More than two years after going viral with her hit “Drivers License,” which spawned endless online discourse about a potential love triangle between Rodrigo, Bassett and Sabrina Carpenter, the 20-year-old “Brutal” songstress dropped the first single from her sophomore album on Friday, June 30, and fans believe she has new inspiration.
Several signs point to Rodrigo penning “Vampire” about DJ Zack Bia. “I should’ve known it was strange / You only come out at night / I used to think I was smart / But you made me look so naive,” she sings in the chorus. “The way you sold me for parts / As you sunk your teeth into me, oh / Bloodsucker, famef—ker / Bleeding me dry like a goddamn vampire.”
While she was first spotted with Bia in April 2022, several reports suggest that they began hanging out around the time of the Super Bowl in February 2022. Us Weekly confirmed in August 2022 that the pair had called it quits, which puts their romance at roughly six months.
“I see the parties and the diamonds sometimes when I close my eyes / Six months of torture you sold as some forbidden paradise,” the lyrics to “Vampire” read. “I loved you truly / You gotta laugh at the stupidity.”
Shortly before Rodrigo started dating Bia, he was linked to Madelyn Cline. (He confirmed on the “BFFs” podcast in January 2022 that he had been “hanging out” with the Outer Banks star, but they weren’t “officially dating.”) In “Vampire,” Rodrigo sings about an age difference — Bia is seven years older than her — and notes another woman who is closer to his age. (Bia turned 27 earlier this month and Cline is 25.)
“Oh, what a mesmerizing, paralyzing, f—ked up little thrill / Can’t figure out just how you do it and God knows I never will / Went for me and not her / ‘Cause girls your age know better,” she says.
Rodrigo hasn’t publicly addressed who she penned “Vampire” about, but she said in an Apple Music interview that she wrote the track with her producer Dan Nigro in December 2022.
“I wrote the song on the piano, super chill, in December of last year. And my producer Dan and I finished it in January and finished writing it,” she explained. “And I’ve just always been really obsessed with songs that are very dynamic. My favorite songs are high and low, and reel you in and spit you back out. And so we wanted to do a song where it just crescendoed the entire time and it reflects the pent-up anger that you have for a situation.”
While some fans have already flooded Bia’s social media pages with shade — writing comments like, “Do you only come out at night perhaps” and “What tf do you have in common with someone under 20?” — other listeners are suggesting Rodrigo could be singing about ex Adam Faze.
The Disney alum dated the producer for less than one year — news of their split broke in February 2022, roughly seven months after they were seen together for the first time in June 2021. (There are Twitter users suggesting June 30 could be the two-year anniversary of when their relationship started.) Like Bia, Faze, now 26, is older than Rodrigo. At the time of their romance, Rodrigo was 18.
As the online chatter continues, Rodrigo prepares to drop her second album, Guts, on September 8. “I had [the title picked out] actually when I was making Sour. I’m like, ‘I want the next one to be Guts.’ I had it in my head. I’m like, ‘Four letters, all caps, just like Sour.’ I love it. I just think it’s an interesting word. People use it in so many interesting contexts, like spill your guts. Hate your guts, I think is a really interesting term,” she told Zane Lowe. “[It] means bravery, but it also means intuition, like listen to your gut. I just think it’s all of these things that coincidentally were things that I’ve really been thinking about in this chapter.”
She also noted that the album chronicles her “19th year” — a good sign for Bassett, who continued on High School Musical: The Musical: The Series after Rodrigo’s exit amid her musical success.
“A year that, for me, was filled with lots of confusion, mistakes, awkwardness and good old fashioned teen angst,” she told fans earlier this month. “I cannot express how excited I am to embark on this new chapter of my life with you guys.”