Avril Lavigne has credited Olivia Rodrigo with reviving “rock-and-roll on the charts”.
The ‘Bite Me’ rocker presented the ‘good 4 u’ hitmaker with the Songwriter of the Year prize at Saturday’s (04.12.21) Variety Hitmakers ceremony, and she hailed the 18-year-old star’s record-breaking debut studio album, ‘Sour’, with helping to bring punk rock back into the mainstream.
Avril said at the bash in Los Angeles: “This year we were introduced to a new artist whose debut album marked a major return for rock-and-roll on the charts.
“From ‘Driver’s License’ to ‘Good 4 You’ to ‘Deja Vu,’ Olivia’s singles from her album ‘Sour’ are part of the collective psyche of 2021, and she wrote every single one of them.”
And the teen phenomenon thanked Avril, 37, for inspiring her.
She gushed: “I am such a massive fan of you, I look up to you so much, so this is so surreal for me. Thank you for the love and support.
“I’ve been writing songs since I was like five years old and my favourite part about all of this is that feeling of writing a song that perfectly captures how I feel better than any conversation could have. So to accept an award for songwriting is really meaningful to me.”
Olivia admitted it has been “beyond a dream come true” to have so many people from all walks of life and backgrounds, regardless of their gender or sexuality, identify with her honest and heartfelt music.
She continued: “When I put out ‘Drivers License’ about this really hard time in my life, I watched it affect so many people regardless of sexual orientation, or gender or age — and to me, that’s the really beautiful thing about art and that was really special to me — to not only see how universal these feelings were but how music can bring us together and make us feel less alone.
“My heart and soul lies in songwriting and so for people to connect with my music like they have is beyond a dream come true.”
She concluded: “Thank you so much Variety for this honour, and thank you for the opportunity to be in a room with all these people I just adore. Thank you to everyone on my team [and] to my manager at Interscope, I love you guys so much. And thank you especially to all of the amazing, supportive women in my life. I appreciate it, thanks again.”