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The Pop-Punk Renaissance is Here, Thanks to Olivia Rodrigo and Willow Smith

Olivia Rodrigo performs on Saturday Night Live in a plaid outfit
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Fresh off of her recent BRIT Awards appearance, Olivia Rodrigo made her way over to Saturday Night Live this weekend, where she performed her hit “drivers license” and her latest single “good 4 u.” The episode, hosted by Keegan Michael-Key, was Rodrigo’s debut as the musical guest on the sketch comedy series.

While Rodrigo gave an emotional performance as she belted out “drivers license,” when it came for her “good 4 u” performance, she switched things up to have fun and let loose. She immediately transported us back to the early 2000s in an edgy plaid corset and matching pants, topped off with a pair of chunky combat boots.

The guitar-driven song, combined with the emo outfit felt super nostalgic, giving off early Paramore vibes and solidifying that the pop-punk revival is upon us. All of Twitter immediately took notice:

It’s not just Rodrigo’s song and performance that are bringing pop-punk to the mainstream again. Willow Smith is also proving she is the moment with her sweeping rock track, “Transparent Soul.” She linked up with none other than Blink-182’s Travis Barker, Kourtney Kardashian’s latest beau, for the song.

Related: Willow Smith gets candid about being polyamorous.

Smith is also collaborating with the queen of pop-punk herself, Canadian treasure Avril Lavigne on an upcoming song.  “I wanted that 2007 Avril angst,” Smith said in an interview with W. “When I heard what she did with what I sent her, I felt like I was transported back to my tween days, in the car, just screaming, ‘I don’t have to try to make you realize!’ It was beyond any joy that I could have imagined,” she said.

While we have to wait for Rodrigo’s album Sour, which is out next week, to hear if she has any more pop-punk anthems up her sleeve, we can anticipate a full punky record from Smith this summer.

Although both singers do have different sounds, it’s great to see women of colour at the forefront of a genre that, when it was at its peak, was extremely white and extremely male. Not to say that most of us don’t appreciate some Green Day or Fall Out Boy, but it shows how with evolution comes diversity, and these two young stars are killing it. Is it too soon to hope for a Rodrigo x Smith collab?


Related: Olivia Rodrigo sounds off on sexist critics

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