Olivia Rodrigo’s journey with her second album was different from anything she had experienced before.
It’s a rare occurrence when a 17-year-old high school senior, confined to their home amid a global pandemic, unveils a debut album that swiftly captivates the globe.
And yet, that’s exactly what happened when the High School Musical: The Musical: The Series star released “Driver’s License” just a few months before spring 2021.
It skyrocketed to number 1 on the Billboard charts and shattered records worldwide. The album earned Rodrigo her first piece of Grammy recognition in 2022, including the prestigious trophy for Best New Artist.
Two years later, she’s making an equally impactful statement with her sophomore album titled “GUTS.” This 12-track collection elevates her maturity, songwriting, and artistry to new heights, building upon the skill she showcased in “SOUR.”
“GUTS” delves into the complexities of being a young woman in the 21st century, delving deep into the struggles faced by her teenage predecessor, all while she has risen as one of the most notable singer-songwriters of her generation.
Let’s dive into how Olivia Rodrigo challenged herself and took her music to new heights with “GUTS,” and what lessons she’s learned along the way.
Rodrigo began her journey with “CRUEL,” a song that dissects the anxieties and insecurities of being a modern teenager and kicks off her “SOUR” album. On tracks like “JEALOUSY, JEALOUSY,” she bluntly criticized the toxicity of social media with a scathing rebuke.
“GUTS” offers a similarly unapologetic honesty, but with a more mature perspective. It starts with the fierce feminist anthem “ALL AMERICAN B**CH.”
Throughout the album, Rodrigo takes on the anger and absurdity that comes with being a woman in a biting, emotional, and sugar-coated venom that completely exposes the anger and futility that comes with it.
The song “ALL AMERICAN B**CH” takes an uncompromising approach, pushing back against the social pressures and expectations placed on young women, even when she sings, “I’m a mom and a machine, I can feel all your little problems, I know what you mean, and I shed light in the dark, there’s the sun in my mother’s pocket, the best belief, yes, you know me.”
With the grand stages and huge megaphone offered by her newfound superstardom, Rodrigo has no trouble delivering a sharp voice to unlikely expectations placed on women. The transformation from a brave statement into Olivia’s high-pitched screams in “REVIVAL” shows a full realization of the uphill battles faced by women in pop stardom and goes further, when she sings,
“I’m always grateful, I’m sexy, and I’m ‘I’m kind/I look beautiful when I cry.”
This song is a testament to Rodrigo’s self-awareness and how she chooses to declare it, whether she’s speaking her truth or breaking free from someone (or, on a larger scale, society).
After the explosive success of “Driver’s License” in 2021, Rodrigo caused a global sensation with “Déjà Vu,” a bitter exploration of psychedelic and pop-rock, filled with emotional depth and piano-driven melodies that find a place in the sonic universe just like her emotional, piano-driven predecessor.
At the beginning of this summer, and now at the age of 20, a fantastic piano song “Vampire” marks the beginning of her GUTS era. This is another beautiful piano piece, with a focus on a past love she enjoys labeling as “bloodsucker, fame-lover” amidst other tasty metaphors.
But when it came time to choose another single, Rodrigo crafted an astonishing anthem with “Bad Idea, Right?” which was a surprise and a clever departure from anything she had previously written.
With her shy, stream-of-consciousness verses (“And I told my friends I was sleeping / but I never said where or whose bed”), turmoil, soaring lungful choruses, and jubilant perennial questioning core, the superstar takes a chaotic older sister to her “SOUR” standout “Good 4 U” and takes a guilt-free left turn in the single as she talks about making a pretty bad decision herself.
Olivia Rodrigo’s Overall Financial Worth
Olivia Rodrigo is a talented American singer and actress who boasts a financial portfolio worth $16 million.
Her initial claim to fame came through her acting roles in various Disney series. Additionally, she has established herself as a tremendously successful singer and a prominent figure in the realm of social media.
Olivia’s debut studio album, “SOUR,” was released in May 2021 through Geffen Records, and she won three Grammy Awards for it.
The album gave birth to a number of chart-topping tracks, among them “Driver’s License,” “Deja Vu,” and “Good 4 U.” In 2022, Rodrigo became the first celebrity partner of the beauty brand Glossier.