With her Ariana Grande and Nicki Minaj-assisted pop diva posse cut “Bang Bang” one of the biggest songs of 2014, Jessie J has finally become a legitimate pop star in America after years of underperforming records. While she was working toward her breakthrough the singer paid her bills as a songwriter for hire, not unlike Charli XCX, Tove Lo, and Sia—composers who also made the quantum leap into American pop stardom in 2014. Her biggest success from behind the scenes is “Party in the U.S.A.,” which she originally wrote for herself but gave to Miley Cyrus after her label nixed the idea of putting it on her own album.
Although Jessie wasn’t able to make the song a hit on her own, “Party”—which she co-wrote alongside Dr. Luke and veteran songwriter Claude Kelly—still paid off. In a new interview she tells the UK edition of Glamour, “‘Party in the U.S.A.’ paid my rent for, like, three years. Actually it was longer than that. That’s where I get most of my money. I write songs. I’m a singer. I love doing endorsements and stuff, but that’s all added on.”