Chrissy Chlapecka Pops Off With 'Girlie Pop'

Chrissy Chlapecka Pops Off With 'Girlie Pop'

By Tobias HessJun 05, 2024

An evangelical protester holds a sign that reads, “Repent or Perish” in a fiery font. “Sin! This is what sin does to people!” he yells while pointing at the pink-clad Barbie dancing in front of him. Though there’s hate behind his words, his message deflates when met with the power of Chrissy Chlapecka, the singing queen of BimboTok, who can be seen playfully trolling him in a 2022 viral video. The video, equal parts fights and laughs, is a perfect encapsulation of Chlapecka’s ethos — she begins most of her TikToks by welcoming in her “girlie pops” before talking about gravely serious current events or winking towards her leftist politics while speaking in a breathy Paris Hilton affect. Her signature blend of humor, play and politics has built her a massive fanbase online, with 5 million comrades on TikTok and counting.

Chlapecka is more than just an online force, though. With an agile voice and a taste for sugary hooks straight out of the '80s or early 2000s, Chlapecka has taken on the music industry with glittery gusto. With songs like “BRAT” (whose video features Drag Race’s Sugar and Spice) and “I'm So Hot,” sh'se established herself as a versatile pop star with the grit to match her sparkle. On her debut EP, Girlie Pop — out today Chlapecka takes all the joyous play that brought fans to her music and turns up the temperature. Songs like “10 Boyfriends” are a call to trade the twisted pain of romantic hopes for the pleasures in polyamorous abandon, while “Verse” is an ode to sexual fluidity with production straight from early-aughts Timbaland. What unites all these disparate sounds is that they fall under Girlie Pop, both the name of her album and her own coined genre, which she tells PAPER celebrates the “girly, fun, campy [and] cheeky.” It’s a tall task to create your own genre, but then again, so is building an online empire. Chlapecka has it covered.

Chlapecka chatted with PAPER in the lead-up to the release of Girlie Pop to discuss sonic inspiration, the logistics of juggling 10 boyfriends, and coining her own genre.

"10 Boyfriends" sounds like a perfect '80s anthem. What inspired the sound?

I wanted to start exploring other sounds outside of the music I already have released. A huge part of my artistic project is showing off the different genres I can fit myself into, and the different parts of my voice I can access from multiple years of vocal training and musical theater. The '80s sound was a perfect genre to explore for this song specifically.

The forthcoming EP is called Girlie Pop. How would you define "Girlie Pop"?

For me, Girlie Pop is a subgenre of music that I have created based on my own experiences and love for girly, fun, campy, cheeky self-love music that makes you wanna dance. I think there is so much beauty in creating music that feels like a celebration. While writing this EP, I was truthfully in a bit of a dark place. This past year was really hard for me, but creating music that felt fun and such a joy to sing was insanely pivotal to my mental health and the way I felt about myself as a whole. I think I’ve grown so much this year, and I’m so proud of myself. I really believe you can hear it in the music. You could easily take these songs at face value and just have fun, but for me they mean so much more. They touch on a lot of where my head was at throughout my writing process. Girlie Pop has a really fantastic arch that I’m excited to share... in time. For now, she’s the light, happy and goofy side of me that I have learned to fall in love with all over again. If anything, Girlie Pop is about finding yourself again and letting things be light.

Having 10 boyfriends sounds fun but stressful. How do you recommend managing 10 boyfriends?

I don’t! That sounds horrible! In all honesty, this goofy song is about my own struggles with love, relationships, abandonment and fear. I am a true, honest lover girl down to my core — but being a lover girl comes with the inevitable heartbreak and dissatisfaction in relationships when things do not feel reciprocated. While navigating that dissatisfaction and my own needs, I wrote "10 boyfriends" with the outlook that if one person cannot fulfill me, would two, three... maybe 10? Would I then feel the full spectrum of what it’s like to be loved? Now, personally, I don’t think I could handle 10 partners, let alone 10 boyfriends — but I figured it was a fun way to express my own fears. Relationships are difficult, scary and vulnerable and something I’m definitely navigating now.

“You just can’t rely on anyone/ So I just spend my life on having fun” is such a real line. What recommendations do you have for dealing with f-boys?

My recommendation is to not deal with them. The minute they show you who you are, run, baby! I refuse to waste my time with anyone who isn’t adding value or appreciating who I am in this world. Respect should always be a non-negotiable. You can still live your life and have fun romantically or just casually with people who respect you, care about you and want the best for you. An f-boy is an f-boy because he can’t even meet himself where he’s at emotionally, so why not project that onto others? You’re stronger than a guy who’s literally just a guy. Blocked, deleted, forgotten, done!

Okay, pick three boys from pop culture, dead or alive, to be among your 10. Go!

I know you said three, but I do have to pick all of the members of One Direction to pay homage to my younger self, who was absolutely one of the biggest 1D stans. That was every girl's dream right? To have them all as your boyfriends!

Photography: Aaron Wolfberg