Over a short period of just a few days in March 2011, 13 year old Rebecca Black rose from being an unknown to an infamous entertainer. The reason was that her recording of the song "Friday" on the vanity label Ark Music Factory had become a YouTube viral sensation. It was then released via iTunes and began to sell and take on a pop culture life of its own. Follow the timeline of the "Friday" saga below.
February 10, 2011 - "Friday" Is Uploaded To YouTube
Rebecca Black's parents paid the Ark Music Factory, founded by Patrice Wilson, $4,000 to make a recording of their daughter singing the song "Friday." In addition, a music video was filmed and it was uploaded to YouTube on February 10, 2011.
March 14, 2011 - Rebecca Black's "Friday" Is Released On iTunes
On March 14, 2011, the song "Friday" was released to the public via iTunes. By the end of its first week on sale, the song sold enough copies to debut at #72 on the Billboard Hot 100. It rose to #58 the next week and had sold a total of 87,000 copies.
March 15, 2011 - Rebecca Black Rules Twitter
In mid March 2011 the music video for "Friday" suddenly became a viral hit. It began racking up millions of views. Mentions by comedian Michael J. Nelson and the blog of the television show Tosh.o are given a significant amount of credit for this next phase in the song's success. Soon, Rebecca Black became the hottest trending topic on the social network Twitter surpassing the earthquake disaster in Japan.
March 22, 2011 - Rebecca Black Appears On 'The Tonight Show With Jay Leno'
Rebecca Black hit national television with an appearance on The Tonight Show With Jay Leno. She presented herself well as a charming teenager and spoke out about the criticisms of her song. The appearance included a live performance of the song, and Rebecca Black announced she would donate the proceeds from the song to Japan relief.
Watch Rebecca Black on The Tonight Show With Jay Leno
March 29, 2011 - Legal Battles Loom Over "Friday"
On March 29, 2011 a letter from Georgina Marquez Kelly, Rebecca Black's mother, to Ark Music was released. It revealed that there were legal questions over who actually owned the song "Friday" and what the status was of Rebecca Black as an artist signed to the label. In a Rolling Stone report, Patric Wilson claimed that everything was fine and that Rebecca Black's family "can have it all."
March 30, 2011 - Rebecca Black Announces Next Single "LOL"
It did not take long for Rebecca Black to consider a follow up hit. On March 30, 2011, Perez Hilton broke the news that the next song from Rebecca Black would be titled "LOL." She was reportedly recording a number of new tracks in a Los Angeles studio.
April 1, 2011 - Rebecca Black Takes Over 'Funny Or Die' For April Fool's Day
Last year it was Justin Bieber who took over the comedy web site Funny Or Die for April Fool's Day. This year they turned to Rebecca Black. The site was filled with a number of humorous videos related to the Rebecca Black "Friday" phenomenon.
Watch "Which Seat Should I Take?"
April 1, 2011 - 'Late Night With Jimmy Fallon' Performance Of "Friday"
Just as it seemed the furor over "Friday" might be waning, a very unusual superstar trio performed the song live on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon. The performance kicks off with comedian Stephen Colbert and he is then joined by the Roots as backing band, host Jimmy Fallon in a heavily auto-tuned voice, and then ultimately former American Idol champion Taylor Hicks. Meanwhile "Friday" has hit the charts in Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, and the UK in addition to the US.
Watch "Friday" on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon.
April 13, 2011 - "Friday" Hits 100 Million Views On YouTube
Rebecca Black's "Friday" hit the 100 million mark in views on YouTube just over two months after being first uploaded. This places the song's video at #43 among most viewed videos of all time. It will likely climb significantly higher with a quick pace of viewing continuing.