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How Drake’s “In My Feelings” Danced to No. 1

Drake’s latest chart-topper exploded off the back (and feet) of an internet personality whose impromptu Instagram boogie was co-opted by everyone from OBJ to Will Smith

Getty Images/Ringer illustration

It takes wading through 20 songs of self-mythologizing and catty Kanye West subs on Scorpion to get to “In My Feelings,” but there’s no longer any question in my mind that it’s the best song off Drake’s latest creative purge. This is only sort of because of how close it is to being narrative- and context-free, provided you don’t do any internet sleuthing about who this “Kiki” is, and why Drake is worried about whether or not she loves him/is riding. In the same vein as “Nice for What,” “In My Feelings” is an infectious bounce-adjace record, coproduced by New Orleans native BlaqNmilD and Cleveland producer TrapMoneyBenny with dancing specifically in mind. And people have been dancing. So that’s how a deep album cut that wasn’t treated as a single and had no visual component ended up atop the Billboard Hot 100 this week.

OK, it’s a little more complicated than that, but not really. It begins with a New York comedian and online personality named Shiggy, with whom Drake celebrated his most recent accomplishment: dethroning himself, and officially having more no. 1 records than Diddy, Eminem, and [squints] Ludacris. Why? A few Fridays ago, Shiggy, clad in a pink-on-pink Reebok sweatsuit, was patient zero for what would soon become an unavoidable dance challenge.

#Mood : KEKE Do You Love Me ? @champagnepapi #DoTheShiggy #InMyFeelings

A post shared by Shoker (@theshiggyshow) on

Speaking to Sway Calloway on TRL this past Wednesday, Shiggy said that he didn’t necessarily mean to start a viral dance craze, he just “felt like dancing.” And so he did, skipping back and forth, fashioning his arms into a jump rope; doing some combination of the Funky Chicken, the Chicken Noodle Soup, and the Peanut Butter Jelly, signing out the lyrics with his hands along the way. It was Shiggy’s good friend Odell Beckham Jr.—who has a similar fondness for feetwerk and nearly 10 times as many followers on Instagram—who gave the hashtag the push it needed. “Everybody get crazy wit it and hashtag #DoTheShiggy legggoo,” he captioned, after turning his legs into rubber.

And get crazy, everybody did: Kevin Hart; La La Anthony; Lance Stephenson; James Harden and his fanny pack; Ciara and (sort of) Russell Wilson on their honeymoon in Cape Town. Even Drake himself did the Shiggy onstage during his recent Wireless Festival set in London. The song turns your limbs into jello, the moves are simple and easy to remember. The draw of the challenge is impossible to resist—unless, that is, you choose to be a gooey chocolate chip cookie, like Jonathan Smith:

Hit-making barely makes any sense at the very best of times, but there’s precedent for this. You need go back only as far as last year, when a dubbed clip of an animated PBS show Sid the Science Kid helped catapult a long-dormant Migos single, “Bad and Boujee,” to the top of the charts. The Mannequin Challenge did the same for Rae Sremmurd’s “Black Beatles” in 2016; the Running Man Challenge resurrected a 20-year-old Ghost Town DJs song that same year. This is also why Drake’s own “Hotline Bling” was given a goofy, imminently GIF-able video: memes sell. Or at least, the conversion from memes to sales isn’t an especially difficult one.

If I had to choose a terminus for this #DoTheShiggy craze, though, that would obviously be Will Smith climbing the Chain Bridge in Budapest. It’s truly astounding how adept you can be at Instagram when you have a team, and you know, hundreds of millions of dollars.

Oh, and drones.

Drake waded into the comments beneath this, declaring that the “In My Feelings” video was finally complete. Which means that you can all stop jumping out of moving cars now. Please stop doing that.