Bebe Rexha ‘Shocked But Grateful’ for Global Success of ‘I’m Good (Blue),’ Hints at Mystery Album

In a sea of out-of-left-field hit songs this year (Kate Bush, anyone?), David Guetta and Bebe Rexha‘s “I’m Good (Blue)” stands out as one of the most unpredictable.

Guetta and Rexha’s throwback dance-floor filler interpolates Eiffel 65’s 1999 novelty hit “Blue (Da Ba Dee)” (itself an unexpected success story), and as Rexha tells Katie & Keith on the Billboard Pop Shop Podcast (listen to the new episode below), the collab was actually made years ago and then unearthed by savvy fans.

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“[David] had played it at a festival after we had cut it, and somebody took a YouTube video of it and posted it,” Rexha recalls. “Then somebody found that and made a remix and posted it to TikTok. Then this big gamer posted it from TikTok, and then it blew up from her page.

“It’s crazy, because you just never know what people want,” she adds. “Everybody was going crazy and being like, ‘We want this song! Why can’t we find it?’ And I was hitting up David [saying], ‘David, people really want this record! We should just put it out!’ At this point, it’s viral on TikTok, and people are asking for it. Let’s just give the people what they want. Let’s not judge it for what it is, and just put it out. It’s just a great, fun record.”

Now that great, fun record is on quite the ride up our charts, climbing 18-16 on this week’s Billboard Hot 100, holding at No. 2 on both the Global 200 and Global Excl. U.S. charts, and spending a fourth week atop Hot Dance/Electronic Songs. Rexha is marveling at the song’s global success and trying to piece together the secret to its popularity.

“Never did I think in a million years that it would be so big,” she says. “I guess people want to feel that 2000s nostalgia, especially after the three years of a pandemic and being cooped in their houses. It brings back that feeling of nostalgia, and it makes you feel kind of warm. I will put my hands up on this one and say I get it, but I’m also confused and shocked, but also very grateful.”

Although Rexha just released her sophomore album Better Mistakes last year, she hinted to fans on Twitter last week that her next project might be out sooner than they think – but she wants to give her hit with Guetta a little space before putting out the “very focused” new project.

“I’m not gonna lie: ‘I’m Good’ has thrown a little bit of a wrench into the whole plan,” she tells the Pop Shop Podcast. “I’m trying to let ‘I’m Good’ have its moment. But the one thing that’s really good about my project is that it does have dance elements to it. It has rock as well as dance elements to it. It’s inspired by one of my favorite female artists of all time. ”

Let the guessing games begin!

Here are a few more hints about the album: “I really spent a lot of time studying this time period and what this artist was saying and how she said it. And then how she said it when she was with her band and by herself, and I really want to make sure that it’s a real artist project. I think it was a natural evolution. I love rock music, and I love dance music. I was like: ‘How can I evolve naturally?,’ because I’m not a child anymore. I’m a grown woman, so this felt like a really great natural growth for me.”

Next up: Rexha will hit the Jingle Ball Los Angeles stage on Dec. 2 at The Forum in Inglewood, Calif.

Also on the show, we’ve got chart news on how Doja Cat gets her sixth top 10 hit on the Hot 100 with “Vegas” while Steve Lacy’s “Bad Habit” holds atop the list for a third straight week. Meanwhile, Glass Animals’ former No. 1 “Heat Waves” marks another milestone in its storied chart career, becoming the song with the most week ever on the Hot 100 — collecting its 91st week on the chart. And, on the Billboard 200 albums chart, Stray Kids notch their second No. 1 album (and second of this year!), while new albums from Quavo & Takeoff, G. Herbo and Charlie Puth all debut in the top 10.

Katie & Keith also take time to chat about all the Grammy controversies that bubbled up after preliminary ballots were sent to voters last week. From Nicki Minaj and Silk Sonic to The Weeknd and Drake, these were the biggest headlines from the ballots.

The Billboard Pop Shop Podcast is your one-stop shop for all things pop on Billboard‘s weekly charts. You can always count on a lively discussion about the latest pop news, fun chart stats and stories, new music, and guest interviews with music stars and folks from the world of pop. Casual pop fans and chart junkies can hear Billboard‘s executive digital director, West Coast, Katie Atkinson and Billboard’s senior director of charts Keith Caulfield every week on the podcast, which can be streamed on Billboard.com or downloaded in Apple Podcasts or your favorite podcast provider. (Click here to listen to the previous edition of the show on Billboard.com.)