In Celebration Of Gwen Stefani: 12 Of The Best Songs From Our Favorite Hollaback Girl
Gwen Stefani has always been the ultra-cool dark horse of mainstream female musicians, ever since her debut as the lead singer of No Doubt back in 1986. Her belly-baring, bindi-wearing, badass persona set her apart from all of the Britneys and Christinas of the world. Back in 2004, she made that distinction very clear when she traded in the ska punk sounds of her band for a quirkier, synth-driven influence.
That year Stefani released her debut album Love.Angel.Music.Baby, a record that set a precedent for what modern pop music should sound like. Her third project coming soon with “Baby Don’t Lie” as the lead single, so we hope this comeback makes an impression that shakes up the industry as much as her first album did a decade ago.
Today (November 21), we are celebrating the 10th anniversary of the L.A.M.B. LP by taking a look back on some of the singer’s best musical moments. Read on after the jump to see Gwen Stefani’s 12 best songs, from Tragic Kingdom to Sweet Escape — and everything in between!
12. “Bubble Pop Electric” — Gwen Stefani (2004)
Kicking off this list is one of the more underrated songs from Stefani’s solo career. “Bubble Pop Electric,” a deep cut from Love.Angel.Music.Baby is a totally kitsch and campy song about having sex at a drive-in movie. But the singer somehow keeps the super-bubbly (pun intended) track from being too cheesy, and more nostalgic — think Grease on speed. Plus, the suave cameo from Andre 3000 (a.k.a. Johnny Vulture) makes it all the more fun!
11. “Hey Baby” — No Doubt (2001)
No Doubt is mainly known for their ska/punk sound, but songs like “Hey Baby” showed off the band’s love for a reggae vibe! From their fifth studio LP Rock Steady, the tune includes a fun mix of electro synths fit for a ’90s video game and Stefani’s calm, nonchalant vocals. The feature from dancehall icon Bounty Killer made the track all the more authentic! “Hey Baby” went on to win a Grammy in 2003 for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal.
10. “4 In The Morning” — Gwen Stefani (2006)
This next song shows just how versatile Gwen Stefani truly is! “4 In The Morning,” from the singer’s sophomore LP Sweet Escape, is a breezy yet emotive ’80s-ballad that highlights her tender vocals. Tony Kanal, No Doubt’s bassist and frequent collaborator on Stefani’s solo work, co-wrote and produced the track. The result is a dreamy yet distraught plea for a lover to make up his mind. “4 In The Morning” was a definite shift from the album’s other crazed pop tracks, which made it all the more refreshing and memorable.