Will Smith attends the 94th Annual Academy Awards at Hollywood and Highland
Source: Emma McIntyre/Getty Images

Will Smith’s Greatest Hits: The Best Songs That the Rapper-Turned-Actor Has Ever Released

Will Smith was a rapper before he found TV and movie fame. Here's a list of the most memorable songs he's dropped throughout his career.


Nov. 1 2023, Published 7:12 p.m. ET

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Will Smith is a man of many talents — a national treasure that must be protected at all costs. From his days on the recently rebooted Black-led 90s series, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, to his various roles on the big screen, Will has foraged a lane that's uniquely his own throughout his decades-long career.

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While his acting career has taken center stage in recent years, it's Will's rap career that launched him into the spotlight. Here are some of his most memorable records, all of which are hip-hop gold.

"Summertime" (1991)

DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince pose for a portrait at First Avenue nightclub in Minneapolis, Minnesota on March 12, 1990.
Source: Jim Steinfeldt/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

"Summertime" is the perfect ode to shenanigan-free summer fun. Will and his longtime collaborator, DJ Jazzy Jeff, teamed up to create the song, which will forever be in rotation at the cookout.

No matter what season it is, this is a timeless classic that deserves a spot on your playlist.

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"Gettin' Jiggy Wit It" (1997)

"Get Jiggy With It" marked the beginning of Will's career without Jazzy Jeff. The song was released as the third single from his solo album, Big Willie Style.

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While the era of getting jiggy with it ended long ago, the phrase will live on in our hearts forever. The song's happy-go-lucky vibe and catchy beat make it a classic.

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"Wild, Wild, West" (1999)

It would be a huge mistake not to include "Wild Wild West" on the list of Will Smith's certified bops!

There is often a notion that movie soundtracks aren't compelling and have little replay value — this song begs to differ.

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As part of the Wild Wild West soundtrack, the single struck a fine balance between country music and rap. It captures the core of the movie's Old West theme while at the same time bringing listeners back to the future.

With its catchy chorus and playful lyrics, the track is still a fan favorite today.

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"Black Suits Comin' (Nod Ya Head)" (2002)

"Black Suits Comin' (Nod Ya Head)" is another movie soundtrack single that was a hip-hop hit. The track is the theme song for the early 2000s sci-fi film, Men in Black II. The beat and background vocals coupled with Will's signature flow made for a chart-topping hit.

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"Parents Just Don't Understand" (1991)

Source: YouTube/Will SmithVevo

Although not all of us have children, everyone has been a child. As former kids, we'd all agree that sometimes, parents don't understand. Will captured the thoughts of millions of teens across generations with this one.

"Parents Just Don't Understand" was part of Will and DJ Jazzy Jeff's album — He's the DJ, I'm the Rapper.

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Cynics suggest that the track sounds straight off a Kid's Bop album, but there's more to it than that. The single is not only catchy and relatable — it also showcases Will's sharp storytelling skills.

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"Miami" (1997)

Will transports fans to the vibrant, luxurious, and lively atmosphere of the Florida city in his song, "Miami."

Its Latin-inspired beat, the music video's sunny ambiance, and Will's descriptive lyrics make listeners feel as if they're strolling through the heart of the city. It's a perfect example of Smith's storytelling prowess in songwriting.

The author’s content and opinions have not been pre-reviewed, approved or endorsed by Discover.

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