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Olivia Rodrigo reassesses the meaning of forever on stunning piano-led debut "drivers license"

08 January 2021, 16:49 | Written by Matthew Kent

High School Musical: The Musical: The Series star Olivia Rodrigo dives off the deep end with her stirring debut single "drivers license".

"I guess you didn't mean what you wrote in that song about me," belts singer/songwriter Olivia Rodrigo on her heartfelt first single. Packing emotional punch after emotional punch, the poignant lyrics of "drivers license" memorialise the end of a relationship with a swirl of much-needed melodrama.

While this is her very first single, Rodrigo isn't new to music having spent the last couple of years playing the lead role of Nini Salazar-Roberts in the High School Musical universe's Disney+ series and the powerful "All I Want" from its soundtrack. This time she's delved deep into some of her darkest moments to create a song which is still flecked with sonic euphoria.

“When I came up with "drivers license," I was going through a heartbreak that was so confusing to me, so multifaceted,” Rodrigo explains. “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.”

"drivers license" was co-written and produced by Rodrigo's close collaborator Dan Nigro, who's worked with alt-pop heroes like Caroline Polachek, Conan Grey, Sky Ferreira and Carly Rae Jepsen. Nigro's extensive list of collaborators is a very exciting nod to the future path her musical direction could take.

With her debut EP wrapped up and set for release in the coming months, we're ready and waiting for Rodrigo to deliver more truly heartbreaking sad songs to soundtrack another year of unprecedented turbulence.

"drivers license" is out now via Polydor. Follow Olivia Rodrigo on Instagram.
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