🎵 Weekly Music Newsletter: Taylor Swift’s Best Song?

Mic-Check Newsletter
9 min readJul 18

Also, Olivia Rodrigo perfects her formula. The Swans’ swan song. Billie Eilish’s long awaited return. Nicki Minaj and Ice Spice are Barbie girls.

Is hip-hop dying? Lil Uzi Vert’s Pink Tape topped the Billboard last week, but it was the first rap album of 2023 to do so. By this time last year, seven rap albums had already achieved the feat. The year before, it was nine. The year before that, it was twelve.

Click here for a Spotify playlist with the songs mentioned in this article.

The 50 Best Songs of 2023 (So Far) ✨

As we pass the mid-year mark of 2023, it’s time to unveil our top 50 songs from the first half of this year. While the complete list can be found on Spotify, here are a few to get you started.

50. Pink Pantheress, Ice Spice, Boy’s a liar Pt. 2 (Baltimore Club)

41. Baby Keem, Kendrick Lamar, The Hillbillies (Jersey Drill)

28. Kali Uchis, I Wish you Roses (Neo-Soul)

16. boygenius, Not Strong Enough (Indie Rock)

10. Lil Yachty, the BLACK seminole. (Psychedelic Rock)

3. Lana Del Rey, A&W (Alt-Pop)

BIGGEST Songs of the Week 📈

It’s hard to believe, but Olivia Rodrigo’s debut single, drivers license, shattered records and catapulted the Disney actress to superstardom over two-and-a-half years ago. Her debut album, SOUR, capitalized on the enormity of drivers license, further cementing her success. The album resulted in multiple chart-topping singles, a sold-out tour, a Saturday Night Live appearance, a documentary, and three Grammy wins. Despite this, Rodrigo hasn’t released any new music, whether it be singles, bonus tracks, or guest appearances, since May 2021.

Rodrigo is finally set to return with her sophomore album, GUTS, on September 8. The album promises to tackle the challenges of navigating mega-stardom and explore the “growing pains” she has experienced since her meteoric rise. While she described GUTS as a bit rockier and happier than SOUR, her brand new single, vampire, the first preview of GUTS, seems to suggest otherwise.

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