Olivia Rodrigo Breaking Records with “Drivers License”


Photo Courtesy: The New York Times

Lana Patlingrao

     17-year-old pop singer, songwriter, and actress, Olivia Rodrigo broke the music industry records with the release of her newest single “Drivers License” on January 8, 2021. In the course of three days after its initial release, the song reached the top of multiple boards across the globe. 

     “The fact that it is number one in the world right now is mind-blowing,” said Rodrigo in an interview with Zane Lowe on the Zane Lowe Show on Apple Music.

     On January 11, 2021, “Drivers License” was number one on Apple Music’s Top 100: Global, number one on Spotify’s Top 50: Global, and had over 15.17 million streams. The amount of streams Rodrigo received on Spotify on that single day was a new record, which she topped the following day with over 17.07 million streams. Currently, her single has about 125 million streams on Spotify.

     Her achievement was reached through hard work as Rodrigo had also been balancing her senior year of high school, playing the role of Nina Salazar-Roberts on High School Musical: The Musical: The Series (HSMTMTS), as well as her songwriting and singing. She was also known for other songs she wrote such as “All I Want” and “Just for a Moment”, which she co-wrote with fellow HSMTMTS cast member, Joshua Bassett. “I have been songwriting for so long, ever since I could write,” said Rodrigo in a collaboration video with Genius. 

     Throughout her developing career in acting and singing, she has had immense support from her family, friends, and fellow cast members. The cast members from HSMTMTS, such as Bassett, Joe Serafini, Frankie Rodriguez, and Julia Lester, have congratulated her on her single’s success through Instagram by commenting and posting on their story about her new song. “I have really, really awesome people around me who support me and really just love me for me,” said Rodrigo to Lowe. 

     With this song reaching out to the global community, many have expressed their feelings about it through various social media platforms, such as TikTok, a social media platform where creators are able to create and post their own videos. On the app, listeners posted videos with the song playing in the background as they wrote captions on how the song resonated with them. With lyrics such as “today I drove through the suburbs, crying ´cause you weren’t around” and “I know we weren’t perfect but I’ve never felt this way for no one,” the song is said to convey deep feelings people have relating to love. “I definitely think I try to approach recording all of my music from a place of emotion,” said Rodrigo to Lowe.

     In her songs, Rodrigo expresses the emotions she has felt before. Being an adolescent like most of her listeners, fans expressed how they were able to relate to her experience. “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,” said Rodrigo in a BBC radio interview with Scott Mills.

     Olivia Rodrigo´s music, merchandise, and newsletters can be found on her website, oliviarodrigo.com. “Drivers License” can be listened to on various platforms, such as Spotify, Apple Music, Youtube, and Amazon Music.