15 essential tracks produced by Scott Storch
© Maria Jose Govea
From Justin Timberlake to Beyoncé, Scott Storch’s inventory of productions is nothing short of extensive.
When it comes to blockbuster resumes, Scott Scorch’s career is like nobody other’s. Apart from being one of the most famous (and infamous) record producers of all time, Scott Storch’s signature keyboard melodies and incorporation of Middle Eastern-inspired sounds dominated the Billboard charts of the mid-2000’s and championed artists like Snoop Dogg and Christina Aguilera. Following two filings for bankruptcy, a successful stint in rehab and a short musical hiatus, Storch is back in the game working with some of contemporary rap’s biggest stars, crafting hits for the likes of Trippie Redd, A Boogie wit da Hoodie and more.
Brush up on your Storch knowledge with his most significant works below.
1. Dr. Dre - “Still D.R.E.” (feat. Snoop Dogg)
The signature haunting keys that define this legendary rap track marked Storch’s second ever production credit on a commercial single. Released in 1999, “Still D.R.E.” was the lead single from 2001 (now a certified West Coast classic) and opened the door to Storch working with numerous affiliates of Dr. Dre, including 50 Cent, Xzibit, Snoop Dogg and more.
2. Beyoncé - “Naughty Girl”
Yes, Storch's beat repertoire includes Beyoncé transcendent scorcher, "Naughty Girl". This Middle Eastern and dancehall inspired track was one of Beyoncé’s first releases after announcing a solo career apart from the iconic group, Destiny’s Child. Considered provocative at the time, “Naughty Girl” marked a time of independence for Beyoncé and became one of the most successful singles from her debut album.
3. Terror Squad - “Lean Back” feat. Fat Joe and Remy Ma
There are few singles more 'New York City' than “Lean Back.” Easily Storch’s most successful track, the Fat Joe and Remy Ma-assisted club banger was destined for legendary status from the start. The catchy hook and signature dance move just made it too easy.
4. Chris Brown - “Run It!” feat. Juelz Santana
It’s only fitting that Chris Brown’s introduction to the world was powered by punchy synths from Scott Storch. This massively catchy club single was paired with an equally infectious music video that propelled the Brown and Storch duo to a Billboard Number 1 hit. And who could forget that scene at the end when the entire gym evacuates and Brown misses out on the kiss he just spent the whole song dancing for?
5. The Roots - “You Got Me” feat. Erykah Badu
"You Got Me" was Storch’s first ever production credit on a commercial single and marked the introduction of Storch’s piano playing skills to the world. Originally written by Jill Scott, the mesmeric neo-soul track appeared on The Roots’ 1999 album Things Fall Apart and features a guest verse from Philadelphia rapper Eve.
6. Justin Timberlake - “Cry Me a River”
Lead by a sharp, funky clavinet melody from Storch and several snapping and popping sounds from fellow super producer Timbaland, this single from Justin Timberlake’s debut album Justified was inspired by Timberlake’s relationship with Britney Spears and earned him the Grammy Award for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance in 2004.
7. 50 Cent - “Candy Shop” feat. Olivia
"Candy Shop" is easily one of the most provocative rap singles of the mid-2000’s. Storch’s dark, funky synths combined with 50’s vulgar rhymes made the song one of his most successful singles and arguably 50’s catchiest song of all time. The track even got the pair a nomination for Best Rap Song at the 2006 Grammy Awards.
8. Mario - “Let Me Love You”
Mario and Storch released “Let Me Love You” in 2004 to enormous commercial success. The song enjoyed nine consecutive weeks on top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart and picked up a nomination for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance at the 2006 Grammys. The Director X (then known as Little X) music video begins with an iconic sequence of Mario in a barbershop busting a move to impress a potential love interest.
9. Lil’ Kim - “Lighters Up”
One of Storch’s many explorations into dancehall, this track was the lead single from NYC rapper and ex-girlfriend Lil’ Kim’s 2005 album The Naked Truth. The music video was shot in several locations across Kim’s home of Brooklyn and features cameos from Mary J Blige and Maino.
10. Fat Joe - “Make it Rain” feat. Lil Wayne
Fat Joe and Storch have collaborated several times throughout their careers, but there’s something special about 2006’s “Make It Rain.” Maybe it’s the cameo appearance from Storch in the music video (or the massive remix with T.I., Birdman and Rick Ross) but this Lil Wayne-assisted strip club anthem has stood the test of time.
11. Xzibit - “X”
The year was 2000 – Pimp My Ride had not yet hit television and Xzibit was creating West Coast essentials with Scott Storch and Dr. Dre. The punchy keys, Snoop Dogg appearance and sharp, aggressive raps from positioned “X” as one of the many genre-defining singles from the Storch-Dre production pairing.
12. Dr. Dre - “Under Pressure” (feat. Jay-Z)
While not an official single (or even an official release), this leak from Dr. Dre’s long awaited and now-cancelled album Detox was an early look at what the project was intended to be. Described by Storch as “the most advanced rap album” fans would “ever have the chance to listen to” in a 2004 MTV News interview, Detox never officially came to life, but the unfinished tracks and leaks still live on today.
13. Kelly Rowland - “Work”
One of two Storch contributions to the Ms. Kelly album, the 2008 single "Work" is one of Rowland’s signature tracks and enjoys healthy playback at throwback parties today. The music video is peak 2000’s and features Rowland and several dancers accentuated by thin vertical lighting that spins to create a kaleidoscope.
14. Trippie Redd and Swae Lee - “TR666”
This track may not be a mid-2000’s hit or classic rap record, but the SoundCloud loosie is one of Storch’s most recent and promising steps in a new musical direction. Beginning with spacey keys from Storch, “TR666” features Trippie Redd and Swae Lee, two of the new generation’s hottest vocalists, taking turns crooning about failed love and rockstar lifestyle.
15. Big Boi - “Shutterbugg” feat. Cutty
This single from OutKast rapper Big Boi’s debut solo album is one of the most fun-loving productions from Storch. This deeply funky track is extremely pleasing to the ears and is guaranteed to have you bouncing along. “Shutterbugg” got Storch and Big Boi a nomination for Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group at the 2011 Grammy Awards and the track was featured on the NBA 2K11 soundtrack.