Spotify Wrapped Through the Decade

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Reese Gallant, Writer

Spotify Wrapped has grown in popularity in recent years. 2022 was a significant standout for Spotify Wrapped as it was one of the most popular years. Since 2013, Spotify has tracked and documented the most listened to songs by users. 

Unfortunately, Spotify does not track ratings of songs from users. Luckily, RYM, Rate Your Music is a large music database. It is commonly used nationwide to rate songs and find new music. Multiple users write reviews and rate published music. 


According to Spotify, here are the number one songs in the last decade:


2013: Thrift Shop – Macklemore & Ryan Lewis

In 2012, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis created the song “Thrift Shop.” The song expresses Macklemore’s desire to buy clothes from thrift stores rather than expensive clothing. According to RYM, the pop rap song is rated a 2.48/5.0 stars and ranked #625 for 2012.


2014: Happy – Pharrell Williams 

On November 21, 2013, Pharrell Williams came out with the catchy tune, “Happy.” The song quickly became popular, as it was written for the animated movie, Despicable Me 2. The song expresses Pharrel Williams’ happiness no matter what he is going through. According to RYM, the pop soul song is rated a 2.27/5.0 stars and #476 for soundtracks. 


2015: Uptown Funk – Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars

On November 10, 2014, Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars came out with “Uptown Funk.” There is much controversy about the meaning behind the song. Some say it is about street quality drugs, while others debate the idea that it is about the lives of women. According to RYM, the synth funk song is rated a 3.12/5.0 stars and is ranked #315 for 2014. 


2016: Starboy – The Weeknd

On November 25, 2016, The Weeknd released a song that quickly became popular. “Starboy” is about The Weeknd, or Abel Tesfaye, talking about how he is a “womanizer.” Many believe that it was his attempt to get rid of his past. According to RYM, the alternative R&B song is rated 3.07/5.0 stars and is ranked #984 for 2016. 


2017: Shape of You – Ed Sheeran 

On January 6, 2017, Ed Sheeran released one of his most popular singles. “Shape of You” is about the sexual attraction a person can have to create a deeper relationship but does not explore otherwise. Sheeran revealed that the song was written with Rihanna in mind. According to RYM, the dance-pop song is rated 1.42/5.0 stars. 


2018: God’s Plan – Drake

Released on February 17, 2018, Drake’s song quickly became popular. “God’s Plan” is about the will of God. During the song, Drake reflects on his future and questions of God’s saving of a soul from sin. According to RYM, the pop rap song is rated 2.78/5.0 stars and is ranked #34 for 2018, #776 overall.


2019: Señorita – Camila Cabello and Shawn Mendes

On June 21, 2019, Camila Cabello and Shawn Mendes released their single collaboration song that shocked fans. “Señorita” is a song about friends who cannot keep their hands off each other, hinting at the couple at the time. According to RYM, the contemporary R&B song is rated 1.89/5.0 stars. 


2020: Blinding Lights – The Weeknd

Another popular song by The Weeknd, “Blinding Lights” was released on November 29, 2019. The single is about the ability of an individual’s sight at night while intoxicated and blinded by the streetlights. Although this is the story behind it, The Weeknd did not intend to promote driving under the influence, but instead he wanted to show the longing to see a person due to loneliness. According to RYM, the synth-pop single is rated 3.90/5.0 stars, #13 for 2019, #1449 overall.


2021: Drivers License – Olivia Rodrigo 

A quick hit, Olivia Rodrigo’s “Drivers License” was released on January 8, 2021. The single was rumored to be about Joshua Bassett, an ex of Rodrigo, who taught her how to drive when they were dating. The single stirred the drama for many fans. According to RYM, the singer-songwriter pop song was rated stars and ranked #875 for 2021.  


2022: As It Was – Harry Styles

The current most popular artist, Harry Styles, stands at the most recent year with a standout single. “As It Was” was released on April 1, 2022. Some believe the song is about childhood trauma and the story behind Styles’ childhood during his parent’s divorce. According to RYM, the indie pop song is rated 3.23/5.0 stars and ranked #385 for 2022, #9234 overall.