Fitting Beyonce into one particular genre is a difficult task. However, the megastar’s roots in R&B and by extension, Hip Hop, remain prominent in her catalog. Although not shy of spitting bars when the time calls for it, she doesn’t hesitate to call on hip-hop’s luminaries for some assistance. Of course, her husband Jay-Z remains one of her most frequent collaborators, having joined forces as The Carters for 2018’s Everything Is Love. Nonetheless, Beyonce has enlisted several Hip Hop stars for some timeless collaborations over the years.
Besides her chart-topping hits as a lead artist, Beyonce has been a featured artist on numerous songs. She has lent her vocals to songs by many notable stars, from singers Alicia Keys and Mary J. Blige to rappers Megan Thee Stallion, Nicki Minaj, and Missy Elliot, among others. Most recently, she linked up with Kendrick Lamar for the official remix of “America Has A Problem.” Notwithstanding, Beyonce’s best collabs shine when she’s in the lead spot, and these are the best of the bunch.
11. “Mine” Feat. Drake (2013)
Beyoncé and Drake developed a very successful working relationship over the years. The pair collaborated on the song “Mine” off Beyoncé’s eponymous fifth album. The smooth track features both artists singing in unison about reaffirming love in the midst of doubt, before Drake tops it off with a rap-sung verse. “Mine” packs several genre elements into its runtime, from the elements of Afrobeats in the catchy refrain to the subtle trap references. Upon its release, “Mine” became one of the immediate standouts from the album.
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10. “Flawless (Remix)” Feat. Nicki Minaj
Before the remix of “Flawless,” Nicki Minaj had recorded unofficial verses to Beyoncé’s songs in the past, such as her “Single Ladies” remix. This led to many fans clamoring for the pair to officially collaborate. Beyoncé and Nicki would later team up for the remix of the confident “I woke up like this” anthem. Minaj also delivered a magnificent verse, and the song was praised by fans of both artists respectively.
9. “Ego (Remix)” feat. Kanye West
“Ego” is a sultry, risqué number packed with several innuendos. On the track, Beyoncé sings proudly about her strong and confident man. For the remix, Beyoncé personally handpicked Kanye West for this classic Hip Hop collab. The singer stated that she chose West because he’s the embodiment of the word. Thanks to Kanye’s cocky lines and undeniable swag, the song became greatly elevated.
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8. “Mood 4 Eva” Feat. Jay-Z And Childish Gambino
By the release of the album The Lion King: The Gift, Beyoncé had already been hailed as a certified queen. Regardless of this fact, she decided to reiterate her successes once again on “Mood 4 Eva.” Beyoncé tapped her husband Jay-Z for this bold and cocky tune, and in true fashion, he delivered his signature braggadocio. With lines like, “y’all make me chuckle, stay in your struggle,” Beyoncé let the haters know she was privy to their talks but continues to elevate despite them. Also featured on the slick, tropical tune is Childish Gambino, who provides a soft, yet groovy bridge.
7. “America Has A Problem (Remix)” Feat. Kendrick Lamar
On a surface level, the title “America Has A Problem” bred anticipation of a political anthem that would sit alongside the likes of “Freedom” and “Formation”. However, Beyoncé shocked her fans by releasing a song about how her sex appeal is, in fact, the problem. On the remix, Kendrick Lamar joins Bey to spit fire on the heavy-hitting beat. It might not be their best release as a duo, but “America Has A Problem” packs enough heat to stay memorable.
6. “Drunk In Love” Feat. Jay-Z
In 2013, Beyoncé had everyone, young and old, singing about drinking watermelon. “Drunk In Love” is one of Beyoncé and Jay’s most iconic Hip Hop collabs as a duo. The couple flowed effortlessly over a thumping beat, singing and rapping about their raunchy love-making sessions. “Drunk in Love” further proved to be a cultural reset, taking radio stations by storm. Unofficially dubbed the sequel to “Crazy in Love,” the single is also a testament to their thriving chemistry as a couple and collaborators an entire decade after their first collab.
5. “Party” Feat. Kanye West, Andre 3000 & J. Cole
“Party” ranks pretty high among Beyoncé’s most radio-friendly singles. The song has become a cookout staple among many African American households. Over a groovy, futuristic beat, Beyoncé sings about having a good time with her lover. Depending on whether you opt for the album version or music video, you’ll be treated to a spunky rap verse from either Andre 3000 or J. Cole. Regardless, expect to start and end the song with none other than Kanye West’s voice. His witty phrase “drippin swagu” quickly became a hit and has been repeated by many listeners over the years.
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4. “Upgrade U” Feat. Jay-Z
A song beginning with Jay-Z telling Beyoncé to talk her shit is expected to cause some raucous. With “Upgrade U”, Beyoncé let Jay know that his life would be incomplete with her. Unsurprisingly, “Upgrade U” is also one of the most popular songs from her sophomore album B’Day. While she sang about being a supportive woman, she made it clear that she’s his equal, and is always gonna split the bill. “Upgrade U” is, at its core, a woman telling her man that she’s the best way to transform his life into one of power and luxury. Furthermore, the song’s music video is also a fan favorite, and features Beyoncé dressed as both herself and Jay-Z, indicating that she’s capable of wearing the pants.
Occasionally, Beyoncé has dabbled in the world of film. In 2006, she appeared in the spy comedy The Pink Panther, led by a hilarious turn from Steve Martin. For the movie, she recorded the chart-topping single “Check On It”, which featured Slim Thug and Bun B. “Check On It” is a fun and sexy number showing off the singer’s ability to tease her man with her looks and dance moves. Slim Thug and Bun B provide a brilliant contrast to the song’s playful nature, with some pumped-up rap lines.
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2. “Freedom” Feat. Kendrick Lamar
The first of many Hip Hop collaborations between Beyoncé and Kendrick Lamar is still the most powerful. “Freedom” follows Beyoncé challenging the powers that be and encouraging Black women to break free from society’s chokehold. “Freedom” is a charged-up anthem with both gospel and protest music influences that tackles the problems of many Black women. As expected, Kendrick Lamar delivers a stirring verse about institutionalized racism, police brutality, and other important struggles that many Black communities in America face.
1. “Crazy in Love” Feat. Jay-Z
Beyoncé and Jay-Z are one of the most powerful couples on the planet. Back in 2003, it was impossible to fathom the future extent of their legacies. However, “Crazy in Love” succeeded in signaling the rise of a magnanimous partnership. Heralded as Beyoncé’s signature song, “Crazy in Love” is also one of the most acclaimed Hip Hop collabs of all time. The song that unleashed the singer to superstardom proved a game changer. Backed by a stellar rap verse by Jay-Z, “Crazy in Love” marked a defining moment in both artists’ careers. With a white tank top and shorts, Beyoncé kicked off her solo career. Twenty years later, the pair continue to perform the song religiously.