We have the Hollywood strike to thank for Ariana Grande’s new album 

The pop star wasn’t intending to work on new music until she was done with ‘Wicked’


Ariana Grande might be ramping up to return with her seventh album ‘Eternal Sunshine’, but she wasn’t intending to be back in the music biz so soon. 

The pop star last shared a new album in 2020 with ‘Positions’, which took the top spot on the charts in the US, UK and more countries around the world. ‘Eternal Sunshine’ will arrive on March 8 and was previewed by the single ‘Yes, And?’ last month. 

In the meantime, she’s been focused on filming for Wicked, Jon M. Chu’s movie adaptation of the long-running stage musical. Grande plays Glinda the Good Witch in the movie, the first part of which will be released in November. 


Glinda was where she wanted that focus to remain until the writers and actors strikes hit Hollywood, putting filming and production on pause. “I didn’t have the goal to make an album,” she told Zach Sang in a new interview. “I was actually really opposed to coming out with music until after Wicked – either both parts or just the one part. I wasn’t sure how it would feel. 

“But as soon as the strike began, I came to New York just for fun, just to see how it would feel. Max Martin came to New York to spend a week with me at Jungle City studios, and it all just kind of started pouring out.” After spending a week in the studio with one of pop’s biggest songwriters and producers, Grande kept going back into the booth to work on new ideas. 

With music unexpectedly pouring out of her, she reasoned that her role in Wicked had played a part in opening her up. “My relationship with music changed and healed a lot through taking space from it,” she said. “I learned so much from Glinda and through Glinda. I healed a lot of parts of myself alongside and through her, and it actually helped me heal a lot of my own personal, weird stuff that I had with my relationship to music and to being an artist and that persona. 

“I was able to come home and address it and sit with it and change the things that weren’t working – and fall in love with it again.” 

Grande also teased that her upcoming album is “human” and a loose concept album that references Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind. While we wait to hear how that plays out on the record, refresh your memory of the pop star’s story so far with our attempt to rank every Ariana Grande song