Two heads are often better than one, and that applies to music. It's always great when two artists jump on the one track together, as when it's done right, they elevate each other's sound to new heights.
2021 saw some huge collaborations come together, and it made for a great year for music fans. We've put together a list of some of our favourite collaborations of 2021 and taken a look at what made these tracks so special!
Lizzo & Cardi B - Rumors
Fans have been calling for Lizzo and Cardi B to link up for a while now, and Rumors didn't disappoint. The track saw the duo take aim at their detractors, pointing out that people are far more concerned about Lizzo and Cardi's lives than their own.
The track was Lizzo's first single since 2019, and the video for it sees the pair embracing their inner goddesses. It's one of the highlights of Lizzo's discography to date - and given the hits she's been dropping in recent years, it's proof of just how much we've been spinning Rumors since it dropped.
The Kid LAROI and Justin Bieber - Stay
The Kid LAROI's trajectory over the last couple of years has been exhilarating to watch, and his collaboration with Justin Bieber, Stay, is concrete proof that he's now one of the biggest artists on the planet. It's a pop song with a hook that's so catchy you'll find yourself singing it to yourself everywhere, before you hit play on it once again.
Stay broke records worldwide, and might just go on to win this year's Hottest 100, which would cap off a historic year for LAROI. Long may it continue - LAROI's one of the only First Nations artists making a huge impact on the world stage.
Silk Sonic - 777
It's hard to pick our favourite track from Silk Sonic's An Evening With Silk Sonic, but it might just be 777. Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak have well and truly spoiled fans this year with one of the smoothest albums in recent memory, as well as a range of award show performances.
777 is all about heading to Las Vegas and winning big, and it's as funky as any other track from the album. Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak are great in their own right, but together, they're well and truly a pair of aces.
Baby Keem and Kendrick Lamar - Family Ties
Kendrick Lamar teased fans with a pair of features on his cousin Baby Keem's album The Melodic Blue, and while we're still waiting for the follow-up to DAMN, his verses on The Melodic Blue have whetted our appetite.
Kendrick's verse on Family Ties was a reminder that his skills haven't dropped off in his time away - quite the opposite. While it's not Kendrick's most structured or sophisticated verse, it is one of his most enjoyable - and in the age of TikTok, a bar like "top of the morning" was always destined to become a meme. Welcome back Kendrick.
Megan Thee Stallion and BTS - Butter (Remix)
Houston hottie Megan Thee Stallion and Korean megastars BTS combined for an irresistible remix of Butter, and it's one of those tracks that we never could have imagined existing, but now can't live without.
BTS's buttery vocals pair well with Megan's punchy bars, and the result is a track that both sounds and feels good. Hopefully this isn't a one-off - we'd love to hear these two work together again in the near future (fingers crossed).
Nerve and JK-47 - One In A Million
Nerve and JK-47 are two of Australia's most exciting rappers, and One In A Million is a reminder that they're both aware of just how talented they both are. Having first linked up for Sunday Roast, One In A Million sees the pair in red-hot form, going bar-for-bar across the track.
The pair created the track as comfort for "made for anyone that’s wary of stepping outside the box and questioning the systems that they find themselves living in." Australian rap has never been in a better place, and Nerve and JK-47 are reminding people that you don't need to fit into a box to succeed - instead, you can carve out a lane all for yourself.
Taylor Swift and Phoebe Bridgers - Nothing New
Taylor Swift reached out to Phoebe Bridgers to collaborate on Nothing New via text, and Phoebe responded with "I’ve been waiting for this text my entire life." It sounds like it, too, with the pair sounding absolutely stunning on the track.
Taylor originally wrote the song when she was 22, and it's one of the standout moments on Red (Taylor's Version). 2021 may have been Taylor's most prolific year yet, and we want to hear more from this pairing.
Budjerah and MAY-A - Talk
Budjerah and MAY-A's Talk is one of our favourite Australian releases of the year, and we'll be looking back at this one in a few years when they're both superstars. Both artists take aim at people's preference to text rather than call - they'd much rather hear people's voices.
Budjerah's sounding as soulful as ever on Talk, while MAY-A's parts are a great example of why Australian pop is in such a good place. Just don't text them telling them how much you love the track, because you might not get a response.
What So Not and DMA's - The Change
If you're looking to give someone a one-song crash course in Australian music, then The Change is a great choice. What So Not is one of Australia's most consistently excellent producers, while DMA's have become a rock music juggernaut, wowing audiences both here and overseas.
The Change features a seriously massive hook, matched by the ever-escalating production. We suspect that this'll go absolutely wild at Australian festivals for years to come - especially given that there's room to dial this one up even further live.
Big Skeez and Foura - On Tonight
As soon as we first heard Big Skeez and Foura's On Tonight, we knew that'd it be a staple of any party playlist we throw in the future. If you're looking to fill a dance floor within seconds, then all you need to do is press play on this one.
Big Skeez's flow combines seamlessly with FOURA's production, and the link-up comes courtesy of Nina Las Vegas's label NLV Records. If you're looking for a track to psych you up for your next night out, then look no further.
Dave and James Blake - Both Sides Of A Smile
Dave and James Blake might exist in different musical niches, but they're undoubtedly two of the UK's most prominent musicians. The pair joined forces for Both Sides Of A Smile, which also features ShaSimone playing the role of Dave's partner, who's fed up with his ways.
It's a sprawling epic of a track that it's split into two parts. The first sees Dave and ShaSimone telling the story of love gone wrong, while the second part sees Dave reflecting on his origins, as well as his mother's pain - a common theme throughout We're Alone In This Together.