True story that I'm sure many can relate to: Britney Spears' albums and songs were the anthem of my childhood. Her bubblegum pop and so-good-they-made-your-heart-ache ballads spoke to my soul — and they still do. (It doesn't matter how old I get, "... Baby One More Time" will always be relevant to my interests.) Spears' music never goes out of style. OK, maybe a few of her songs haven't aged spectacularly well ("E-Mail My Heart," anyone?) but no one is going to be able to convince me that "Toxic" isn't still sing-in-the-shower material. Classic Britney songs are sexy, fun, and addictive: Think of them as the potato chips of the music world — once you've listened to one stopping is impossible.
I could list nearly every Spears song here because, in my mind, pretty much all of them are classics. That would be a crazy long article, though, so for the sake of your sanity and mine, I have narrowed the list down to my nine favorites. These songs remain flawless after all this time, in my opinion: They are the perfect kind of pop, and when they get some much deserved play on the radio, I crank up the dial and sing my heart out — just the way Spears intended.
Want a good idea of how enduring "Toxic" is? During his reign at the help Doctor Who, Russell T. Davis chose it as the one "traditional ballad" that would be played at the end of the world . Personally, I think he was onto something: "Toxic" mixes a timeless beat with simple, easy-to-remember lyrics that make you want to jump around like a hyperactive rabbit. What more could you want from a song?
2. "... Baby One More Time"
I had to mention Spears' most iconic song of all time! This is her truest classic and it's never going to get old — it certainly won't be forgotten, either.
What a completely perfect dance song. "Womanizer" is just a little bit scandalous, and marked an older, more mature turn in Spears' career. The result is a wonderfully self-aware, feminist, sex-positive anthem.
I know this could be an unpopular choice, but for young women, this song is a legit anthem. It's so reminiscent of a time when you are caught between childhood and adulthood. Even though "Overprotected" isn't as popular as some of Spears' other hits, it sticks with you — and that's the mark of a memorable song.
5. "Oops...I Did It Again"
I will never get over the delicious cheesiness of this video, because it's just so wrong it's right. Sure, it's about leading on dudes, but Spears sounds so sincerely apologetic while also managing to channel her inner player, it wows me every single time.
As long as people need to get pumped up before a speech/karaoke night/date, "Circus" will remain an iconic power anthem.
7. "I'm a Slave 4 U"
Any time Spears gets defiant, her music instantly becomes epic. I don't love the title, but I do love the attitude of "I'm a Slave 4 U." It's so angry and dreamy, I never get tired of listening to it.
8. "(You Drive Me) Crazy"
I have to go old school with this one: "(You Drive Me) Crazy" is original flavor Spears and, just like Bubblicious, it's the perfect confection of sweetness to get you through a crush — no matter how old you are.
Nobody puts Britney in a corner. "Stronger" is such a proud, comeback song, I have no doubt people will still be singing it a hundred years from now.
That's just how Britney's music works. Sure, it's pop, but it's pop with staying power.