect from the song. The opening line, “You now that girls love Beyonce, girls will fuck with your conscious” shows that the song was going to talk about the perils of finding someone good enough to let in.
2013: “All Me”
“Hoe, shut the fuck up!” While this was Big Sean’s opening verse, this song let all the collaborators shine and could have been a strong single for any of the artists.
2014: “0 To 100”
“Know yourself, know your worth” is an inspiring line from a song that could have been categorized as your typical braggadocios rap song that stepped outside of that category. Drake shows his vulnerable side with the line about his father not showing up. This beat also did lead to a fight between Diddy and Drake at a night club.
2015: “Back To Back”
A diss track that won a Grammy. This song still holds up and is a fun listen even though Drake and Meek Mill patched things up.
During Drake full on island phase, we did get this gem that I’m pretty sure if about Rhianna.
2017: “Free Smoke”
A great intro track from Drakes “playlist” project, More Life, Drake takes us through a brief history of his come up.
“Low down, dirty, shameful, crazy.” Wow Drake, tell us how you really feel. If he had to get his heartbroken by Jorja Smith for the perfect pairing of “Summer Games” and “Jaded,” it was so worth it. Also, great use of the uncredited feature of Ty Dolla $ign.
2019: “Money In The Grave”
Back when Drake felt that he won a NBA championship with the Raptors, he released this song. I’m not a huge Rick Ross fan, but I believe all the songs that him and Drake do together are strong.