What is Happening?
I can’t say this is the “coolest” or most “music literate” thing I’ve ever done, but I can’t stop thinking about TikTok. I recently downloaded it and am quickly becoming acquainted with “TikTok songs” as a phenomenon. Again, not my finest music journalism hour. It’s just so hard to resist when one of your best friends has a whole playlist titled, “studying but its tiktok songs” with a description that says, “songs I found on TikTok that I don’t hate” (I totally had her send me the link). I’m sure fifteen year old me would be shaking her head and judging me right now (I’m judging me right now), but I am astounded by the number of songs that have been shot to the foreground because of teenagers dancing for a few seconds.
Turning to the Teenagers…
This week, as a new user with only one post, I set out to collect some of these “TikTok songs” (wow I sound like an old person). I, of course, pestered my friend to send me her playlist that I already mentioned, but the best source of information was my teenage brother (best to go to the source). I texted him asking if there were any songs he knew solely because of TikTok. He replied, quite simply, with, “Too many to count.” At the risk of sounding weird and old again: that is so cool! Songs and artists are being given heaps of free exposure so long as fifteen-year-olds can turn the chorus into some trendy dance. It’s a great example of the positive impact social media can have.
So, my brother actually sent me some examples, and he gave me seven songs to listen to. He mentioned one more song saying, “And then like old town road obvi.” “Old Town Road” was widely circulated by TikTok, gaining speed through this social media platform. While it’s not really my kind of jam, Lil Nas X is so funny on Twitter, and I totally wouldn’t have followed him without TikTok. He also probably wouldn’t have accumulated so much fame so quickly either.
Thanks to TikTok…
Anyway, I’m sure everyone knows these songs now, and maybe not all directly due to TikTok. That said though, this potential cousin of Vine has introduced people, like my brother, to a whole new (sometimes annoying) world of music, and grants artists a unique space in which to gain a following.
Stay tuned to hear more about TikTok’s streaming service, Resso, launching to the U.S. soon!