DMX was known for his unapologetic authenticity, and this resonates through his work with the LOX, or his share of the mic with Snoop Dogg. Yet DMX was never typecast, as evident in his ventures with the unlikely Bono of U2, or the R&B songstress Mary J. Blige. His reach was expansive, crossing borders with Sean Paul and Mr. Vegas. DMX’s ability to merge his raw style with various artists’ unique flows showcases the undeniable versatility he wielded. It is a testament to his influence and relevance that spans from the 90s golden era to the contemporary scene, with collaborations with Westside Gunn, Benny The Butcher, and Conway the Machine further cementing his legacy.
Remarkably, DMX has collaborations with this exhaustive list of artists across several decades:
Czech National Symphony Orchestra
Jinx Da Juvy
Machine Gun Kelly
Infa-Red & Cross
Brian King Joseph
Mary J. Blige
Benny The Butcher
Conway the Machine
So, let’s get into the list of tracks. From “It’s Personal” all the way through to “What These Bitches Want” and “I Don’t Dance”, here are the 30 Best DMX collaborations, ranked.
30 Letter To My Son (Call Your Father) (feat. Usher & Brian King Joseph)
It’s an intense portrait of DMX’s personal struggles with drug addiction, absence, and the regret of not being there for his child. In this letter set to a haunting melody, DMX opens up about how he sees the cycle of pain and absence tearing him and his son apart, urging his son to reach out to him. Far from being a simple apology or confession, it’s a plea for forgiveness and understanding. Usher’s soulful chorus underscores the pain and regret, adding another layer of emotional depth.
29 Come Thru (Move) (feat. Busta Rhymes)
DMX and Busta Rhymes carry the track with an electric back-and-forth, painting a vivid picture of their commanding presence in the hip-hop landscape. DMX’s verses are filled with his signature bravado and no-nonsense approach to life. He’s assertive, stating his dominance while warning others to make way when he approaches. Meanwhile, Busta Rhymes adds a twist of dynamic flow and raw energy to the mix. The two powerhouses create a synergy that speaks volumes about their shared street credibility and hard-earned respect in the hip-hop game.
28 A ‘Yo Kato (feat. Magic, Val)
As the dark undertones of the beat build up, DMX confronts his inner turmoil, refusing to say “goodbye” and rather celebrating the time they spent together. Ultimately, “A ‘Yo Kato” is DMX’s promise of eternal brotherhood, his pledge to keep Kato’s spirit alive, ensuring his children remember their father, and making it clear that Kato will always have family in New York.
27 That’s My Dog (feat. The LOX & Swizz Beatz)
Designed as a tribute to loyalty and authenticity, it’s a classic DMX joint that resonates with raw emotion and authenticity. DMX’s lyrics reflect his unique perspective on the world, viewed through the lens of street-level wisdom and survival instinct. His verses offer insight into his experiences and struggles, touching on loyalty, hardship, inequality, and resilience.
26 Dogs Out (feat. Lil Wayne & Swizz Beatz)
Swizz Beatz, known for his high-energy beats and theatrical style, provides the backdrop for this narrative, a solid foundation for both MCs to showcase their artistry. Each verse symbolizes a bone thrown in the yard, demonstrating not just their irrepressible swagger, but also their lyrical capabilities.
25 Skyscrapers (feat. Bono)
DMX’s demonstrates his poetic prowess, showcasing his ability to craft narratives that intertwine personal struggle and spiritual resilience. The song exudes raw vulnerability, wrestling with the tenacious dichotomy of life’s hardships and the relentless pursuit of dreams. Through the lens of DMX’s pen, we see the transformation of coal into diamonds, a metaphor that speaks to enduring pain and hardship to realize one’s full potential.
24 Take Control (feat. Snoop Dogg)
This sees DMX delivering his rhymes with that raw, untamed energy we’ve come to expect, meanwhile, Snoop’s silk-smooth drawl adds a balanced contrast on the bridge, full of suggestive imagery and sly humor. Their differing styles create a dynamic interplay that makes the track sizzle. The chemistry between them suggests a mutual respect and an understanding of the game—where love can be fleeting, and heartache is just a beat away.
23 What You Want (feat. Sisqo)
Using a mixture of aggression and provocative language, X carries his listeners through the dark corners of his world, one where survival is a daily hustle and the law of the jungle is the only rule. The lyrics specifically delve into the idea of not being fooled by appearances and staying strong amidst adversities. Yet, there’s also a thread of defiance weaved within.
22 Angel (feat. Regina Bell)
Veering away from the grit and hardness commonly associated with his persona, X lays bare his soul revealing his struggles, hopes, and firm belief whilst navigating through life’s murky waters. The lyrics paint a picture of a man torn between worldly temptations and spiritual aspirations, grappling to reconcile the two.
21 Coming From (feat. Mary J. Blige)
This collaboration with Mary J. Blige dives deep, unraveling DMX’s past struggles, his self-doubt, and his ultimate rise. DMX recounts his journey from a dark place, representing his experiences as nightmares, and the subsequent transformation to his dreams. The song ebbs and flows with DMX contemplating about his beginnings, endings, and the constant battle between peace and violence, representing the duality in his life.
20 No Love For Me (feat. Kasseem Dean, Drag-On)
DMX, in pure Yonkers grit, takes us through his code of the streets, where trusting in transient affiliations can be a costly mistake. Amid the flashy facades of the industry, DMX steadfastly upholds his dog-eat-dog worldview, establishing a street-oriented honor code that he lives and breathes by.
19 D-X-L (Hard White)
DMX, alongside The Lox and Drag-On, paints a vivid, threatening landscape of violence, crime, and the ceaseless struggle for respect and survival. Each verse is filled with aggressive assertions of dominance and power, often relying on the imagery of guns and violence.
18 Hood Blues (feat. Westside Gunn, Benny The Butcher & Conway The Machine)
Featuring the trio of Westside Gunn, Benny The Butcher, and Conway The Machine, DMX is in rare form. Laced with gritty street narratives and raw lyrical prowess, the track is a vivid testament to DMX’s capacity to marry dark, grimy street tales with hip-hop artistry. Each artist shares their personal experiences of the streets, painting a vivid picture of their individual journeys.
17 Party Up (Cavalry Remix)
The lyrics paint a vivid picture of DMX’s fierce persona and his mastery at keeping the crowd on their feet. DMX is the puppet master, making his audience dance to his unruly beat. He’s got everyone bouncin’ again, wilding out, losing their minds, just as he intended.
16 Bath Salts (feat. JAY-Z & Nas)
Jay-Z’s verse is filled with cultural references and egotistical brags, portraying himself as a monstrous figure in the industry and alluding to luxury brands and lavish lifestyles. Nas, on the other hand, brings a thoughtful introspection to his part, talking about the spiritual and moral struggle he experiences given his fame. He also throws down some classic relationship lines, adding a touch of drama and emotion to the mix.
15 Good Girls, Bad Guys (feat. Dyme)
The track presents a fascinating narrative of contrasting realities, posing the classic question of why refined ladies tend to gravitate towards the so-called “bad boys.” DMX blends his gruff delivery with a surprising introspection, functioning as a philosopher of the streets. His lyrics contemplate why a man from the “hood” or an admitted “dog nigga” would aspire to a woman of class, concluding that sometimes the allure extends beyond superficial physical attraction.
14 For My Dogs (feat. Drag-On, Loose, Big Stan, Kasino)
This here is a promise of unwavering support, asserting that DMX would be the “extra gun” his friends could rely on in times of strife. His love for his “dogs” is not transactional or based on material gain, but rather a manifestation of shared experiences and mutual respect. DMX’s raw and gruff delivery amplifies the intensity of his sentiments, making the lyric “I treat you like my blood” resonate with listeners.
13 The Omen (feat. Marilyn Mason)
This track sees DMX in conversation with a perverse entity insinuated to be the devil himself. X grapples with his inner demons, his turmoil palpable in each line. The icon finds himself in turmoil, compelled towards violence through manipulation from this entity. A striking part of the narrative is how DMX’s cunning adversary negotiates, promising rewards in exchange for his soul. The tragic twist, as always, is that nothing comes without a price. But, DMX is not a man to back down and surrenders not to the devil, instead, he throws a plea to the skies for divine intervention. The song’s chilling narrative is flanked by a haunting chorus, shedding light on DMX’s eternal battle between good and evil, embodying the essence of his raw and tumultuous journey.
12 How’s It Goin’ Down
The storytelling here is raw with a narrative style laid that lays the foundation for many hip-hop tracks to come, illustrating the power of authenticity in rap. The song serves as a testament to DMX’s unparalleled ability to bring the intricacies of the ‘hood to life, flipping the perception of what it means to be a gangsta in hip-hop.
11 Shot Down
What stands out is in this joint is X’s reflective moments on his past alliances and the complicated path to fame. He pays homage to his roots and acknowledges key figures that shaped his development. His unmatched storytelling ability, reinforced by the menacing beat, brings a raw authenticity to this track that beautifully complements the overarching theme of street credibility and survival.
10 Top Shotter (feat. Sean Paul, Mr. Vegas)
The recurring “here comes the boom” phrase, both a mantra and a threat, sets the tone for DMX’s explosive delivery. The lyrics are filled with acknowledged brutality and confrontational language, giving the impression that he’s constantly in survival mode, ready to fight at a moment’s notice.
9 We Don’t Give A Fuck (feat. Jadakiss, Styles P)
Dark Man X, narrates a narrative of camaraderie turned sour, embellishing the grim picture with vivid wordplay and metaphors, featuring Styles P and Jadakiss. The track is an anthem of defiance against false loyalty, as DMX takes aim at a former ally who’s betrayed him. The lyrics convey DMX’s feelings of deep betrayal, his readiness to sever ties, and his refusal to compromise, all backed by a relentless, hard-hitting beat.
8 Blackout (feat. The LOX, Jay-Z)
DMX is at his rugged best as he narrates tales of the streets with unparalleled authenticity. He speaks on the harsh realities of his life, making no apologies for his choices, and weaves in metaphors of violence and survival that are rife within the world of street hustling. This is a man who has weathered the storm, and his words bear the weight of his experiences.
7 Niggaz Done Started Something (feat. The LOX, Mase)
The lyrics are an unapologetic reflection of street life, peppered with references to drug dealing, gun violence, and the lust for wealth, power and respect that drives the characters within. DMX’s verses are menacingly vivid, portraying a man ready to face any challenge head-on, no matter the stakes. The essence of DMX’s aggressive, almost primal delivery is matched by The LOX and Mase, who come in strong with their own recounts of life on the streets. This is a song of survival, told through the lens of those who ‘started something’, those who stirred up the game and set new rules in the hip-hop world. It’s not just a song, it’s a gritty narrative that embodies the harsh realities and experiences that DMX and his peers endured.
6 I Miss You (feat. Faith Evans)
DMX, with his raw emotion and unique narrative style, connects to everyone who’s experienced such a profound loss. The song is a vivid chronicle of how DMX’s grandmother, Mary Ella Holloway, influenced his life, the wisdom she imparted, and the void her departure left.
5 Grand Finale (feat. Ja Rule, Method Man, Nas)
DMX’s verses, complemented by the collaborative efforts with. Ja Rule, Method Man and Nas, paint a vivid picture of a hostile environment marked by gun violence, drug peddling and a grim acceptance of death as an inevitable consequence. From the perspective of those trapped in this harsh reality, the song carries a defiant note, asserting one’s presence and resilience against the odds. There’s also an underlying homage to the ‘dog’s life’, a metaphor for the loyalty and indomitable spirit DMX and his crew vow to maintain. Ultim
4 Get At Me Dog (feat. Sheek)
The anthem, a quintessential hip-hop banger, is packed with bravado and trademark X aggression. It’s a narrative about survival on the streets, where DMX implores his adversaries to confront him directly. The lyrics reveal DMX’s life credo – he operates by unconventional rules because he feels compelled to, not because he chooses to. The dark undertones of the song underscore the grim realities of a life embattled with crime, where violence is just around the corner. DMX’s delivery oozes affirmation, illuminating his resilience amidst harsh conditions. The song serves as a clarion call to every wannabe tough guy that X is fearless, authentic, and unapologetically himself. All of this is wrapped in a gritty, almost threatening, sound, creating a spectacular embodiment of DMX’s tumultuous journey.
3 Get It On The Floor
The joint serves up a smorgasbord of street philosophy, DMX’s own brand of gruff wisdom, and an explosive hook that dares you to not move. The Dark Man X rides the beat like a veteran jockey, his gruff voice accentuating the rugged texture of the track. The song showcases his unyielding bravado and unabashed rawness, churning out verses that touch on life’s struggles, survival, and maintaining one’s hustle in the face of adversity. At its core, it’s an anthem for tenacity and resilience, traits that define DMX himself. The lyrics spin a narrative that’s street-smart and hardened yet rallying the listener to let loose and find solace on the dance floor, making it a fixture in both the streets and clubs. In typical DMX fashion, “Get It On The Floor” is as much a testament to his lyrical prowess as it is a mirror to the gritty world he came from.
2 I Don’t Dance
Contrary to the party anthems overflowing in mainstream consciousness, DMX switches gears here, making it clear that he’s not one to seamlessly blend into the club scene. He stakes his claim in the game, punching heavy with his nonlinear, offbeat flows that don’t dance around the beat, but rather bulldoze through it.
The lyrics serve as DMX’s personal manifesto, a bold proclamation that he’s in the game for life, unwilling to follow anyone’s script but his own. He distills the streets, dismissing any notion of fame or flamboyance. DMX’s signature cadence and relentless bar delivery challenge the status quo, echoing his determination to keep it straight, real, and undiluted. Ultimately, “I Don’t Dance” captures the grit and authenticity of DMX, an artist whose relentless pursuit of raw, unvarnished expression left an indelible imprint on the landscape of hip-hop.
1 What These Bitches Want
DMX’s lyrical style in this song is explicit and reverberates with a sort of unvarnished honesty that only he could deliver. This collaboration with Sisqo of Dru Hill fame underscores the contrast between DMX’s gruff aggression and Sisqo’s smooth R&B vocals, creating a dialectic of hard and soft, jaded and hopeful.
DMX’s lyrics delve into the heart of his struggles with the opposite sex, how his lifestyle attracts women yet simultaneously pushes them away. He paints a picture of a man caught between his identity on the streets and his relationships with women, leading to a dynamic and tension-filled narrative.
The chorus, instantiated by Sisqo, contrasts with DMX’s verses, giving voice to the softer, more emotional side of these relationships. The song is a profound exploration of the tension between image and reality, hardness and vulnerability, love and lust, providing an intimate glimpse into DMX’s complex persona and his view on relationships.