The Music Behind TikTok’s Most Viral Dance Challenges
Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past two years, you should be familiar with the rise of the latest social media craze, TikTok. During a time where many of us felt lonely and hopeless due to the 2020 stay-at-home order, the app cured our social depression and connected us with millions of users. From memes and comedy skits to educational videos, TikTok’s popularity rose outside the platform and transcended into pop-culture royalty. As the platform has grown significantly within the year, it has also widened the careers of many artists thanks to the ever going viral dance challenges. Who would’ve thought that aggressive arm movements could turn a sleeper hit into a chart-topper with just one post?
Here’s a complete list of some of the trendiest dances to go live on TikTok and the songs behind the viral sensation.
The Renegade- K CAMP “Lottery”
One of the first multiple-step dances to hit TikTok, The Renegade was created by 14-year-old Atlanta-based Jalaiah Harmon. Some of the app’s most influential users like Charli D’Amelio helped make the dance a viral phenomenon. From Lizzo to the Stranger Things cast, K Camp’s 2019 hit became the official song for the new platform racketing over 20 million videos.
Savage Dance- Megan Thee Stallion “Savage”
2020 wasn’t the best year but, it was the year of Megan Thee Stallion. With the help of several users, various Megan songs were able to shine thanks to the many dance challenges. One of them being her EP Suga’s hit single, “Savage.” Keara Wilson is the dancer behind the TikTok choreo! Almost a month after its release, the song was remixed with Beyoncé and accumulated more than 50 million views.
Wap Challenge-Cardi B feat. Megan Thee Stallion “WAP”
Like we said, 2020 was the year of the Hot Girl! Even though Megan Thee Stallion and Cardi B were met with controversy after the video and single release of “WAP,” the female-rap duet ultimately took the internet by storm. YouTube dancer Brian Esperon created his own WAP choreograph and posted it on TikTok. #Wap now has over 14.3 billion views and has a star-studded catalog of features including Vanessa Hudgens and Jennifer Lopez.
Say So Dance- Doja Cat “Say So”
Another artist whose career elevated thanks to the video-sharing app was Los Angeles’ Doja Cat. The rapper-turned singer released her song “Say So” in 2019 a part of her second studio album, Hot Pink. TikToker Haley Sharpe is the credited creator behind the dance and even got a feature in the “Say So” music video.
Silhouette Challenge- Paul Anka “Put Your Head On My Shoulder” x Doja Cat “Streets”
Arguably the sexiest challenge on the internet right now, this vivacious viral video trend is one of the latest to come from the platform. Not necessarily a dance but, more of a celebration of the female body, the Silhouette Challenge invites users to shoot a sultry silhouette against a red light background. The songs to compliment this challenge are “Put Your Head On My Shoulder” by Paul Anka and “Streets” by Doja Cat. Since the challenge, Doja’s song became a sleeper hit from the 2019 album.
Number One Baby Dance- Young Thug feat. Future “Relationship”
A lot of TikTok songs that go viral are previous tracks that just got their shine a little late. This is the case for 2017’s Beautiful Thugger Girls hit song, “Relationship.” The ‘Number One Baby Dance’ is set to Young Thug and Future’s collab, which has joined the long list of viral dance songs. Users would film themselves performing the typical TikTok hand gestures to Future’s melodic chorus.
Corvette- Popp Hunna “Adderall”
As TikTok begins to grow, many independent musicians have been able to skyrocket their careers with the help of dance challenges. Up-and-coming Philly rapper, Popp Hunna is one of the latest artists to gain fame thanks to the platform. “Adderall” also known as “Corvette Corvette” was released on the app with choreo provided by @yvnggprince. Since its release, the viral dance has been performed by Sasha Obama and Steelers wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster.
June Bug Challenge- StopEmGottem “Beat Box”
This fun challenge has audiences dancing awkwardly everywhere. The Junebug Challenge is the latest craze to take over social media across all platforms. The TikTok dance consists of funny arm movements in various places of a user’s setting. Previous dancers who participated in the challenge include, Saweetie, Swae Lee and more.
Buss It Challenge- Erica Banks “Buss It”
Another viral TikTok that celebrates womanhood is Buss It Challenge. “I think my butt gettin’ big” now has a new meaning in 2021! The Texas rapper, Erica Banks made the Billboard Top 100 due to her breakout hit song “Buss It” in January 2021. The trend features users transforming from one lazy outfit to another baddie fit.
Hood Baby- KBFR “Hood Baby”
Autumn Simon is a music and cultural journalist based in Los Angeles, Ca. She graduated from the University of La Verne, where she studied journalism and social media marketing. Her work has been published on DoLA and UncoverLA. Her interest includes finding hidden gems in LA, discovering new artists, and attending live concerts and festivals. Her favorite artists include Kanye West, Ice Cube, Frank Ocean, and Smino- just to name a few!