For the longest time, the world knew her as Hannah Montana – the chic blonde rockstar who was every teenage girl’s role model and envy. However, Miley Cyrus gradually shed the blonde wig and shimmery outfits to revamp herself as one of the most eclectic pop stars in the industry.
Today, on her 28th birthday, here’s a round-up of my Top 5 songs from her amazingly diverse discography:
1. Wrecking Ball (2013)
If there is one song that can be said to define the new ‘edgy’ Miley Cyrus, it would be “Wrecking Ball”. Ostensibly musical documentation of the pain caused by her break-up with then boyfriend Liam Hemsworth, the song evokes some heightened emotions – frustration, all-consuming love, and vulnerability – through lyrics like “I came in like a wrecking ball/I never hit so hard in love/All I wanted was to break your walls.” The song’s music video, both hailed and criticised for its sexually explicit connotations, is nevertheless culturally potent and revolutionary.
2. Party in the USA (2009)
Exemplifying pop-rock perfection, “Party in the USA” continues to be a party anthem not just in the USA, but worldwide even eleven years post its release. With earnest, relatable lyrics like “I hopped off the plane at LAX/With a dream and my cardigan/ Welcome to the land of fame excess/Whoa, am I gonna fit in?” accompanied by foot-tapping beats, the song is pure fun. As a listener, one can’t help but reflect Cyrus’ joy and moves: “So I put my hands up … Noddin’ my head like, yeah/Movin’ my hips like, yeah.”
3. Midnight Sky (2020)
Cyrus released “Midnight Sky” in the wake of her much-publicised divorce from Liam Hemsworth. The song is almost a declaration of the singer’s newfound strength, freedom, and hope. It is also an ode to self-reliance and self-love: “But it’s been a long time since I felt this good on my own/Uh, lotta years went by with my hands tied up in your ropes/Forever and ever, no more … I was born to run, I don’t belong to anyone, oh no/I don’t need to be loved by you.” Cyrus’s robust vocals and disco harmonies elevate the lyrics and make “Midnight Sky” one of her best recent offerings.
Also Read: Miley Cyrus Says She Won’t Have Kids Because ‘The Earth Is Angry’
4. Malibu (2017)
“Malibu” can be best be described as a song that is a literal ray of sunshine – full of all things warm and tranquil. Cyrus lends her soothing, breezy vocals to lyrics like “We are just like the waves that flow back and forth/Sometimes I feel like I’m drowning and you’re there to save me … It’s a brand new start/A dream come true/In Malibu.” The perfect background score for a beach vacay replete with “feet in the sand” and watching “the sun go down”, the song promises instant relaxation and around the year summer vibes.
5. The Climb (2009)
Part of the superhit Hannah Montana: The Movie’s soundtrack, “The Climb” is a musical reaffirmation of the saying ‘the journey is more important than the destination’ with lyrics like “Ain’t about how fast I get there/Ain’t about what’s waiting on the other side/It’s the climb.” Full of wisdom nuggets for anyone at a crossroads, the song is a reminder that though there’s “always gonna be another mountain”, it’s important to “Keep on moving/Keep climbing.” A hit from her early days, the song is a testimony to Cyrus’ sincerity and expertise at producing heartwarming ballads.
Fearless and diverse, Miley Cyrus has cemented her position as a musical tour de force who excels across genres, subjects, and age groups.
The views expressed are the authors own.