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10 Awesome VMA Performances You Probably Forgot

Maybe you don't remember these performances (or maybe you weren't even born yet!) but check out our favorite least-talked-about VMA moments

1 / 10

Whitney Houston, "How Will I Know?"/"Greatest Love of All" (1986)

The VMAs were still in their infancy, but Whitney Houston was at the top of her game. Long before the days of Auto-Tune, Whitney slays this performance of "How Will I Know," reminding us one more time how much we love this song. To top it off, she finishes with a vocally epic performance of her now-classic "Greatest Love of All." 

2 / 10

INXS, "New Sensation" (1988)

Did you forget how good INXS were? Let this clip remind you. The Aussie rock band brought their mega hit "New Sensation" to the award show (along with their unfortunate suits—hey, it was the '80s). They might be the only band who successfully performed a sax solo on the VMA stage.

3 / 10

Guns N' Roses & Elton John, "November Rain" (1992)

Guns N' Roses + Elton John. Enough said. Press play.

4 / 10

Salt-N-Pepa, "Push It/None of Your Business/Whatta Man/ Shoop" (1994)

Salt-N-Pepa's here. And they're in effect. With the best hip hop medley to ever hit the VMA stage...

5 / 10

TLC, "Ain't 2 Proud 2 Beg/Kick Your Game/Creep/ Waterfalls" (1995)

OK, we take that back. TLC's hip hop medley was pretty fantastic, too.

6 / 10

Puff Daddy, Faith Evans, Sting & 112, "I'll Be Missing You" (1997)

The 1997 VMAs went down in MTV history for Fiona Apple's infamous "the world is bullsh-t" tirade while she accepted her Best New Artist in a Video award. Sadly, it probably overshadowed a touching tribute to Notorious B.I.G. from his best bud Puff Daddy, wife Faith Evans and Bad Boy Records boy band 112. The superstars performed their Biggie homage track "I'll Be Missing You" which even had Sting, who sang on the original Police track that "Missing You" reinterprets, paying his dues by singing on the chorus.

7 / 10

Sheryl Crow, "Safe and Sound" (2002)

Though the song is actually about a breakup, Sheryl Crow performed her ballad "Safe and Sound" at the 2002 VMAs as a tribute to New York on the year anniversary 9/11.

8 / 10

OutKast, "Prototype/The Way You Move/Ghetto Musick/ Hey Ya!" (2004)

Andre 3000 of Outkast during 2004 MTV Video Music Awards - Show at American Airlines Arena in Miami, Florida, United States.
Kevin Kane/WireImage

What's the best way to close out the VMAs after you win Video of the Year? Ask OutKast. Their six-minute medley from Speakerboxxx/The Love Below made everyone pretty happy.

This performance is so good (e.g. so rare) that video of it doesn't even exist online anymore. *gasp* Quick! Check if you recorded it on VHS!

9 / 10

Christina Aguilera, "Hurt" (2006)

Little known fact: Christina Aguilera actually had a cold during this performance. This is what Christina Aguilera sounds like with a cold. Bow.

10 / 10

Young the Giant, "My Body" (2011)

AdeleBruno Mars and Lil Wayne all performed at the 2011 VMAs, but Young the Giant was the only act holding down the rock front ... and they were still rather unknown at the time. The quintet was chosen based off buzz about their live show and they definitely delivered. Their performance of "My Body" earned their debut album more than 10,000 in album sales the following week and secured their first appearance on the Billboard 200 albums chart. It might have been all about pop and rap that year, but rock still made a statement.

Watch it above or here.

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Photo of the day

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