10. Bone Thugs N Harmony – Crossroads
Classic 90’s hip-hop. Bone Thugs N Harmony’s chilling “Crossroads” performance at the 1996 VMAS was theatrical — with extras running around the stage shrouded in hoods, fog in the background, and skulls flashing on the big screen. A fitting performance for such an important and haunting song. (File Photo)
9. Puff Daddy ft Faith Evans, 112 and Sting – I’ll Be Missing You
After The Notorious B.I.G.’s murder in 1997, his best friend and boss Diddy (Puff Daddy at the time) was left to carry the Bad Boy torch. His heartfelt tribute performance to Biggie Smalls featured 90’s R&B heavyweights like Faith and 112, but watching Sting of The Police sing his trademark sampled hook before Puff took the stage was truly awesome. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Eminem ft Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg – My Name Is
8. The 1999 VMAs was the coming-out party that introduced the world to Eminem. Marshall Mathers’ set featured his boss, Dr. Dre, and frequent collaborator Snoop Dogg as he performed “My Name Is” and his crazy verse from “Guilty Conscience.” (Photo by Frank Micelotta/ImageDirect)
7. Beastie Boys- Sabotage
The Beastie Boys’ 1994 performance of ‘Sabotage’ mirrored the visuals from their iconic music video as the trio dressed in the cheap suits and shades that stereotypical 1970s beat cops wear.
6. Beyoncé – Single Ladies
Kanye infamously reminded us about Beyoncé’s greatness during Taylor Swift’s acceptance speech before she performed her single “Single Ladies” in 2009. Still, Bey didn’t need the ego boost as she gave the audience an outstanding performance, complete with silver leotard. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images)
5. Run-DMC feat. Aerosmith – Walk This Way
Run-DMC performed their original rap/rock collab “Walk This Way” at 1987 VMAs. Along with Steven Tyler and Joe Perry of Aerosmith fame, Run-DMC shut the place down while the crowd realized they were watching music history being made. (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
4. Kanye West feat. Pusha T – Runaway
Coming off the backlash from the Taylor Swift incident at 2009’s VMAs, people were curious to see what Kanye had to offer. When Kanye performed “Runaway” at the 2010 VMAs it was beyond epic. He wore an all red suit on a white stage, and was accompanied by ballerinas — Kanye is at his best when he has something to prove. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
3. OutKast – Hey Ya Medley
Everyone had a copy of OutKast’s Speakerboxxx/The Love Below back in ’03 and ’04. The double disc album gave the ATL-based group the exposure that they needed to rip the stage at the 2004 VMAS. (Photo by Frank Micelotta/Getty Images)
2. Lauryn Hill – Lost Ones / Everything is Everything
After Lauryn Hill’s incredible The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill dropped in 1998, L-Boogie was collecting awards left and right. Her VMA music set was a prime example of an artist performing in her prime. (Photo by Frank Micelotta/ImageDirect)
1. Michael Jackson – Dangerous Medley
Watching the King of Pop back in the 90s was a household event as families gathered around the TV to see his magical dance moves. His 1995 VMA performance is just another reminder of how great MJ was as an entertainer. R.I.P. (Photo by Frank Micelotta/ImageDirect/Getty Images)
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MTV’s annual Video Music Awards is slated to air tonight with performances from a star studded lineup which includes Rihanna, Lil Wayne, Nicki Minaj, 2 Chainz, and Frank Ocean.
We’ve put together a slideshow of our top 10 performances from previous VMAs. Check it out and let us know what you think, and which ones were your favorites.