An actress-turned-singer Olivia Rodrigo has released her debut single to welcome the new year 2021. The song, titled “drivers license” is inspired by heartbreak, and her moody vocals really do get to you.
The 17-year0old Olivia Rodrigo is best known for her roles in the Disney channel programs ‘Bizaardvark’ and ‘High School Musical: The Musical: The Series.’ She has contributed to the soundtracks on these programs before. The brand new single is likely the first taste of her debut studio album.
During the live listening party Olivia hosted prior to the release of the song, she talked about the inspiration behind “drivers license;” “When I came up with ‘drivers license,’ I was going through a heartbreak that was so confusing to me, so multifaceted. Putting all those feelings into a song made everything seem so much simpler and clearer—and at the end of the day, I think that’s really the whole purpose of songwriting. There’s nothing like sitting at the piano in my bedroom and writing a really sad song. It’s truly my favorite thing in the world.”
The song set a new record in Spotify history for becoming the fastest song to surpass 100 million streams, in approximately 8 days. “drivers license” also won Olivia Rodrigo her first Grammy award at the 2022 Grammy Awards ceremony.
Watch “drivers license” Music Video
“drivers license” Lyrics Meaning and Song Review
In the song, Olivia Rodrigo talks about getting her driver’s license–not because she is excited about driving around town. She is much more excited about the thought of driving to meet her lover. This has been the only motivating factor for her to get her driver’s license. But as the song progresses, we come to know that life doesn’t exactly go as planned.
So, Olivia Rodrigo got her driver’s license and on the day she was very excited to go see her boyfriend, he ditched. We don’t know why she could not meet him. But we do know that she ended up driving through the suburbs all by herself.
In the second verse of the song, we get to know that even Olivia does not know why her boyfriend ditched on her. This is bad! This is when her mind wanders to the worst possible assumptions. Yes, she begins to think about that older, curvier, and blonde girl that her boyfriend hangs out with. Yes, she has her doubts now.
Translating this scene to the real world (since the song is inspired by real-life events), it was rumored that Olivia Rodrigo and High School Musical co-star Joshua Bassett were dating during the filming of the show in 2019. It was also rumored that they called it quits in early 2020. In July 2020, Joshua and singer Sabrina Carpenter were spotted together, sparking dating rumors. Olivia released the snippet of “drivers license” a couple of weeks later. Sabrina Carpenter has blonde hair and is older than Olivia.
In the song, Olivia Rodrigo is just heartbroken imagining her lover being with another girl. But she cannot say that she did not see the red lights from far away. She talked about him with her friends until her friends did not want to hear about it anymore. So, she put her thoughts into a song, and she is on to something here!
Let us hear what you think about this song in the comments below. Check out the complete lyrics and further meaning breakdown on Genius.