Alyssa Thorne
August 31, 2016 2:56 pm
YouTube/Rebecca Black

If you have a computer and a pulse, you definitely remember Rebecca Black skyrocketing to internet stardom with her music video for “Friday,” which came out in 2011 (six years ago!!). In case you somehow missed the boat, you can check out the original video below (and feel all the nostalgia feelings, obvs).

While we think it looks like Rebecca was having the time of her life — and, um, hi, who at thirteen wouldn’t’ve LOVED their parents to gift them with their own music video shoot?! — becoming an internet sensation wasn’t all good, even if it’s funny in retrospect. She also received a lot of criticism and cruelty from the denizens of the world wide web.

Recently, Rebecca Black, who is now 19, sat down with Dazed Digital to talk about what it’s like to go viral at thirteen, and how it’s shaped her life.

Watching the video now, it seems inevitable that it would go viral. But Rebecca Black had no idea what she was signing up for when she shared it with the internet and world.

“That wasn’t the intention, to even really go out there,” she said. “All of a sudden it kind of blew up, and I had to go with it. Of course being that I was so young, it was hard – I can’t lie and say it was easy.”

Despite how hard it must’ve been to deal with criticism from millions of strangers emboldened by the anonymity of the internet, she didn’t let it get to her.

“The thing is, my dream has always been to perform, and do music, and be on stage, so I just had to see it as a glitch in the road and I had to, one way or another, get through it, because I wouldn’t let that stop me from being where I wanted to be.”

In fact, not only did she refuse to let the haters get her down, she turned her fifteen seconds of internet fame into a wildly successful YouTube channel, and has spent the years since “Friday” came out writing and honing her craft.

She has an Instagram, where you can keep up with her adventures.

Rebecca even has new tunes!

And not only has she kept up with her musical career and continued doing what she loves, but the whole experience gave her some killer wisdom when it comes to the pressure placed on young women. Download her new song, “The Great Divide,” here.

The singer states, “What’s important is maintaining your own individuality. I think it’s important to feel free to explore that. And being a teenager, you’re supposed to try out the different things – I don’t know, dye your hair pink, or do whatever feels right at the moment. I know there can be some pressure to not do that just because it’s not trendy. That’s the one thing I hope girls like myself don’t lose, and it’s the one thing I’ve fought to keep strong within myself. Don’t be afraid to try out what you want and be your own individual person.”

You go, Rebecca Black. We’ll get down with you like it’s Friday any day of the week.

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