Welcome to Billboard Pro’s Trending Up column, where we take a closer look at the songs, artists, curiosities and trends that have caught the music industry’s attention. Some have come out of nowhere, others have taken months to catch on, and all of them could become ubiquitous in the blink of a TikTok clip.
This week: A newly viral and unusually located Katy Perry live performance helps her 2019 single see big gains, 30 Seconds to Mars’ first big single gets boosted by a Chad Smith drum-along and Lay Bankz is on the verge of a TikTok-accelerated breakout hit.
Katy Perry Flushes Out New Streams With Viral Bathroom Performance
Back when she was promoting her most recent album, 2020’s Smile, Katy Perry launched a series that she dubbed Potty Jams, in which the hit-maker belted out her pop songs in a bathroom (stars – they’re just like us!). “Never Really Over” and “Small Talk” also both received Potty Jams versions, but over the last few weeks, the powder-room performance of “Harleys in Hawaii” has gone viral, leading to renewed interest in the island-vibed fan favorite.
Part of the “Harleys” return comes from the Tiny Desk-esque effect of the bathroom performance, with Perry crooning the mid-tempo track while flanked by musicians and backup singers popping out of bathroom stalls and the acoustics affecting the sound of the song. And then there’s the way that Perry attacks the lyrical phrase “you and I” as “you and ayyyyyyeeeeeyeahhyeahhhhh!” in the clip — a go-for-broke melisma that’s belatedly turned into a meme, and earned millions of TikTok streams.
The revival began in earnest at the end of September, and as a result, weekly streams of “Harleys” nearly doubled: the track earned 1.11 million U.S. on-demand streams during the week ending Sept. 28, according to Luminate, up 93% from the previous frame. Perry kicks off the final month on her Play Las Vegas residency on Wednesday night (Oct. 4); “Harleys” hadn’t been a regular part of the set list, but maybe the Potty Jams renaissance will make it a late addition. – JASON LIPSHUTZ
Drum With Me, Drum With Me: 30 Seconds to Mars’ ‘The Kill” Lifts Off After Chad Smith Plays Along
Though longtime Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith might not have been previously familiar with 30 Seconds to Mars’ 2006 breakout hit “The Kill,” by the time he finished his first listen, he’d helped the song have one of its best weeks on streaming. The guys behind the YouTube presence for drumming online education program Drumeo correctly predicted Smith’s lack of prior 30STM knowledge, and tested him (on video) by having him listen to the song for the first time — without drums — and do his best trying to play along with it.
Smith’s instinctive reading of the song’s drum part turned out to be pretty close to the real thing, resulting in a very cool look into the ways veteran musicians can feel a song from the inside out, adjusting to changes in dynamics and structure on the fly and even anticipating them before they happen. The video was widely shared, resulting in 4.5 million views since its Sept. 22 posting — many of whom apparently when on to go back and stream “The Kill,” which jumped 62% from under 1.4 million official on-demand U.S. streams for the week ending Sept. 21 to over 2.2 million the following week, according to Luminate.
Soon, other bands may be petitioning Smith to have not their own song be the next one he’s never heard before. – ANDREW UNTERBERGER
Lay Bankz Channels Her ‘Ick’ Into A Streaming Smash
In a year largely defined by the dominance of female rappers and Jersey club’s hip-rocking dance trends, Lay Bankz emerges this month with “Ick,” a simultaneously cutting and danceable ode to all the things about guys that turn her off. From bad credit and foot fetishes to a part-time job at 7-Eleven and a “sassy man apocalypse,” Bankz spends the whole song – which she first teased back in June — lambasting men who are simply not up to her standards.
According to Luminate, “Ick” earned 2.19 million official on-demand U.S. streams during the period of Sept. 22-28. That’s a 56.8% jump from the period of Sept. 15-21, during which the song earned 1.39 million streams. Compared to two weeks ago, stream for “Ick” jumped a staggering 418.8% from just over 422,000 streams during the period of Sept. 8-14. The official TikTok sound for “Ick” boasts over 217,000 posts, most of which are people jamming along to the beginning of the second verse.
Meanwhile, the song’s official YouTube audio upload has garnered a little over half a million views in one month, and a six-day-old music video-lyric video has earned around 135,000 views. With various clips using the song still going viral across platforms, it seems that consumers aren’t getting the ick from “Ick.” – KYLE DENIS
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