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    19 Throwback Songs That Would've Blown Up If TikTok Was Around When They Were Released

    Yes, "Tik Tok" by Ke$ha is on the list.

    I love a throwback tune as much as the next person but the real question is, which songs from back in the day would’ve gone viral on TikTok if they dropped today?


    Well, as a proud Zillennial that spends the majority of my life on TikTok, I think I’m more than qualified to answer this question! Here are 19 songs that I reckon would've become TikTok famous if they were released today.

    1. “Girlfriend” by Avril Lavigne

    RCA / Columbia

    Before Olivia Rodrigo arrived on the scene, Avril Lavigne was who we all turned to for angsty teen songs about love and heartbreak. “Hey, hey, you, you, I could be your girlfriend” might just be the most relatable lyric in pop history, and if "Girlfriend" came out today, Gen Z’s everywhere would definitely be singing (or lip-syncing) their hearts out on TikTok. 

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    2. “Bills, Bills, Bills” by Destiny’s Child


    There’s not a single doubt in my mind that Destiny’s Child would have completely dominated TikTok. They came through with the bad bitch energy that Tik Tokkers know and love. Their songs are perfect to dance, lip-sync, and hype yourself up to, and "Bills, Bills, Bills" would’ve been one of many to go viral. 

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    3. “Crank That (Soulja Boy)” by Soulja Boy

    Soulja Boy

    When I think of the noughties think of questionable fashion choices, Tamagotchis, and of course, "Crank That (Soulja Boy)". If you didn't grow up recreating this epic dance in your bedroom and/or school playground, you truly missed out. I know one thing’s for sure, if this song dropped in 2021, it would’ve been TikTok famous in no time. 

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    4. “Vogue” by Madonna

    Sire / Warner Bros.

    "Vogue" is one of those songs that are just impossible not to dance to. Madonna would’ve had everyone on TikTok recreating the moves from her mesmerising black and white music video and trying their hand (or hands, rather) at voguing. At the end of the day, this is Madonna’s world and we’re all just living in it.

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    5. “In My Feelings” by Drake

    Young Money / Cash MoneyRepublic

    “Keke do you love me?” could be heard from far and wide when Drake dropped this classic a few years ago. If "In My Feelings" was released today, TikTok would probably crash from all the trends that would follow! One thing’s for sure, this song would be all over everyone’s FYP indefinitely.

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    6. “Obsessed” by Mariah Carey


    "Obsessed" was iconic then and it’s just as iconic now. Mariah really ate and left no crumbs with this one. Let’s be honest, who wouldn’t want to sing “why you so obsessed with me?” on TikTok?! I know I would. Not only is this one of the most satisfying songs to sing along to but this would’ve also been a great audio for dance, makeup, or even fashion trends – the possibilities are endless. 

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    7. “Take On Me” by A-ha

    Warner Bros.

    We all saw the chaos that ensued after TikTok discovered "Blinding Lights" by The Weeknd. Everyone and their mums were dancing along to the retro choreography that matched the '80s-inspired song. As one of the greatest '80s tunes of all time, "Take On Me" would’ve easily been a fan favourite on the app. If it came out today, TikTokers all over the world would be lip-syncing and dancing to this track like there’s no tomorrow. 

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    8. “Paper Planes” by M.I.A

    XL / Interscope

    M.I.A changed the game when she came out with "Paper Planes," and it’s no less legendary than it was all those years ago. The badass lyrics paired with the gun and cash register sound effects would’ve most definitely taken TikTok by storm. 

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    9. “24K Magic” by Bruno Mars


    Bruno Mars loves a catchy tune and a great dance routine almost as much as TikTok does - it’s a good thing he’s made plenty. Many of his older tunes would’ve undoubtedly been a hit with the app but I think it’s safe to say that TikTok would’ve run wild with 24k Magic. 

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    10. “Glamorous” by Fergie ft. Ludacris

    A&M / / Interscope

    Any song that starts with “If you ain’t got no money take yo’ broke ass home” has a really great chance of becoming TikTok famous. Aside from the incredible opener, Fergie really said all there was to say when she came out with "Glamorous" – she even went to the trouble of spelling it out for us. Something tells me that had this song been released today, TikTokers everywhere would’ve been spelling out this word like their life depended on it. 

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    11. “Boys” by Charli XCX

    Asylum / Atlantic UK

    Charli XCX really said what we were all thinking when she came out with "Boys." "I was busy thinking ‘bout boys" – same here Charli. This upbeat banger leaves so much room for fun and creative transitions and I just know that TikTok would have welcomed this track with open arms. 

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    12. “Thrift Shop” by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis ft. Wanz

    Macklemore LLC / Elektra

    When "Thrift Shop" dropped, everyone lost their shit, and rightfully so. It was a banger for its time and it certainly would have been well received by TikTokers worldwide. It could've been the audio for a new dance trend or even the backdrop to try-on hauls and outfit transitions (many of which would’ve been inspired by thrift shops, I’m sure). 

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    13. “Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)” by Beyoncé


    In my humble opinion, there are very few old-school Beyoncé songs that wouldn’t have become TikTok famous if they were released now. However, "Single Ladies" in particular would’ve changed the game! It would’ve been a fun dance trend and a welcomed reprieve for all the singletons that spend their days sifting through the app's painfully adorable couple content.

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    14. “Clique” by Kanye West ft. Big Sean and Jay-Z

    GOOD / Def Jam

    “Ain’t nobody fucking with my clique” would have been the perfect lyric for all friendship groups on TikTok to groove to. It’s also the kind of chorus that lends itself to a more laid-back, chilled dance routine. It’s not every day you want to partake in full choreography, sometimes you just want a few simple steps to follow and that’s where "Clique" would have come in. 

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    15. “Work” by Rihanna ft Drake

    Roc Nation / Westbury Road

    I don’t care what anyone says, "Work" was the song of summer 2016. It was a little before TikTok’s time, and it’s a damn shame because there’s no doubt it would’ve gone viral. The only collaboration that could ever be greater than Rihanna and Drake is Rihanna, Drake, and TikTok – thank you for coming to my TED talk. 

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    16. “Womanizer” by Britney Spears

    Jive / Zomba

    Not every catchy pop song has what it takes to become famous on TikTok but this would certainly be one of them. This pop queen always understood the assignment and "Womanizer" just gave what it was supposed to. We’ve seen a number of old-school Britney classics become TikTok trends and if this song was released today, it would be all over everyone’s FYP immediately. 

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    17. “Sorry” by Justin Bieber

    Def Jam

    Yes, there are dozens of early Justin Bieber songs that TikTok would’ve absolutely loved, but "Sorry" just hits different. The music video for this hit featured a lot of impressive dance moves and chances are, if the song came out this year, we would’ve seen them all over the app! 

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    18. “Bodak Yellow” by Cardi B

    Atlantic / KSR

    Unfortunately, the banger that is "Bodak Yellow" was released just before TikTok reached its prime but we know one thing for sure: it would’ve become TikTok famous overnight! There’s something about Cardi’s NSFW lyrics that makes you want to start aggressively gesticulating, and "Bodak Yellow" is a prime example of this. “These expensive, these is red bottoms, these is bloody shoes” – we would’ve had an absolute field day with these lyrics.

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    19. “Tik Tok” by Ke$ha


    This song would’ve gone viral on TikTok in no time and not just because the hit shares the name with the app or because the party doesn’t start until Ke$ha walks in, but because the song is nothing short of iconic! And let’s be honest, Ke$ha’s "Tik Tok" trending on TikTok would’ve been one of the greatest crossovers in history. 

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    Did I miss any classics? Let us know in the comments!