- On September 8, 2023
The 90s introduced us to wild raves and a plethora of timeless classics. It marked the rise of boy and girl bands, electronic music, hip-hop, and Euro-dance. Let’s dive into this compilation of 90s dance anthems. They’re not listed in any particular order, but when these tunes burst from a set of speakers, the dance floor would instantly come alive. In fact, it’s quite likely that people still groove to these beats even after more than two decades have passed.
Faith Evans – Love Like This (1998)
During the late 1990s, the revamped rendition of this song soared to the top of every DJ’s playlist. The unmistakable rhymes of Fatman Scoop paired with Faith’s delicate vocals created a perfect harmony in the realm of R&B.
Mark Morrison – Return of the Mack (1996)
This British one-hit wonder is the perfect tune to rekindle your spirit and get you back in the game. Morrison’s track became a staple on any classic R&B night’s playlist, and you know what? The album wasn’t too shabby either.
Cher – Believe (Life After Love) (1998)
Do you believe that after 20+ albums, this was just Cher’s second single to hit number one in Australia? Reinventing herself yet again, this dance-pop song had dance floors heating up all over the world.
Naughty by Nature – Hip Hop Hooray (1993)
Vinnie, Treach, and DJ Kay Gee joined forces to create this beloved party anthem and homage to hip hop. They pieced it together using a diverse array of samples, including one from Peter Gabriel’s Sledgehammer. The track enjoyed a one-week reign at the top spot on the US Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart and climbed to number eight on the Billboard Hot 100.
MC Hammer – U Can’t Touch This (1990)
This catchy tune is undoubtedly MC Hammer’s iconic track, and it made history as the first rap song ever to receive a Grammy Award nomination for Record of the Year at the 33rd Annual Grammy Awards in 1991. Admit it, you’ve probably given the Hammer dance a try at least once!
Vanilla Ice – Ice Ice Baby (1990)
Much like Mr. Hammer, Mr. Ice achieved iconic status in the 1990s, thanks in large part to this track. Among his impressive list of achievements, this song notably became the first hip-hop single to reach the pinnacle of the Billboard Hot 100 chart.
Blur – Song 2 (1997)
Named after the length of the song (2:02) and the placement on Blur’s fifth album (track 2), there’s not a lot of songs you’d rather sing along to with your crew when the party is really getting going. Sure, the lyrics might not make a lot of sense, but who cares? Woo-hoo!
Dr. Dre feat. Snoop Dogg – The Next Episode (1999)
Who could mistake the opening notes from this follow-up to Dre and Snoop’s 1993 hit Nuthin’ but a ‘G’ Thang. The beat behind the track featured Dr. Dre’s signature style along with additional input from fellow Aftermath producer Mel-Man.
Chumbawamba – Tubthumping (1997)
No doubt the the pubiest of all pub songs, Tubthumping peaked at number two on the UK Singles Chart. It topped the charts in Australia, Italy, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, and hit number six on the US Billboard Hot 100.
Marky Mark & The Funky Bunch – Good Vibrations (1991)
Kids today would be shocked to hear that the old guy from those Transformers movies had a smash pop hit as a rapper back in the day! The early 90s dance beat and classic sample from Loleatta Holloway’s ‘Love Sensation’ made sure this one was a hit around the world, and it never fails to bring the good vibes to any party.
Smash Mouth – All Star (1999)
The ultimate outcast anthem with some of the catchiest opening lyrics of the 90s, Smash Mouth cracked the Australian top 10 for the second time with this megahit. Its hilarious use in the movie Shrek further cemented its place in pop culture history.
Real McCoy – Another Night (1993)
The German Eurodance and pop music project Real McCoy struck gold with this booming hit from the 1990s, achieving multi-platinum success. The track showcased the vocals of Karin Kasar and the rap stylings of the band’s founder, O-Jay Jeglitza.
Steps – 5, 6, 7, 8 (1997)
Bet you can’t name another country techno mashup that gets Aussie dance floors going like this one! A number hit down under, when the DJ plays this it’s time to get in line. 5-6-7-8!
Deee-Lite – Groove Is In The Heart (1990)
Groove is wherever this song is played, but especially in Australia which is the only country where it hit number one on the charts. A groovy mix of disco, funk, house and hip hop, with a rap by Q-Tip of A Tribe Called Quest, this one will really get the heart pumping!
Hanson – MMMBop (1997)
You might think you’re cool, but you’re not too cool to sing along with this pop smash when you hear it. The Hanson brothers exploded onto the scene with this gigantic hit that went straight to number one across the world.
S Club 7 – Bring It On Back (1999)
Another hit from another 90s UK pop band that stands the test of time. It’s a catchy pop song that charted all over the world and has been covered by a number of artists over the last 20 years. There’s never a bad time to bring this on back to the dance floor!
Spice Girls – Wannabe (1996)
Probably the biggest hit on this list, the Spice Girls absolutely exploded onto the music scene with Wannabe. This was the group’s debut single and it went to number one in 37 countries! Next time you’re partying, make sure you tell the DJ what you want, what you really really want.
2 Unlimited – No Limit (1993)
After a debut gold album that spawned a number one single, 2 Unlimited came back with the lead single to their second album and found themselves with the biggest hit of their career. The Belgian/Dutch dance crew’s stand-out track still gets the party going with its energetic beats and smooth and catchy vocals.
Daft Punk – Around The World (1997)
While the lyrics may not have been particularly deep, the infectious groove of this song certainly was. Hailing from the enigmatic French duo, the track became a massive club hit globally and managed to secure the top spot on the dance charts in Canada, the UK, and the US.
Darude – Sandstorm (1999)
Upon its release, this Finnish techno song quickly achieved mainstream success and has managed to stay relevant as a popular choice for sporting events and as background music for a wide variety of online videos.
Ace Of Base – Beautiful Life (1995)
Here’s another Euro treasure from the Swedish quartet, who you might recognize more for their chart-topping hit The Sign. Co-written and produced by Jonas Berggren and Denniz Pop, this single reached the 15th spot on both the US Billboard Hot 100 and the UK Singles Chart.
Corona – Rhythm of The Night (1993)
This Italian Eurodance group made a smashing debut with this single. The track dominated dance charts worldwide, reaching the second position on the Canadian Dance/Urban chart, the third spot on the UK Dance Chart, and number seven on the Hot Dance Club Play chart in the USA.
Everything But The Girl – Missing (Todd Terry Remix) (1995)
This song by the English duo Tracey Thorn and Ben Watt didn’t quite make its mark initially until it received a remix by Todd Terry and was re-released in 1995. This move led to global success, as the track climbed to the top or near the top of the charts in multiple countries.
Culture Beat – Mr. Vain (1993)
Very much in the same ‘vein’ as Rhythm Is A Dancer, this track was performed by lead singer Tania Evans and rapper Supreme. This high-energy song achieved tremendous global success, reaching the number one spot in at least 12 countries.
Fatboy Slim – Right Here, Right Now (1999)
This was the fourth single from the British big beat musician Fatboy Slim’s acclaimed album, You’ve Come a Long Way, Baby. The track climbed to the second position on the UK Singles Chart and also made its mark as a top-40 hit in countries like Iceland, Australia, Greece, New Zealand, and Ireland.
Blink 182 – All The Small Things (1999)
After most of the songs for Enema of the State had been written, lead singer and guitarist Tom DeLonge felt that the album needed a catchy and straightforward track. All the Small Things was penned about DeLonge’s girlfriend and was clearly destined to become a single. It achieved great success, reaching number six on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and claiming the top spot on the Billboard Alternative Playlist.
Lenny Kravitz – Are You Gonna Go My Way? (1993)
Who can forget the amazing music video that accompanied Are You Gonna Go My Way? with the drummer sporting a phenomenal afro and cool fly-inspired sunglasses, the crowd surfing, and Lenny’s distinctive dreads? The song itself boasts a massive drum sound, combined with a guitar riff that ties the whole track together. This iconic hit is from Lenny Kravitz’s 1993 album of the same name.
Everclear – Santa Monica (1995)
This is a perfect track to enjoy while cruising on a summer day, evoking images of palm trees and sunshine. The song kicks off with a serene guitar intro and then transitions into a mid-tempo groove, eventually building up with thrashing drums, powerful guitar, and vocals. With strong support from alternative radio, the song even made its way into the Top 40 in Australia.
The Spin Doctors – Two Princes (1992)
This song is what’s often referred to as a “feel-good” track. The vocals are lighthearted and melodic, the instrumentation is brimming with energy, and it’s a prime example of pop-rock style. Chris Barron, the lead singer of the Spin Doctors, was known for his passion for literature, particularly fantasy novels. He drew inspiration from this love for books, incorporating princes as characters in Two Princes.
Third Eye Blind – Semi-Charmed Life (1997)
Semi-Charmed Life is a post-grunge and alternative rock song characterized by prominent chords and a vocal style influenced by rap. Despite its radio-friendly sound, the song is inspired by themes of crystal meth addiction, the unpredictability of life, and personal struggles. The seemingly cheerful melody serves as a deceptive cover, masking the darker meaning behind the lyrics.
The Foo Fighters – Everlong (1997)
From the 1997 album The Colour and the Shape, Dave Grohl has shared the meaning behind the song. When Grohl wrote this track, he was in the midst of a divorce, and his powerful emotions for his new love, Louise Post from Veruca Salt, combined with a distinct chord progression, culminated in the creation of this beautiful song. Often regarded as one of their finest works, Everlong stands as a post-grunge and alternative rock masterpiece.
Faithless – Insomnia (1995)
Arguably one of the most iconic and widely recognized tracks here, Insomnia can still be heard rocking music festivals worldwide. Serving as a fantastic homage to the entire rave scene, this track charted across multiple continents and stands as one of the group’s most significant hits to date.
Haddaway – What Is Love (1993)
This track was the ultimate Eurodance anthem of the 90s, guaranteed to get the dance floor moving. It soared to the number one spot in an impressive 13 countries, including Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Portugal, Finland, France, Spain, Netherlands, Norway, Ireland, Italy, Switzerland, and even Zimbabwe.
The Notorious B.I.G. – Hypnotize (1997)
With some of the most stylishly crafted lyrics ever written for a club track, baby baaaby, this jam stands out. Rolling Stone recognized its significance by ranking the song at number 30 on their list of the 100 Greatest Hip-Hop Songs of All Time.
Run-DMC vs. Jason Nevins – It’s Like That (1997)
It’s Like That marked Run-DMC’s debut single, released in 1983 under Profile Records. The Nevins version skillfully blended the lines between rap and dance music. In the UK, it achieved remarkable success and became the third best-selling single of 1998 in Britain.
House of Pain – Jump Around (1992)
Pack it up, pack it in, let me begin. Produced by DJ Muggs of Cypress Hill, this track served as the first single from House of Pain’s debut album. The song climbed to number three on the charts in the United States and continues to make people all around the world jump to its infectious beat.
Bell Biv DeVoe – Poison (1990)
Thanks to their involvement in New Edition, BBD (Bell Biv DeVoe) made a splash on the music scene with their multi-platinum-selling debut album Poison. Even after more than 30 years in the music industry as a group, this remains their most iconic and well-known hit.
TLC – No Scrubs (1999)
Following their massive album CrazySexyCool, TLC made a strong comeback with this empowering anthem for women, thanks to production by She’kspere. Even today, you can catch attendees at bachelorette parties belting out this song at venues across town, and it’s well-deserved.
M People – Moving on Up (1993)
M People kept the house beats banging throughout the 90s, but this 1993 hit was the pinnacle of their formula – and their biggest hit. Who doesn’t want to sing about “moving on up” in the middle of the dance floor? Nothing can stop the party when the DJ spins this classic.
Montell Jordan – This is How We Do It (1995)
A song celebrating the release from the workweek and the embrace of the weekend, no Friday night at a club would be complete without this absolute classic. “So tip up your cup and throw your hands up. And let me hear the party say!”
Armand Van Helden – You Don’t Know Me (1999)
Armand Van Helden is one of the great American DJs, with a career of over 30 years (and still going). This house/garage tune is an undeniable classic. The cool lyrics by Duane Harden, which he was left to write alone, take it to the next level and help create this monster hit.
The KLF – 3 A.M. Eternal (Live at the S.S.L.) (1991)
The KLF released various versions of this song between 89 and 92, but the 1991 Live at the S.S.L. acid house mix was the one that really hit for them around the world. From the infectious beat to the cool raps and catchy hook, this one is sure to get every generation on the dance floor. KLF is gonna rock ya!
Cosmic Girl – Jamiroquai (1996)
If any 90s act seemed like they were from another galaxy, it was Jamiroquai. Described as a British funk and acid jazz band, they had a string of hits across the universe. This disco song, fuelled by psychedelic lyrics, is infinitely catchy and will keep any party floating!
Eiffel 65 – Blue (Da Ba Dee) (1998)
You will never feel blue when the DJ hits play on this one. Eiffel 65’s first single is still their biggest hit, and still being sampled by singers, rappers and even death metal bands across the (blue) world.
SNAP! – Rhythm Is A Dancer (1992)
Rhythm is a dancer, and so are you when this megahit by German Eurodance group Snap! blasts out of the speakers. The crazy thing is that it wasn’t even going to be released as a single until it started playing in clubs and packing dance floors everywhere. Thank the music gods for making that happen, as we’re all better for it. You can feel it in the air!
La Bouche – Be My Lover (1996)
With its thumping rhythms, sharp raps, and soulful vocals, this German dancefloor sensation soared to the number one spot in both Germany and Sweden, while also conquering the Eurochart Hot 100. It’s worth noting that this track has sold over six million copies worldwide to date.
Rednex – Cotton Eye Joe (1994)
Where did this come from? Sweden, apparently. Eurodance group Rednex broke out the stables with their biggest hit, charting across the globe with this dance/country mashup featuring just the right amount of banjos and fiddles. You can’t help but sing along to this one.
Right Said Fred – I’m Too Sexy (1991)
Originally recorded as an indie rock song, the Fairbrass brothers eventually reworked I’m Too Sexy into a dance track, and the rest is history. They got the idea for the song when they were running a gym and were making fun of all the narcissism and posing they saw. You’re never too sexy to dance to this!
Gettin’ Jiggy Wit It – Will Smith (1998)
When The Fresh Prince went solo after a string of hit movies, there was no doubt he’d also continue his success in music. The classic Sister Sledge song He’s The Greatest Dancer has been sampled in a whole lot of songs, but this is easily the most popular example. On your mark, ready, set, let’s go!
Aqua – Barbie Girl (1997)
Often regarded as an inexplicable pop culture phenomenon, this track by the Danish-Norwegian quartet dominated the charts worldwide. It found particular success in European countries, including the United Kingdom, where it held the number-one spot for an impressive four weeks.
Tag Team – Whoomp! There It Is (1993)
Party people! Atlanta hip hop crew Tag Team’s debut single went four times platinum and for good reason. With an infectious chant for a hook, a banging beat and fast raps, Whoomp! (There It Is) became one of the biggest rap anthems of the 90s.
Whitney Houston – I’m Every Woman (1992)
Whitney’s 1992 version of Chaka Khan’s 1978 song was the big dance hit from the soundtrack for The Bodyguard, which Whitney also starred in. When the beat kicks in, you won’t be able to keep yourself from running onto the dance floor. Houston, we don’t have a problem with this party classic!
Mariah Carey – Emotions (1991)
Mariah, you’ve got us feeling all types of emotions with this one! The first single from Carey’s second album, Emotions was yet another smash hit for the singer. Lose control and get into the groove when this track comes on.
Madonna – Vogue (1990)
The Queen of Pop broke into the 90s by releasing a soundtrack album to accompany her film Dick Tracy. The lead single, Vogue, remains one of her biggest hits to date. When you hear the 70s disco vibes kick in, you’ll find it hard not to strike a pose!
Ce Ce Peniston – Finally (1992)
While not known as a consistent hitmaker, CeCe managed to secure her place in 90s music history with this song. Finally peaked at number five on the US Billboard Hot 100 in January 1992. It also gained significant popularity in the UK and was featured on several popular dance music compilations.
Michael Jackson – Black or White (1991)
While there are several tracks from this album that could make the list, the one that undoubtedly reached the widest audience was Black & White. This song touched on the theme of racial unity while irresistibly pulling people to the dance floor. The track’s sound was just as impressive as its colorful and enjoyable music video.
Robin S. – Show Me Love (1993)
Released in 1993, this track quickly became one of the most iconic house anthems in the United Kingdom and remains Robin’s biggest hit to date. Many credit it with playing a significant role in pushing house music further into the mainstream, particularly in larger markets such as the UK and the USA.
Robert Miles – Children (Dream Version) (1995)
Children achieved gold and platinum certifications in multiple regions and secured the top spot in over 12 countries. It earned the title of Europe’s most successful single of 1996 and continues to be held in high esteem even today.
C+C Music Factory – Gonna Make You Sweat (Everybody Dance Now) (1991)
Consisting of singer Martha Wash and rapper Freedom Williams, this track made its mark on the charts worldwide and achieved significant success in countries such as Germany, Austria, the United States, and Sweden, where it claimed the number one spot. Everybody dance now!
Stardust – Music Sounds Better With You (1998)
The French house trio Stardust crafted this timeless classic, incorporating a guitar riff sample from Chaka Khan’s 1981 song. It’s no surprise that the track has earned a place among the greatest in its genre, as acknowledged by numerous publications.
Crystal Waters – 100% Pure Love (1994)
With its undeniable sex appeal and polished percussion, this track by American artist Crystal Waters achieved Platinum certification in Australia and Gold status in the United States. It also garnered worldwide recognition for its infectious groove and style.
We Like To Party! – Vengaboys (1998)
Everyone likes to party when this Vengaboys banger comes on! Just one of multiple hits from their release The Party Album!, bopping along at 136 beats per minute, you won’t find an empty dance floor anywhere nearby, Your head will be nodding and you’ll be singing at the top of your lungs when the Vengabus rolls up.
If You Could Read My Mind – Stars On 54 (1998)
This house music remake of Gordon Lightfoot’s soft rock classic reached number three in Australia. It’s impossible not to jump up and shake your body when this drops. If the DJ can read your mind, they’ll probably play this one to keep the party going!
The Nightcrawlers – Push the Feeling On (1992)
Brought back into the spotlight recently by Mufasa & Hypeman, Push The Feeling On originally achieved international chart success in 1995. It climbed into the top 10 in several European countries, including the UK, where it reached the impressive position of number three on the charts.
The Outhere Brothers – Boom Boom Boom (1992)
This track was a somewhat risqué addition to the hip-house genre of the 1990s. Released in 1992, this American song quickly garnered international attention, topping charts in countries like Germany, the Republic of Ireland, and the United Kingdom.
Santana feat. Rob Thomas – Smooth (1999)
Who knew that rock legends Santana and the lead singer of Matchbox 20 would, err, match so well? Rob Thomas provided the sultry singable lyrics for this huge hit, charting across the world and keeping people dancing well into the 2000s. It’s just soooo smooth!
Blackstreet feat. Dr Dre – No Diggity (1996)
When a song’s title becomes ingrained in a culture’s everyday language, you can be sure that something extraordinary has been created. In this case, Teddy Riley and his team join forces with another heavyweight of the era, Dr. Dre, to deliver this timeless piano-driven classic.
Ricky Martin – Livin’ La Vida Loca (1999)
Ricky Martin’s lead single from his first English language album is just so damn danceable that it easily hit number one in over 20 countries. It’s one of the biggest and best pop songs of the 90s and will have you livin’ the crazy life for a few minutes when it comes on at the party.
Lou Bega – Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit of…) (1999)
Whatever your name is, you need a little bit of this one in your life. Lou Bega’s debut single and remake of a 1940s instrumental track danced its way to number one across the world. Gotta love when that trumpet kicks in!
Britney Spears – …Baby One More Time (1998)
There isn’t a much more iconic track to symbolise 90s pop than this world class dance track by Britney. This was the song that introduced her to the world and continues to introduce people to the dance floor. Oh baby, baby!
The Cardigans – Lovefool (1996)
Appearing on the Romeo + Juliet soundtrack and on music charts around the world, Lovefool by Swedish rock band The Cardigans is a catchy love song with a disco beat that you just can’t help bopping and singing along to. When the DJ plays this, say that you love them!
OMC – How Bizarre (1995)
It’s not bizarre seeing the dance floor fill up when this jam comes on. This pop hip hop track from New Zealand made waves all across the world in the mid-90s. It’s had a resurgence in the last few years thanks to TikTok, but at parties, this song really shines!
Groove Armada feat. Gram’ma Funk – I See You Baby (1999)
Just making it in time to end the 90s with a huge shake, I See You Baby didn’t need to rely on much more than a funky beat and a catchy, repeated line about shakin’ that thang to keep parties rocking all night long.
Jennifer Lopez – Waiting For Tonight (1999)
One of multiple hits from J.Lo’s very first album, this Hispanic house smash is a remake of the original version which was released by girl group 3rd Party in 1997. Whichever version the DJ plays, make your way on to the middle of the dance floor and sing it loud!
2pac feat. Dr Dre – California Love (1995)
This song marked 2Pac’s comeback single after his release from prison in 1995 and served as his debut single as the newest artist signed to Death Row Records. With additional vocals from the legendary funk artist Roger Troutman, the track was a joyful celebration of the West Coast lifestyle, radiating the spirit of fun and sunshine.
Backstreet Boys -Everybody (Backstreet’s Back) (1997)
Don’t call it a comeback, Backstreet never left! Is it original? Maybe not but who cares? You’ll be magically drawn to rocking your body when you hear the dance pop beat, and the first lyric of the song. Sing it with me… “Everybody!”
Ginuwine – Pony (1996)
Ginuwine never had another platinum hit after his debut single and he’s probably doing just fine with that. Pony is still taking parties to another level in the 2020s, with one of the catchiest hooks of the 90s and a beat so smooth from Timbaland that you can sing it.
Chemical Brothers – Hey Boy Hey Girl (1999)
Superstar DJs The Chemical Brothers didn’t waste our time with overly long singing on this one. The beat is doing all the heavy lifting, and it’s not even breaking a sweat. Get ready to party when the DJ spins this classic.
EMF – Unbelievable (1990)
This unbelievable and ultimately danceable rap rock song by British band EMF had the party groove going at the start of the 90s. It had people making moves across the world, and jump-started their success. Remember, you’re unbelievable!
Bill Ray Cyrus – Achy Breaky Heart (1992)
Billy Ray remade 1991’s Don’t Tell My Heart into a country pop megahit that launched his career, which has shown no signs of slowing down. It was the first-ever song to reach triple platinum status in Australia and is to blame for line dancing getting popular across the world!
These other 90s dance tunes also had to receive a mention:
- Los Del Rio – Macarena (1996)
- Sir Mix-A-Lot – Baby Got Back (1992)
- Bucketheads – The Bomb (These Sounds Fall into My Mind) (1995)
- Us3 – Cantaloop (Flip Fantasia) (1999)
- Tori Amos – Professional Widow (1996)
You can enjoy the playlist on Spotify below at your next function: