Believe it or not, there were things that happened in 2023 that didn’t involve Taylor Swift. Here’s a roundup of some of the other music stories that made headlines this year:
Jonas Brothers released the long-awaited follow-up to their comeback album, Happiness Begins. Called The Album, it was influenced by the sounds of 1970s soft rock. The brothers promoted the album with a five-night Broadway residency, followed by The Tour, which featured them performing all the songs from five of their albums each night. In the middle of all this, Joe Jonas and Sophie Turner announced they were divorcing. A nasty legal battle over their two daughters followed, but the two eventually came to an agreement.
Miley Cyrus ruled the charts with her song “Flowers,” which debuted at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in January. It spent eight nonconsecutive weeks on top and set a Spotify record for fastest song to 1 billion streams. The song and its parent album, Endless Summer Vacation, earned Miley multiple Grammy nominations, including Album of the Year and Record of the Year. Miley followed that up with a new song, “Used to Be Young,” in August.
Ed Sheeran had a busy 2023: In addition to continuing his Mathematics world tour, he released not one but two albums. He released – (Subtract), his final math-related LP, in May. Co-written and co-produced by The National‘s Aaron Dessner, the album was inspired by his grief over the death of his best friend Jamal Edwards and by his wife, Cherry‘s, cancer scare. In September, he released Autumn Variations, with songs inspired by his life and his friends’ lives.
Pink released her album Trustfall in February and then launched her hugely successful, high-flying Summer Carnival Stadium Tour, which has sold over 3 million tickets and grossed $350 million worldwide.
Ariana Grande made headlines in 2023 for all the wrong reasons: On July 17, news broke that she and her husband, Dalton Gomez, whom she’d married in 2021, had separated earlier in the year. On July 20, it was reported that Ari had already moved on with Wicked co-star Ethan Slater, who filed for divorce from his wife on July 26. Insiders claimed the two only got together after they both were separated.
In 2023, everything old was new again. Among the songs that became hits on the charts despite being released years ago were Lady Gaga‘s 2011 song “Bloody Mary,” The Weeknd‘s 2016 song “Die for You,” Taylor Swift‘s 2019 song “Cruel Summer” and Miguel‘s 2010 track “Sure Thing.” In most cases, each song’s popularity on TikTok is what led radio stations to start playing it again.
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