15. Lindsay Lohan, “Over” (2004)
LiLo really knows how to break our hearts. On “Over,” Lindsay belts in disbelief over a relationship’s end. Ten years after its release, the song’s painful questions about “what could have been” take on a whole new meaning, as we consider what Linday’s career might have been like had she followed more in the sober footsteps of onetime mentor Tina Fey. Don’t tell us that it’s over, Linds. We still believe in you!
14. Demi Lovato, “Skyscraper” (2011)
If you ever need something that will make you feel invincible, Demi’s your girl. “Skyscraper” features her trademark soaring vocals. And the teary eyes she’s got in the video will make you want to reach through your computer screen to giver her a hug.
13. Selena Gomez, “Slow Down” (2013)
The Cataracs-produced track had Gomez going full EDM and “grown-up,” singing about secretive and seductive “inspections.” It’s confusing why a TSA agent was trying to search her in the club in the video, but this song is perfect for the dance floor.
12. Aly & AJ, “Potential Breakup Song” (2007)
You may remember Aly Michalka from playing Phil’s BFF in the Disney Channel Original Series Phil of the Future. But you may also remember her band with her sister, AJ. (These days, they go by 78violet.) “Potential Breakup Song” is their best work, a biting kiss-off which shows both singers have great comedic timing.
9. Hilary Duff, “Reach Out” (2008)
Built around a sample of Depeche Mode’s “Personal Jesus,” “Reach Out” introduces an all-grown-up Lizzie McGuire. It’s sexy, fun, and in the video, H. Duff looks F-l-a-w-l-e-s-s. BRB, gonna go look up makeup tutorials for all of these looks.
8. Miley Cyrus, “See You Again” (2007)
Miley Cyrus’ released “See You Again,” which recounts a time she freaked out in front of a crush, during her teenage Hannah Montana days. But thankfully, being awkward is still what “bein’ Miley” is all about.
6. Lindsey Lohan, “Confessions Of A Broken Heart” (2005)
In the the aftermath of her father’s very public DUI, Lohan released “Confessions of A Broken Heart (Daughter to Father),” an almost too-real love letter to her deadbeat dad. The song also had a heavy music video, directed by Lohan herself, which starred her sister Ali as a younger version of herself listening in on verbally abusive parents.
4. Miley Cyrus, “We Can’t Stop” (2013)
This song was the debut of Miley 2.0, all-grown-up and ready to raise some eyebrows. And for as much controversy and general fun that’s been poked at the video, “We Can’t Stop” has only gotten better with time. Here, Miley sounds Stevie Nicks-soulful, a quality which distinguishes her from the more traditional vocal theatrics of other former Disney kids.
3. Vanessa Hudgens, “Sneakernight” (2008)
Maybe Vanessa Hudgens doesn’t have the catalogue of her former-Disney peers, but this song is REALLY good, even if it does have an unfortunate title. This is basically Jamiroquai-lite R&B, with horns, pianos, and strong jazz vocal from Baby V.
1. Miley Cyrus, “Party In The U.S.A.” (2010)
Who knew that this little song about a girl pulling up to LAX with her dreams and her cardigan would become a Fourth of July standard? “Party In The U.S.A.” is so joyous, so carefree, so catchy that it’s basically impossible not to love. From little girls to grown men on motorcycles, there aren’t many people who can resist Miley’s pièce de resistance.