New Music Releases March 12: Gwen Stefani, Joshua Bassett, CHIKA and More
By Meredith B. Kile
Happy New Music Friday! It's every audiophile's favorite day of the week, and some of our favorite artists from all different genres have blessed us with new tunes.
Gwen Stefani dropped another danceworthy single off her upcoming album, Selena Gomez released her first Spanish language EP, and Joshua Bassett finally dropped his buzzed-about debut album -- minus one notable track.
Plus, Best New Artist nominee CHIKA prepped for the GRAMMYs with a new EP and a cover of a former winner in her category, and America's Got Talent fan favorite Mandy Harvey debuted her uplifting new single, with a heartwarming music video that features some familiar faces!
Read on for some of our favorite recommendations for new songs and albums to listen to this week -- plus, where you can stream them now!
"Slow Clap" - Gwen Stefani
She's reintroduced herself, and now she's ready for the applause! Stefani dropped the second single off her upcoming fifth solo album on Friday, thrilling fans with the reggae-inspired, dance floor-ready sound.
"Been the champion, rang the bell / Rocked the bottom, been through hell," Stefani sings on the track. "Climbed the mountain, now I'm well / I just feel like coming back for the belt."
Following singles "De Una Vez" and "Baila Conmigo," Gomez dropped her first Spanish language EP on Friday, a project that's been nearly a decade in the making for the young performer, and an accomplishment she says she's "so grateful" for.
"This has been something I've wanted to do for 10 years, working on a Spanish project, because I'm so, so proud of my heritage, and just genuinely felt like I wanted this to happen," Gomez told Apple Music's Zane Lowe of the project. "Of course I want everyone to enjoy the music, but I am targeting my fan base. I'm targeting my heritage, and I couldn't be more excited... I just hope that people understand how much I put my heart into this, and how amazing I feel about it."
After several buzzed-about singles and plenty of fan speculation about a real-life love triangle, Joshua Bassett's debut EP is finally here, and the High School Musical: The Musical: The Series star is eager to let his heartfelt collection of songs write their own narrative (except for that Sabrina Carpenter duet, which was recently cut from the EP).
"I think the songs speak for themselves. That's really the truth. If you listen to them, that's the inspiration for it," Bassett told ET's Katie Krause about fan speculation over his lyrics. "I wrote it over the last two years, so to finally get it off my chest, I'm excited, and I can't wait for people to hear it."
Ahead of the GRAMMYs, Best New Artist nominee CHIKA gave fans a double dose of what makes her a perfect nominee for the award this year, dropping her new EP, Once Upon a Time, which features her hit, "FWB," as well as five new tracks.
CHIKA also shared a two-song "Spotify Singles" session, which includes a pared-down rendition of her track, "U Should," and a spellbinding cover of 2020 Best New Artist winner Billie Eilish's "My Future," which showcases CHIKA's soulful voice as well as rapid-fire rap chops.
The America's Got Talent finalist shared her latest song on Friday, an anthem to positivity, inclusivity and embracing what makes you a "masterpiece." The accompanying music video is fully accessible in ASL -- with performances from Harvey, Super Bowl breakout star Warren “Wawa” Snipe, Shaheem, and Christopher Corsini -- and features everyday heroes including medical personnel, teachers, parents, and farmers, plus notable champions of the deaf and disabled community like Marlee Matlin, Erik Weihenmayer, Kyle Maynard, and Shoshannah Stern.
"'Masterpiece' is about embracing all of who you are, including the broken pieces, and understanding that all of life’s experiences -- even the tough ones -- made you who you are today," Harvey said of her new song. "It’s a celebration of the journey. During these times, it can be hard to find a silver lining, but a beautiful one in my mind is that this journey we are on is making us stronger and that’s something worth celebrating."