Teenage Dream: The future of pop is female

It’s time to destroy the notion that teenage pop singers = mindless kiddos with a one-way ticket to stardom after a Disney career.

Young women in mainstream music have existed forever, but following the breakthroughs of especially mature trailblazers like Lorde and Billie Eilish, the floodgates have opened for the under 21 gals of Gen Z to start gripping the rowdy reigns of pop. Simply put, the era of teen queens is surging, and their tsunami of talent isn’t receding any time soon.

Inspired by 19-year-old King Princess’ (very) sold-out show at The Sinclair on Thursday (July 12) and 19-year-old Clairo’s appearance at the Cambridge venue on July 20, Vanyaland has compiled a list of ladies continuing the line of wise-beyond-their-years pop tunes. Swipe through to see our picks of women under 20 who are keeping the new trend not only thriving, but pushing the boundaries of pop music.

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Olivia O’Brien

Following her breakout song with gnash “I Hate U, I Love U,” Los Angeles’ Olivia O’Brien is still caught in the throes of teenage tribulations. Her video for “Empty,” released last year, cashes in on the rich-bitch-by-the-pool look while putting out “I don’t want to live / But I’m too scared to die” vibes. Her song “RIP” is just as radio-ready, if not more so. The 18-year-old starlet makes some pit stops in New York, California, and Washington next month on a mini summer tour. She’s worth the summer road trip.

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