The 5 Best One-Hit Wonders of the 2010s!
Today (September 25) is National One-Hit Wonder Day, and what better way to celebrate than to look at some of the best one-hit wonders to have graced our radio airwaves over the past ten years?! "One-hit wonder" can be a difficult term to define, but it typically refers to when an artist only has one song reach No.1 on the charts and their follow-up singles fall short of the artist's initial success. Usually, these artists or bands have a following and continue to produce singles and albums for their loyal fans; however, their music is not usually mainstream enough to be played on the radio.
When looking at the past ten years, a lot of one-hit wonders have made it to the top of Billboard’s Top 100 and it is hard to choose a favorite, so here are some of the best one-hit wonders of the 2010s to listen to on National One-Hit Wonder Day!
1. “Gangnam Style” by PSY
“Gangnam Style” by PSY is guaranteed to take you back to 2012. I am sure you remember doing the Gangnam Style dance move at your middle school formal or high school prom! PSY is a K-pop singer who did not break onto the music scene in America until the release and ultimate success of this single.
But where is PSY now? PSY is currently a father and also the owner of the record label P Nation, which he began in 2019 and has since signed the famous Korean rapper Jessi. Following “Gangnam Style”, PSY has released two albums, but unfortunately they did not receive the hype or create a global dance craze as his previous single did. Either way, “Gangnam Style” and PSY will always take up a small portion of our brain and heart!
2. “Friday” by Rebecca Black
Notably, one of the most well-known one-hit wonders of the past decade has been “Friday” by the young artist Rebecca Black. At just 13 years old, Black released her song and video to “Friday”, which honestly was severely autotuned and had not the best lyrics, but was one that we could just not get out of our heads!
Since then, Rebecca has released numerous singles, but unfortunately none of them have been able to top the 2011 release of “Friday”. Black’s music has transformed now that she is older and has had more experiences in her life. Her music is much more mature and tackles topics of anxiety, depression, love, and pain. If you are interested in some new music this weekend, Rebecca Black might just be your new favorite artist!
3. “Cheerleader” by Omi
Back in 2015, Omi released his debut single “Cheerleader”. For Jamaican artists, worldwide fame and No. 1 hits are not common on their first track, but Omi beat the odds with this song and his collaboration with German DJ Felix Jaehn. Immediately following his single's rise to fame, he released his album Me 4 U, which included “Cheerleader” as well as his song “Hula Hoop”. While “Hula Hoop” did not break into the American music scene, it did do well in other countries, scoring as high as No. 3 on the Swedish charts.
Unfortunately for Omi, he has not been able to top the charts since then, but he does have a strong following and a unique sound when it comes to his music and most recent single “Bring My Baby Back”. So if you need some upbeat, dance hall, Jamaican jams to get you into the weekend groove, start listening to some of Omi’s most recent hits now!
4. “Shut Up & Dance” by Walk the Moon
Saying the words “Shut Up & Dance” to you probably brings back a flood of lyrics and a time when you could not get this song out of your head. Walk the Moon released this single back in 2014, which lead to their rise in popularity and fame but also scored them Top Radio Song, Top Rock Song, and Top 40 New Group of the Year awards over the next several years.
After having to ask themselves the question, “What do we do from here?”, the band waited until 2017 to release their next album, What If Nothing. Unfortunately, this album did not have the same success as the previous one, and since then, the band has not released any new singles or albums. Can we expect to hear new music from the group later this year? This answer is unclear but we will have to wait and see if Walk the Moon can ever top the fame of “Shut Up & Dance”.
5. "Rather Be" by Clean Bandit ft. Jess Glynne
“Rather Be” was released in 2014 by the electronic pop group Clean Bandit, featuring the vocals of Jess Glynne. It reached No. 1 in eleven countries and even won Best Dance Record at the 57th Annual Grammys. Not only was the song a hit, but so was the music video! Filmed in Tokyo, the video featured a Japanese fan lip-syncing to Glynne’s lyrics.
Scoring over 540 million views, the music video, as well as the song, made a name for Clean Bandit as they began to collaborate with other well-known artists. Working with talent such as Demi Lovato, Zara Larsson, Julia Michaels, Charli XCX, and more, many of the band's songs you probably know just did not make the connection that they were the same group! Currently, the band is working on their third studio album, which will hopefully be released later this year, perhaps with a No. 1 hit in the mix.
National One-Hit Wonder Day only comes around once a year, so grab your headphones and turn up your favorite One-Hit Wonders today!