By now, you’ve probably heard Olivia Rodrigo’s debut single “Drivers License,” as it has gone viral on social media and is topping the charts on all streaming platforms. You are most likely one of two — a huge High School Musical: The Musical: The Series stan who has been waiting for Rodrigo to finally release music, or this is the very first time you’re hearing about her. If you are the latter, you will undoubtedly fall in love with Rodrido’s pure talent. Rolling Stone has even deemed “Drivers License'' as an early contender for song of the year. Although it is only January, Rodrigo is set to top the music industry in 2021.
Rodrigo released “Drivers License” along with the music video at midnight on Jan. 8, immediately generating buzz around the song. In a matter of hours, “Drivers License” had gone viral on TikTok, taking over everyone’s For You Page. Many celebrities have praised Rodrigo and “Drivers License” on social media, including Joe Jonas, Niall Horan and Taylor Swift, who Rodrigo has said is one of her inspirations.
Once you hear the opening of a car door and beeping at the beginning of the song, get ready to hold back tears. The song tells the story of Rodrigo getting her driver’s license and depicts the heartbreak Rodrigo experienced soon after. She had been excited to get her driver's license because it was something she and her past love had always talked about. However, it was too late and he had already moved on with a much older blonde girl.
In the ballad, Rodrigo — now heartbroken — drives alone past her ex’s street and questions whether their love was real when she says, “guess you didn't mean what you wrote in that song about me.” The bridge of “Drivers License” is a work of art, to say the least, and its most powerful lyric is when Rodrigo reveals “I still f—king love you.” Rodrigo’s storytelling in “Drivers License” is raw and emotional, conveying the pain of going through a heartbreak, and it is no wonder it has garnered so much attention.
Now let’s get into the drama of it all — who is “Drivers License” about? Fans have speculated that the song is about Rodrigo’s High School Musical: The Musical: The Series co-star, Joshua Bassett. The two were very close when filming and came to write “Just for a Moment” together for the show. Rodrigo even said Bassett helped her learn to drive. However, when this past summer Bassett was spotted with fellow Disney actor Sabrina Carpenter, dating rumors arose. The older blonde girl mentioned in “Drivers License” is supposedly Carpenter. Although these speculations have not been confirmed, there are many hints in the song lyrics and music video, leaving the internet convinced the song is indeed about Bassett.
Prior to the success of “Drivers License,” Rodrigo starred in the Disney Channel show “Bizaardvark.” In her most recent work in High School Musical: The Musical: The Series, Rodrigo has proven her musical talent with her original song she wrote for the series, “All I Want,” so it’s no surprise that “Drivers License'' is a major hit. Rodrigo has also posted snippets of original songs on her Instagram that fans are hopeful will be featured on her upcoming EP.
It’s hard to imagine that Rodrigo is only 17 years old due to her maturity and impeccable artistry. There is no doubt that she is going to be the next big pop star. Rodrigo has said her debut EP will be released late spring, but for now, “Drivers License” will continue playing on repeat 24/7, while dominating the charts.