220px-Santana_-_Santana_(1969)#17– Santana – “Evil Ways” – (1969)

Santana had our #1 song of the 1990s. And it was an even bigger hit in the 2000s. That’s some serious staying power. This was actually a cover, having originally been recorded in 1967 by Willie Bobo. It was the band’s first top 40 hit, reaching #9. With that wailing organ, it’s one of the best examples of jazz-infused latin rock.

#1 – Santana feat. Rob Thomas – “Smooth” – (1999)

Here it is, number one. This song was, well, massive, and I didn’t care for it much at the time (as it was overplayed). But man, oh man, how I love it now. It was the last #1 single of the 1990s and of the 20th Century. It spent 12 weeks at the top but it considered the most popular #1 single of all time (if you take into account total sales and time spent on the chart). It won 3 Grammys and Billboard ranked it #2 on their list of all-time #1 singles (behind “The Twist”). Oh, and it’s completely kick-ass. Chorus: “And just like the ocean under the moon / Well that’s the same emotion that I get from you / You got the kind of lovin’ that can be so smooth / Gimme your heart make it real / or else forget about it.” Not only are the lyrics delivered with severe punch from Mr. Thomas but ol’ Carlos on the guitar really tears it up. This song provided a real comeback boost for Santana, as they’ve had multiple hits since (and this was their biggest hit since 1971). The other from Supernatural was “Maria Maria” (also a #1 hit featuring The Product G&B). Other awesome lyrics: “Man it’s a hot one / like seven inches from the midday sun / I hear you whisper and the words melt everyone / but you stay so cool / my muñequita, my Spanish Harlem Mona Lisa / you’re my reason for reason / the step in my groove.” This song was an excellent way to end the 90s and really the only way to end this countdown. After 6 months and 200 tracks it’s finally over, but we’ll be back in a few months with another countdown (but don’t expect it to be 200 songs).