Soundtrack Of My Life: Jason Derulo

‘Swalla’ hitmaker, TikTok superstar, furry fella in 'Cats'

The first song I remember hearing

‘The Lord’s Prayer’

“I went to church in Miami from a really young age and that’s where I remember hearing music for the very first time. ‘The Lord’s Prayer’ was definitely one of the first pieces that I came into contact with. As the years went on and after I eventually learned it off by heart I was singing it louder than everybody else in church.”

The first song I fell in love with

R. Kelly – ‘I Believe I Can Fly’


“I’m pretty sure the first time I heard this was on the Space Jam soundtrack. It was one of the first songs I was able to sing on my own. I knew it front to back, back to front and could sing it with just an instrumental playing. It was the first song I fell in love with because it marked the start of a new journey for me, where I was able to start singing by myself.”

The first album I owned

Michael Jackson – ‘Thriller’

“My mum bought this album for me after I saw Michael do a live performance on TV. I asked her to get it for me and from that point I was hooked. Michael Jackson is everything to me. He was my teacher way before I became a star myself. This album was a learning tool for me. It was like a textbook. It was my how-to and it had me studying all his vocal runs, little ad-libs – everything. It became an obsession for me, so much so that there was a point where I had to wean myself off it.”

The first gig I went to

Michael Bolton – Yacht Rendezvous Gala, Miami, 2000


“When I was a kid I entered a talent competition at the Boys and Girls Club of Broward County – which is like an after school programme for kids – and I won it. The prize was the opportunity to go see Michael Bolton live and perform a song with him. It was on Star Island in a smaller venue, maybe like 1500 people, and it was one of my first experiences being in front of an audience. My mum loved it because she is the biggest Michael Bolton fan. She played him in the house all the time [when I was] growing up.”

The song that makes me want to dance

Jason Derulo (Feat. Adam Levine) – ‘Lifestyle’

“I had to pick one of my own – I wanna get up and dance every time I hear this shit! It’s just really, really infectious. That’s why I shot the video the way I did. I wanted it to be a very bare bones type of video that focused on dance, especially since people are not able to go see shows and stuff like that at the moment.”

The song I love because of TikTok

DaBaby (Feat. Roddy Ricch) – ‘Rockstar’

“This song’s always been a great song but TikTok really took it over the top. It had a dance that came with it that was a little harder than the others on the platform but people really wanted to learn it. I think TikTok dances are progressively getting harder but this one was one of the first to really challenge people.”

The song I can’t get out of my head

Jason Derulo & Jawsh 685 – ‘Savage Love’

“This song is as catchy as they come. The [original] lyrics were totally different. I had the same in-between bits but I just didn’t have that title that I thought was gonna hit it out the park. But the melody was just so infectious that I knew I had to keep on trucking and figure out what that hit title was. I think it would be a great song even if it wasn’t mine.”

The song I want played at my funeral

The Black Eyed Peas – ‘I Gotta Feeling’

“This is a song for every occasion. It brightens up every moment. I honestly believe it has magical powers. I can’t think of another song that brings more joy and I don’t want everyone to be sad at my funeral. I want it to be a celebration. I want people to be happy and remember the good time father than the fact I’m gone. There’s no better song to soundtrack that.”

Jason Derulo’s new single ‘Lifestyle’ featuring Adam Levine is out now

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