Ranking Ariana Grande’s First Single From Each Album

“thank u, next”-thank u, next

When “thank u, next” came out, it was a total surprise. She had just released Sweetener in August, so releasing a lead single for a new album in November was out of the blue. However, she had gone through a lot in those few months. Mac Miller had passed away and she had broken off her engagement to Pete Davidson. While you would expect a song about an ex to be more of a “f*** you,” it was more of an appreciation of what you learned from the relationship. I also feel like this song, album and the overall vibe were where Ariana Grande nailed her signature sound.

“The Way ft Mac Miller”-Yours Truly

This was a risky debut single (yes, we’re completely ignoring “Put Your Hearts Up,” Ariana does). It was very R&B heavy and featured a rapper who was mostly known for his stoner rhymes. However, it was the perfect introduction to the sound of Ariana Grande, an R&B tinged, trap-inspired song that while she did digress from for a little bit, she ultimately went back to it.

“Problem ft. Iggy Azalea”-My Everything

Ariana went full pop for this song, and it paid off. This is really when she started gaining popularity and became a pop princess. It’s a perfect kiss-off of a song, and the surprise Big Sean whisper feature brought texture to the song.

“no tears left to cry”-Sweetener

After the terrorist attack at her concert, Ariana took a much-needed break. But she returned with “no tears left to cry,” explaining how she was ready to move forward with her life while recognizing the pain she went through. It’s a great song to sing when you’re going through hard times and ready to stand up again.


This song just came out, so its ranking might move at some point. Ariana went in the same R&B direction as “thank u, next,” but this time it’s about acting crazy in love. While I love the song, not the biggest fan of the “kitchen” trope you often hear in love songs.

“Dangerous Woman”-Dangerous Woman

This song is different from anything Ariana did before or after. More of a rock-tinged song, a genre she usually doesn’t touch. I think the a capella version of the song does a better job of highlighting the lyrics and her voice.

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