Turning Heads This Week on TikTok: Britney, BIA, Bachata and Beyond
One of the things that makes TikTok so exciting is that there’s no blueprint for a TikTok hit–a trending song can come from any year, artist, or genre. The past week on TikTok saw trending sounds from the worlds of rap, pop, soul, and even bachata. The app’s diverse tastes reflect the wide-ranging community, whose subcultures large and small intersect in fascinating ways. Take a look below at some results of those interactions from recent weeks:
- TikTok recently unveiled a suite of immersive creative effects that enhance the music experience on the app, including a music visualizer and an effect that allows users to create their own beats. Last week, Diplo demonstrated the new “delayed beats” effect, by synchronizing a series of still images of himself riding a skateboard to the beat of “One By One,” his yet-to-be-released single. Featuring contributions from Elderbrook and Andhim, “One By One” is causing a stir on TikTok with over 18k video creations since Diplo posted his video, many of which use the same delayed beats effect that his video used. With the TikTok community building momentum for the song on the platform, “One By One” is primed to make a massive debut with its official release on Friday April 30th.
- More than capable of returning past hits to prominence, TikTok recently breathed new life into the 2008 smash “Circus” (272.9K+ creations) by pop legend Britney Spears. The track’s notable line “All eyes on me in the center of the ring just like a circus” has inspired a new trend that can make even the most self-assured TikTok creator engage in a little lighthearted, self-deprecating fun. The song is mainly used to soundtrack self-callouts, whether you have a knack for acting mysterious in traffic, being secretly obsessed with fictional characters, or being the center of a lecture from a coach. The self-effacing trend behind “Circus” shows how humor helps music connect the platform’s various communities.
- With over 52K creations and counting, rising rapper BIA’s intoxicating “WHOLE LOTTA MONEY” is providing a spark for displays of creativity and confidence across the platform. The über-confident banger has creators posting footage of their visual art skills, from cool kicks-inspired photoshoots to eccentric hair and makeup looks. Rapper Amine has expressed his appreciation for the bold track and BIA has even engaged with the sound on her own page. With the track gaining more momentum by the day, and recently entering the top 25 of Spotify’s U.S. Viral chart, “WHOLE LOTTA MONEY” has the potential to become a summer anthem.
- Making a splash in 2020 with her hit “Do It” (over 500k video creations across multiple sounds), Chloe x Halle’s Chloe Bailey is very much at home on the app. The 22-year-old singer made waves in March when she helped popularize the #WalkChallenge (2.9 billion views), a confident strut to the tune of Houston rapper Saucy Santana’s “Walk.” Since posting her famous “Walk,” Chloe has been very active on the platform, recording covers of hits like GIVEON’s TikTok-beloved “Heartbreak Anniversary,” Silk Sonic’s “Leave The Door Open,” and The Weeknd’s sensual smash “Earned It,” the last of which racked up over 1.3 million video views. With a follower count of 756k and rising, Chloe’s TikTok has helped her show off her personality and shed the image she cultivated as a teenaged R&B star.
- Latin music has a growing presence on TikTok, and the community doesn’t just have time for the latest trap and reggaeton hits–they show plenty of love to more traditional styles too. TikTok is going through a major bachata phase, powered by “Necio,” the 2014 collaboration between Romeo Santos and Carlos Santana. TikTok users are turning to the sound to help them show off their bachata dance skills, whether they’re strutting their stuff with a partner, shaking it solo, or something in between. With 34k video creations and counting, the popularity of “Necio” heralds a hopeful summer full of careful choreography and close contact on TikTok and IRL.
- The theme song from HBO’s Big Little Lies, Michael Kiawanuka’s smoky and soulful “Cold Little Heart” (41k video creations) is an instant mood-setter, evoking dusky beach landscapes and hazy sunrises. On TikTok, creator @nicholas_flannery uses the song to soundtrack his ongoing exploration of the kind of “rich white lady” that appears in prestige dramas like BLL and The Undoing. With the help of “Cold Little Heart,” the British-born creator is capable of provoking laughter and knowing recognition with just a well-timed glance and an expressive facial expression to show the distinct way a “rich white lady” on HBO would take a taxi home, discover her husband’s infidelity, temporarily lose her cool, or get distracted by a dark thought. Thanks to Flannery, who often generates more than 10 million views on his videos, “Cold Little Heart” has spread throughout the app like wildfire, as creators make sketches about schoolyard romances and post-decision regret.