The TRL Pop Quiz works like this: our editors are posed a music-related question and have only 15 minutes and just 100 words to research, choose and explain their answers. This week's question: what's a song by a celeb who's not primarily an artist (e.g. actor, model) that the world needs to hear?
The Twilight soundtrack slaps, including Robert Pattinson’s “Let Me Sign.” The first full minute of the song consists of Pattinson vocalizing over an acoustic guitar. The second minute we get to the real meat of the song, indecipherable lyrics over an acoustic guitar. I love this song. Its rock sound and melancholy feel fit perfectly with the mood of the rest of the Twilight soundtrack. I genuinely think this is a great song, and it's the perfect jam for staring out of a car window with your parents in the front seat and rain falling outside. Trust me. - Leah Williams
Pop music by young white actresses should really be considered its own genre; at this point, who in this realm HASN’T tried to make a bop? But once you get past Lindsay Lohan, Leighton Meester, Heidi Montag, Paris Hilton—the list is really endless—you land at my criminally underrated fave, Ashley Tisdale. “He Said She Said” had 2007’s whole blippy-clap sound on lock, wherein High School Musical’s Sharpay Evans eyes a guy from across the club and immediately begins broadcasting her downright filthy dreams in extremely PG-detail: “Baby, I could see us kissin’ like that!” Oh, behave! - Terron Moore
Eddie Murphy’s music career was as strange as it was indulgent. He didn’t need to pair up with Michael Jackson on this single from his 1993 album Love’s Alright, but since he did, we’re here watching him float through a psychedelic sky alongside the King of Pop himself. “Whatzupwitu” isn’t particularly original; the sound and imagery seem cribbed from Prince’s Around the World in a Day. Regardless, the phrase “Whatzupwitu” has proved remarkably durable to my ears: a week has gone by since I heard the song where the greeting hasn’t wormed its way into my mind or conversations. - Gus Turner
This question made me search beyond musicals and Disney tracks for songs by people who aren’t typically music artists. I found out Jada Pinkett Smith is the frontwoman of her own band, Wicked Wisdom! The metal rock band hasn’t put out new music since 2014, but they technically are still active. The genre-blender band might not be well known and it’s not on Spotify or iTunes, but Jada has a really big voice and she knows how to use it. - Landyn Pan
It’s no surprise that Brett Gray was the hilarious stand out in Netflix’s new series On My Block, but outside of his breakout role, he’s eager to flex his musical chops with his first EP Easy Daze dropping on his birthday – August 7. He’s said the EP is inspired by the sounds of his childhood like Usher’s Confessions and is a musical retelling of his first heartbreak. He’s released two singles so far, “Old Thing Back” and “No One Else,” and I’m absolutely feeling “Old Thing Back.” It’s a fun nineties throwback that actually gives me OG JoJo vibes. - Kristen Maldonado
Would it surprise you to hear that not only has Priyanka Chopra recorded multiple tracks, but that she was the vocalist on The Chainsmokers’ debut single “Erase” in 2012? I can’t even begin to theorize how these two acts wound up meeting and collaborating, but “Erase” is a half-decent club song that I’m always surprised to remember exists. It’s clearly an early work of The Chainsmokers, not resembling the pop-friendly electronic sound they mastered later with “Roses.” Nevertheless, I can’t help but wonder if Priyanka’s small music career helped bond her closer to new fiancé Nick Jonas. - Matt Gehring