Taylor Swift might have been proud of her “baby” Olivia Rodrigo as soon as “Drivers License” became a runaway hit, but Rodrigo’s actual mother — also incredibly supportive, of course, but evidently pretty frank — didn’t react to the standout track the way one might have expected her to the first time she heard it.
“My mom is the first person I play every song for,” said Rodrigo, who celebrated the release of her debut album, Sour, alongside Apple Music’s Zane Lowe and fans with a virtual listening party.
“When I played ‘Drivers License’ the first time for my mom, she goes, ‘The bridge is really weird. The bridge is, like, too much. It doesn’t fit with the rest of the song,'” she recalled with a laugh during the interview.
“In hindsight, I’m glad I didn’t take that to heart, but she’s very honest,” she quipped.
Before sharing that fun story for the first time, Rodrigo prefaced it by setting the scene for just how awesome her mother really is: “My mom is the best,” she gushed. “My mom is the sweetest woman. She’s from Wisconsin and she’s a third grade teacher and she’s like the sweetest, purest woman you’ll ever meet in your whole life. But her favorite music is, like, punk music and metal music and really hard, gritty stuff.”
She continued: “So she has always been the one that has instilled in me, like, ‘I don’t care [about] the technicalities. If it makes you feel something, then it’s good music.’ That’s why metal was always so cool to her, like, ‘I really feel their emotion. It’s so tangible.’ And so if my mom doesn’t like it, I know it’s not music that makes you feel.”
But mother doesn’t always know best: “Drivers License” raced to a No. 1 debut, and stayed in that position for many weeks — and remember, even the guys of SNL strongly disagree with Rodrigo’s mom’s early take on that heartfelt bridge.
Rodrigo’s album Sour, featuring a total of 11 very emotional tracks — including the singles “Drivers License,” “Deja Vu” and “Good 4 U” — was released on May 21.