Everything that happened in 2018 before Ariana Grande's release of "Thank U, Next" is pretty much irrelevant, because the pop star has broken a ton of records and, in doing so, is rewriting the rules of music — at least, for women.
“I would just love to see a chart with as many women on top as men,” she told Billboard in their latest cover story. “It’s just so male-dominated. It’s so easy for them. There are so many unbelievable female artists out there that try so much harder.”
Instead, Grande is taking the path less traveled, dropping music willy-nilly "the way these boys do," and writing songs on her own terms.
“I can’t believe it but, like, [also] can," she said of the success of "Thank U, Next." "It’s me and my besties tipsy off champagne — and me with a broken heart — just letting it out and having fun. I love this more than any other song I’ve ever put out."
As for the line "Cause her name is Ari," — not "Aubrey," as many people misheard — she knows it's "kind of corny."
"But the other part of me was like, ‘That’s beautiful and I need to keep it in,’" she explained. "I know that once I put something into a song, then it’s real."
Despite Grande's many records, including the biggest music video debut in YouTube history Vevo's fastest video to reach 100 million views, Spotify's top-streaming artists are all men. Women still don't seem to be getting the same recognition. In 2019, Grande is on the warpath to change that.
"If I want to tour two albums at once, I’m going to tour two albums at once," she told Billboard through tears. "If I want to drop a third album while I’m on tour [in 2019], I’ll do that too! Please. ['Thank U, Next' production duo] Social House is my opening act — you don’t think we’re going to have a studio on the bus? That we’re not going to be making records on the road? Of course we are."
Spotify, YouTube, and everyone else: Get ready.