What are songs are currently trending on TikTok and beyond? Well, the path to virality, chart domination, and TikTok hits is no longer reserved for new, popular songs. The industry has seen an uptick in renewed interest around classic tracks that re-emerge in pop culture thanks to social media, soundtrack syncs, and commercial placements, and sometimes purely by chance. Look no further than the time a man went cruising on his longboard listening to Fleetwood Mac’s “Dreams.” This column will break down all of the older songs that are trending on TikTok again (and explain why they became popular one more time).
Dru Hill – In My Bed
In 1996, US R&B group Dru Hill – led by Sisqó – released its hit single “In My Bed,” ascending to the top of the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs Chart and to No.4 on the Billboard Hot 100. The track depicted a tale of infidelity, Sisqó becoming suspicious of his partner, explaining: “I got this feeling and I just can’t turn it loose/That somebody’s been getting next to you.” The track is now trending on TikTok thanks to two different mash-ups – one with Ciara’s “Body Party,” which has users reacting to dating mishaps and more, and one with a freestyle from a session by Jen Carter, Tata 41, and Kyle Rich.
Mark Ronson ft. Amy Winehouse – Valerie
Although originally released by The Zutons, Amy Winehouse’s cover of “Valerie” has become one of her most iconic releases. It was released as part of Mark Ronson’s second album Version in 2007 and became the ninth biggest-selling single of that year in the UK. Last year, while paying tribute to the late star, Ronson shared the original demo of Winehouse’s version, kickstarting a renewed appreciation of her music. With over 75k video creations, “Valerie” is at the center of multiple trends on TikTok, including a hip-shaking dance trend, romanticizing favorite foods, and more.
Nick Jonas – Jealous
Settled into his solo career and on his second album, Nick Jonas released the single “Jealous” – a track that would go on to be his highest-charting and highest-selling single. The hit was based on feelings of envy Jonas had felt seeing other men looking at his girlfriend, striking a relatable chord with many. Now back with The Jonas Brothers, “Jealous” has been a part of the group’s setlist at its Las Vegas residency, with fans on TikTok sharing live clips, appreciating Nick’s powerful vocals.
Rupert Holmes – Escape (The Piña Colada Song)
A soft rock classic, “Escape (The Piña Colada Song)” appeared on Rupert Holmes’ fifth album, Partners In Crime, released in 1979. Its lyrics tell the story of a man bored with his romantic lot who spots a personals ad looking for a man who likes piña coladas. TikTok creators have recently been highlighting the track as one of the best songs ever made, showing appreciation for its addictive chorus.
Lady Gaga – Applause
The lead single from Lady Gaga’s third album Artpop, “Applause” paid tribute to the star’s fans, inspired by their cheering – something which helped keep her spirits up during her Born This Way Ball tour as she battled a hip injury. “I realized it was the applause of the fans that really kept me going,” she explained during an interview with Sirius XM Radio. “Because I would be ready to go on stage and just be crying hysterically, not understanding even how I was feeling.” The song – both the original and a sped-up version – is now trending on TikTok, the former being adapted to Harry Potter scenarios, and the latter soundtracking videos where people share their attention-seeking activities.
The Weeknd – Party Monster
Taken from The Weeknd’s third album Starboy, “Party Monster” details its creator’s decadent lifestyle over a woozy beat. “Woke up by a girl, I don’t even know her name,” he sings in the chorus, lyrics matching the song’s disorientating mood. The track has been experiencing a resurgence on TikTok lately thanks to one line being central to a new trend. Users on the app are sharing videos of them using a filter that makes their lips thin and small, taking off the filter when The Weeknd sings: “Lips like Angelina.”
Mary J. Blige – Mr. Wrong
This Drake team-up appeared on Mary J. Blige’s 2011 album My Life II… The Journey Continues (Act 1) and found the R&B icon lamenting being attracted to the wrong type of man. “Bad boys ain’t no good/Good boys ain’t no fun,” she explained. Now, TikTok creators are using a sped-up version of the track to share their own complicated relationship stories.
Timbaland – Give It To Me
In 2007, Timbaland recruited Justin Timberlake and Nelly Furtado for the single “Give It To Me,” eventually scoring a No.1 on the Billboard Hot 100 with the track. It is the producer’s first and only No.1 US single as a lead artist and his third best-selling single in the country. Users on TikTok have sent it up the trends on the app recently by performing a short choreography to the track.
Snoop Dogg & Anna Kendrick – Winter Wonderland/Here Comes Santa Claus
Snoop Dogg might not be the first person you think of when it comes to festive classics, but back in 2015, the rapper appeared in Pitch Perfect 2 singing a Yuletide hit in “Winter Wonderland.” He was joined in the holiday scene by Anna Kendrick whose character mashes up the track with “Here Comes Santa Claus.” As new Pitch Perfect series Bumper In Berlin begins streaming on Peacock and as Christmas draws closer, fans are remembering the iconic scene.
The 1975 – Robbers
Inspired by the 1993 film True Romance, The 1975’s 2014 single “Robbers” told a tale of two lovers who are no good for each other, but refuse to let the other go. “I’ll give you one more time,” the protagonist declares in the chorus. “We’ll give you one more fight/Said one more line/There’ll be a riot cause I know you.” As the band return to the live stage in the US, the track has been trending on TikTok thanks to frontman Matty Healy using the song to plant kisses on fans, his fellow band members, and security guards onstage.
Colbie Caillat – Try
Taken from singer-songwriter Colbie Caillat’s fifth studio album Gypsy Heart, “Try” shares the message of not trying to be somebody else to please other people. “You don’t have to try so hard/You don’t have to give it all away,” she instructs on the single. “You just have to get up, get up, get up, get up/You don’t have to change a single thing.” Those words are striking a chord with fans on TikTok now, who are sharing their own heartfelt covers of the song.
Lady Gaga – Bloody Mary
Taken from Lady Gaga’s Born This Way album, “Bloody Mary” takes inspiration from the Biblical character Mary Magdalene and uses her – along with the star’s belief that she is both “fully divine and fully human” – as an analogy for the expectations on women to be both flawless and humble. A pitched-up version of the track is now trending on TikTok as users place it under edits of and tributes to new Netflix series Wednesday.
Def Leppard – Too Late For Love
Released in 1983, “Too Late For Love” formed part of Def Leppard’s diamond-certified album Pyromania and was eventually released as a single. When it was given its moment in the spotlight, it didn’t waste any time in rocketing up the charts, landing at No.9 on the Mainstream Rock charts. Almost 40 years later, it’s still proving an enduring and popular track as it experiences a resurgence on TikTok. The song has now become a central part of a new trend in which car lovers share videos of getting in trouble for leaving marks on lawns or spinning tires in parents’ fields, spliced with a video of a grinning, sheepish child.
Sublime – Waiting For My Ruca
Sublime’s 1992 album 40oz. To Freedom opened in a distinctive form with “Waiting For My Ruca.” The track began with a dog barking before frontman Bradley Nowell’s vocals came in over a haphazard drum beat and little else. Its unusual form is now taking over TikTok, with young fans celebrating the deep cut surging in popularity via videos of them lip-syncing along to it.
The Cramps – Goo Goo Muck
There have been a few iconic TV music moments in 2022, and Netflix’s Wednesday has provided another to round off the year. In the new series, the titular character is seen pulling some inimitable dance moves to The Cramps‘ “Goo Goo Muck,” quickly gaining the attention of her peers for her kooky style. A YouTube clip of that moment has already gained over 5 million views, while it’s also trending on TikTok as users impersonate her and share edits of the scene.
Eminem – Big Weenie
“I don’t understand/Why are you being so mean?/You’re mean mean man,” Eminem raps at the beginning of “Big Weenie,” which appeared on the 2004 Encore album. It’s a track that takes aim at those who diss Marshall Mathers, quickly that they’re “just jealous” of the rap icon. Now creators on TikTok are taking those opening lines and using them to soundtrack videos about mean things people have said about them.
Ariana Grande – Santa Tell Me
Released in 2014, “Santa Tell Me” saw Ariana Grande get festive – and score a massive hit in the process. The track, which combines holiday sentiments with classic R&B, hit the Top 10 in countries around the world, including Australia, Korea, New Zealand, Germany, and more, and has gone on to be called a “modern Christmas standard.” As the festive season approaches once again, it’s climbing up the TikTok trends, spurred on by Kim Kardashian’s daughter North using it in a video.
K’naan – Wavin’ Flag
An anthem from the 2010 World Cup, K’naan’s “Wavin’ Flag” was originally written in tribute to the people of Somalia. After it was chosen by Coca-Cola for use in the football tournament, it became an anthem of the sport that is still beloved today. That is evident in its resurgence on TikTok as the current World Cup continues to unfold, with fans using it to soundtrack edits of classic moments from the cup.
Jeremih – oui
Appearing on Jeremih’s third studio album, Late Night Tales, in 2015, “oui” flexed Jeremih’s lyrical creativity as he makes a pun in both English and French. “There’s no we without you and I,” he sings in the chorus, nodding to the English homophone of the title. A pitched-up version of the song is now trending on TikTok, soundtracking edits and lyric videos alike.
Zedd – Stay The Night
In 2013, dance music producer Zedd made an unlikely team-up with Paramore frontwoman Hayley Williams on “Stay The Night.” Although unexpected, the results were massive, taking the track to No.1 on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Songs and Dance/Mix Show Airplay charts. Following its ninth anniversary earlier this year, fans have been remembering and paying tribute to the track on TikTok.
Phillip Phillips – Home
The debut single of American Idol season 11 winner Phillip Phillips arrived in 2012, one day after the singer was crowned victor of the show. It scored him instant success, selling 278,000 downloads in its first week – the biggest digital sales week for any “coronation song” for a winner of the program and the best-selling song by any alumni of the show in the US. A decade on from its release, fans on TikTok have been celebrating the hit with old performance clips of it.
Lil Wayne – Lollipop
In 2008, Lil Wayne scored his most successful single to date with “Lollipop.” The track, which served as the lead single from his acclaimed sixth album Tha Carter III, spent five non-consecutive weeks at the top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart and has since been certified five-times platinum by the RIAA. As well as Weezy’s inimitable flow, the track featured vocals from singer Static Major, who tragically died two weeks before the single was released. More than a decade later, the song is now having a resurgence on TikTok as users create comedic videos with features and on-screen text to sync with the vibe of the music.
ABBA – Slipping Through My Fingers / Me And I
Taken from Swedish pop icons ABBA’s 1981 album The Vistors, “Slipping Through My Fingers” details a mother’s regret at time passing quickly in her young daughter’s life, noting how little time they have had together before the realities of the world like school keep them apart. Now, TikTok creators are using the sentiment of the song to highlight how they feel about the ever-moving pace of life.
Post Malone – Rockstar
On his second album, Post Malone teamed up with 21 Savage for the smash hit single “Rockstar,” which topped the charts in the US, Australia, Canada, Greece, Portugal, Romania, Ireland, New Zealand, the UK, and more. Since its release, its success has continued growing – just after its third anniversary, it became only the second song ever to pass 2 billion streams on Spotify. Now, the single is trending on TikTok following Post Malone’s North American tour.
Dean Martin – Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!
Originally composed in 1945 by Jule Styne, “Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!” has become a holiday staple, despite its lyrics only mentioning a wintry night staying warm while snow falls outside. While many artists have covered the track over the decades, Dean Martin released his first version of it in 1959 and re-recorded take in 1966. As Christmas approaches, users on TikTok are beginning to use it more to soundtrack winter-based videos.
Louis Prima – Pennies From Heaven
Featured on his 1957 album The Call Of The Wildest, “Pennies From Heaven” found Louis Prima fantasizing about a fortune “falling all over town.” “When you hear thunder, don’t run under a tree,” he warns. “It’ll be pennies from heaven for you and me.” Now, TikTok users have co-opted the song for a new trend that sees them sharing videos of their problems in areas like travel, family, pets, and more.
Kendrick Lamar – All The Stars
Kendrick Lamar executive produced the soundtrack for the first Black Panther movie in 2018 and, as part of the OST, he released a collaborative single with SZA, “All The Stars.” It went on to be nominated for Best Original Song at the Oscars and Golden Globes the following year, while it was also in the running for four awards – including Record Of The Year and Song Of The Year – at the Grammys. Following the release of the Black Panther sequel Wakanda Forever, “All The Stars” is once again pushing back up trending charts as fans return to the first soundtrack.
Maroon 5 – Sunday Morning
After the massive success of “She Will Be Loved,” Maroon 5 returned with another song that would become a beloved hit – “Sunday Morning.” Nearly 20 years after its original release, the track is still inspiring fans, with multiple trends on TikTok using it as a soundtrack, from romantic dances to beautiful covers.
Lady Gaga – Judas
A single from her massive Born This Way album, “Judas” encapsulated stories of romantic betrayal and “things that haunt you in your life,” according to Lady Gaga. Just as the song represents something that is not good for you, TikTok users have now started a trend to the track, lip-syncing their crush’s name when Gaga sings the titular moniker.
Eminem – Sing For The Moment
After decades in the rap game, Eminem received a huge honor recently when he was inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame – one of the few rappers in the hallowed hall. At the induction ceremony, he performed his 2002 single “Sing For The Moment” with guests Steve Tyler and Ed Sheeran, which is once again causing fans to return to the iconic track.
Bee Gees – You Should Be Dancing
Although the Bee Gees’ iconic hit “You Should Be Dancing” is well-known for featuring on the soundtrack for Saturday Night Fever, the band of brothers originally released it a year before that movie hit cinemas. It didn’t need Hollywood to propel it to success either – upon its release in 1976, it scored the group their third Billboard Hot 100 No.1. However, another association with the film industry is giving the song a resurgence on TikTok as users perform a comedic dance trend from the Despicable Me and Minions franchise on the app.
YG – Toot It And Boot It
Back in 2010, “Toot It And Boot It” was shared as rapper YG’s official commercial debut single, following two independently released mixtapes, 4Fingaz and The Real 4Fingaz. It marked the star’s arrival in the hip-hop mainstream, peaking at No.12 on the US Hot Rap Songs chart while a remix featured 50 Cent and Snoop Dogg. Following recent live performances by YG, the track is rising in the public consciousness again.
Lady Gaga – Just Dance
On “Just Dance,” Lady Gaga’s debut single, Mother Monster landed a ferocious hit. Although it took five months to reach the top of the Billboard Hot 100, it has since gone on to become one of the best-selling singles of all time – not bad for a track its creator said was written in 10 minutes. A sped-up version of the fan favorite is now trending on TikTok as part of a dance trend known as “getting sturdy,” reinforcing its staying power in modern pop culture.
Aloe Blacc – The Man
Aloe Blacc’s 2014 single “The Man” was a positive declaration from an artist on the rise. “It’s time to do what must be done/Be a king when kingdom comes,” he sang on the track, which also paid homage to those who’d come before him. Elton John and Bernie Taupin received songwriting credits for the use of the line “You can tell everybody,” while the music video paid tribute to Marvin Gaye, Muhammad Ali, Martin Luther King Jr., and more. Now, the song is trending on TikTok as fans celebrate its positivity and brilliance.
Billie Holiday & Her Orchestra – Solitude
“In my solitude you haunt me/With reveries of days gone by,” Billie Holiday sings in the opening lines of “Solitude.” “In my solitude you taunt me/With memories that never die.” The mournful but beautiful song is a 1934 jazz standard that Lady Day recorded for her 1952 album, Billie Holiday Sings, putting her magic touch on the song originally composed by Duke Ellington. Recently, the song has experienced a surge of streams on Spotify, taking it from 267,000 plays to almost two million.