Who is Olivia Rodrigo and what is the Drivers Licence drama?

5 mins read

Since its release last week, Olivia Rodrigo’s debut song Drivers Licence has taken the internet by storm. On January 11, just 3 days after its release, the song broke Spotify’s streaming record gaining over 15 million streams in a single day. It then went on to beat its own record the next day.

It has stayed at number one in the global charts on Spotify, Apple Music and the iTunes store since.

The topic of the song sent fans into a tizzy after the pointed lyrics hinted that it could about her co-star Joshua Bassett. The two star in Disney’s High School Musical: The Musical: The Series together and were rumoured to be dating IRL. Rodrigo posted a Tik Tok a few months back using the All I Want sound with the caption ‘and that’s on failed relationships’ and many believed it to be about the pair’s split.

The song All I Want is from HSMTMTS and went viral on the social media platform last year. It’s about a failed relationship between Rodrigo and Basset’s characters, further encouraging the rumours about them.

Sabrina Carpenter credit: Popsugar

If you think that’s all the drama then you are very wrong. This is where Sabrina Carpenter comes in. Drivers Licence refers to a (much) older blonde woman and so the jump to Bassetts possible new love interest was an easy one – Carpenter is in fact blonde and four years older than Rodrigo (‘much older’ from a four year age gap does seem a stretch though).

Carpenter is also a Disney star and became famous for her role in the show Girl meets World. More recently she appeared in Dinesy+’s Clouds and Netflix’s Work It. Like most Disney actors she can sing and has a pretty successful music career.

While the relationship hasn’t been confirmed by either of them, Basset and Carpenter have been seen out together and have been appearing on each other’s social media regularly. The even coordinated their Halloween costumes dressing up as the ever-iconic Sharkboy and Lavagirl.

Shortly after the announcement of Rodrigo’s single Bassett announced his own song titled Lie Lie Lie. The song, which was released on the 15th, seems equally pointed towards the relationship between the two.

However, some have noted that Bassett teased the song all the way back in April 2020, before the rumours about him and Rodrigo had even come out. The lyrics “Guess you didn’t mean what you wrote in that song about me” from Driver’s Licence are more likely to be referring to a different song that Bassett apparently wrote about her called Anyone Else.

Even if the song isn’t originally about her, the timing and some of the similarities between the videos (and the figure that looks suspiciously like Sabrina in the car with Bassett) make it hard to completely rule out that it isn’t about Rodrigo.

The weird competition that seems to be going on between the two has only served to stir the pot further but could easily be one big publicity stunt. If it is a competition then Olivia Rodrigo’s streaming number speak for themselves.

We’ll probably never know if any of the drama is real or if it’s just a massive coincidence hyped up by the internet. The real question we should be asking ourselves is why do we even care? Maybe it’s just the lack of anything else to do or maybe its just another symptom of our celebrity fulled society.

Featured image credit: Spin South West

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3rd year Journalism student | Film and Television Editor @ Brig Newspaper

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