TikTok Treats, Week of February 15th

The News:

TikTok is a place where superstars of the past and present rub shoulders with emerging artists and the internet’s wildest memes. It seems as if that kind of variety should cause whiplash, but in the context of TikTok, these disparate artists and musical styles make a certain kind of sense. The platform’s emphasis on authentic creative expression ensures that each creator will bring a unique twist to a song or trend. Check out some of the songs, trends, and artists TikTok is vibing with at the moment:

  • Rap/R&B maestro T-Pain has made himself at home on TikTok, populating his page with highlights from his illustrious career. Earlier this year, T-Pain had a minor viral moment, when a clip of him and Slim Jxmmy of Rae Sremmurd live reacting to the song “Feet Pic” by MrSunChips racked up over 2 million views. T-Pain is going viral once again on the app this week with his 2014 DJ Mustard-produced banger “Up Down (Do This All Day). Powered by a dance created by @itsromebaby (which T-Pain acknowledged on his own page), “Up Down” is one of the top trending songs on the app, with over 380k video creations. 
  • Rapper King Von tragically passed away in November, but he left behind a legion of loyal fans. The Chicago native was known for his gripping storytelling , and now a particularly dramatic moment in his song “Twin Nem” ft. Lil Durk is a trending sound on TikTok. The rhythmic grunts and call-and-response between Von & Durk provides a perfect prompt for sketch comedy, useful for anyone who’s too busy vibing to worry about being embarrassed. With over 115k video creations, “Twin Nem” has been used to soundtrack overzealous cousins at a family reunion, Andy’s toys coming to life in Toy Story, and the relatable moment when you forget you’ve muted yourself on video chat.
  • Plenty of TikTok users were feeling the love during Valentine’s Day week, as songs like The Fray’s “How To Save A Life” and Edith Whiskers’ cover of Edward Sharpe’s “Home” each earning an uptick in video creations. While the happily attached TikTok users chose a variety of songs to express their love, the single and unsentimental users decided on a single anthem–“F*cc Valentines” by Honcho Moonk. With over 298k video creations, many of which from the past week, “F*cc Valentines” allowed the anti-V-Day contingent to send a forceful and angry message, whether they were taking their anger out at the Valentine’s section of a store, bemoaning the deluge of lovey-dovey social media posts, or, like Oneya from @angryreactions, just feeling the anti-love vibes.
  • Combining glitchy electronic sounds and manipulated vocals with pop-friendly choruses, the nascent genre of hyperpop is rapidly growing in popularity on TikTok. 16-year-old artist ElyOtto’s appropriately-titled song “SugarCrash” is the latest hyperpop banger tearing up TikTok. Anticipated ever since ElyOtto shared a snippet in August, “SugarCrash” has more than 35k video creations on TikTok, partially inspired by an editing trend that juxtaposes the bright sonics of the song with a scary or awkward moment, or highlights a strange scene from an anime. The song’s TikTok success is reverberating in the real world–”SugarCrash” has over 10 million streams on Spotify, and recently reached the #1 spot on Spotify’s U.S. Viral 50 chart.
  • TikTok is often a channel for expressing joy, but sometimes, you just need to scream your head off. Rising British club music star Shygirl’s song “UCKERS” (62k video creations) is the perfect soundtrack for that catharsis. At the start of the song, a series of blood-curdling screams give way to a syncopated beat, and TikTok users have used that transition to explore the benefits of healthy eating, show off creative Zoom still images, or to document a transformation of appearance.
  • Amidst all the bizarre trends and superstar stories that populate TikTok, the platform’s bread and butter is still providing a platform for emerging artists to find their audience. One such rising star is Leyla Blue, a singer-songwriter from New York City. When she created her TikTok account in November, Leyla had zero followers, but by posting every day–sharing her new and old songs, performing covers of songs by artists like Amy Winehouse, or just feeling a vibe–she’s built a following of over 90k. The Island Records-signed artist built much of her momentum with her sultry anthem “What A Shame,” which eventually surpassed 100k creations on TikTok. Leyla recently posted a video enthusiastically explaining how her TikTok followers helped “What A Shame” grow into a hit on Spotify, and to show that even seemingly out-of-nowhere TikTok hits are the product of hard work, not pure luck. Leyla has recently been using the app to promote “Gasoline,” her upcoming single.

All throughout February, TikTok celebrated Black History Month by honoring Black music with themed playlist, LIVE streams with artists like Kelly Rowland and Monica, and deep dives into music history with @songpsych. Today, TikTok announced even more Black History Month initiatives, including commissioned songs by Leon Bridges and KAYTRANADA, and TikTok LIVE Make Black History Celebration, a Black History Month finale event with performances from Snoop Dogg, Saweetie, and more. Check out all the details at TIkTok’s newsroom: https://newsroom.tiktok.com/en-us/leon-bridges-kaytranada-more-help-tiktok-honor-black-music-during-bhm

Check TikTok’s newsroom for more noteworthy stories: newsroom.tiktok.com

For more info, please contact:
Michelle McDevittAndrea HigginsErin Ryan, Audible Treats
Leah Linder, TikTok

The Background:

TikTok is the leading destination for short-form mobile video. Their mission is to inspire creativity and bring joy.

TikTok has global offices including Los Angeles, New York, London, Paris, Berlin, Dubai, Mumbai, Singapore, Jakarta, Seoul, and Tokyo.

TikTok’s Newsroom: https://newsroom.tiktok.com/en-us

Check out previous editions of TikTok Treats, a weekly newsletter about the most interesting music happenings on TikTok:

Black History Month Kicks Off, Mark Ronson Duets, and More Music Stories From TikTok
Cardi Goes Up, Uzi Goes Down (to Sleep), and More TikTok Stories
Dave Grohl, Migos, Miley, and More Happenings on TikTok
This Week on TikTok: Olivia Rodrigo Hits #1 as Memes & Mashups Flourish
New Year, New TikTok Trends: Alicia Keys, Remembering MF DOOM & More
Paul McCartney, Holiday Celebrations, and New Year’s Eve Live on TikTok
TikTok Releases First U.S. Music Report: Here Are Some Key Insights
How TikTok’s Top 10 Songs of 2020 Impacted the Industry
On TikTok: Lil Nas X Brings “Holiday” Cheer, Shawn Mendes Welcomes Us to His World & More

Run-DMC, MGMT, and More Noteworthy TikTok Stories
Billie Eilish and Queen Join the Party, New Viral Hits Take Flight, and More From the World of TikTok
Ariana Grande, Rick Astley and More TikTok Stories
Elton John, Tim Burton, Liam Payne and More Add Some Pumpkin Spice to the Week in TikTok
John Lennon, Oasis, George Michael, and More Score Trending Hits on TikTok
Stevie Nicks, Jason Derulo, and More Highlight a Big TikTok Week
Now Here You Go Again, You Say You Want Your TikToks
Pop Smoke, 24kGoldn, Flo Milli, and Others Have Scored Multiple TikTok Hits
TikTok Salutes Its #FamiliaLatina: Music Stories from Latinx Heritage Month
Big Sean, Charlie Puth, Classical Harp, and More From TikTok
David Guetta, Sada Baby, and Rick James Are Having a Moment on TikTok
BTS Hits #1, Kendrick Plants Money Trees, and More From TikTok
Dua Lipa Levitates, J. Cole Soundtracks Glow-Ups and More TikTok Stories
TikTok: The “WAP” Dance Challenge, Folklore, La Roux, and More Provide Joy and Catharsis
Charlie Puth, Pop Smoke, and More Trending TikTok Stories
Artists Unite to Say #SaveTikTok
How TikTok Users Use the App to Boost Their Musical Careers
TikTok Doesn’t Just Mint New Hits…It Revives Old Ones
These International TikTok Artists and Hits Eliminate Language Barriers
Who’s Hot on TikTok? Jason DeRulo, Rod Wave, and More
TikTok Success = Chart Success and the Hot 100 Proves It
TikTok Users and Artists Celebrate #MyPride Through Music
TikTok Promotes a Vibrant Artistic Community with #BlackMusicMonth