10 perfect Kelis collaborations

Teamwork = dreamwork.

Photographer Sharon Gong
November 14, 2017
10 perfect Kelis collaborations

The first girl to scream on a track also has features for days. She has proven over and over that she works well with others, whether it's on a wonky-sounding vampire concept track, a druggy rave sleeper, or one of her own visionary singles. Here's a non-exhaustive list of our favorite Kelis collabs, in no particular order.


Foxy Brown f. Kelis, "Candy"

Foxy sounds great on this steamy, not-so-subtle early-’00s soundtrack staple. The hook is stone-cold classic Kelis — a.k.a. unshakeable, and lightyears ahead of its time.

Kelis f. Pharrell, "Shooting Stars"

On this peaceful standout from her long-lost sophomore masterpiece, Kelis is joined by the album's co-producer, and her long-time friend and collaborator, Pharrell. It's a gorgeous duet, hinged on the kind of chemistry you can't fake.

Kelis f. Andre 3000, "Millionaire"

For millennium-era music nerds, these two together was a dream come true. It's also a reminder that while money can't buy happiness, but it can get you the rights to a Doug E. Fresh and Slick Rick sample.

P. Diddy f. Kelis, "Lets Get Ill"

Diddy's first-ever dance single, featuring a robot-gospel vocal loop sung by Kelis, is a rave-pop artifact. Protect it all costs.

Kelis f. Too $hort, "Bossy"

Prediction: this self-aware post-"Milkshake" radio hit will still feel fresh in 100 years. It's a celebration of Kelis's affinity for setting sonic trends — something Too $hort also knows about.

Busta Rhymes f. Kelis, "What It Is"

Remember when everyone made a big deal about 2001 actually being the first year of the new millennium, because we technically started counting at "year 1" and not "year zero"? That was annoying. If you subscribed to that version of history, though, Busta and Kelis's "What It Is," and the extremely-of-its-time video, probably made a pretty good anthem for Y2K part two.

Kelis f. Nas, "In Public"

A NSFW ode to semi-private sex acts, and to the songs we listen to while we're doing them. It's genuinely sexy, thanks in big part to Kelis and Nas's real-life lust (they'd been dating for a little over a year when the song dropped).

Calvin Harris f. Kelis, "Bounce"

Whether or not you are a big Calvin Harris fan, this GameBoy-channeling collab between him and Kelis is an undisputed bop.

Outkast f. Kelis, "Dracula’s Wedding"

This 2003 mash-up of digital squelches and classic Dracula imagery is, without a doubt, a better vampire love story than anything Stephenie Meyer ever dreamt up. Pairs great with a PB&J sandwich.

Clipse f. Kelis, "When the Last Time "

Clipse's highest-charting single features the Kelis touch. Even her monosyllabic arpeggios are iconic.

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10 perfect Kelis collaborations