From “Dreams” To Reality: How TikTok And Social Media Revitalized A Classic Record
Renewed attention from a viral TikTok video has catapulted a song that was released over 40 years ago into the spotlight once again. Fleetwood Mac’s “Dreams” entered the Top 10 on Billboard’s streaming songs chart last month, and it’s all thanks to a skateboarding TikToker sipping on a bottle of Cran-Raspberry juice.
It all started when Nathan Apodaca, an Idaho Falls resident who goes by 420doggface208 on TikTok, posted a clip of himself in early October lip-synching to “Dreams” as he skateboarded down the street. His vehicle had broken down on the way to work, and he happily sang along to the classic record while sipping on a bottle of cranberry juice. The video quickly went viral on the social media platform and began spreading across other networks.
“We love this!” the band tweeted when they saw his post.
According to Billboard, in the week ending Oct. 15th, “Dreams” earned 16.1 million US streams. It was the type of ‘full circle’ moment that most iconic entertainers only dream about (no pun intended). The hit from the group’s “Rumours” album reached the top spot on the Billboard Hot 100 chart shortly after its release in 1977, and almost a half-century later, found itself topping the charts once again. Even former Fleetwood Mac guitarist Lindsey Buckingham joined the viral “Dreams” team, posting a clip of himself to TikTok where he can be seen horseback riding with his daughters and drinking the now-iconic bottle of cranberry juice.
Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours is still a top 20 album this week — currently sitting at #16 more than four decades after its release — and it’s all thanks to a viral TikTok video that’s had everyone vibing. One of the most amazing aspects of this resurgence is that TikTok virality catapulted the album into its first appearance in the top 10 since 1978, a year after it debuted. It wasn’t so much that TikTok triggered a sense of nostalgia for an older generation – it created a whole new one.
Apodaca’s original viral video has been viewed more than 69.4 million times since being posted at the end of September. As is the case with most viral videos, Apodaca had no idea the video would become such a viral hit and would create a whole new generation Fleetwood Mac fans.
“I couldn’t hear nothing when I was looking around for the cars, because the wind was in my ears. So when I turned and the wind cut out is when I caught the part where she gets the vocals,” he said, referencing the end of the video when he lip-syncs Stevie Nicks’ iconic lyrics. “I almost didn’t post it, but I was like, ‘Let’s post it and see what it does within an hour.’
Of course, Apocada had no idea that his TikTok would make him an overnight celebrity. But soon after his original post, over 170,000 TikTok users created videos of themselves drinking beverages and skating down the street to the same classic Fleetwood Mac song.
Capitalizing On Virality
As a result of his overnight TikTok fame, Apocada now has enough Ocean Spray cranberry juice to last a lifetime – and perhaps even better, a new truck gifted to him by the company. Of course, the truck wasn’t just a token of appreciation to Apocada for the publicity – if we remember, he was on his skateboard in the now-viral video because his truck broke down on his way to work.
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Why It Matters
For some, Apodaca’s viral clip may just seem like the feel-good video of the moment, enjoying its moment in the sun before it’s quickly replaced by the next piece of viral content. But this particular piece highlights more than just one man’s 15 minutes of fame. It highlights the power that the app continues to have over the charts, a platform with growing influence where one video — and its innumerable clones — can vault a 43-year-old album back to cultural relevancy.
What makes this feat even more intriguing is the fact that this isn’t’ the first time a song has become massively popularized via TikTok. Artists like Drake and Doja Cat have previously used viral dances and remixes their songs as a way to boost their singles up the Billboard chart.
The most notable song to break on TikTok has to be Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road,” which dominated the charts last year. Unlike “Dreams”, which was a hit record when it was released decades ago, Lil Nas X was still little known at the time that he first gained notice because of TikTok.
“Old Town Road” became notable in its own right for its unique blend of hip-hop and traditional country, and also its rejection by country music purists. But it’s probably the first clear example of TikTok turning a song into a breakout hit. And it all happened because Lil Nas X turned it into a meme. “I promoted the song as a meme for months until it caught on to TikTok and it became way bigger,” he told Time.
Released on Dec. 3, 2018, Lil Nas X had the savvy and wherewithal to see an opportunity and try to turn the hybrid record into a meme. Though benefitting from a stroke of luck the likes of which many of us will never experience, the 19-year old Atlanta rapper did have previous experience with going viral and creating memes. He became a “tweetdecker” on Twitter as a teen.
Social Media Is Making Hits – Both Old And New
Let’s face it; teens can make anything cool. This tech-savvy, social-media-driven generation has used their online presence to launch songs like Drake’s “Toosie Slide,” Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road” and Roddy Rich’s “The Box” to the number one spot on the Billboard charts. Each and every day, pop songs become templates for viral lip-syncs and break-the-internet dance routines. But the sharp creative minds on TikTok are also discovering – and rapidly popularizing – indie songs, international songs, and even songs you almost completely forgot about. Some songs are completely obscure and largely unknown until they are heard by many for the first time on TikTok.
“Dreams” is just the newest iteration of TikTok’s growing influence. It’s a symbol of the profound impact that social media continues to have in shaping popular culture. Whether it be a choreographed dance routine to a newly released single, or a skateboarding cranberry juice drinker with a killer lip-sync, social media is making new stars every day; and giving classic songs and iconic artists the second act of a lifetime.
Why “Dreams” Are Important For Social Media
In many ways, TikTok can kind of feel like a greatest hits compilation. It takes many of the most engaging elements and experiences of its social media predecessors and amalgamates it into this wonderfully entertaining and highly-addictive stew of content.
Many of the platform’s top influencers have become bonafide stars, hiring well-connected managers and garnering five to six-figure compensation for their services. One of TikTok’s brightest stars, Charli D’Amelio, is a 16-year-old from Norwalk, Connecticut who has a staggering 97.5 million followers and 7.6 billion likes oo TikTok.
The deep-rooted connection between music and pop culture runs deep. There’s an axiom as it pertains to music – specifically, the idea that popular music tends to be popular everywhere. Whether it be radio, streams, downloads, etc, if a song is hot, it’s hot. This is true for the most part with TikTok, where songs like “WAP” by Cardi B featuring Megan Thee Stallion were the No. 1 on-demand streaming track in the U.S. and dominated the meme landscape across the platform.
Though TikTok has now solidified itself as a social platform and engrained itself into pop culture, the video-sharing landscape could undergo some dramatic changes over the next calendar year. With the impending election and the uncertainty that lies ahead, social media continues to be at the forefront of our everyday communications (and entertainment). After announcing an IPO back in September, TikTok will have the capital to build features to attract new users and grab additional market share.
In light of the renewed attention around “Dreams” and Fleetwood Mac, Stevie Nicks spoke about how she and Christine McVie were a “force of nature” when the two played together in the band.
“In the first two months I was in the band, Chris and I made a pact that we would never be in a room full of famous English or American guitar players and be treated like second class citizens. If we weren’t respected, we would say, ‘this party’s over’. We have stayed true to that our entire career.”
While Nicks and her bandmates stay true to their part, Gen-Z follows suit by continuing to find new and innovative ways to create viral content. What seems certain is the youth of America will be recording more funny, clever, and choreographed videos set to current and future hit tracks. In 2020, it’s the stuff “dreams” are made of.