image [Notorious B.I.G, Arista Records photo]

There was something in the musical water of 1994. Let’s take another sip.

A good chunk of millennials were either pre-teens or young teens in 1994 — and their budding musical tastes were informed by a wide array of memorable offerings in just about every genre. It was the post-grunge era, and alternative music ruled. But so did R&B, rap (which was getting away from party-anthems and addressing more realistic or slice-of-life tales) and pop-ish singer-songwriters.

It was a year that saw the release of many seminal albums: Green Day’s “Dookie,” Nine Inch Nails’ “The Downward Spiral,” Nas’ “Illmatic,” Weezer’s “Blue Album,” Hootie and the Blowfish’s “Cracked Rear View,” the Notorious B.I.G’s “Ready to Die.”

Aaliyah, Korn, Dave Matthews Band, Brandy, Oasis, Portishead and Marilyn Manson were among the artists who released their first album in 1994.

We’ve rounded up 20 of the most influential, notable and, well, just downright catchy, songs released two decades ago. And yes, it was agonizing to narrow this down to 20 (sorry, Des’ree! You just missed it). We’re getting a little misty. — Jordan Bartel

CLICK HERE to watch videos of 20 songs turning 20 this year.