Ah, the art of twerking, rump shaking, booty bouncing, ass clapping, etc. However you choose to refer to it, it always looks the same. While many feel as though twerking is a newfound phenomenon, it actually began many eons ago. It is a known fact that even the Greek gods and goddesses would have twerk competitions atop Mount Olympus as Zeus watched on in amusement. #funfact
Regardless of where it began, there is no argument that it has come a long way from backyard booty bounces, to the forefront of mass media. As we look back at the history of the twerk, there are an abundance of videos that showcase those who have managed to master the difficult art. Take a look at this list of some of my personal favorites over the years, in no particular order. But maybe a little bit of an order.
Tip Drill – Nelly
Why not begin with one of the most infamous twerk videos of all time? Before we even dubbed it the “twerk,” Nelly had capitalized on the entire booty shaking industry in a way that nobody had ever seen before. As the undisputed king of BET: Uncut, Nelly showed us things most only get to see after paying a steep cover at the door.
Anaconda – Nicki Minaj
You’ll notice that many of the names on this list are from the male population. For some reason, it isn’t as common for women to star in their own booty shaking videos, as it is for them to be featured in them. Nicki Minaj clearly made some vow to change this unwritten rule. “Anaconda” not only became a social media phenomenon, but goodness her ass looked AMAZING. Honestly, Nicki, you didn’t even have to move. I would have enjoyed watching you stand in the jungle for 4 minutes and 32 seconds. But you did. In a thong. Thank you.
Donk – Soulja Boy
Say what you want about Soulja Boy, but don’t say he didn’t give us one of the best club tracks of the decade. Video aside, I’ve done some grade A twerking myself to this song. The visuals just made it that much better. I wonder what the audition for that video was like?
Birthday Song – 2 Chainz
This video can make the list from the first 14 seconds of the video, alone. The steady side-to-side movement of the perfectly sculpted booties? Perfecto. 2 Chainz really knows how to make the most vulgar dance moves look elegant. Would it be far fetched to call him a genius? Yes? Ok.
Pour It Up – Rihanna
Rihanna. My dear, sweet Rihanna. She gives hope to us proud members of the Little Tootie Community. While all the videos on this list are different, the one they have in common is the size of the booties. Rih, my self-appointed best friend, showed us that you don’t need to have a bunch of junk in your trunk to be a top flight twerker. It helps, yes. But do you need it? NO! Thank you, Rihanna for proving all our naysayers wrong. Go to hell naysayers! *continues to twerk with a bitty booty*
Get Low – Lil Jon and The Eastside Boys ft. The Ying Yang Twins
I’ll be honest. This is a great twerk video, but I made the executive decision to put it on this list because it’s a song I hold near and dear to my heart. As a skinny 8th grader who spent her previous years at a Catholic School, I had no idea what it meant to “shake what my mama gave me.” My lunch money?? Anywho, my first year in public school I found myself at a school dance with no idea what to do. Then this song blared over the speakers, and spoke to me. “TILL THE SWEAT DRIP FROM MY BAWLS!” ..and it was then that I experienced my first twerk. Thank you, Lil Jon and The Eastside Boys (featuring the Ying Yang Twins), I don’t know where I would be without you.
Pop Lock and Drop It – Huey
What’s better than twerking? Choreographed twerking. Honestly, this song was perfect for those young and old. The rookies and the vets could make the most out of this. Simply follow the steps, and you’re in the clear. If you feel confident, add a little twist to it.
I Luv Dem Strippers – 2 Chainz ft. Nicki Minaj
In my opinion, this is one of the best music videos of ALL TIME. *In Kanye’s voice* Where else can you watch world class professional strippers for 5 easy payments of free.99?! Not to mention you’ve got Nicki thrown in the mix. It’s almost unfathomable.
Baby Got Back – Sir Mix a Lot
Are you allowed to make a list about anything booty-related without adding this song? Is that legal? I feel like if I left it out, I would get a summons in the mail or something. Anyway, he’s sitting on top of a giant ass. While girls stand around shaking their asses. He deserves a framed poster in my living room for the strides he made.
Look Back At Me – Trina
Because any song that starts out, “I got an ass so big like the sun” deserves to be on any and every list, relevant or not. Have you seen Trina’s backside? Have you seen her MOVE her backside? I had the pleasure of seeing it live and thankfully, unlike the sun, you can look directly at it without burning your retinas.
Oochie Wally – Nas
What makes this video so great, besides Nas’ astonishingly handsome face, is the undisclosed metaphor he is making to his penis all throughout the song. As the girls are twisting and turning and shaking and bouncing, you almost miss the point Nasir is trying to make as he poses as a snake charmer. I wonder if the girls know, or were they hypnotized by the snake charmer?
Back That Azz Up – Juvenile
Finally. The cream of the crop. The song that sends girls flying from their seats and men leaping from their wall posts. The best twerk song to ever be created. To be honest, this song is legendary that the video could literally be a small furry animal playing in a cage and this song would still make the list on merit alone. From the very first note, this song turns more heads than Paul Revere. The video (obviously) features mucho twerko from various women. Visual art at its finest.