Best songs of 2014
Entertainment & Playlists

25 Best Songs of 2014 (Top Picks)

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Written By Will Fenton
Entertainment & Playlists

25 Best Songs of 2014 (Top Picks)

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It was a successful year for Nicki Minaj.

Ariana Grande was only getting better and better after her 2011 debut.

Beyoncé and Jay-Z released one of the best romantic songs of the year.

2014 was a special year for many artists. 

Keep scrolling for our top picks of the 25 best songs of 2014. 

1. “Fancy” by Iggy Azalea

2014 confirmed Iggy Azalea as one of the hottest Australian rappers.

And that showed in her memorable electro-pop song.

The song was part of Iggy’s 2014 debut album, The New Classic, and grabbed her fans’ attention worldwide. 

It reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, besides topping the charts in New Zealand and Canada. 

2. “Anaconda” by Nicki Minaj

Nicki Minaj laid a strong claim for the best rapper of 2014 with songs like “Anaconda.”

If you listened to the 2014 music, you might recall the song’s sensual lyrics.

Sir Mix-A-Lot’s “Baby Got Back” inspired the lyrics, where he sings about ladies with huge behinds. 

3. “Wiggle” by Jason Derulo

Jason Derulo collaborated with Snoop Dogg for one of the hottest collaborations of 2014.

And the song was titled “Wiggle,” an upbeat, club-ready tune about a woman’s behind. 

It’s basically about girls twerking while showing what their mama gave them. 

The song was one of the five collaborations from Derulo’s studio album, Talk Dirty, released exclusively in the US in 2014. 

4. “Bang Bang” by Nicki Minaj

2014, three of the biggest female artists came together for an empowering girl anthem

Listening to Nicki Minaj’s songs from the bygone years is always fun. 

And the “Bang Bang” song featuring the Trinidand-born rapper will always be many people’s favorite.

From the sweet vocals to the bouncy beat and the empowering message, it had everything music lovers needed for the year.

5. “Summer” by Calvin Harris

The excitement of first love is unexplainable.

The intense feeling can only be captured by songs as good as Calvin Harris’ “Summer.”

The 2014 track is about a summer romance that was never meant to be.

The guy in the song finds a special someone in the summer, but the relationship is already at a dead end as fall comes.

The only bad thing about the pure joy of first love is that it’s always short-lived.

Many people resonated with Calvin Harris’ song, reflecting on those intense moments they’ve had with their first lovers, only for the inevitable heartbreak to rip them apart. 

6. “Lifestyle” by Rich Gang

Rap music and bragging didn’t start today if Rich Gang’s 2014 song is anything to go by.

The song, featuring fellow American rappers Rich Homie Quan and Young Thug, is about the flashy lifestyle many rappers portray.

They spend money how they wish, bedding any woman they want and living large. 

“Lifestyle” was one of the most popular songs in 2014, becoming even more popular amongst younger listeners.

It topped the US R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay chart and peaked at #16 on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart. 

It was certified platinum in the US and received positive reviews, with some describing it as an “all-encompassing generational hip hop party track.”

7. “Break Free” by Ariana Grande

You can’t talk about the best songs of 2014 without mentioning one of Ariana Grande’s most recognizable hits of the decade.

“Break Free” is a song about getting out of those relationships that only bring you pain.

It’s a female liberation anthem that resonated with many listeners, encouraging them to celebrate the independence of breaking free from toxic lovers. 

8. “Bailando” by Enrique Iglesias

Do you all remember Enrique Iglesias’ Spanish dance song that went straight to #1 on the Latin streaming charts? 

“Bailando” means dancing, as the narrator admires a sexy girl setting the dance floor ablaze.

It’s a common theme in Latin music, and Enrique only continued the trend in 2014.

He released “Bailando” for his 10th studio album, Sex and Love (2014), and has continued to captivate listeners worldwide, leaning more towards Latin fans. 

9. “No Mediocre” by T.I. 

Let’s hope you haven’t forgotten T.I.’s sexy anthem of 2014.

T.I. is very clear that he won’t sleep with any woman just for the sake of it. 

That’s what he calls mediocre.

The American rapper only has a taste for fine women. 

Or, as he puts it, a “bad bitch with attitude, a pretty face, and a “fat ass.”

10. “Happy” by Pharrell Williams

Pharrell Williams found a way to connect with his fans via a rhythmic song about happiness.

The happiness expressed by the lyrics is so contagious you can hardly ignore it.

The lyrics encourage the listeners to be happy and smile even on bad days. 

Happy” was one of the most uplifting tunes of 2014, spreading a message of happiness, joy, and contentment. 

11. “Dark Horse” by Katy Perry ft. Juicy J

Katy Perry knows the dark, painful side of love, having been heartbroken multiple times. 

In “Dark Horses,” she assumes the role of an evil woman, capable of offering intense love or becoming your worst enemy.

It’s a classic case of sweet but poison.

And the singer makes it clear to her secret admirer that he must be ready for both sides if they are getting into a relationship. 

Then comes Juicy J, comparing Katy Perry’s love to karma and how it can turn your life upside down when least expected. 

“Dark Horse” was a global success, topping the charts in the US and Canada. 

12. “Stay With Me” by Sam Smith

Sam Smith’s breakthrough hit single speaks of emotional heartbreak and the singer’s troubled love life. 

But the failed romance didn’t stop him from winning two Grammy awards with “Stay With Me.”

The hit song from Sam’s In The Lonely Hour debut album welcomed him to the music industry, now boasting a career set to continue for many years. 

13. “Shake It Off” by Taylor Swift

It’s almost a decade since Taylor Swift went after her haters in “Shake It Off.”

Interestingly, the message still resonates with contemporary pop music lovers. 

The song’s lyrics were directed at the haters and pretenders who always spread lies about her life. 

The American singer has had enough of them and had this as the perfect album opener for 1989.

The up-tempo bop is still remembered as one of the best songs of 2014, with over 3 billion YouTube views. 

14. “Let Her Go” by Passenger

“Only know your lover when you let her go.”

Everybody who listened to the best songs of 2014 will remember that line from Passenger’s song.

“Let Her Go” was one of the year’s most popular songs about a man who regrets breaking up with his girlfriend. 

The remorseful singer now realizes what a gem he’s lost while using different metaphors to express his regret.

Ultimately, the song’s message goes beyond love and relationships and more about life and how people never appreciate what they have until they lose them. 

15. “Animals” by Maroon 5

Maroon 5’s “Animals” is another irresistible hit from 2014.

Many listeners interpret the catchy lyrics differently.

And once the song gets into your head, there’s no turning back.

16. “Drunk In Love” by Beyoncé ft. Jay-Z

2014 got even better with a husband-wife collaboration on “Drunk In Love.”

Beyoncé’s hit song with her rapper husband Jay-Z made everyone believe in the magic of love.

The lyrics describe the American pop singer’s euphoria of falling in love.

She’s consumed by this person’s romance and feels like an intoxicated woman.

Beyoncé passionately sings the sensual lyrics, giving us a glimpse of their private lives.

17. “Turn Down For What” by DJ Snake ft. Lil Jon

DJ Snake’s “Turn Down For What” was one of the best party anthems of 2014, with the Algerian-French music producer bringing the southern trap music vibes to keep the party going. 

The song’s obsessive chorus, “Turn down for what? Turn down for what? Turn down for what? Turn down for what? Turn down for what?” stuck in every listener’s mind. 

It’s a song about having those good times on the dance floor in good company. 

At that point, nothing matters more than grooving to the tune.

Not even the morning-after hangovers. 

18. “Blank Space” by Taylor Swift

If you combine “Blank Space” with “Shake It Off” and “Bad Blood,” you will know why Taylor Swift was one of the most popular singers in 2014.

“Blank Space” is one of the most recognizable songs from Taylor’s 1989 debut album, released in November 2014. 

It topped the Billboard Hot 100 chart for seven weeks, was eight times platinum certified, and was nominated for Record of the Year and Song of the Year at the 58th Grammy Awards.

Lyrically, the song expresses the crazy side of Taylor Swift when matters of the heart are involved.

19. “Problem” by Ariana Grande

Ariana Grande is a celebrated pop superstar who shot to fame in 2011 with “Put Your Hearts Up.”

One of her best songs of 2014 was “Problem,” expressing the fear of reigniting broken love.

It’s a real tragedy trying to get over a broken relationship when that’s the only thing the heart craves the most.

The up-tempo dance-pop song with R&B elements and funk influences became one of the best songs of 2014. 

You can find it on Ariana’s My Everything album, which also featured “Bang Bang,” “Break Free,” and “Love Me Harder.”

20. “Chandelier” by Sia

Sia’s song about alcoholism and drug addiction became one of the anthems of 2014. 

The lyrics describe a hedonistic lifestyle, where the party girls live to the fullest, with little care about morals. 

Sia admits that the cheap thrills don’t solve her problems, as her life is still filled with pain, tears, and emptiness. 

The narration fits the dark stage in many people’s lives, which makes the lyrics relatable for the 2014 electro-pop music lovers. 

21. “No Flex Zone” by Rae Sremmurd

“No flex zone, no flex zone.”

American rap duo Rae Sremmurd announced their arrival to the 2014 hip-hop music scene with a debut single that would ultimately earn them global success.

Anybody who wanted to vibe out and be themselves would listen to “No Flex Zone,” one of the duo’s best-ever songs.

The rappers are simply saying that there’s no need to flex. 

Instead, be yourself. 

22. “Maps” by Maroon 5

The search for love can take you to places you never imagined.

But it hurts if it’s one of those one-sided relationships or one party has decided to move on.

“Maps” is about Adam Levine trying to rekindle a broken relationship after his lover left him at his lowest moment.

The lyrics encourage the listeners to never give up on a relationship, even when it looks impossible to salvage. 

The song earned impressive reviews from critics, becoming one of the best singles of 2014. 

23. “Just One Of The Guys” by Jenny Lewis 

Jenny Lewis tackles womanhood in a playful and witty manner that many people find enjoyable. 

The catchy tune describes her biological clock, knowing too well it won’t be long before it’s too late to find the man of her dreams. 

It can also be viewed as a song about the struggles of a modern woman in a world of insane expectations. 

This was Jenny making a comeback after a 6-year hiatus, and it’s fair to say the wait was worth it. 

24. “Move That Dope” by Future ft. Pusha T, Pharrell, Casino

“Move That Dope” is a song from Future’s 2nd studio album, Honest.

The lyrics describe narcotics.

And the beat made it one of the best songs of 2014. 

The song was designed for younger listeners, especially African Americans. 

25. “Every Breaking Wave” by U2

U2 used the sea metaphor and the constantly changing waves to describe life’s uncertainties and mental fragility. 

The lyrics describe the pressure of friendship and the difficulties of maintaining a relationship even when you’re addicted to one another. 

The relatable message made it a beloved song in 2014.

Best Songs of 2014 – Final Thoughts

It might not have been the greatest year, but 2014 was a special moment for many artists.

Rae Sremmurd was debuting with “No Flex Zone,” Taylor Swift was going after the haters in “Shake It Off,” and Sam Smith was announcing his arrival in the pop music scene with “Stay With Me.” 

Indeed, fans were treated to some of the greatest hits across different music genres.

That was our round-up of the 25 best songs of 2014.


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