Olivia Rodrigo’s first official debut single, “drivers license”, is generating major attention with its emotional depiction of heartbreak. The 17 year old Disney actress broke streaming records, topped the Billboard charts, and sparked celebrity gossip within the media, making it undeniably the music industry’s first viral hit single of the new year.
Rodrigo appeared in Disney channel’s “Bizaardvark” and starred in the Disney+ exclusive “High School Musical: The Musical: The Series”. With this presence on the screen, Rodrigo has built a loyal and impressive audience; however, her debut single has allowed for more exposure and a larger range of supporters.
“The cool thing about ‘drivers license’ is I’ve seen so many videos of people being like, ‘I have no idea who this girl is, but I really love this song,’ which has been really interesting for me, because for so long I’ve really just been attached to projects and to characters, and that’s how people know me,” Rodrigo said in an interview with the New York Times. “It’s really cool to be introduced to people for the first time through a song that I feel really passionate about.”
The modern pop ballad tells the story of a sorrowful breakup being remembered through the bitter accomplishment of a driver’s license, a topic largely talked about between the ex-couple. The song is rumored to be about Joshua Bassett, Rodrigo’s co-star on “High School Musical: The Musical: The Series.”
“The song is about me and an experience I went through and I think people resonate with the song because of its honesty and vulnerability,” Rodrigo said in an interview with Scott Mills.
Channeling award winning artists such as Taylor Swift and Lorde, the song carries sharp imagery and bold emotions allowing listeners to grasp the underlying plot. Many fans have been able to relate to the sourness and sadness conveyed within the lyrics.
“It was really natural and organic. Very much me writing in the depth of my emotion and I think that’s apparent in the song,” Rodrigo said in an interview with Zane Lowe.
On January 11, the single set the record for most streams in a day on Spotify, disregarding holiday tunes, with 15.17 million global streams. The song became an immediate sensation on the Tiktok platform as well, being featured in countless videos. Rodrigo is the first Asian American woman to reach #1 in Apple Music Charts, continuing to inspire and diversify the industry.
Rodrigo’s massive success on her first debut single illustrates her musical talent and potential in the music industry. Fans are anticipating the growth of another impactful artist.