I don’t know what it is about this month, but it’s kind of a huge one for pop music. Firstly, there’s the release of Lady Gaga’s album, ARTPOP, today, in addition to Mariah Carey releasing a brand new single, “The Art of Letting Go.” And let’s please not forget that on November 24, music’s biggest acts will be performing (and winning) at the 2013 American Music Awards. But you know what? We can’t let these pop stars forget where they came from. So for today’s OK! Old School, let’s look (well, listen) back to today’s biggest female artists’ first-ever hits. Make sure your headphones are up, because this is going to be amazing.
Firstly, it seems appropriate to start with Lady Gaga since today is #ARTPOP day. Her first hit was “Just Dance” ft. Colby Adonis that came out in 2008. What a classic.
Another pop princess who’s had a huge month is Katy Perry, who won big and performed at last night’s MTV EMAs. Remember back when “I Kissed a Girl” was her claim to fame circa ’08?
Nicki Minaj is relatively new to the game, but when she happened, she happened hard. Sure, Nicki released a few songs in 2010, but she got her big break in 2011 with “Super Bass.”
And what about RiRi? Rihanna has had more charted singles than most people in the game right now, but “Pon De Replay” was the first song that really made her, you know, famous. And it came out in 2005! That was so long ago!
Like RiRi, it’s hard to keep track of the number of successful singles Taylor Swift has released over the years. But her first actual hit (and second single overall) was in 2007 with “Teardrops On My Guitar.” After that came the sucess of “Love Story” and basically the entire Fearless album so yeah, Taylor’s rise to fame was pretty much smooth sailing after that.
Pink didn’t have a top-charting album until 2012 (which seems basically impossible, right?), but she had dozens of singles before that, including her first ever single and hit, “There You Go” from her debut album Can’t Take Me Home in 2000. I had this album (still do) and can confirm that every single song on it is amazing.
Avril Lavigne has also been around for probably longer than you think. Ten years ago, she introduced the world to her punky-pop style with “Complicated” which is to this day her second most successful single (behind 2007’s “Girlfriend”). This track brings back so many mems.
While we’re kicking it old school, let’s not forget Beyonce‘s “Crazy in Love” which released in 2003 and was her first solo record after Destiny’s Child. And for B, it was all up from there.
But before Beyonce, there was Britney Spears, who confused the world in 1998 when she came out with her first song, “Hit Me Baby (One More Time).” 15 years later and still no one knows what the song means, but it was the start of an era, that’s for sure.
And wait! We can’t talk about Britney without mentioning Christina Aguilera‘s “Genie In a Bottle…”
Or Jessica Simpson‘s 1999 classic, “I Wanna Love You Forever…”
Or Alicia Keys’ most famous song to this day, her debut single “Fallin” from 2001…
And what about those girls (formerly) on Disney, you ask? Selena Gomez got her start as a singer in 2009 with her band, The Scene, and her first album, “Kiss & Tell,” that brought us this gem:
Demi Lovato got her start on Camp Rock, and her first single was actually a collaboration between her and her co-star and then-boyfriend, Joe Jonas. “This Is Me” is lyrically genius, honestly.
Miley Cyrus got her start the same way—via singing on Disney Channel. But her first hit didn’t happen until she dropped the Hannah Montana and just sang as Miley Cyrus. Anyone remember “See You Again” from 2007? Anyone?
Then there’s Ke$ha. She’s probably not as big as the other girls on this list as far as industry standards go, but everyone knows that “Tik Tok” is one of the greatest songs to hit pop radio since, like, 1999.
Speaking of 1999, that was definitely the peak of Jennifer Lopez‘s music career. “If You Had My Love” was the first single off On The 6, which is probably the most quintessential album from the 90’s. Probably.
Before she hit in big in America, Shakira was a Spanish-speaking popstar elsewhere in the world. But “Whenever, Wherever” was her first foray into English music and was a mega hit in 2001.
And you think all these songs are old school? Well, Mariah Carey debuted her first single, “Vision of Love,” in 1990 before most of the other people on this list were even born. All hail Mariah.
Which of these first-ever singles is your favorite? Tweet us @OKMagazine.