The latest love triangle in pop music

Get the scoop on a complicated yet seemingly strategic teenage affair of hearts

10 Feb 2021 / 09:25 H.

FOR a newcomer in the music industry, 17-year-old Olivia Rodrigo sure seems to know how to make a good impression for herself. From being the youngest artiste to top the HOT 100 chart to having the most streamed song, Rodrigo has proven herself to be the next big thing in pop music.

She has two people to thank for her debut single Drivers License, and they are none other than her fellow co-star Joshua Bassett from the High School Musical series and 21-year old singer, Sabrina Carpenter .

The backstory

Before she was known for getting her Drivers License, Rodrigo got her break in the High School Musical series. Staring as Nini Salazar-Roberts, she played the love interest of Bassett’s character. It is rumoured that the pair dated while filming the show, before calling it quits sometime last year.

Bassett then moved on with another Disney princess, Carpenter. This is where things get interesting. Months before the release of Drivers License, Rodrigo teased about an upcoming breakup anthem on Instagram, writing: “Wrote dis the other day. Vv close to my heart. Gonna call it drivers license I think lol.”

In the demo, she can be heard singing: “... and you’re probably with that brunette girl” and “I don’t believe you when you say I did nothing wrong”.

But upon the release of the song, fans were quick to notice the difference in the lyrics.

“I bet you’re with that blond girl, who always made me doubt. She’s so much older than me, she’s everything I’m insecure about.”

This may be the most telling component in this story because it turns out Bassett was seen with Carpenter over the past summer.

Rodrigo went on to disclose the inspiration behind the song, crediting a heartbreak she recently went through.

The Other Girl

In an attempt to clear her name, Carpenter released her latest track, Skin, with an accompanying music video. In it, she sings about a character who attempts to disrupt her new found happiness with her lover.

“Maybe then we could pretend there’s no gravity in the words we write. Maybe you didn’t mean it, maybe ‘blond’ was the only rhyme.

“I’m happy and you hate it, hate it, oh” and then later, “You can try to get under my, under my, under my skin, while he’s on mine.”

In the video, she is seen weathering through a storm for her newfound happiness. However, Carpenter has played coy about the inspiration, explaining on her Instagram: “I wasn’t bothered by a few lines in a (magnificent) song and wrote a diss track about it ... a lot of people were trying to get to me. The song isn’t calling out one single person.”

Bassett has also released two new tracks with similar lyrics to one another, Lie Lie Lie and Only a Matter of Time. Both songs tell of a person defaming his character over a heartbreak.

Crazy ex-girlfriend or brilliant PR move?

Although they have played coy about the drama, these young lovebirds are not the first Disney stars to be involved in a romance triangle. Just a decade ago, Miley Cyrus found herself in one after the release of 7 Things, while former Disney mouseketeer Justin Timberlake publicly shamed Britney Spears for cheating on him with an alleged friend.

Then, there is the love affair between Hilary Duff, Lindsay Lohan and Aaron Carter.

Although these love narratives took place at different times, they sure do share a lot of similarities. Hence, the question: Could this be another brilliant PR move to further their careers or a complicated love story between three young stars?

For instance all three artistes have managed to produce their songs along with a music video in just three weeks. This seems a bit suspicious considering the current circumstances. Regardless, it seems to be working very well for them.

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