Tag Archives: lyrics

KelSwift and Kaylor on again off again

1 Oct

You saw my disclaimer on the other 3-4 posts that yes, this post is Taylor-centric because I’m trying to find connections.  The thing that started this was Kelsea’s lyric:  DAISES ON THE DASHBOARD?!  For what reason?  It’s not a common expression, or something that happens.  That is a purposeful, direct connection to Kaylor.  So here we are, seeing ANY possible others…  But I like Kelsea as an artist in her own right, I’m not saying she’s copying Taylor, or that Taylor wrote her songs or anything disrespectful.  I’m just trying to call out possible intentional connections that Kelsea placed across her new album.

If this is confirmation bias–it’s sure strong.  And it speaks to how Taylor’s writing has the ability to capture universal, relatable feelings in all sorts of situations.  So many lyrics of Taylor’s encapsulate just what an individual is feeling or going through.  If this song is not intentionally referencing Taylor’s work–then Kelsea needs to give Taylor a call, because Tay could really be an understanding shoulder to cry on.  She gets what Kelsea is going through–says her lyrics.

Each one of these lyrical parallels would be considered a “reach” by the mean-Gaylors and the hetlors.  And it’s true, after seeing the daises line, I was really looking deep, and trying to pull out any, little thing that connected to Taylor. So some of these just might be stretching it. This write-up may delve into fan-fiction territory, but take from it what you like, and leave what feels too “reachy” (to use a word I’m tired of). But when there’s TEN “reaches” in one song is it confirmation bias or a preponderance of evidence?  Time will tell.  Midnights out October 21, 2022.

I GUESS THEY CALL IT FALLIN’ (Lyrics)

I guess they call it falling ’cause you end up on the ground/You can’t live forever with your head up in the clouds

I mean, Taylor Swift [Lover] OUT now?!

As we discussed before Kelsea might be talking about the beginning of the Lover era where Taylor was actively trying to get Karlie back (the literal signs, the mural, etc, etc…).  A lot of cloud imagery was used for Lover promo so Kelsea uses the word “clouds” to describe this more complex situation.  See Kelsea’s song Weather in another post.

Think it’s written in the stars ’til they burn out

I am waiting to see if Taylor talks about stars in her new album–it’s a pet theory of mine with no evidence yet.  I have seen stars (and the moon) mentioned across this album of Kelsea’s.  And it makes sense to me for Taylor to move on from Karlie (the sun) to Kelsea the stars and/or moon.

…I was like, “Oh my God”, every thought played like a video

I thought the quotations and video was an odd turn of phrase, so I looked up Taylor’s lyrics where she says, “Oh my God” and found:

A song about the media and public having this perception of Taylor.  She is tongue in cheek here, playing into that (false) perception.  The subtext/secret meaning of the song is about bearding.  

Shake It Off is a song about ignoring haters and living your best life. 

That song also addresses the media and public’s perception of Taylor:

The third song where Taylor uses, “Oh my God” talks about the perception that Taylor is a serial dater who just writes songs about her exes:

All three of these songs talk about the (false) perception in the general public that Taylor is boy-crazy. And the narrative pushed by the media that Taylor just writes songs about her exes. The were really big music videos for Taylor as well.

I think in this line Kelsea is saying when her and Taylor were first having romantic sparks, she was incredulous.  Kelsea might have been surprised because the media portrays Taylor as a man-eater, and Taylor’s public persona leans into dating and writing songs about men.  So Kelsea might have been shocked to have a romantic connection with Taylor. She might also have been a bit star-struck to have something serious with someone of Taylor’s caliber of fame, since Kelsea had seen Taylor in her music videos before meeting her in person.

Left your shirt, and the hurt, now I curse your Acqua di Gio

Taylor’s Tis the Damn Season mentions perfume:

It’s about how Taylor goes back to her hometown (Nashville, where Kelsea also lives) to visit her parents and has an on again off again fling when she’s home. Both people are OK with this situationship. Taylor talks about how when she’s home that relationship and life (road not taken) seems good, but she left that geographic location.  But it still is part of her and stays with her.   

In Illicit Affairs Taylor talks about sleeping with someone who is committed to somebody else (Karlie is officially with Jo$h).  They have to lie and sneak around to see each other.  But living in secret gets real old, and the high of their encounters feels less and less good as time goes on because of the million lies.

The perfume is used as a “tell” of the encounter.  Perfume can be used to cover up the scent of the side-chick so her smell is not noticed by the boyfriend. Karlie might put on the perfume Jo$h bought her (or perfume she picked out because Jo$h liked the smell) to cover up Taylor’s smell on her. It could go the other way too: Perfume cannot be worn during the encounters because it would leave scent-evidence that the person was there.  If Jo$h could smell Taylor’s perfume on their bed there would be questions.

Kelsea curses the perfume because the scent left behind makes her think of Taylor.  And also the perfume represents secrets and hiding an affair, so it makes Kelsea think of the Kaylor bearding triangle.  

That night you told me I hung your moon (I hung your moon)

If Midnights has moons and stars, I will not shut up about it!!!

I jumped right in with no parachute (No parachute, oh, oh)/…Did you only get me high to let me down?

Taylor uses “high” in two of her more WLW songs:

Call it What You Want is a definite Karlie song (Call it what you want, Karlie what you want).  Taylor tells Karlie that she can call what they have going on whatever she wants.  Karlie is  nervous about it.  Karlie doesn’t want to be a cheater.  But Taylor just wants to keep what they have going alive, even if it needs to be secret and unofficial.  It doesn’t have to be lesbian-love, call it anything that makes you more comfortable. It speaks to the on-again off-again nature of Kaylor also. With Karlie being nervous about breaking her commitment to Jo$h as one reason for the encounters to be fleeting and secretive, on and off.

Kelsea using “high” in opposition to down could reference an on and off Taylor relationship.  And when Kelsea thinks of Taylor’s songs pleading with Karlie to be with her, that’s what gets Kelsea down.  Whenever Kaylor is “on” that means Taylor is emotionally unavailable and physically gone from Kelsea. Kaylor and KelSwift and similar relationships. One person is on, then off, here than gone.

Another song where Taylor uses the word “high” is Don’t Blame Me.  In the song Taylor compares WLW love to a drug.  She says it’s bad for her and her brand and her image, but also she can’t stay away. “My drug is my baby.”  

Kelsea feels like her love with Taylor gets her high also.  When Taylor comes around and loves Kelsea, it’s like a drug.  It’s that same drug Taylor speaks about in her song, the WLW love, and Kelsea can’t leave it alone even though there’s a let down when Taylor/the WLW love leaves again.

I guess they call it falling ’cause you end up on your face/Sleeping by myself in a bed I didn’t make

If Taylor and Karlie were on and off, it’s possible Taylor got with Kelsea during the Kaylor “off” periods.  And it wasn’t Kelsea’s choice to be alone during the Kaylor “on” periods.   Taylor’s song, Willow describes Taylor sneaking in to see Karlie even though she’s committed to Jo$h (bearding contract or bisexual love, we don’t know).

Willow talks about sneaking around to be with your secret WLW lover despite commitments to men and secrecy to preserve public images. The partner is mythical, because they are gone a lot, mostly a dream not reality. Describing a lover as a trophy or champion ring could speak to Taylor and Jo$h fighting over Karlie. In their fighting, they’re treating her as an object without autonomy to make her own choices. “Prize I’d cheat to win” probably has the double meaning of cheating in a relationship, and also cheating/lying to the public to hide the true nature of the relationship. “I’m begging for you to take my hand, wreck my plans, that’s my man” is one partner asking the other to commit fully to them. Wreck the bearding plans (for one or both Taylor/J0e and Karlie/Jo$h). In an interview, when asked about Jo$h, Karlie repeatedly referred to him as “my man” which came off as awkward. So Taylor may have written Willow with that in mind, to convey Karlie’s commitment to Jo$h as a stumbling block to be “home” (a committed relationship with each other).

Sleeping in a bed I didn’t make, is Kelsea saying that her relationship with Taylor, got her dragged into all this Kaylor drama. She didn’t create the Kaylor bearding triangle, but she has to live with the consequences of it too. Kelsea is left alone when Taylor is literally going back to Karlie, or emotionally still hung up on Kaylor.

… I should’ve known, should’ve known, should’ve known, should’ve known (I should’ve known, known)

I thought Kelsea’s repetition of this phrase was pointed, but didn’t know why.  I looked up the phrase in Taylor’s lyrics to check if Kelsea was insinuating a connection.

It’s funny that the lyric ties to White Horse a song about someone holding out hope that this other person will come around.  Ultimately Taylor realizes this person is going to let her down because she is being starry-eyed and dreamy about love, not realistic.

So that sentiment goes right along with Kelsea falling for an person who is back and fourth, in and out of her life.  There are highs when they’re together, but it comes at the cost of loneliness and feeling bad when Taylor physically leaves for Karlie (in earlier years), or emotionally checks out for missing the Kaylor relationship (in more current times).

… Then the wind, blowing in, threw me right off of my pedestal

Red is a song also about highs and lows of a passionate love that ends suddenly.  It seems connected to the theme of this song as well.

The word, “wind” again conjures, Willow which describes secret meetings and fooling the media/public with the bait and switch.  It’s a lover that comes and goes in secret, same as in Kelsea’s song.

In the second half of Kelsea’s phrase she says threw me off my pedestal. “Pedestal” is a very loaded word in GayLore.  It conjures Dianna, one of Taylor’s early girlfriends.  It’s also a common phrase when digging into Gaylor (Taylor’s LGBT subtext and secretive relationships) to say “going down the rabbit hole” which was Dianna’s heading on Tumblr (I think?).  

Taylor doesn’t have a copyright on the word, but if Kelsea were trying to reference Gaylor things, that would be a good way to do it.  In Long Story Short, Taylor describes being at the top, then falling down (kinda like this song) then clinging to the nearest lips. . .

…[Bridge]/I should’ve known gravity was gonna pull/You and me, down, down, down

In one of Taylor’s gayest songs, she uses “gravity” to describe the pull she has to a dangerous partner/type of love.  And Taylor says that other person (Dianna?) is quicksand.  Meaning not stable, fickle, here and gone.  Sort of like this song is saying Taylor is in and out, bringing Kelsea love to make her high, then leaving and making Kelsea fall to the ground, sad and lonely.

But I know now/I should’ve known gravity was gonna pull/You and me, down, down, down

A second song of Taylor’s uses “gravity” to describe her inability to stay away from this lover/love that’s bad for her brand.  Dancing with Our Hands Tied aka the Kissgate song, is another of Taylor’s gayest songs.  So it’s funny that this song talking about a love interest that is fickle and leaving all the time, talks about that love interest feeling scared about homophobia.  Taylor, loves Karlie, but doesn’t want to get caught as WLW and lose her career success.  So she runs away and hides, despite love.  And Kelsea is acknowledging that not only Kaylor takes Taylor away from their relationship, but Taylor’s skittishness about being out(ed) is a barrier to her being emotionally/romantically available.

But I know now/…[Outro]/(I guess they call it fallin’, ah-ah, ah)/I guess they call it fallin’/(I guess they call it fallin’, ah-ah, ah)

Finally, one of Taylor’s songs that uses “falling” perfectly encapsulates the meaning of this song.  

Taylor tells Dianna to stay with her instead of leaving all the time.  Taylor fell in love, but it’s not happy, it’s cruel because Dianna is worlds away.  Now the shoe is on the other foot and Taylor is worlds away while Kelsea is sad when she’s gone.

If you were only gonna let me go/Ah-ah, ah, ah-ah

Kelsea Ballerini Promises Not to Out Someone (Taylor Swift?) Because it Would Out Her Too

25 Sep

Disclaimer:

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” (can we retire that word?!) as the more mean-girl Gaylors and the homophobes accuse of 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.  

IF YOU GO DOWN (I’M GOIN’ DOWN TOO)

I’ve known you since Brad and Angelina

Brad and Angelina got together on the set of Mr. and Mrs. Smith, in 2005.  They collected children, and then got engaged in April of 2012.  The wedding took place in August 2014.  Angelina filed for divorce August 2016.  So that puts the timeline anywhere between 2005 and 2016, with the actual marriage between 2014-2016.  Kelsie and Taylor met in 2015.

Taylor’s Tweet:

Taylor invites Kelsea to her friend, Abigail’s birthday party:

…If I got an aisle with a mess I gotta clean up

A double entendre–clean up a mess on aisle 7, and also walking down an aisle to marry, cleaning up that mistake with divorce.

Kelsie learning about herself and realizing she had been forced into a straight marriage?  She had to use a lot of introspection and therapy to realize she was in a comp-het situation, and un-learn her heteronormative training.  And when she was finished with that she realized the man had to go.

I know you’ll be showin’ up with bleach, hmm

This reminds me of Taylor’s song, No Body No Crime:

Taylor was going to clean up a mess of a different marriage that ended in that song.

This line could also be a reference to hair bleach.

The Met Gala of Getaway Car fame.

Depending on the narrative you believe, this is the night Taylor left Calvin Harris for Tom Hiddleston.  It has also been said Taylor met Joe Alwyn at the 2016 Met Gala.  If you’re a Kaylor, you know it’s the night Taylor ditched 2 beards (Calvin and Tom), arranged a long term beard (Joe), and ran away from Jo$h Ku$hner (Karlie’s long term BF/beard) with Karlie.  A lot was happening that night!  Been in each of those scenarios Taylor, with her bleachella hair, was leaving a relationship.  And Kelsea is talking about leaving her marriage.

All those names that we don’t ever speak of

Kelsie and Taylor both have had their share of feuds and exes:

Got a couple nights that have slipped my mind/Proof and photographs have been deleted

I found this headline by Googling their names:

https://country925.iheart.com/alternate/amp/2018-05-09-kelsea-ballerini-and-taylor-swift-in-towels/

I included the link so you can see I didn’t do any fancy cutting and pasting–the image that used to be on that provocatively headline was removed… Just like Kelsea said in the song…

If you ever needed an alibi/’Cause dirt on you is dirt on me/And we both know our hands ain’t clean/If it all blows up and we end up on the news

Here’s another headline with a deleted picture that I came across:

Taylor’s song, Delicate is about the nervousness of getting closer to someone when you’re first seeing each other.  There’s an added layer of precariousness in the song because this date is between two gals.  There’s an anxiety about going for this relationship, but also a lot of sexual chemistry.  It’s pretty steamy, really:

Kelsie doing a cover of that particular song is very loud to me.

If you go down, I’m going down too/It’s a good thing we’re each other’s kinda crazy/Ain’t no judgment or keepin’ score

Kelsie might be referencing Taylor’s song, hoax, where Taylor references her painful breakup with Karlie:

In, False God Taylor told us she’s New York City:

And Karlie Kloss was the West Village:

So part of me back in New York is saying Taylor had her heart in NY, but had to leave because she can’t bear to be reminded of Karlie everywhere she goes.  The keeping score bitter line in Taylor’s heartbreak song is what Kelsea brings up in this song–she won’t do that to Taylor like Karlie did.

If you rob a bank, I’m your getaway Mercedes

God knows that’s what friends are for/’Cause dirt on you is dirt on me/And we both know our hands ain’t clean/If it all blows up and we end up on the news/If you go down, I’m going down too/If you go down, I’m going down too, yeah/I keep all your secrets by the dozen

These lines have to be about closeting and outing.  If these two had a fling or shared their secrets that gives each one of them ammunition and leverage over the other.  One cannot out the other without outing themselves. 

I think rather than a threat, this is meant to calm Taylor.  She does not want to be outed and is always fearful that she will get recognized by everyone as WLW before she’s ready, so Kelsea is saying, don’t worry, I can’t out you because I would be outing myself.  And since they’re both singers they both understand what they would be losing by being outed. It’s a sort of consolation that the gayness of it all will remain secret.

You know where my skeletons sleep

Kelsie may be talking about Taylor’s song, Cowboy Like Me here:

In the song Taylor is saying she does stuff purely for money.  Bandits, tricks up my sleeve, takes one to know one all indicate she has met someone just like her–pretending to like rich people or date men so rich people approve in order to get the money/fame.

Forever is the sweetest con is a line that I think speaks to lavender marriage.

Hypothetically, if you ever kill your husband

Kelsie is using this as an exaggeration of something terrible that she would still keep a secret.  It does double-duty here being a call-back to Taylor’s No Body No Crime:

And also could be speaking about “killing” the bearding contract.  Killing the idea of being married to a man.  Killing the charade.  And if Taylor decides to ditch Joe and other beards, Kelsea says she will still never tell that Taylor is WLW or that they had/have? a thing.

Hand on the Bible, I’d be lyin’ through my teeth/’Cause dirt on you is dirt on me/And we both know our hands ain’t clean/If it all blows up and we end up on the news/If you go down, I’m going down too/Our bodies are buried and they’re in the same ditch/So even if I wanted to, I can’t snitch/30 to life would go quicker with you, yeah/So, if you go down, I’m going down too/If you go down, I’m going down too/If you go down, I’m going down too

This song to me, is an acknowledgement that Kelsea knows a secret about Taylor, and has that same secret.  I don’t know if they were just honest with each other, or had a fling, or are dating, but this song is LOUDLY about closeting and being outed.

Reputation Re-listen: 3rd Lens

23 Jan

1st lense: Public persona. Straight. Thought it was bad. The BF stuff was OTT. As such, the rest of this analysis is from the perspective that Oat Milk is a beard (Grammygate).
2nd lense: Kaylor. Eyes opened, everything made better sense. It’s a WLW love story.
3rd lense: in light of Karlie baby. Post FolkMore.
It’s all of those. Taylor was layering meanings into songs (for plausible deniability) before she admitted it in folklore.

I included lyrical analysis in this, but not quotes from Taylor outside of her songs. When marketing an album to the general public she tends to be an unreliable narrator, and cherry-picking takes away from the credibility of these conclusions. The truth is (buried) in her lyrics.

Call It What You Want (pertinent lines and [brackets show my words]):

My castle crumbled overnight I brought a knife to a gunfight They took the crown, but it’s alright [Snakegate] All the liars are calling me one [KimYe] Nobody’s heard from me for months [Reputation black-out] I’m doing better than I ever was, ’cause My baby’s fit like a daydream [Victoria’s Secret Angel, Karlie] High above the whole scene [tall, and also out of the KimYe drama] Windows boarded up after the storm [during reputation black-out, Kaylor went underground together] He built a fire [Karlie] just to keep me warm All the drama queens taking swings [Karda$hians] All the jokers dressin’ up as kings [Kanye] They fade to nothing when I look at him I’m laughing with my lover, making forts under covers

Taylor is in love with Karlie. She says they don’t have to label it if that doesn’t work for Karlie:

(Call it what you want, call it what you want, call it) So call it what you want, yeah, call it what you want to Call it what you want, yeah Call it what you want To [said fast it even sounds like Karlie’s name in here]

Taylor writes a lot about the sexual chemistry of Kaylor:

Don’t Blame Me

I’ve been breakin’ hearts a long time, and [Taylor’s serial-dater reputation] Toyin’ with them older guys [Jake G, John M, Tom H…] Just to play things for me to use [beards]

Something happened for the first time, in The darkest little paradise Shakin, pacin’, I just need you I get so high, oh Every time, yeah every time you’re lovin’ me You’re lovin’ me Oh, Lord, save me, my drug is my baby I’d be usin’ for the rest of my life [Lesbian sex.]

My name is whatever you decide [Karlie misspells Taylor’s name in the sand during the Big Sur trip] And I’m just gonna call you mine Halo, hiding my obsession [VS Angel and also Taylor Swift the wholesome/straight brand] I once was poison ivy, but now I’m your daisy [a daisy on the dashboard identical to the pic on the liner notes; also Ivy from Evermore calls back to this]

I rearranged the lyrics of So It Goes:

Met you in a bar [Delicate? or the 2014 Met Gala?] All eyes on me, your illusionist [Taylor is not what she seems] All eyes on us [Guests, media, the public?] See you in the dark All eyes on you, my magician [magical but twists the truth does tricks to obscure] All eyes on us You make everyone disappear, and [Taylor only has eyes for Karlie]

Cut me into pieces Gold cage, hostage to my feelings

[Taylor is in love, yet still in her metaphorical cage. She has to hide this love from the public for the sake of her career. She’s also in the cage because her love, Karlie, is committed to someone else (Jo$h).]

Back against the wall [no options] Trippin’, trip-trippin’ when you’re gone [Karlie goes back to Jo$h] ‘Cause we breakdown a little I’m so chill, but you make me jealous [Taylor doesn’t want to share Karlie] But I got your heart Skippin’, skip-skippin’ when I’m gone [Both of them feel love, not just Taylor]

[There’s a lot of outside factors standing between Taylor and Karlie, and making their relationship complicated and messy.]

But when you get me alone, it’s so simple ‘Cause baby, I know what you know We can feel it And all the pieces fall Right into place Getting caught up in a moment Lipstick on your face So it goes I make all your gray days clear and Wear you like a necklace [lesbian sex graphic reference] But when I get you alone, it’s so simple ‘Cause baby, I know what you know We can feel it You know I’m not a bad girl [Commenting on public stigma of gays] But I do bad things with you [Sexually-speaking] So it goes Come here, dressed in black now So, so, so it goes Scratches down your back now So, so, so it goes

[sex, sex, sex is so passionate and great and makes all the public image and commitments to others momentarily disappear]

I’m yours to keep [Karlie could choose Taylor] And I’m yours to lose [will Karlie choose Jo$h?] You did a number on me [Staying committed to Jo$h while seeing Taylor] But honestly, baby, who’s counting? I did a number on you [bearding, anxious about their relationship] But honestly, baby, who’s counting? [Proceeds to count. Maybe saying resentments are building up on both sides]

End game through this 3rd lens seems less like couple goals as I had previously interpreted it, and more like begging Karlie to choose her (over Jo$h):

Big reputation, big reputation Ooh you and me we got big reputations [obv Taylor and Karlie individually and together]

I don’t wanna touch you (I don’t wanna be) Just anther ex-love (you don’t wanna see) I don’t wanna miss you (I don’t wanna miss you) [When Karlie goes back to Jo$h] Like the other girls do I don’t wanna hurt you (I just wanna be) Drinkin’ on a beach with (you all over me And I can’t let you go, your hand print’s on my soul [Taylor is deeply in love with Karlie] It’s like your eyes are liquor, it’s like your body is gold [Karlie] You’ve been calling my bluff on all my usual tricks So here’s the truth from my red lips I wanna be your end game I wanna be your first string I wanna be your A Team I wanna be your endgame, endgame

[This screams, please pick me overJo$h]

Delicate under the 3rd lens seems less like a nervous 1st date and more like anxiety that Karlie is a flight risk.

We can’t make any promises Now can we, babe Is it cool that I said all that? Is it chill that you’re in my head? ‘Cause I know that it’s delicate (Delicate) Is it cool that I said all that? Is it too soon to do this yet? ‘Cause I know that it’s delicate

[Taylor is full of anxiety, not wanting to scare Karlie away, not wanting to push boundaries.]

Third floor on the West Side, me and you [Kaylor sex] Handsome, you’re a mansion with a view [Karlie] Do the girls back home touch you like I do? Long night with your hands up in my hair Echoes of your footsteps on the stairs Stay here, honey, I don't want to share [with Jo$h] 'Cause I like you Sometimes I wonder; when you sleep Are you ever dreaming of me? [vs. Jo$h] Sometimes when I look into your eyes I pretend you're mine, all the damn time 'Cause I like you

Dress is the Met Gala (2014 or 2016?). Things were sexy, there was attraction, they had undeniable chemistry.

Wildest Dreams is looking backward at the Big Sur trip Kaylor took after they met. So looking about here in the timeline. They were in love.

I believe Taylor was writing songs that went on the Lover album and was interrupted by KimYe/Snakegate. That's why some of the Lover tracks fit chronologically between Reputation tracks.

A stressor to Kaylor is election season ramping up. Miss Americana and the Heartbreak King [Taylor doesn't want her brand associated with Ku$hners/Trump. Thus she could not be open that her and Karlie are in a romantic/sexual relationship (even though she feels so much for Karlie).]

Getaway car

1st lens: Leaving Calvin (Tom?!) for Joe. Makes no sense. Too many people and an inconsistent timeline.
2nd lens: leaving beards for true love Karlie. Occasional lines don't make sense- did Taylor switch perspectives within the lyrics?
3rd lens: ditching Jo$h to have Kaylor sex. And lines like:

No, nothing good starts in a getaway car [Kaylor is doomed]
He [not Calvin, not beards. Jo$h] poisoned the well, [Jo$h was working against Kaylor, he was doing his best to thwart Taylor and persuade Karlie to stay with him] I was lying to myself [That she was hetero/bi (she's not), that she could handle a casual relationship, and that Karlie would leave Jo$h forever to be with her]. I knew it from the first Old Fashioned, we were cursed
We were flyin', but we'd never get far
There were sirens in the beat of your heart [this trist is exciting but problematic. Both for the public finding out about WLW. But also bc TS is seriously in love and that will cause problems.]

*This stanza:

It was the great escape, the prison break

Both from the Met gala (a bit confusing bc Kaylor went at least twice-2014 and 2016 I think) but also Taylor from comp-het. Now she realizes she's lesbian. I say that because Taylor already knew she liked women. She dated Diana. And I'm assuming it wasn't just a Kaylor sex, 'I am sexually attracted to women' epiphany, because Swiftgron lasted awhile and I'm assuming they were sexual. But there is some sort of revelation Taylor has in this part of the song. A change has taken place, and something is different about Taylor compared to before.

The light of freedom on my face

A change has taken place within Taylor, and it's evident to observers. Even though Taylor previously dated Diana, she has this "prison break" moment where she realizes she wasn't bisexual after all. I wonder if Taylor had previously felt like her dalliances with women were just about sex. She may not have taken them as seriously, and still thought she would end up with a guy (compulsory heterosexuality). But in this Getaway Car prison break, she sees in her negative reaction to Karlie's commitment to Jo$h (and perceived indifference to Kaylor) that her (Taylor's) love is different. She realizes she is serious about wanting a relationship, not just having funsy sex.

But you weren't thinking [Karlie wasn't thinking of more then sex, and especially not considering the long term implications of a lesbian relationship] And I was just drinking Well, he [Not any beard, Jo$h] was running after us, I was screaming, "Go, go, go!" But with three of us, honey, it's a sideshow And a circus ain't a love story [There are Jo$h, Karlie, and Taylor involved.]

I knew it from the first Old Fashioned, we [Kaylor] were cursed It hit you [Karlie]  like a shotgun [not romantic, deadly]  shot to the heart We were jet-set, Bonnie and Clyde (oh, oh) [the sneaking and sexing was fun and exciting]

Until I switched to the other side, [Taylor tells again of a revelation. She has the realization that she is not bisexual just wanting a friends w/benefits, or casually playing, but that she's actually full-lesbian with serious feelings] to the other si-i-i-i-ide [She emphasizes there is a change.]

There were sirens in the beat of your [Karlie- it's all fun and games until Taylor falls in love]  heart (should've known) [that Karlie didn't want that lesbian life] Should've known I'd be the first to leave

Taylor tells us that she broke up with Karlie. She thought Karlie wasn't taking Kaylor seriously because she remained committed to Jo$h. Taylor tells us she was angry that her conveying a true love was received with anxiety by Karlie. And also, Taylor couldn't be outed by the relationship for her public image. And thirdly, she didn't want to be associated with Ku$hners and Trump.


Cruel Summer cements this.
Shape of your body is new. [Taylor with a woman. Taylor's lesbian status is new to her.] Blue. [Taylor is depressed about the implications of being gay. But also...] It's cool, that's what I tell 'em No rules in breakable heaven [She's also depressed that it's a casual sex thing with Karlie despite agreeing to those terms .] I'm drunk in the back of the car [getaway car?] And I cried like a baby coming home from the bar (oh) Said I'm fine, but it wasn't true [what this song is about] I don't wanna keep secrets just to keep you And I snuck in through the garden gate [but Taylor can't get enough of Karlie] Every night that summer just to seal my fate (oh) [sex] And I screamed for whatever it's worth "I love you, " ain't that the worst thing you ever heard? [Because this isn't what Karlie wants (remember the shotgun to the heart)] He looks up grinning like a devil [kissgate, or Jo$h wins bc if they're outed Kaylor falls apart]

After this realization of being a lesbian, Taylor shuts Kaylor down bc of internalized homophobia, fear, and all the outside factors making Kaylor overly complicated.

Tolerate It [(song on folklore that could be looking back) parent and industry homophobia]

The Archer [worried about losing fans and career if she comes out]

Even though Daylight is the last track of the next album (Lover) I think it belongs here in the sequence of events. In the song, Taylor comes to terms with her sexuality.  I'm about to trade Daylight lyrics in what I believe to be a Chronological way:

Clearing the air, I breathed in the smoke [kissgate] I've been sleeping so long in a 20-year dark night [realization she knew she liked girls since she was 7, but was in the closet and also comp-het and bearding. Now she knows she's a lesbian.] My love was as cruel as the cities I lived in [internalized homophobia]

[Taylor comes to accept her sexuality] Like daylight It's golden like daylight You gotta step into the daylight and let it go Just let it go, let it go [Let fear and homophobia go] Maybe you ran with the wolves [Ku$hners] and refused to settle down [with Taylor under the condition that they could never have a public family bc of Taylor's image] Maybe I've stormed out of every single room in this town [Taylor is upset her and Karlie can't have real Love]

[Despite all the outside factors, Taylor cannot just leave Karlie]
I don't wanna look at anything else now that I saw you (I can never look away) I don't wanna think of anything else now that I thought of you And now I see daylight, I only see daylight And I can still see it all (In my mind) All of you, all of me (Intertwined) I once believed love would be (Black and white) [Male female love] But it's golden (Golden) And I can still see it all (In my head) Back and forth from New York (Singing in your bed) I once believed love would be (Burning red) [Passionate, sex/fighting, bisexual?] But it's golden Like daylight, like daylight

This Love Happened around this point but looking back to the Wildest Dreams times. Folkmore has call-backs to this song.

Death by a Thousand Cuts is the next part of the Kaylor story.

Trying to find a part of me that you didn't touch [so much sex, but also touched heart] Gave up on me like I was a bad drug [Karlie wants a public family and didn't want some covert hidden closeted one] Now I'm searching for signs in a haunted club Our songs, our films, united we stand Our country, guess it was a lawless land [call back to Miss Americana and the Heartbreak King where she describes GOP winning the 2016 election. This also explains 1 reason why in the Getaway Car Taylor was unwilling to publicly be out with Karlie. Taylor didn't want to be associated with Ku$hners/Trump.] Quiet my fears with the touch of your hand [Fears of a public family with Karlie are gone.]

Taylor is regretful and heartbroken she left Karlie:

get drunk but it's not enough 'Cause you're not my baby I look through the windows of this love Even though we boarded them up [Kaylor broke up] Chandelier's still flickering here [Taylor still loves Karlie] 'Cause I can't pretend it's ok when it's not [being without Karlie] No, it's not It's death by a thousand cuts Trying to find a part of me that you didn't touch My body, my love My trust But it [The sex. Taylor's trust.] wasn't enough, it wasn't enough, no,

Taylor is very depressed without Karlie. And she's re-thinking her reasons for breaking up with her.

Then is Cornelia Street:
Back when we were card sharks, playing games I thought you were leading me on [Taylor broke-up with Karlie after Getaway car because she thought Karlie wasn't taking their WLW thing more seriously. Karlie kept going back to Jo$h] I packed my bags, left Cornelia Street Before you even knew I was gone [getaway car]

But then you [Karlie] called, showed your hand [told Taylor Jo$h and her weren't real. Just a cover and means to have a public family] I turned around before I hit the tunnel Sat on the roof, you and I [Kaylor]

[Kaylor is back on]

I hope I never lose you, hope it never ends [but Taylor's afraid it's tenuous] I'd never walk Cornelia Street again That's the kind of heartbreak time could never mend [folkmore confirms this] I'd never walk Cornelia Street again


In paper Rings (through the 3rd lens)
The wine is cold Like the shoulder that I gave you in the street Cat and mouse for a month or two or three [after the 1st break-up there was still an attraction between Kaylor] Now I wake up in the night and watch you breathe [Cornelia Street told us Kaylor got back together after Karlie told Taylor Jo$h is not a real relationship. Then they sat on the roof together. Taylor looks back to Getaway car where she couldn't give Karlie that family life. But 2-3 months later here Taylor is watching Karlie sleep.] I want to drive away with you [Big Sur and also living happily ever after] I want your complications too [Jo$h situation. So Taylor says she'll accept Kaylor as it is. Karlie will still be entangled with the Ku$hners, but Taylor would rather accept that then not have Karlie at all.]

And Taylor suggests a solution that would work for Kaylor. She suggests:

I like shiny things, but I'd marry you with paper [Kaylor marriage is not socially legitimate but paper rings is Karlie's "marriage" to Jo$h (you showed your hand)] rings Uh huh, that's right Darling, [Karlie] you're the one I want, and I hate accidents except when we went from friends to this Uh huh, that's right Darling, you're the one I want In paper rings, in picture frames [Polaroid], in dirty dreams You're the one I want


Lover song:

Ladies and gentlemen, will you please stand? With every guitar string scar on my hand I take this magnetic force of a man [Karlie] to be my lover [committed lesbian partner, but socially illegitimate] My heart's been borrowed [beards] and yours has been blue [Taylor hurt her with the 1st break-up] All's well that ends well to end up with you Swear to be overdramatic and true to my lover And you'll save all your dirtiest jokes for me And at every table, I'll save you a seat, lover

Yet there's still some uncertainty and instability:

Have I known you 20 seconds or 20 years? [Mercurial soulmate] Can I go where you go? Can we always be this close forever and ever? [Taylor is still not sure that Karlie won't up and leave her permanently for Jo$h (and it's almost a self-fulfilling prophecy given what we learn in folkmore). And ah, take me out, and take me home

In Afterglow Taylor says:
This ultraviolet morning light below [Karlie marrying Jo$h while Taylor was in Australia. When Karlie got "married"  Taylor flips out  But it's not real.  She got jealous and forgot paper rings. Jo$h and Karlie have some sort of agreement on paper, a fake marriage. And in Paper Rings Taylor said she accepted that.]

Taylor broke up with Karlie a second time.

But in this song she takes responsibility for their demise, and is regretful for her blow-up. Taylor wants Karlie back.

Fighting with a true love is boxing with no gloves [Bad Blood] Chemistry 'til it blows up, 'til there's no us Why'd I have to break what I love so much? It's on your [Karlie's] face, and I'm [Taylor for thinking the marriage was real] to blame, I need to say Hey It's all me in my head [jealousy for the Jo$h situation] I'm the one who burned us down But it's not what I meant I'm [Taylor] sorry that I hurt you [Karlie] I don't wanna do, I don't wanna do this to you I don't wanna lose, I don't wanna lose this with you I need to say, hey It's all me, just don't go Meet me in the afterglow Tell me that you're still mine Tell me that we'll be just fine Even when I lose my mind I need to say Tell me that it's not my fault Tell me that I'm all you want Even when I break your heart

So that is what I think Taylor is telling us through her music. I've just rearranged it in a way I think is more linear to the actual Kaylor timeline. Also, this is not supposed to be all-inclusive. It does not include every song, nor every bit of the Kaylor relationship (I mean, this is already too long). I largely omitted a lot of their happy times, and other things. But this chunk includes some Kaylor happy times, sexy times, strife, and 2 break ups.

After this part I do think Karlie gave Taylor another chance after the paper rings break-up. The first part of the Lover era was all rainbows and butterflies and a possible coming out. But the latter half was dark and depressing. So they might have broken up in the middle of the era? I think the masters heist caused Taylor to delay a coming out publicly another time. It was just another blow and let down to Karlie in a series of promises (Coney Island) and probably Karlie thought time was running out for her to have a child. She couldn't delay a family life much longer.

After that even Kaylor had to be 'on' for a bit because prior to the surprise drop folklore, Karlie was in a cardigan and amongst trees. Karlie HAD to know. And nobody else did, and there was a bit of hope in folklore. So I don't know what occurred between sad-Lover era and folklore, but something gave Taylor hope. I think it ended for good (4th? break-up was final) because Evermore was all super-sad.

Disaster Song

19 Mar

Trump is a loser

I never wanted him

Hillary thought we should choose her

sexism is ultimately why she lost the prelim

 

so many mistakes, ineptitude

obvious personality disorder-narcissistic

the dude can’t read, we are screwed

worse than that he’s fascistic

 

Trump pretended the pandemic wasn’t happening

he doesn’t understand basic economics

America’s reputation blackening

closer and closer to using atomics

 

Now here we are, all alone

coronavirus threatening

everyone barricaded in their home

U.S. will have our reckoning

 

And as we hide from this disease

our businesses must close the doors

republicans blame the Chinese

it won’t stop the multiplication of corpse

 

Big Fish Small Pond

5 Feb

oh what a success!

that higher degree

you lowered yourself

came back to the town

living on past memories

 

big fish small pond

you sparkle like a diamond

taste of fame and smugness spawned

 

so you were born silver and blue

titled yourself royalty

make speeches and appearances

big for your britches

nobody cares except your own vanity

 

big fish small pond

a new era has dawned

all your modesty gone

 

everybody knows you

at least they think they do

love and hate the fishbowl

you relish that attention

resent and shun it too

 

big fish small pond

all your devotees fond

do they know that they were conned?

 

you impressed me

I wanted to appease you

and have you as a role model too

I worked very hard

you can’t dispute that

 

but you have a secret

can’t show that side of you

you’re actually terrified

but will never let on

your ego might get bruised

 

you’re self absorbed

everything’s about you

on my scary day

locked me in the bathroom

told me to keep yours confidential

 

put yourself on a pedestal

all that self aggrandizing

calling everyone losers

saying ‘play the game’

the town doesn’t know that part of you

 

big fish small pond

but pomposity beyond

a professional = non

 

invited me in

I saw the breakdown

now you cheat and scheme

not who I thought you were

awfully disappointing

 

big fish small pond

though I left and did abscond

I won’t be shamed I will respond

 

you only liked when I admired you

turned against me when I saw inside

stomped on me when I was low

could have tried to mentor though

my behavior wasn’t any worse than yours

 

your true character is ugly

you have your issues too:

you’re a bully

and conniving

and mean-spirited

gossipy

judgmental

it’s what you do

so go ahead and talk shit

you know I know the truth

Monkey Pencil Song

28 Jan
Got in a bike accident
Tore my private parts real bad
Your friend arrived from afar
 guilted to go out to eat
Sat upon that wood bench
But like a monkey still I pinch
[beat] [growl-shout] Monkey pencil Monkey pencil
Hold so tight
Even when [beat] it isn’t right
[beat] [growl-shout] Monkey pencil Monkey pencil
Grasp and clutch
Even though [beat] it isn’t much
[syncopated] Like monkey  [half beat] on that pencil
My loyalty [beat] is so prehensile!
Your work Halloween party
Bathroom in your bosses’ house
Tried to stick your hand up my skirt
I resisted- not in here
Found out you had bet your friends
You could slide home base with ease
But like a monkey still I squeeze
[beat] [growl-shout] Monkey pencil Monkey pencil
Hold so tight
Even when [beat] it isn’t right
[beat] [growl-shout] Monkey pencil Monkey pencil
Grasp and clutch
Even though [beat] it isn’t much
[syncopated] Like monkey  [half beat] on that pencil
My loyalty [beat] is so prehensile!
Over 6 years of dating
both working the same bad job
You Listened to mean girl lies
You relished ambushing me
And threw me under the bus
You talked about them so Much
But like a monkey still I clutch
[beat] [growl-shout] Monkey pencil Monkey pencil
Hold so tight
Even when [beat] it isn’t right
[beat] [growl-shout] Monkey pencil Monkey pencil
Grasp and clutch
Even though [beat] it isn’t much
[syncopated] Like monkey  [half beat] on that pencil
My loyalty [beat] is so prehensile!
[Outside in the frozen cold
Scraping my frosty windshield
You surprised me before work
Brought my favorite coffee
Drank the warmth and felt so snug
And like a monkey still I hug]
[beat] [growl-shout] Monkey pencil Monkey pencil
Hold so tight
Especially when it all goes right
[beat] [growl-shout] Monkey pencil Monkey pencil
Grasp and clutch
Especially when the loves so much
[syncopated] Like monkey  [half beat] on that pencil
My happiness [beat] is so prehensile!

Why Does Taylor Swift Act That Way?

23 Sep

After doing a lot of Taylor Swift research in general, and Kaylor factoids, I was thing about Taylor’s possible feelings and motivations.  The underlined are topics that came to mind, and I want you to read it bearing in mind things that go on in the Swift-verse (I tried to made up a word for Taylor Swift’s world, and I’m not sure it worked out).  The following is laying the groundwork for what’s happening with Kaylor and why.

 

Being in the closet:

fear of getting caught

fear of other’s people’s reactions

fear of losing important people in your life

fear of career setbacks

fear of being bashed

fear of who you become when you give up being (thought of as) straight

sadness at not fulfilling (heteronormative) expectations

sadness at not having an easy love/life

sadness at missing out

sadness about being the odd man out with friends and society at large

not being sexual at all-as a way to avoid it

being “too busy” for dating/love-so that people stop asking

being ultra-private-to signal others not to ask about it

feeling defensive

feelings of persecution

feelings of being alone, the only one

feelings of not being supported

forcing straight relationships (then feeling detached from them)

dating the opposite sex, but it’s weird/not what you had thought

internal homophobia

using homophobic language–so others won’t suspect

acting more straight

having very close same sex friendships

having confusing feelings regarding friends

being confused about boundaries

talking about the opposite sex to throw others off

staying away from ‘out’ queer people (guilty by association)

planning ahead-to avoid awkward topics, situations, or damning evidence

anger at having to hide

anger that life is harder for LGBT members

anger at a small dating pool

anger at homophobes

anger at people that “tolerate” gays

being hyper-aware of pronouns and manipulating them

language with a double-meaning

using wardrobe, jewelry, color to signal other gays, but stay hidden from everyone else

swearing others to secret

threatening same sex partners not to let on

not acting couply in public

saying your lover is just a friend

coming out to certain, trusted people, but not large groups, or known homophobes

 

Not knowing Taylor Swift personally, but being alive in the world, I think she may experience some of these feelings.  Lyrics, interviews, dates, and persona could maybe relate to a lot or most of these.  You can’t rush a person’s timeline.  Taylor has to come out when she’s ready (or if she is ever ready at all). 

A lot of these are truly founded worries the LGBT individuals have about making known their ‘difference.’  The list above comes about with politics, language, expectations, seeing openly gay people struggle.  This stuff doesn’t just come out of nowhere.  For example, Ellen Degeneres is an ‘it’ gal today sure.  But she lost everything when she came out–and for a long time afterwards. 

Instead of taking that trajectory as  ‘it’ll work out, come out– see how good Ellen is doing?  I think it should be a cautionary tale.  It was scary and even today I would characterize Ellen as a reluctant gay icon.  She came out for personal reasons, so she could live authentically.  I And when that happened she lost everyone.  Except a small group of LGBTQQA.  She didn’t wanna play to only gay crowds.  Didn’t ask to represent a whole population.  She was thrust in that role because of how big a deal her coming out was at the time.  But that other stuff wasn’t a choice she made–she played to exclusively gay crowds because suddenly, no one else would see her.  She was boycotted.  Ellen was cancelled.  People see her current success and forget all of that.  She didn’t even really mention her gayness at all in the beginning of her talk show.  She had to sort of play it straight again to get the status she has attained.  She finagled her way back into the mainstream. 

There are many more examples of people cut down after coming out.  So if Taylor is planning to come out (which I greedily hope she does, b/c it would make me personally very happy) I think she’s right to be cautious and do it carefully.  I would not want to see people throw her away, especially in the world of music where women are treated as a dime a dozen, totally replaceable by the next pretty blonde.

 

Gay-Dar

Because of all the closeted tactics, gays automatically learn to identify “family” and there is a knowing wink and nod, exchanged.  I think to some extent most gay people (and some straight) have honed their gay-dar.  It’s a practiced skill based on signals, non-verbal cues, and some stereotypes.  My feeling is that gays from conservative or churchy backgrounds are especially good at it, because the rural gays have to be more secret and underground.  

Does Taylor Swift’s Easter eggs relate to this?  I think so!

On the pod-cast I was listening to, they asked if Ellen Degeneres know Taylor Swift.  My feeling:  absolutely.  You can sense the two have a rapport.  Think of the episode when Ellen asked Taylor who she’s dating in kind of a knowing and cheeky tone.  And Taylor said, “My publicist told me not to answer that.”  I think Ellen knew what was up.  And whether or not Ellen has been told explicitly, I think she’s clever (and experienced enough) to know the signs when she sees them.

 

bearding

I’m not going to get into this as much, because it’s not really in my personal experience, but bearding is a good way to remain in the closet.  Because if you’re dating the opposite sex you obviously can’t be gay-says the public at large.  

This one speaks for itself.  And is the subject of so many theories in Kaylor.

 

Heteronormative/heterosexist

This is the societal attitude that everyone is straight until proven gay.  And when I say proven, I mean you won’t accept subtle signs, or obvious scenarios–it has to come from that person’s mouth.  The only other way is actually seeing sex.  This mentality is pervasive.  It’s just assumed all little girls dream of their big wedding day with whatever groom chooses them.  Guys are assigned the role of going out and chasing women for sex.  From infants when everyone is so curious about gender, roles are assigned to the sexes, and LGBT has no part in that.  It’s placed on everyone, and if that’s not who you are, it’s your responsibility to ‘come out of the closet’ as not straight.

I feel like 95% of Taylor Swift’s fans believe she’s straight.  They see long hair.  A feminine-looking gal, narratives of dating men.  Even when evidence to the contrary is presented, most fans refuse to believe she might be romantic toward women (too).  And they get angry at Kaylors for “pushing a narrative” when all Kaylors are doing is reading clues that Taylor Swift, herself, has placed.  Kaylors are hunting just like all Swifties, in the way that Taylor has asked and expected us to do.  I think some people, no matter what evidence was presented, would refuse to take stock in that.  Because of heterosexism, homophobia, or ignorance.  A lot of straight people don’t know that they know a gay.  Therefore, they don’t know what characteristics go with that.  Or they might have only experience with the most ‘out’ gays.  Which are only one type of gay.  To be fair, not a bunch of gays have come out, so people don’t realize the LGBT is diverse and there are all types, not just the super-flamboyant and stone-butch that are unable to hide, and are obviously gay.

 

OK, so there I think is a good foundation to see Taylor’s motivations and how it could possibly substantiate the Kaylor theories.

Song by Song. Brandi’s By the Way, I Forgive You

20 Feb

My Spotify went one track passed the new album, and it showed how almost, melancholy By the Way, I Forgive You sounds.  It’s subtle, but by comparison to the two prior albums, it’s a lot less light-hearted.

  1. “Everytime I Hear that Song”

It’s kind of a slow opening to the album.  I would have put something more upbeat in the first spot.  But the track definitely provides the foreshadowing for what is to come:  A sentimental, serious, from-the-heart string (pun!) of songs.  The chorus is very Fleetwood Mac.  I like what the song says though.  It talks about how bad relationships are actually good because it brings us to where we were supposed to be in life.  The trajectory of our love and family would be completely different without those failed relationships.  And hearing certain songs or seeing certain pictures, triggers those memories and makes us wonder what might have been or even sentimentalize what opportunities were lost because things didn’t go a better way.

2. “The Joke”

The message that the joke is on the detractors is a good one.  The band is saying, ‘you be you, and live your life, despite what others think about it.’  The background music is resonant, and swirling, and provides enough drama to help get the point across.

3.  “Hold Your Hand”

Probably my favorite track (so far) and absolutely my fave upon the first listen through.  It’s reminiscent of that old western style that focuses more on telling a story then singing.  It reminds me of Jonny Cash, and the way he talks through every song–but it’s better.  Because there are great key/cadence/style changes that show-case Brandi’s strong voice.  I like the combination of both styles in one song.  I like how it’s cheeky, yet strong on singing-technique.  This is what the band does very best–change it up in the middle of the song.  Think “The Story” and the title track, “Firewatcher’s Daughter.”   On this song, the shouting is so fun after the 2.5 min mark!  What I could do with less of is the bad-da-das.  But I can see them involving the audience in that at a concert so maybe it will turn out all right. . .

4.  “The Mother”

I’m not down on this song.  It’s one of, if not THE strongest songs on the album.  It’s just that I heard it so early, it didn’t feel like part of the rest of the album.  I like that this song conveys love, but realism, too.  It’s one of the few mom-songs that’s not entirely lovey-dovey, super-saccharine.  Here is what little edge Brandi has left.  Sure, she’s up in the family lift all gung-ho–but she knows what she’s not doing anymore also.  I like how Brandi acknowledges that she’s missing out on things, kids are messy, and motherhood is sometimes about being tired and giving up on your own wild flights of fancy.  Also, the video is cute.  Though, I wonder how many takes it took because Evangeline looks bored.

5.  “Whatever You Do”

Another slow song.  As a whole, I think the album would have benefitted from something a little more dancy by this point.  I love the line, “I never said I’m sorry, but I meant it.” It shows how serious the writing was for this latest album.  Very thoughtful lyrics are throughout.  The best part of the song for me is after 3:08 min when the instrumentals really come out loud.  It’s haunting, and melancholy, and final.

6.  “Fulton County Jane Doe”

I had really high hopes due to the title that this would be the raucous track of the album.  Alas, it’s another kind of internal dialogue that is quiet and lulling. I think Brandi’s yips at the end are the best thing about this one.

7.   “Sugartooth”

Searching.  Judging someone without walking in their shoes.  Bad habits that keep pulling you back.  Guns and suicide.  Finding peace in death.  Without reading the lyrics or hearing the backstory, I find this song a little meandering.  Is there one takeaway point or is it just a conglomeration of ideas?  I do enjoy how Brandi sounds like she means whatever she’s singing–whatever it’s about.

8. “Most of All”

How your parents are with you even when they’re not physically there.  You resemble them.  Your speech patterns end up sounding similar.  You internalize their lessons.  This one is also a little Fleetwood in the chorus, and I think that’s reaching a little.  I believe they should stop relying on their inspirations or fitting in a certain genre, and come up with something more original.  It’s nice that the song-lyrics go full circle though.  And the emphasis on family goes well with the rest of the album.

9. “Harder to Forgive”

I think this one might be the catchiest song on the album.  Finally!  One you want to sing with.  Though the subject matter is still sentimental and internally-probing, it has some happy sentiments in it as well.  “When every broken heart seemed like the end” shows that the band is not at that stage anymore.  I like how the song goes into a march.  Again, these cadence changes are some of the band’s best work.  Where I lose it though, is when the twin’s humming sounds like kazoos.  Not. a. fan.  I think maybe it was supposed to emulate the string section, but it sounds too circusy for the previous part of the song.  I do like how Brandi ends it on a partial scream.

10. “Party of One”

I like when Brandi takes to the piano.  She doesn’t do it nearly enough.  But this song is kind of a bummer to end on.  I would like them ending on a more uplifting note.  Or at least something the conveys some inner peace has been achieved as a result of all the afore-mentioned forgiveness.  Or else–what is the audience motivation to practice forgiveness?  Or what exactly is the album trying to say about forgiveness?  Just do it, despite the difficulty of it, to–feel alone and disappointed?  I think the message should be more uplifting and present some benefit from the forgiveness.  Not end on a divorce.  And the symphonic end is kind of nice, but it felt like they didn’t really know how to close out the album, so they just played and played.

 

So that was what I gleaned from listeninging only.  I’m excited to read the track notes, hear the stories behind the songs at concerts, and see articles on the content.  I probably missed a lot of the intent–I hope so!

 

Bear Creek Reviewed

10 Jun

I really like the sound of this whole album.  It’s somehow. . .  different.  It feels like a good camping or hiking CD, and reminds me of those country/folk/oldies songs that my dad likes to sing aloud.  Yet it is still hip, and still very Brandi.  And though I didn’t absolutely LOVE every song on the CD (when does that happen anyway?  Rarely) I like Bear Creek as a whole.  I’ll go song by song, in order from my favorite to not-so-much:

That Wasn’t Me

One of my very favorite songs on the album–and in the top faves in her library.  When it was released prior to the rest of the CD, I listened a million times.  That said, I thought it was the one song that didn’t cohesively FIT with the rest of the tracks on the CD.  So I didn’t include it in faves for Bear Creek, looking at it as more of a single.  It has a different feeling and a sound unique to the rest.  I wonder why this was the single that was pre-released. . .  Just because I don’t feel it is a good representation of Bear Creek.  At any rate, no complaints about the song–I like the premise behind it and it’s beautifully sung/played.

Rise Again

I thought this was the definite standout track on Bear Creek.  And maybe I’m alone here, but it took a ridiculous amount of listens (5-6?) to figure out what lyrics she was singing–though I could tell immediately the words were sung with great passion.  I was struck right away with how much feeling emoted from this song.

Hard Way Home

This song kinda snuck by me upon my first few listens.  I guess all lyrically superior tunes are like that.  Lines like, “I just count the rain,” and the metaphor liking herself to the engine wishing for someone to be her wheel, well, how great is that?  It’s my second fave track on the album, and the one I think SHOULD have been released as the first single as best representation of Bear Creek.  It’s got the folksy-country thing goin’ on, the clapping, harmonies, a story, and heartfelt singing.  I especially like when the first stanza is reiterated in a syncopated way toward the end.  My 2nd favorite track because of the getting better the more you listen factor.

Raise Hell

Very Reminiscent of Johnny Cash–in a good way.  Sort of talking more than singing just as he does.  Except she really belts out the chorus.  This one is excellent because it’s feisty, it’s catchy, and it’s a good sing aloud.  Toward the top of my fave Bear Creek and Brandi songs.  I love the guitar when she starts to sign “turn me head. . .”  I’ll be belting this one out with Brandi when I attend one of her concerts.

A Promise to Keep

The harmony with the twins is astounding.  The Indigo Girls would be proud–I’m sure they ARE!  This one had gospel undertones that I like listening to, and reminds me of Appalachia for whatever reason.  It ties with the next listed track for 4th best.

What Did I Ever Come Here For

This song could speak to anybody.  It ties for fourth fave because it makes me think of some time or other in my own life each time I play it.  It’s about love.  It’s about rejection.  It’s about regret.  Every lesbian person could understand where Brandi is coming from in this track.  It’s something everyone has gone through.

I’ll Still be Here

The “. . .  if it all disappears. . .”  moves me.  It is probably awesome to see Brandi sing that “all” in concert–it’s really belted out.  It falls 5th, because of the passionate “all.”

Save Part of Yourself

This song is kind of neutral to me–it contributes well to the rest of the album, but I’m not certain it’s strong enough to stand alone.  The clapping, the woo, woo, woos, the sort of acoustic feel.  It’s like Brandi’s staple songs but in a style to fit the rest of the Bear Creek.  This track wasn’t an instant hit with me, but it’s growing on me as I listen.

100

Where are we on my favorites?  7th?  This song could easily be on one of Brandi’s earlier records.  It talks of dreams, and has a love-disappointment-aging sort of theme like a lot of her songs do.  Instrumentally, it is one of the weaker songs on the record.  Maybe a live jam-out session with the band would make it pop.  Lyrically, I like it though.

In the Morrow

This song is at a disadvantage.  It’s kind of a let down because it follows the power of “Rise Again.”  I think I would like this one more if it were earlier in the line-up.  Do I hear some kind of bango or mandolin or something?  I like that.  And I enjoy the combined singing in the chorus, and the hopefulness of the track.  But it’s just not as good as “Rise Again,” so it’s sort of a let down each time it follows. . .

Heart’s Content

With the sweet piano backing and the lilt in Brandi’s voice, this one reminds me of Doris Day.  Especially with the double-sing (is that a thing?) or Brandi harmonizing with herself, it is like a 1950s sweetly sung song.  It’s toward the bottom of the list only because it’s not very deep, emotional, or controversial–which also fits with the Doris Day thing she’s got going on.  And I just KNOW she wrote this to sing at symphony halls with that cello featured.  Can’t wait to hear it with The Seattle Symphony!

Keep Your Heart Young

Ok, Ok I really WANT to like this song.  This is the “new song” she played at the half of the concert we went to.  So it has sentimental value to me.  It’s in a story-telling style like your folkey-country songs, and I like those (I’m thinking “Big John” right now).  The message is to appreciate what you have and keep your innocence as long as possible, which I’m all-about.  The harmony vocals are nice.  Trouble is, I got tired of it really fast.  I blame it on the story–I felt like it was a childhood storybook that I re-read 6 times in a day, and could repeat without looking at the words.

Just Kids

Last place–but it doesn’t mean I HATE it.  I found the intro too long and quiet.  I’m sure it will be better with the orchestra playing it.  And the singing was too. . . breezy/dreamy.   I just wasn’t feeling it that much–I’ll bet there are a lot of people that dig this though.  I just wanted it to be. . .  Catchier?  Something. . .  It seemed tediously long every time it played.

So the recap?  I have been wearing out my Spotify by listening to Bear Creek.  A good musical effort, with very few complaints or criticisms from me.  Now, if Brandi Carlile will only come in my vicinity (a day before a day off work/school, please and thank you) to promote it–I’m there!!!

My Interpretation of “Yoke”

15 Mar

refer to the last entry for a line by line analysis of Amy Ray’s lyrics.

Amy Ray is addressing someone deceitful and closed off.  I think the someone represents all of us listeners’ dark, non-caring side.  She mentions a “she” that (I think) could be interpreted a couple of ways (or even both ways).  The “she” is nature/environment/Earth/all living creatures or the “she” could be a loving, yet naive woman in a relationship.

The main message of the song is even though it isn’t in our past history, and it may be difficult for our psyche, people need to work together, be open, and loving or “she” will be destroyed.  Depending on the listener, the “she” is different and so are the implications.  If “she” is the environment, being bad and taking advantage of her will result in Earth’s destruction and the ultimate annihilation of humankind as well.  If the person listening to the songs thinks of “she” as a woman in a relationship, trying to play upon her helplessness in order to control her will result in eventual loneliness.

Amy is telling us we are here to figure out how to overcome our greed and deceptive core to appreciate what we have, treat the “she” in our lives with openness and honesty, and return her love.  If we succeed in working together, loving one-another without manipulation and not as a means of controlling another; and if we love the beauty of the animal kingdom and land, instead of over-hunting and over-consuming them–we will reach a higher plane.

In short, the song sounds so forlorn because Amy is asking all of us to stop carelessly and thoughtlessly grasping everything of our hearts desire.  She is saying going after everything we want has consequences for loving relationships and at a higher level, our planet.  She is imploring us to yoke together like oxen in a herd of hope and hold tightly (with grubby hands) to what we already have.