We’ve now finished writing about all the singles that reached No. 1 in 1996. The year began with “One Sweet Day” continuing its record-breaking run on top, and ended with another tearful mega-ballad, “Un-Break My Heart.” Between those two, we saw a tremendously wide-ranging set of tracks hit the apex of the Billboard Hot 100, including “Macarena,” “Tha Crossroads” and “No Diggity.”
In general, the dominant genres of 1996 were (post-Grunge) Alternative, including female-oriented rock by acts such as Alanis Morissette and No Doubt, as well as R&B and Hip-Hop by the likes of 2Pac, Nas, Keith Sweat and Fugees. It was a lackluster year (in the U.S., at least) for Pop, a genre that would see a resurgence in 1997 with the introductions of Spice Girls, Backstreet Boys and *NSYNC. On the Country charts, 1996 was a big year for Shania Twain, George Strait and LeAnn Rimes.
Below is a playlist of our 10 favorite songs of the year, followed by the list. Enjoy!
- “Twisted,” Keith Sweat
- “Missing,” Everything but the Girl
- “Un-Break My Heart,” Toni Braxton
- “It’s All Coming Back To Me Now,” Celine Dion
- “Birmingham,” Amanda Marshall
- “Shadowboxer,” Fiona Apple
- “Mouth,” Merrill Bainbridge
- “I Want To Come Over,” Melissa Etheridge
- “You’re The One,” SWV
- “Anything,” 3T