by Leah Mandel, Colin Joyce, Michelle Hyun Kim, and Kristin Corry of Third Bridge Creative
This week’s Trending Tracks report examines a 2018 folk favorite, the best of Brazil's baile funk, a poppy tune from a Dance Moms alumna, an ethereal TikTok success, and a comedian-turned-rapper’s unintentional summer anthem.
Chartmetric Artist Rank: 2,240
Genre: Alternative Folk
Portland singer-songwriter Haley Heynderickx released her first and only full-length album of introspective folk songs, I Need to Start a Garden, in 2018. Since then, the record has become somewhat of a cult hit with Heynderickx’s marquee track, “The Bug Collector,” trending on TikTok with 360.7k posts, 73.5 million likes, and 614.4 million views. The song, which soundtracks sentimental posts like promposals, engagements, and baby photos, exploded in popularity on the app at the start of July. It has been used most frequently with the viral “old age” filter — as seen in a post (3 million views) from Spanish sensation, Rosalía, which may have contributed to the track’s virality. “The Bug Collector” now has 53.9 million streams on Spotify, where it’s inspired playlists such as “the bug collector typa beat” and “the bug collector vibes.”
Chartmetric Artist Rank: 856
Though she’s only recently come to fame for her sensitive, orchestrated pop music, kenzie has been in the public eye since she was a child. She’s the younger sister of dancer, actress, and Sia collaborator Maddie Ziegler and together, they appeared on the Lifetime reality show Dance Moms when they were kids. In the years since, the younger Ziegler has amassed a robust following on social media (23.3 million followers on TikTok) — substantially lifting her burgeoning career in pop music. “anatomy” is just beginning its viral journey, but it’s already garnered a staggering 1.3 million views on YouTube since being released on July 21. With appearances on tastemaking editorial playlists like big on the internet, Pop Rising, teen beats, the tender track is poised to only get bigger from here.
Chartmetric Artist Rank: 2,514
Genre: Baile Funk
Baile funk, the brash Brazilian rap/dance hybrid, has been having another global moment over the last few months thanks to both the genre’s popularity on TikTok (The #funkcarioca hashtag has 736.3 million views) and crossover hits, like YouTuber iShowSpeed’s fiery “Portuginies,” that draw on the sound. Bibi Babydoll is one of the scene’s rising stars, marrying the ostentatious sound of funk with a colorful, carefree image that recalls internet faves like Uffie and PC Music. “Automotivo Bibi Fogosa” is her biggest hit thus far — drawing on video game beats and vibrant rapping to make an infectious and immediate version of the sound. It’s connected with listeners, and its recent virality has powered it onto Spotify’s Viral 50 and global charts as well as popular playlists like phonk (6.2 million followers), Funk Hits (5.9 million), big on the internet (3.5 million), and Hits de Internet (947k).
Chartmetric Artist Rank: 5,070
Releasing smoldering electronic R&B since 2019, Belgian-Korean singer-songwriter MEYY has scored her first TikTok hit with the sped-up version of her song “Pretty,” a bilingual French-English track. With the original version released as part of her Digital Gloss EP on April 19, which delves into futurist themes, the sped-up track has since rapidly gained over 908.1K videos in three months since dropping on June 7 (The original version has come up short at 161 videos). Though the track’s success has been slowly transferring to Spotify, with both versions clocking a combined total of over 673k streams, “Pretty (Sped Up)” proves that post-PinkPantheress, e-girl R&B can still go viral on TikTok.
Chartmetric Artist Rank: 8,322
Actress and comedian Angel Moore-Tanksley turned a viral speech by popular Evangelical preacher (and ironic TikTok star/meme) Sister Cindy into a contender for song of the summer. In late May, Angel freestyled the hook on her podcast Here’s the Thing, turning a speech about abstinence into a campaign for a bar tab full of ‘ritas. Within a week, the remixed song was officially released and a clip from her show went viral on TikTok (1.2 million views). The sound blew up: Janelle Monae, Doechii, and over 338.7k other users have since used the catchy and suggestive tune to soundtrack their summers. By June 18, Angel had over 554K monthly listeners on Spotify. Flash forward a month and that number had more than tripled to 1.84 million listeners. Over 10 million streams and a Saucy Santana remix later, it’s safe to say we’ll be drinking margaritas all summer.
Graphics by Nicki Camberg and cover image by Crasianne Tirado; data as of Aug. 11, 2023.