08. Outkast – Hey Ya!

Need more awesome? Listen to our FAVORITE SONGS OF 2014. Make sure you don't miss any tunes: FOLLOW US ON TWITTER.

08. Outkast   Hey Ya! Artwork by Adam Sarpalius

As 2009, and the decade come to a close, PMA will be looking back at our favorite songs of the last ten years. We will update a list with 75 empty slots until we reach that song that changed everything. You can keep track of this list by keeping an eye on this page. We make these lists in hopes that you guys will chime in the comments and share your favorite musical moments of the noughties.


08. Outkast   Hey Ya! One morning in late-September of 2003, I woke to my television on and tuned to MTV. (I must have been watching Real World/Road Rules Challenge the night before, the only reason to watch MTV at the time.) I turned over at saw Outkast’s Andre 3000 in eight incarnations, joyfully paying homage to the Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show. I listened in my semi-stupor, and as I turned over to fall back asleep I thought, God, I love this song. Only later did I realize I had never heard it before.

Such is the brilliance of “Hey Ya!,” a song whose instant likability belies a remarkable level of complexity and virtuosity. The song has been so ubiquitous, that its novelty is easily taken for granted. Its meter unexpectedly shifts between 4/4 and 2/4, giving it an odd, syncopated beat. The tempo, a brisk 160 BPM, never feels rushed, thanks to its bass line. Andre’s vocal spans a range of over an octave and a half, from its half-spoken verse to its giddy height at the chorus. Its lyric is responsible for adding idioms like “shake it like a Polaroid picture” into the vernacular. All told, no small feat for one single.

Repetition may have diminished its immediacy, but “Hey Ya!” remains a mini-masterpiece, and the defining instant-classic of the decade. -Peter Tabakis

What did you think?
 0  0  0  0
Erik-Hassle
Videos

Also, a remix from Chrome Sparks

READ MORE
radiohead
Music

One of these may appear on the band’s new album

READ MORE
SBTRKT Wonder Where We Land
Favorite Songs

The strangest collaboration we’ve heard in a while.

READ MORE
SBTRKT Wonder Where We Land
News

The album’s first single features Vampire Weekend vocalist Ezra Koenig.

READ MORE
spoon 2014
Music

Another new song and creepy video from our most anticipated record of 2014.

READ MORE
flying lotus
News

We have some news about the follow-up to Until the Quiet Comes.

READ MORE
banks
Music

Hear another one from the LA songstress’s hotly anticipated Goddess.

READ MORE
1268658_552919034756260_1012062544_o
Music

London-based rock duo 2:54 (made up of sisters Hannah and Colette Thurlow) released a fairly…

READ MORE
raveonettes peahi
Music

Stream two songs, “Endless Sleeper” and “Sisters,” too.

READ MORE