Tag Archives: Gaylor

Glitch: Is it for Kaylor or KelSwift?

13 Nov

Let’s read the song through two lenses:  One under the assumption Taylor is talking to/about Karlie.  The second, that Taylor is addressing Kelsea Ballerini.

We were supposed to be just friends

Doesn’t it seem like Taylor and team might want to break the boy-crazy narrative by pushing friendships (with women)?  Sure, her meeting Karlie could have been organic.  But also her team could have hired a lot of models to compose “The squad” to show female friendships…

You don’t live in my part of town, but maybe I’ll see you out some weekend

We could be talking about a different NYC neighborhood (in the case of Karlie).

Or Nashville.  When Taylor was mostly on the coasts.

Depending on what kind of mood and situation-ship I’m in

And what’s in my system

These lines show that Taylor is dismissive about seeing this person or not.  She says maybe she’ll see them out.  Depending on her mood, what she’s imbibing, and who else is in her life.  This is not really Kaylor (I wrote 5 albums about loving you and longing for you) vibes.  Though I guess it could be during the card sharks, playing games point in time.

In Kelsea’s song Weather, however,  I think it talks about being the recipient of similar capricious feelings:

I think there’s been a glitch

Five seconds later, I’m fastening myself to you with a stitch

And I’m not even sorry

But here are just 5 examples (there’s too many to include that would totally waylay this post) where Taylor DOES care a lot if Karlie leaves her life:

Cornelia Street

Death by a Thousand Cuts

Illicit Affairs

The entirety of Evermore (song), the entirety of Hoax.

Also, here’s just 5 (there’s tons more) Kaylor songs with a tinge of regret (Taylor IS sorry):

Afterglow

Betty

This is me Trying

Coney Island

Question…  

You see Kaylor is NOT casual and cavalier (like this song) at.  All.  

But then there’s some songs from Kelsea that are a bit more casual:

I can’t help myself

The Little Things

Nights are so starry, blood moonlit

A very Kaylor mention of “stars” in Taylor’s discography is in Cardigan:

But Taylor mentions stars in a less romantic way in both Dorthea and Cowboy Like Me:

Kelsea’s song I Guess They Call It Fallin’ mentions both stars and the moon:

Again in Heartfirst

And again in Universe

And a fourth time in Love is a Cowboy

It seems like Kelsea Ballerini fell totally in love, but Taylor is just having a fling/hook-up.

It must be counterfeit

Is something about Kaylor intended to deceive or defraud?  

Deceive the public/media-we’re just friends. Or deceive Jo$h?

Is Kaylor an imitation of something else?  

Her mirror “relationship” with Joe?

What about Kelsea?

Is something intended to deceive or defraud?  

Does Taylor get involved with Kelsea to deceive herself?  As a distraction from pain, and with the intent to move on and feel better?  But she just can’t?

Is KelSwift an imitation of something else?  

Kaylor love.  This relationship with Kelsea is meant to ease the heartbreak and loss of Karlie, but Taylor doesn’t feel it as deeply.  She tries to imitate the love she felt with Karlie, but it just comes up short.  

I think there’s been a glitch

I was supposed to sweat you out

Taylor could be talking about when she got a crush on Karlie.  Maybe her, her parents, her team wanted Taylor to get over it.  The anxiety could apply here.  I wouldn’t think all the pain in the above definitions would be applicable to a fleeting crush, or hook-up though.

Applied to the Kaylor break-up and trying to get over Karlie by distracting herself with Kelsea, it fits better.  Taylor is painfully trying to work through the break-up.  She’s sad, anxious, having intense feelings, having to endure pain through 3-4 album cycles…  I think the lyric works better with a Kaylor ending than it does as a beginning.

In search of glorious happenings of happenstance on someone else’s playground

This line is a lot.  Let’s take it one word at a time to glean exactly what Taylor is trying to convey.

Glorious = Beauty but exponential, that evokes delighted and splendorous (I think I just made this word up, but you see what I’m getting at)  admiration.  So beauty on steroids that evokes glory in those who see it.

Kaylor friendship could be seen as a performance, with media and heteronormativity participating in the best friends narrative.  But that’s more external than the internal meaning I think this song means.

Happenings might be the, “if I see you, I’ll see you” tone of the song mentioned from the first line.  It’s a very indifferent attitude.   

Happenstance further substantiates the detached tone of Taylor in this song.  If it happens, it happens, if not-meh.

Let me make it known that I don’t really like equating women to property.  

Karlie is with Jo$h.

Kelsea was married to Morgan Evans.

Either way Taylor is playing on someone else’s playground.

All together:

Glorious = Beauty but exponential, that evokes delighted and splendorous (I think I just made this word up, but you see what I’m getting at)  admiration.  So beauty on steroids that evokes glory in those who see it.

Happenings = event or performance art.  Kaylor friendship could be seen as a performance, with media and heteronormativity participating in the best friends narrative.  But that’s more external than the internal meaning I think this song means.  Internally, Taylor could be performing love “fake it til you make it” on Kelsea trying to move on, but she just can’t force it to bet totally genuine.

Happenings might be the, “if I see you, I’ll see you” tone of the song mentioned from the first line.  It’s a very indifferent attitude.   

Happenstance further substantiates the detached tone of Taylor in this song.  If it happens, it happens, if not-meh.

Karlie is with Jo$h.  Kelsea was married to Morgan Evans.  Either way Taylor is playing on someone else’s playground.

The IN SEARCH OF is doing a lot of work here.  Taylor felt that awe for Karlie. She hungered for those fleeting secret moments with her.  But Paris and Illicit Affairs tells us it wasn’t just happenstance, Kaylor very intentionally planned their private moments.  That’s why I think Glitch is more of a KelSwift song.  Taylor is trying to recreate that Kaylor-magic-love feeling whenever she happens to see Kelsea. But Kelsea caught feelings.  Hard.  And divorced her husband, partially over this relationship with Taylor.  

But it’s been 2, 190 days of our love blackout

The system’s breaking down

I think there’s been a glitch

Five seconds later, I’m fastening myself to you with a stitch

And I’m not even sorry

Nights are so starry, blood moonlit

It must be counterfeit

I think there’s been a glitch

A brief interruption, a slight malfunction

In Bigger than the Whole Sky (purportedly about Taylor’s main love interest and the self she lost by not coming out and choosing a family with her) Taylor says it was more than just a short time.  In no way, did Taylor feel that Kaylor was just a affair/fling/flirtation.

But all of Kelsea’s songs talk about a person who is halfway in their relationship.  Very mercurial.  Fleeting.  Wishy-washy.  Hard to pin down.  Because Taylor only sees her thing with Kelsea is herself being temporarily broken.  That’s not romantic.  Taylor is saying she was broken so she got with Kelsea 

I’d go back to wanting dudes who give nothing

Is Taylor saying she would go back to these men (Sweet Nothing and Lavender Haze)?

Or is this advice Taylor is giving to the subject of the song? 

Suggesting Karlie go back to Jo$h (which Exile, Cardigan…  So many songs don’t want Karlie to pick the man). 

Or is Taylor suggesting Kelsesa forget her new epiphany that she loves women?  Since Taylor has firsthand experience of being a closeted country star.

I thought we had no chance

And that’s romance, let’s dance

Taylor wanted it to work with Karlie. Just in private, which Karlie couldn’t agree to in the long-term.

Here, I think Taylor is saying she didn’t really take KelSwift seriously.  She didn’t intend for them to be a long-term couple.  And that’s what she liked about it:  Short, fun, no strings attached.  Dancing is a dangerous thing–because Love is a Cowboy, when you’re with them you’re ropin’ the wind.

Glitch

Five seconds later, I’m fastening myself to you with a stitch

And I’m not even sorry

Nights are so starry, blood moonlit

It must be counterfeit

I think there’s been a glitch

Taylor IS on Kelsea’s self-titled album (2020) and SHE is the track 4 falling out on Subject to Change (2022)

12 Nov

I know you aren’t going to believe me.  Taylor and Kelsea at least had a dalliance, if not full-on dated.  Here is the link to my 2020 albums ranking:

I provide it because it’s date/time stamped to Dec 2020.

In it, I said I can hear Taylor Swift on several albums that year.  All for people who are known associates of hers.  All uncredited.  Here’s the blurb from that post:

OK, I Know Halsey featured on The Other Girl, track 4 of Kelsea’s self-titled album from 2020.

Ashley…is Halsey, P.S. I hadn’t known that but was looking for possible pseudonyms.

Don’t take my word for it. Listen for yourself.  A good place to compare and hear that there are 3, not 2, distinct voices is:

0.55-1.00 is Kelsea alone

1.04-1.12 is most definitely Taylor Swift according to my ears

1:26-1:30 is Halsey by herself

Kelsea Ballerini – the other girl (with Halsey) [Official Audio]

Now, I tried to compare the studio version of the song to the live CMT duet, but alas, they were lip syncing (not bashing, just stating facts) so it’s the exact same song.

The part that I heard Taylor on has lyrics:

Taylor says she’s a scarlet letter (fraught with adultery, witchy stigma vibes) in Love Story:

Original lyric said “This love is DIFFERENT, but it’s real.  Different like gay.  Because what straight, white love pairing is so off-putting to parents and society?

Then, in New Romantics Taylor introduces herself again using scarlet letter:

In this context scarlet letters is some trait that’s stigmatized by society.  And she says this group of misfits she is hanging out with in NYC has different scarlet (aka stigmatized) letters.  How about LGBTQQAA perhaps?  And she says, hers trumps all of them.  In the song she goes on to describe:

To this group love = danger.  P.S. there is nothing dangerous about a wealthy, white lady dating a wealthy white man…  To emphasize her point Taylor talks about switching sides.  That’s bisexual.  Or they “switched” from hetero to homo.  To drive home that she’s talking about gay love and being a part of the marginalized gay community, Taylor talks about the terrible, cruel rumors, which just like in Betty (another song with gay undertones) are true.  Every day these LGBT folk are battling for rights and visibility and equality but every night they’re alone with their lover, peaceful and happy.  

That’s all to say it’s very interesting that those are the lines I hear Taylor on in Kelsea’s song.  Like it goes with what Taylor has been telling us in other songs.

Back to The Other Girl video/song:  

At 1:44 Taylor says, “I, eye?!”  WTF, now eye theory 

2:08 is a repeat of Taylor singing the red dress part, but it’s a lot harder to distinguish her voice from this point on in the song, because I don’t think she sings alone.  There may or may not be a “girl” she sings by herself, but I couldn’t tell for sure…

So Taylor sang uncredited on an album with friends, big deal, you say.

HERE’S WHY THIS MATTERS:

On Kelsea’s 2020 album she talks about falling out with someone on her track 4.  And everybody assumed it was about the credited feature, Halsey.  But we have no story, no blind, no evidence of what happened between Kelsea and Halsey, if anything.  I think Kelsea is talking about Taylor!

DOIN’ MY BEST 

[Verse 1]

2020 was a weird year

Album dropped at a weird time

Ain’t the homecoming queen but better believe I cried

And therapy for one turned

Into therapy for two

When you get married that young, you got a lotta shit you gotta get through

Kelsea got divorced.

…[Verse 2]

I was friends with a pop star

I put ’em on track four, but

Wish I could take it back, I would’ve nevеr asked

If I knew we wouldn’t talk anymorе

…[Bridge]

I live in my head ’til the sun’s up

Even I can admit that it’s fucked up

And you’re pushing for perfect your whole life

And it didn’t work out

But, damn it, I tried

The bridge just might have a double meaning.  On the one hand Kelsea is talking about releasing her self-titled album that she worked really hard on, during a time promo couldn’t be done, so maybe it did worse then she hoped/anticipated.

A 2nd meaning could be that Kelsea is overthinking.  The sun (Karlie) is out, centered in Taylor’s life.  Kaylor is on-again.  Kelsea says Taylor using her (Kelsea) as a back-up gal when Kaylor is off is fucked up.  In this context the “you’re” shifts to Taylor possibly.  She’s the one with the perfect image she’s trying to maintain.  And that keeps her closeted.  And being in a closeted relationship sucks for both Karlie (Kaylor on) and Kelsea (Kaylor off).  But damn it, Kelsea tried to have a proper relationship with Taylor.

Midnights Album = Lover Vault Tracks

28 Oct

I guess I should have started the series with this post. But what I forgot is not everyone has this same opinion. Even though it seems fairly obvious to me. So here’s some background thinking that may influence my opinions about the tracks.

Here’s what I think happened:

Taylor is rerecording her masters. Fans were clamoring for the albums. There were trends every Friday on Twitter guessing album drops. And it is in Taylor’s best interest to keep up engagement and interest in her masters project. She needs each one to sell and stream and be successful. If there is a drought people might forget or lose motivation to support it. Except there were snafus: She wants the big finish to be Taylor Swift TV. Reputation isn’t eligible until 2023. Speak Now and 1989 both ran into legal troubles.

It makes sense to me that Taylor’s team decided to throw together a new album real quick as damage control, and a bridge to the next rerecord. Taylor dipped into her diaries, her drafts, and vault songs that didn’t make past albums. She cleaned them up, did a bit of editing, and rushed to construct an album to satiate the general public.

I think the new album sounds like if Reputation and Lover had a baby that was more subtle than both. Taylor said these tracks are from midnights throughout her life so it makes sense to me she might have written most of the songs, portions of the songs, lyrics, taken inspiration from the period of time between Reputation tour and Lover promo.

Looking at Taylor’s catalog as an evolution, it doesn’t seem like Midnights belongs after folklore and Evermore. Yes, those albums were a slightly different genre, but more than that those albums were high-brow and complex with shifting themes. They were decadent in their lyricism and expertly written to mix fantasy and fiction.

Midnights sounds like it belongs prior to the quarantine era albums. It is WILDLY successful, and I wonder how much of that is promo working, how much is due to Taylor’s name bringing high recognition/curiosity no matter what she does, and how much is thirsty fans supporting it. I think it’s probably a variety of factors, but to me Midnights is not the progression of talent post folkmore.

I also think the timelines in the new songs make better sense if they were written in the past. Example:

The Great War bridge

It turned into something bigger
Somewhere in the haze, got a sense I’d been betrayed
Your finger on my hairpin triggers
Soldier down on that icy ground
Looked up at me with honor and truth
Broken and blue, so I called off the troops
That was the night I nearly lost you
I really thought I’d lost you

the nearly lost you confuses me. It implies when this song was written Taylor was still with Karlie. I know the two were on and off many times, but current dresses, music videos, posts, and lyrics show more of a petty-ex energy between the two. Also, the last 3-4 albums wouldn’t be so sad if Taylor was currently together again with Karlie.

I’m interested to see what the 11th album will sound like. Then we’ll know for sure if folkmore was just an anomaly of suddenly having tragedy plus downtime, or if Midnights belongs at 6.5 in the album order.

Midnights Analysis-Evasive Character Perspective: Lavender Haze

27 Oct

Lately (folklore on) Taylor has been especially good at obscuring subject, timelines, characters, point of view etc… I suspect she does this to make her work palatable to the largest audience possible. She can cater to every different subset of listeners by making each song multifaceted. Diverse populations, people with divergent backgrounds and sensibilities can take different things from the same songs.

In folklore, fantasy and fiction were combined to make a sort of double story out of each song. This tactic builds in plausible deniability. The Last Great American Dynasty is an explicit example. In that song, Taylor is talking about the history of Rebecka Harkness, but also herself.

In Evermore, several different people were written about in the same song, until people could not extricate the truth for what line was about who. Take Dorthea. The song is about this Dorthea who we don’t know. Maybe someone from Nashville. But also a few of the lines could be Taylor talking about herself. And other lines really seem like present-day Taylor speaking to younger Taylor. The song is about all 3 of those people. And she is not clear about when the narrator or character changes.

For Midnights, I think Taylor used a different tactic. We were told these stories are personal, non-fiction, true events. I would say perspective (who is saying this?) and character (who is being talked about/to?) are the main foils to deciphering Midnights. She even switches the person who is talking and the subject being talked to in the same sentence at points. I won’t give an example here because I’m going to try to give each song it’s own entry. But that device makes it difficult to know who the songs are about–and that’s the point.

So our first controversial (we’ll get into it in a minute) song is Lavender Haze:

Toot noise like NYE

Model walking beat

Other songs that have this same type of beat are Style and Gold Rush, which are both very Karlie songs.

Meet me at midnight…

I think she’s talking to NY day muse. Though I think songs get repurposed over time to reflect Taylor’s current situations (think I Bet You Think About Me which was supposedly a Red-era vault track, but had many, many current symbols). I think this song has at least evolved for Taylor to be about Karlie.

At 0.59 sec, Taylor sings “I want HER midnights.”

In that song, Taylor is talking about hiding her WLW love during New Years Eve when everyone is around, and for the big midnight kiss because she is closeted. Her and her lover have to resort to spending private time cleaning up on New Years Day, when everyone is passed out or hungover. But Taylor says she wants her girlfriend’s midnights–she wants to be able to be up front about the woman she loves and partake in that public kiss tradition.

Staring at the ceiling with you

This line may be a character switch. It the midnights person the same as the ceiling person?

Oh, you don’t ever say too much

The two have been “dating” for 6 years but are weirdly private, not attending important events, speaking about one another in interviews, or acting like a couple save for the occasional paparazzi photo (read, hired be the celebrities themselves to take PR pics). If the two are actually together, their relationship is unnecessarily complex. And it seems like Joe is a bad boyfriend (minimizing Taylor’s accomplishments, being absent for important events, looking like an unhappy hostage dragging her 2 steps behind him when they are photographed).

And you don’t really read into

My melancholia

That sounds unfulfilling to me. If I’m severely depressed, I want Cool to engage with me and talk to me about it. Try to help me, at least show she cares. . . But Joe apparently just takes it at face value, and doesn’t mention it.

I thought the description for the movie related to Taylor’s life and songs, which may have been why she chooses that particular, and unique word to describe depression.

Melancholia film similarities to TS:

There’s a wedding (Taylor doesn’t want that 1950s shit. Karlie got married to a man).

Castle is money/status. (Taylor wants to keep hers, Karlie may have married a man for it).

narrow and winding, same as spiral. Not straight. Not easy. rural = desolate and alone. Labyrinthine?

Justine is pushed into a role others chose for her (marriage). (Just like Taylor is being pushed by media/public/parents/team/Joe? and doesn’t want that according to this song).

There is cheating and the marriage is called off. (Many of Taylor’s songs talk about cheating: Illicit Affairs, Betty, etc…)

The women in the film spend their final moments alone in a magic cave (kingdom in my bedroom, if you will) drinking wine by candlelight.

There is a SEA of FLAMES and Earth SHATTERS into a billion (million in Taylor’s case, says Mirrorball).

I been under scrutiny

You handle it beautifully

All this shit is new to me

Which part of this is new to Taylor? She’s supposedly been dating for 6 years, so not the committed relationship. She’s been famous since she was a child, so not celebrity, or media asking her things. She has even bearded at least once before.

I feel the lavender haze creeping up on me

If you missed my last post on how lavender is a decidedly gay color, go back one entry and learn some history.

Haze:

so lavender haze could be tenuous, obscure, confusing…

It reminds me of Cardigan:

Here, I think she uses smoke to symbolize the aftermath of a tragedy. And also something that was a reminder. And that causes confusion.

“Haze” reminds me even more of The Archer:

…I’ve got a hundred thrown-out speeches I almost said to you

Coming out speeches to her fans?

…Help me hold onto you

…I wake in the night, I pace like a ghost

She’s worried about what would happen if she came out

she’s a ghost because she’s caught in-between and because she feels her true self is invisible.

The room is on fire, invisible smoke

She imagines the worst outcome, and is anxious, but it’s in her mind so far.

And all of my heroes die all alone

Help me hold onto you/…Screaming, who could ever leave me, darling?/But who could stay?

Taylor wants to keep her fans, and place as a legend in music.  She wouldn’t want coming out to ruin that.

(I see right through me, I see right through me)/’Cause they see right through me/They see right through me/They see right through/Can you see right through me?/They see right through/They see right through me/I see right through me/I see right through me

Can fans see Taylor’s intentions?  Can they sense her fears?  Taylor has been signaling she’s queer-have fans picked up on that?  

Who could ever leave me, darling?/But who could stay?/(I see right through me, I see right through me)/Who could stay?/Who could stay?/Who could stay?/You could stay/You could stay/You…

Taylor is inviting fans to stay with her even if she comes out.

Furthermore she says she can feel the lavender creeping.

creeping:

You would not describe the haze of the honeymoon phase of a relationship as creeping. Creeping is negative, unwanted. The lavender is something Taylor is saying she does not want.

Surreal

I’m damned if I do give a damn what people say

Stated another way:

If I do give a damn about what people say

I’m damned

Taylor is saying if she cares about this pressure people are putting on her to marry, she will be doomed.

No deal

The 1950s shit they want from me

I just wanna stay in that lavender haze

Taylor doesn’t want the creeping lavender that will doom her (marrriage). She wants to remain in the gray, hazy area she is currently occupying. This could mean this awkward “private” relationship with Joe (if the public narrative is to be believed. Or it could mean bearding with Joe to portray herself as straight to the majority, and hinting at her true orientation to Gaylors.

All they keep asking me

Is if I’m gonna be your bride

This line is direct in who Taylor is talking to. Now, she could have changed perspectives or subjects with in the song (like in Question… and back to Peace) but this tells us Joe. The media and fans and maybe her team keep asking Taylor if she is going to be JOE’s bride.

The only kinda girl they see

Is a one night or a wife

The media and fans accuse Taylor of serial dating and not being able to keep a man, or they press her about when she will get engaged or have children.  

These are the “weird rumors” Taylor spoke of in the Lavender video.

I find it dizzying

The word dizzying makes me think of all the spinning on tiptoes in heels in mirrorball:

Taylor already told us she shows each person what they want to see. She is not being her authentic self.

They’re bringing up my history

Who is they? 

It could be media, fans, enemies, exes, Taylor’s own team, the music industry, her parents…  

What history is being drudged up?

Taylor’s dating history, Kaylor, her song catalog, awards shows, promotion…

But you weren’t even listening

Who is you?  

It could still be Joe, or the “you” could indicate a different subject: Karlie, another love/muse, Taylor’s team, her mom, fans…

…Talk your talk and go viral

This sounds like she’s addressing the media.  They say whatever narrative gets them the most clicks. 

I just need this love spiral

The opposite of spiral (depending on the way the word is being used):  straight, a line, flat, constant, consistent, unchanging, calm…

Love spiral reminds me of the heart that turned into a spiraling tunnel in the Me!  Music video:

Interestingly the heart/love spiral evokes the same feelings as this lavender haze song:

Get it off your chest

“Your” sounds less like a group (fans, her team, media, music industry) and more like one individual to me.

Get it off my desk

Whatever proposal that whoever is pushing. From the context of the song, it sounds like some sort of marriage. For someone to put something on Taylor’s desk (unless she’s talking metaphorically) this person or group has to be in proximity to her. That eliminates her talking about media, fans, or the general music industry. These two lines have to be Joe or Taylor’s own team. I think Joe, because get it off “your” chest is more personal, and less used for a collective like a team.

The media, fans, her team, and Joe all want Taylor to enter a Lavender marriage with Joe in order to satiate heteronormativity and straighten out her image. And this song makes clear Taylor wants to remain in this undefined haze.

…That lavender haze, I just wanna stay

I just wanna stay in that lavender haze

Kelsea Ballerini Tells Taylor She’s Being as Fickle as the Weather as Long as She’s Not Over Kaylor

29 Sep

OK this is going to be all about Taylor because I’m trying to convey the connections I noticed. And maybe some of it is a “reach” as the more mean-girl Gaylors and the homophobes accuse anything that’s outside the well-established narrative.  I heard many things, that alone, didn’t mean much, but compiled all together made me think, hmmmmm.  So this is me looking at Kelsea’s work through a frame of trying to find proof she is into women and also that her and Taylor had a fling/are together/are WLW besties–something is there!  But please know that I like Kelsea Ballerini as an artist, on her own terms.

[ellipses indicate lines I omitted.  Highlighted text is her lyrics, plain text is my commentary]:

Weather

I’ve been thinkin’ you’ve been thinkin’ ’bout something else (Mm-hmm, mm-hmm, mm-hmm)

I suspect at least 10 songs on Taylor’s last (true vs re-recordings) album Evermore contain Karlie references.

The, I Bet You Think About Me music video dropped 11/15/21 was practically overt in it’s Karlie images and symbolism.

On the left, music video groom on the right, Jo$h Ku$hner, Karlie’s husband:

Taylor knocks the groom over on the wedding cake:

I think she’s going for some symbolism here:

And Taylor eats a cherry: 

Whatever the red scarf represents (many Swifties say it’s Taylor’s virginity)…  Taylor gave it to the bride:

At the first dance, the groom (Jo$h) pulls the bride in, and to me, it looked like a “you’re mine” gesture.  As in Jo$h made known he owns Karlie, or there is a contract, or he will keep her:

When Taylor/bride walks away from the dance, she shows us red sneakers under the wedding dress.  I’m sure you can guess who else wore sneakers under her wedding gown?  It’s Karlie.

And in the lyrics of this same vault track I think Taylor snuck in a more modern reference to some shoes that Karlie was recently marketing:

Aside from this video, as well as a preponderance of lyrics from folklore, Evermore, and some vault tracks, and the general sadness on Taylor’s face and in her voice for every event/performance she’s attended since 2020–the new album about to drop is called Midnights.

Karlie is a spokeswoman for this Midnight perfume released July of 2022:

And Taylor, wearing silver (right picture), said TS10 will be called Midnights.  A month later:

And during this Midnights Era, Taylor wore gold, which is similar in aesthetic to the gold in Karlie’s Midnight perfume ad.

This was not an exhaustive list of the times Taylor has referenced Karlie in recent times.  So you can see why Kelsea would feel the person she’s talking to in the song (Taylor?) is thinking about something else–breakup with Karlie.

Yeah, we felt perfect, now I’m nervous, can you even tell? (Oh,oh)

This headline says, “. . . perfect for a date. . .”  when Taylor and Kelsea were photographed shopping together.  It just might fit with the perfect lyric if Kelsea is trying to contrast the current unsettled times in a relationship, where someone is not over their ex, and maybe a flight risk, with the good times they had.

Did I wake you up on the wrong side of the bed?

Kelsea just might be alluding to Taylor sleeping with Karlie, and the image that Taylor snuck into her video while dressed in drag.  In The Man music video Taylor, as the man, gets out of bed with a slender woman.  And when the man gets out of the bed, this sun-looking item on the wall is obscured, bringing “my loaded gun, my eclipsed sun” lyrics from Hoax (a song probably about the Kaylor break-up) to mind.  Make of that what you will.  

Is there someone’s body that you’d rather be laying with instead?

The line in this song might be intended to conjure the mental image of that video clip and its wink to Kaylor.  Also, the expression ‘wrong side of the bed’ means grumpy, bad day, etc…  Kelsea (if my theory pans out about her and Taylor being together in some manner) may be telling Taylor that she’s acting moody, and negative, and grumpy, because she is missing a different person in the bed (Karlie).  Or missing the person that used to be on that side of the bed (Karlie).  Without more info it’s hard to say for sure, but if all these references across Kelsea’s new album are about Taylor, I can see how anyone would have had enough of their fling/new relationship/GF being hung up on an ex.

I’m so tired of your weather/Stormy when we’re together/Yeah, we used to be sunny and seventy-five/We wеre dancing, baby, rain or shine

Kelsea met Taylor June of 2015.  And they danced at that first party:

…Now somehow, I need a sweater

Kelsea is possibly talking about the cardigans Taylor sent her close friends for the folklore rollout (for the song/single, Cardigan):

Aside from this lyric possibly talking about the cardigan gift, a deeper meaning could be Taylor’s album/era.  During folklore, it was clear in a lot of lyrics that Kaylor were breaking up or broken up, and Taylor didn’t want that.  It’s full of regret and longing, and Taylor seems very preoccupied with Karlie in this time frame.  If Taylor had seen, was currently seeing Kelsea, or even if Kelsea wished Taylor would see her as a love interest–Taylor’s heartbreak over Karlie would get in the way.  It would not be happy, sunny times, it would be gloomy, sad times that made Kelsea feel chilly and left out. 

How’d we go from summer to cold as ice?

The romance with this person went from steamy and hot and comfortable to distant and chilly.  If Taylor was unable to move on from an ex, or held out hope of getting back with Karlie, it would put a relationship with Kelsea on the back burner.  

In Taylor’s The Lakes, she says she can’t move on.  And Taylor wishes Karlie would come back to where they had been (in the closet together) in total privacy.  The red rose is a Kaylor reference we talked about earlier, and the ice frozen ground is all the depression and loneliness and heartache and chilliness toward one another.  In Taylor’s wishful thinking Karlie and her could be together and that difficult, calamitous love, is causing her a grief she can’t overcome.

Right Where You Left Me is another of Taylor’s songs that uses frozen imagery to show she is not moving on from the Kaylor breakup:

Because Taylor can’t move on from the Kaylor breakup, any relationship between Kelsea and Taylor cannot move forward either.  If Taylor is frozen in place to where she had been with Karlie, it would be distant and chilly inside any relationship between Kelsea and Taylor.  Kelsea is left out in the cold, feeling the aloofness of a Taylor stuck in the past, or in a fantasy in her head.

Are we really lovers if you’re changing your mind/Like the weather? (Weather)

Taylor can’t decide if she wants to pine and be heartbroken about Karlie, or if she wants to move forward with someone new.  She is not committed, and Kelsea can feel how this person she’s trying to be in a relationship with is fickle, running hot, then cold as her moods change.

Uh-huh, oh/Get in or get out

Kelsea tells Taylor to either be present in the relationship with her or be alone wishing that Kaylor would have worked out.

But honestly, right now, you’re killin’ my vibe/(Killin’ it, killin’ it, killin’ it)/(Killin’ it, killin’ it, killin’ it)/So, if you wanna stay stuck in the clouds/Keep ’em around but not in my sky (Mm-hmm)

Taylor doesn’t own clouds.  Put clouds and sky were constant themes in the Lover era.  

Me! video:

Taylor didn’t want to date the man, nor did she want this man’s hand in marriage.  She accepted a kitten.  She’s saying no to men here.

Many Gaylors think Kaylor broke up or were on and off before 2019, and the Lover era was Taylor trying to get Karlie back. Evidence for the beginning of the Lover era wooing Karlie back are the lyrics around New York and the butterfly mural commission:

I think the commissioned mural looks a lot like Karlie’s Victoria’s Secret wings!

Here is a well-worded comment from a Gaylor on Reddit that explains the many reasons the Lover album isn’t a romantic love story, it’s a plea to Karlie; begging her to get back together:

Kelsea using “stuck in the clouds” in this song is not accidental.  A lot of the Lover album, imagery, videos and roll-out focused on the sky.

When Kelsea says you can stay stuck in the clouds, I think she means the mindset of trying to get Karlie back.  Just like in the Lover era.  And Kelsea tells Taylor, it’s fine if Taylor stays stuck in the Lover-era clouds, pining for Karlie, but not in her sky.  Kelsea doesn’t need anyone who is moody and hung up on their ex.

When it hits the fan, I don’t know who you’re gonna be/I’m not asking for much, just a little reliability

Kelsea is emphasizing the point that Taylor’s heartbreak about Kaylor is making her a flake in their relationship.

I’m so tired of your weather/Stormy when we’re together/Yeah, we used to be sunny and seventy-five

The number/temperature 75 is very specific.  Kelsea is saying her and Taylor(?) used to be happy, but are now gloomy.  And I found this tweet from Kelsea:

It is exactly the same temperature in the lyric!  If we can find out who Kelsea saw in L.A. on July 1, 2022 (or the few days before) we will know who this song is about!

I tried to figure out where Taylor was late June to July 1 of this year, 2022, and had a very difficult time (since I don’t know anything about Jet tracking).  If anyone can get the jet data, or other sources showing if Taylor Swift was at her L.A. house June-July, we’d be one step closer to knowing if this song is about her.

This was as close as I could get to narrowing down where Taylor was:

June 11, 2022 (Tribeca Film Festival, NY)

July 4, 2022

…[Bridge]

Baby, talk to me/Tell me what you need/Don’t leave me hanging anymore

Taylor’s song, Cowboy Like Me has a lyric about hanging.

Skeletons in the closet means a dirty secret.  Something bad in your past you hide from others.

It’s funny Taylor mentions closets in this context.  I’d say part of the point of this song is having gay-dar and being able to identify other gays (because you’re one too, so you know the signs).  And gay people hide in the closet before they’re out.  A secret and hiding in the closet??!

Here’s an excerpt about the Gardens of Babylon:

As a sidenote: The central club in America’s Queer as Folk series, about mostly gay men and a pair of lesbians, was called Babylon.

The fact that another track on Kelsea’s same album called, Love is a Cowboy really puts it over the top!

…  Are we really lovers if you’re changing your mind/Like the weather? (Weather)

And the word, “Lovers” to end the song???  OMG.  I think I’m on to something here.

One Taylor Reference Might be a Coincidence, But a Dozen? That’s a KELincidence

25 Sep

OK this is going to be all about Taylor because I’m trying to convey the connections I noticed. And maybe some of it is a “reach” as the more mean-girl Gaylors and the homophobes accuse anything that’s outside the well-established narrative.  I heard many things, that alone, didn’t mean much, but compiled all together made me think, hmmmmm.  So this is me looking at Kelsea’s work through a frame of trying to find proof she is into women and also that her and Taylor had a fling/are together/are WLW besties–something is there!  But please know that I like Kelsea Ballerini as an artist, on her own terms.  For more Kelsea-centric content, see my album review from 12/8/20:

And my Top 12 songs from 1/6/17:

Now on to the clues in Kelsea’s new album!

THE LITTLE THINGS

Save your money on the roses, baby/Just leave a daisy on the dashboard

The first few lines are Kelsea rejecting romantic gestures like roses and idealized prince on a white horse rescuing a’la heteronormative tropes.  Kelsea is saying she’s OK with breaking all the straight-dating-rituals and norms for this relationship.  

Also, these lines tie directly to Taylor, and pretty blatantly.  On first listen to the album, these were the lines that clued me into the fact Kelsea might like women–and specifically, Taylor. 

At one point Taylor was using so much rose imagery that fans speculated her next album might be called Roses.  

At another point, fans speculated that Kelsea’s new track, ROSES was a collaboration with Taylor:

Interesting…

Remember Taylor’s song Gold Rush? This product is called Rose Blush:

Walk past, quick brush/I don’t like slow motion double vision in rose blush

Here are other examples of roses/gardens in Taylor’s work:

  • Love Story: So I sneak out to the garden to see you
  • Blank Space: Rose garden filled with thorns
  • Cruel Summer: And I snuck in through the garden gate every night that summer just to seal my fate
  • Betty: Would you tell me to go fuck myself or lead me to the garden?
  • Betty: In the garden would you trust me if I told you it was just a summer thing?
  • Cowboy Like Me: Now you hang from my lips like the Gardens of Babylon

Here’s some more interesting rose/flower/garden incidents in Kaylor:

Taylor is twinning with Karlie’s cover from 5/21/18 when she collects are folklore Grammy on 3/15/21.

And again here Taylor is undeniably twinning with Karlie’s 9/13/21 Met dress for her I Know You Think About Me video announcement/promo on 11/14/21:

And daisies.  Let’s not forget how important daisies are in the story of Kaylor.

The Big Sur road trip was epic in the start of Taylor and Karlie’s love story.  With many lyrics referencing it, the daisy on the DASHBOARD, daisy tag on Karlie’s social media, and the same daisy in Taylor’s liner notes–it’s one of the biggest proofs for Kaylor.

In other words those 2 lines of Kelsea’s song are telling her new romance to leave Karlie behind and stop with all the roses/daisies/gardens to focus on the little things with her.

Don’t gotta ride in on a white horse

That is a literal title of one of Taylor’s first hit songs.  And that song also fits the theme of this song about rejecting heteronormative indoctrination:

Kelsea is saying she doesn’t want a Prince Charming on the white horse to rescue her. She wants a non-stereotypical love that means more to her because of little things rather than grand gestures of Disney movies and rom-coms.

When you’re younger they say it’s a kiss in the rain

Again, I’m not saying Taylor has a copyright on “rain” the word, imagery, metaphor, symbolism–it’s pretty common in writing.  But there is a preponderance of rain songs, especially kissing in rain songs in Taylor’s work, so if you were trying to reference her this might be a subtle way to do it:

Throwing rocks at a window

Taken alone, this line is just a common writing theme.  As the fourth very close association to Taylor things in one song, in a row–it seems intentional on Kelsea’s part that she wants the listener to be reminded of Swift.  The next line of Kelsea’s song could also be a reference to another early Taylor Swift song, Ours:

 And Ours just happens to have one of the same messages contained within Kelsea’s track 1:  Subject to Change.  That society may judge LGBT love, but the happiness of the individual must be prioritized so the relationship is pursued even so.  

But it’s when we’re in a crowded room, put your hand on my back

This line reminds me of the themes in at least 3 Taylor Swift songs:  Ours that we just talked about.  Taylor’s line, 

They’ll judge it like they know about me and you/And the verdict comes from those with nothing else to do

When people see a same sex couple, they’re not sure if they’re just friends, or if the two people are in a relationship, especially straight people!  Heteronormativity works hard.  When Taylor says they know about me and you, she’s saying people are speculating that she and the person she’s talking about in the song are not just friends, but gay together.  Furthermore, those gossiping people disapprove and stigmatize anything that is not straight.  So Kelsea’s line makes me think of a covert couple in a public space.  They can appear as friends to safely avoid further scrutiny or judgment.  Because when it’s a woman’s hand on another gal’s back, heteronormativity says they’re just friends!  

The second song of Taylor’s that this line makes me think about is, I Know Places:

Pretty much that whole song is an expansion of the line we talked about in Ours.  Same theme.  “Friends” out in a public space, and someone inside that secret relationship daringly depends on heteronormativity to make their gesture of love to appear as just friendly.  It’s both daring and safe for a female couple to touch out in front of the public.  People usually chalk it up to friendship.  But there are the gossips that want to call it out as WLW and disparage it.  So for the couple there is always that fear of being exposed.  And in Taylor’s case, she says she hides the relationship away from prying eyes so they can love safely. 

The third of Taylor’s songs that Kelsea’s line reminds me of is, So It Goes… 

I think Kelsea is talking about the same phenomenon Taylor speaks of with “magician” and “illusionist” in public spaces.  When this couple is out on the town, they appear straight.  Maybe they’re flirting with guys, or “dating” a guy.  They can do small coupley things that the naysayers will interpret as female friendship, but this couple is on high alert not to get caught.  But Taylor’s song is saying when they’re alone, it’s “wear you like a necklace” time.  

And waiting on me in the morning with my coffee black…

It’s wine and vinyl, my head on your shoulder…

Reminder, I know Taylor doesn’t have the only references to drinking in any song.  But also, if you were talking about Taylor Swift, it might be apt to mention alcohol.  Taylor’s discography has at least 11 lines that talk about wine, not counting all the champagne/beer/whiskey/cocktails/drunk references.  And it wouldn’t be surprising that two artists might hang out listening to vinyls, signing vinyls, or otherwise listening to music and doing merch.

Used to think it would be a backseat sex scene/Drawing hearts on the window…

A clear callback to the song, Heartfirst where she met a man at a party and went to the car with him. But the line here says, USED to think.  So Kelsea has changed her mind about what love is to her.  Which she clearly tells us on the first track.

Just pull me in and kiss me slow/Ooh, it ain’t just for show (it ain’t just for show)

And this line reminds me of Taylor’s Peace:

Peace describes half of the couple being blue and depressed.  The other person says they will be there for them, warm their heart, die for them.  But only privately.  Outsiders think the love is PR or just friends, but they don’t know the real story.  Their love is a hidden secret and it’s true and deep, but also the person asks is this secret relationship going to be enough for you?    

(Ah) let’s not go big, let’s just go home

I know, I know the concept of “home” is not owned by Taylor.  But also lyrics of Taylor’s that contain the word…

home {also in Exile and Peace and Tears Ricochet}

~[Cornelia Street from Lover = “leading us home” “I took the long way home“]

~[Cruel Summer from Lover = “…I cried like a baby coming home from the bar”]

~[Delicate from Reputation = “do the girls back home touch you like I do?”]

~[Gorgeous from Reputation = “guess I’ll just stumble on home to my cats”]

~[I Think He Knows from Lover = “I’ll make myself at home“]

~[Lover from Lover = “take me out and take me home (forever and ever)”]

~[Miss Americana and the Heartbreak Prince from Lover = “I think you should come back home“]

~[New Year’s Day from Reputation = “or if you strike out and you’re crawling home“]

~[Paper Rings from Lover = “went home and tried to stalk you on the internet”]

~[Style from 1989 = “takes me home” “just take me home“]

So here, Kelsea is offering to be the one to take Taylor home.  She’ll provide peace and stability, just the little things.