Katy Perry is taking over The Theatre at World Resorts Las Vegas for her first-ever Vegas residency. We’re excited as ever for a night of dancing along to one of pop’s finest, so we decided to look back at 11 essential songs by the singer.
It’s a must to have the song that started it all. Back in 2008, Katy Perry took over Top 40 radio with a pop tune with a dash of promiscuity and a hint of controversy— a perfect debut for a future pop star.
If you thought Katy was only pomp and circumstance, she proved you wrong with this acoustic track from her first album, One of the Boys. “Thinking of You” is the kind of song so vulnerable that all you need is a guitar.
We have to honor the town at hand! The elder sister of “Last Friday Night,” Katy reflects on a debaucherous night out awash in booze, glitter and plenty of mistakes.
Teenage Dream, the album, is not only Katy’s best album, but is also a landmark work in pop music history. One would be remiss not to bump the nostalgia pulsing title track that enlivens a love song with the very best emotions and impulses of being a teen. Fun fact: this song didn’t almost make it on the album and required extensive retries by Katy and co-songwriter Bonnie McKee.
Those first couple of notes will make your heart skip a beat every time. Another fantastic single from Teenage Dream, “The One That Got Away” is so infectious that you’ll forget you’re singing along to a song about the biggest mistake of your romantic life.
The pop girls of the early 2010s had a handle on celebrating their messy nights of partying, and perhaps none better than Katy’s ode to a particularly wild Friday. Who could forget the music video? A vibrants ‘80s fever dream, guest stars abounded from Kenny G to, in light of her on-theme virality, Rebecca Black.
The lead single for Katy’s fourth studio album is an anthemic blast of fun and encouragement that, after the winding down of the iconic Teenage Dream era, reminded everyone she was here for the long haul.
Tacking on to the tail end of the EDM-pop tailwind, this track from Prism is an idyllic club song that meets at the intersection of ‘80s maximalism and invigorating dance music.
After a four-year break, Katy returned with the lead single of her next album, Witness. Though it didn’t do as well as her showing in the early ‘10s, “Chained to the Rhythm” is a nice, soft pop song with a contagious earworm that still captured the anxiety and hardships prevalent in 2017.
Throw a pop star on a track with Zedd and you’ve got yourself a hit! Originally released as a standalone single, “Never Really Over” came to be included on the 2020 album Smile and for good reason. The electropop song is one of Katy’s most fun recent releases.
As Katy has evolved from pop juggernaut to entertainment extraordinaire, it’s important to reflect on “Never Worn White.” With this single, she cemented her evolution away from pop party girl and into a self-assured woman. In the song, she acknowledges her bumpy edges and accepts the love of a good man. Don’t forget: the beautiful, flowery video also served as a pregnancy announcement.
Photography by: John Salangsang/BFA.com