Did Joshua Bassett Just HInt That His New Song Is About Olivia Rodrigo?

Olivia Rodrigo and Joshua Bassett Reunite for HSMTMTS Season 3 Premiere High School Musical The Musical The Series Red Carpet 8

Joshua Bassett may be having some major deja vu with his new song, “The Golden Years.”

The singer, 23, took to social media on Thursday, May 2, to share a snippet of the track via TikTok. In the video, Bassett could be seen singing on the beach by the Santa Monica pier.

“Four years gone by in a blink of an eye / We were young ‘till we weren’t / It was fun ‘till I hurt,” he crooned while staring into the camera.

After posting the clip, fans quickly took to the comments section to question the song’s inspiration. Many pondered if Bassett was singing about his ex Olivia Rodrigo, whom he dated four years ago in 2020 while filming High School Musical: The Musical: The Series.

Joshua Bassett: Olivia Rodrigo 'Hasn’t Spoken to Me' Since 'Drivers License'

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“Hey siri play stranger by olivia rodrigo 😬,” one person wrote. “I feel like you could’ve easily changed the lyrics to say 2 years or like 7 just to avoid all the drama lol,” another joked.

Others pointed out that Bassett’s shirt featured the numbers 17 and 21, which mark the ages of Rodrigo when she wrote her song “Driver’s License” — largely rumored to be about Bassett — and the age she is now.

“GUYS HIS SHIRT. There’s number 17, that was the age of Olivia in 2020, and 4 years later she is 21.!!!!!,” one person said. A second added: “Olivia wrote drivers license when she was 17 and now she’s 21 the numbers on his shirt🤔.”

Bassett then posted a second clip of the track on Friday, May 3, alongside various photos from his time filming HSMTMTS. The lyrics remained the same with the exception of one added line: “Now I’m terrified that I’ll never find love like yours.” The pictures, meanwhile, included Rodrigo, as well as Bassett’s other costars Sofia Wylie, Matt Cornett, Julia Lester, Frankie A. Rodriguez and Larry Saperstein.



♬ The Golden Years – Joshua Bassett

Because one photo largely focused on Bassett’s character, Ricky, and Rodrigo’s character, Nini — who also dated on and off on the show — smiling at one another, some users felt the post was another hint that the “Deja Vu” singer could be the song’s subject.

“Josh was like ‘in case y’all couldn’t figure out who I was singing about in the last post’ 😝,” one fan quipped. A third commented: “Did he just confirm that this is abt olivia!?”

Some, however, speculated that the song could just be about Bassett’s time on the DIsney+ series, which ran for four seasons from 2019 to 2023. “I feel like some of yall are taking this too far bc Olivia was a main cast member in the first season so ofc she’s in the pic 😭,” one fan declared.

Though Bassett and Rodrigo never officially confirmed they were dating, the two sparked romance speculation in 2019 after being cast as leads in HSMTMTS. Rumors swirled further after the twosome wrote a song together for their characters.

“I think we understood each other. It was really neat … how well we really did work creatively together,” Bassett told the L.A. Times in a January 2020 interview when asked about his creative process with Rodrigo.

Ricky and Nini High School Musical The Musical The Series Olivia Rodrigo and Joshua Bassett Worst TV Couples of All Time
Walt Disney Pictures/Kobal/Shutterstock

Rodrigo, meanwhile, shared that working with Bassett felt natural. She recalled an instance in which he improvised with her while filming season 1, which caused her to get emotional.

“He said, ‘Remember that one time that we wrote a song, and we didn’t know if anybody would like it?’ That one made me cry because I just remembered sharing those memories with him,” she told the outlet. “I love him so much. He’s my best friend … It was like I wasn’t acting.”

In August 2020, Rodrigo seemingly confirmed the two had calle dit quits when she opened up about a “failed relationship” via TikTok. After her debut album, Sour, dropped less than a year later, fans speculated that the record was about her romance and subsequent breakup with Bassett.

Bassett and Rodrigo made headlines again when speculation sparked that a potential love triangle was brewing between the duo and Sabrina Carpenter. Bassett later addressed the rumors during a December 2021 interview with GQ.

Olivia Rodrigo Dating History

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“[Everyone] is asking me about Sabrina and Olivia,” he said. “Why don’t we focus on these women for who they are? Let’s focus on the art that they’re making and how great they are instead of their relationship to a boy.”

He added that at the time, Rodrigo hadn’t “spoken to me since ‘Driver’s License’ came out.” However, the duo reunited at the season 3 premiere of HSMTMTS in August 2023, even posing for photos together on the red carpet.

Since their split, Rodrigo dated Adam Faze and Zack Bia before moving on with current boyfriend Louis Partridge. Bassett and Carpenter, meanwhile, called it quits sometime in 2021. Carpenter is currently linked to Saltburn star Barry Keoghan.

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