Ladies and gentlemen, she has done it yet again. Yesterday morning I woke up to Taylor Swift announcing her second surprise album of the last six months, evermore. Like many of Taylor’s fans, I’m still not quite over folklore yet, but it’s cool. I’m not freaking out, you’re freaking out.
Like all of her albums, this one really worked best when listened to completely, from front to back, so I did just that, twice, to write this. I want to preface my thoughts by saying that I am a huge Taylor stan and I do actually like the album a lot. I love literally all of her work, but I hate change, so it typically takes me a few days to process and fall in love with a new album. That said, I’m not exactly sure which ones are my favorites yet.
Honestly, and I hate to say it, but evermore is like folklore’s younger and slightly less cool sister. It’s a good album with some really great tracks, but folklore is the perfect album to cry to for no reason and evermore is just missing some of that emotion and anger. However, like all Taylor albums, there are still plenty of cathartic songs and devastating lyrics, so here are the best ones to add to your breakdown playlist.
It’s not actually a super sad song, but it’ll push you over the edge if you’re feeling a little more single than usual. It’s a really cute song that’s definitely meant to be a love song, but it is a little emotional.
Most devastating lyric: “I’m begging for you to take my hand / wreck my plans / that’s my man”
Cry vibes: 2/10
It took me three listens to, like, really get the song. Though I initially was lukewarm on it, I’ve really warmed up to it. The lyrics have major “afterglow” vibes and the song has beautiful instrumentals that make it very catchy. All in all, I’m really excited to add this to my list of songs that I have no way to relate to through life experiences but still make me cry in the car.
Most devastating lyric: “‘She would’ve made such a lovely bride / What a shame she’s f*cked in the head,’ they said / but you’ll find the real thing instead / she’ll patch up your tapestry that I shred”
Cry vibes: 6/10
‘tis the damn season
I know for a fact that this is joining my playlist of sad songs I like to scream-sing in the car. Between “the one that got away” energy and the seasonal relevance, the vibes are immaculate.
Most devastating lyric: “I won’t ask you to wait if you don’t ask me to stay / I won’t ask you to wait if you don’t ask me to stay”
Cry vibes: 6.5/10
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As a track five, we knew that “tolerate it” was going to be emotional AF. It isn’t on the same level as “All Too Well”, but it’s a heartbreaking song. Granted, I’ve never been in a relationship, but I’ve been in just enough failed talking stages to know how sh*tty it is when you can feel someone drifting or getting bored with you.
Most devastating lyric: “Now I’m begging for footnotes in the story of your life / drawing hearts in the byline / always taking up too much space or time”
Cry vibes: 9/10
Despite literally being called “happiness”, this song is literally anything but happy, which is to be expected when it comes to Taylor. This might be her most mature breakup song yet in terms of general aesthetics, but the lyrics themselves are very self-aware.
Most devastating lyric: “When a good man hurts you / and you know you hurt him, too”
Cry vibes: 7/10
“dorothea” seems like it tells the same story of “’tis the damn season” but from the opposite point of view. It’s a cute song with a lot of the same feel as “betty”, but with an older vibe. It’s an easy listen and not her most complex or deepest work. And, tbh I hope the boy I was obsessed with in high school thinks of me the way Taylor sings about Dorothea.
Most devastating lyric: “A tiny screen’s the only place I see you now / and I got nothing but well wishes for ya”
Cry vibes: 3/10
So, Matt Berninger’s (of The Nationals) vocals are a little jarring in this song just because they’re more country than I was expecting. BUT, it works really well as a duet and is similar to ‘exile’ in that the conversational aspects are really clear.
Most devastating lyric: “Did I paint your bluest skies the darkest grey?”
Cry vibes: 6/10
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As of right now, I think this may be the strongest song on the album. In folklore, “epiphany” did an incredible job telling her grandfather’s story. In evermore, Taylor focuses on her grandmother, Marjorie. Even sweeter, both of these songs were track 13, because Taylor’s mind knows no bounds.
Most devastating lyric: “I should’ve asked you questions / I should’ve asked you how to be / asked you to write it down for me”
Cry vibes: 8.5/10
Going into this, I knew “closure” was going to be my favorite track. It’s really soothing to know that Taylor also imagines running into an ex and totally winning an argument. Stars: they’re just like us.
Most devastating lyric: “It wasn’t right / the way it all went down / looks like you know that now”
Cry vibes: 9.8/10
Both the titular track and the last one on the album, excluding the bonus tracks, “evermore” leaves me with a lot of mixed feelings. It’s not that it isn’t a good song, but I’m just kind of confused by the choices that Justin Vernon makes.
Most devastating lyric: “Can’t remember / what I used to fight for / I rewind thе tape but all it does is pause / on thе very moment / all was lost”
Cry vibes: 7.5/10
Some More Highlights
Joe Alwyn’s Writing: During the Folklore: The Long Pond Studio Sessions special on Disney+, we learned that mystery songwriter William Bowery, who was credited for “exile”, is actually Taylor Swift’s boyfriend, Joe Alwyn. Alwyn/Bowery wrote “champagne problems” and “evermore” and, apparently, is an incredible songwriter, because everything he has written with Taylor is a full 10/10.
Marcus Mumford’s backup vocals: Before the album was released, Taylor said that someone she is a huge fan of was responsible for the male backing vocals in one of the tracks. That someone was Marcus Mumford, the lead singer of Mumford and Sons, and his performance on “cowboy like me” is incredible.
Haim: When Taylor announced the album and said Haim was going to be featured in “no body, no crime,” I wasn’t really expecting them to just be doing backing vocals, but they literally sound amazing and this may be one of my favorites on the album. The main character in “no body, no crime,” is named after Este Haim. One of her sisters, Danielle, is also referenced and sings backup in the song.
@haimthebandOur dream of singing on a COUNTRY FOLK SONG with the one and only queen of storytelling, miss TAYLOR SWIFT is our second Hanukkah present to you!♬ original sound – haimtheband
At the end of the day, I am a huge Taylor Swift fan and truly believe she rarely releases bad content (except for “Me!”). Evermore is no exception to that, but I don’t think it’s as good as folklore, just because it feels like there’s a little less of the raw emotion that folklore had. That’s not to say that my opinion about the album won’t change 100 million times while I re-listen and process the tracks, but for now, I’d say it’s a solid A-.
Imagse: Tinseltown / Shutterstock.com; taylorswift / Instgram (2); haimtheband / TikTok
Yesterday, I was going about my business when I got a push notification that really surprised me. My phone was chiming in to inform me that, once again, Taylor Swift has beef with Scooter Braun. I know this entire year has felt like a bizarre alternate universe and time is a social construct, but I really thought we had left Taylor Swift’s drama with Scooter Braun in 2019. But despite my initial surprise (and the eye roll that went along with it), of course I had to get to the bottom of exactly what is going on. The saga of Taylor and Scooter is still going strong, and unsurprisingly, Scooter still looks like an asshole.
But before we get into the new developments, how about a quick refresher of how we got here. Scooter Braun is best known as the manager of major recording acts such as Justin Bieber, Ariana Grande, and Demi Lovato, but he’s also a major record executive and investor. Taylor Swift is… Taylor Swift. Duh. In 2018, after over a decade of releasing music through the Big Machine record label, Taylor signed a new recording contract with a different label. Due to the terms of her Big Machine contract, the label still owned the master recordings of her first six albums, even after she left. In the summer of 2019, without Taylor’s knowledge, Scooter Braun’s company bought Big Machine, which basically made Scooter the owner of Taylor Swift’s entire catalogue.
Taylor was livid when she found out about Scooter’s purchase, and this was when the drama ignited publicly for the first time. In a searing public statement, Taylor accused Scooter of years of “incessant, manipulative bullying,” and claimed that “my musical legacy is about to lie in the hands of someone who tried to dismantle it.” Later in the year, Taylor also claimed that Big Machine (aka Scooter Braun) was trying to stop her from performing a medley of her hits at the American Music Awards, or from using her songs in her documentary Miss Americana. In her post, she invited her fans to let Braun know how they felt about these actions, and as you can imagine, the response was intense. In a subsequent post, Scooter Braun said he received death threats, and pleaded with Taylor to bury the hatchet. Ultimately, Taylor was allowed to perform at the AMAs and use her songs in the documentary, but even though that particular beef was squashed, it wasn’t like Taylor and Scooter were going to get brunch anytime soon.
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So where does that leave us now? Well, fast forward a year, and Scooter Braun has already sold Taylor’s masters to another company. Last month, all of the recordings, videos, and album art from Taylor’s first six albums were purchased by Shamrock Holdings in a deal believed to be worth over $300 million, and on Monday, Taylor Swift shared an open letter, in which she made some important clarifications about the recent deal.
First of all, Taylor makes it clear that she wanted to purchase the masters herself, and she tried to do so. But before Scooter’s team would enter discussions with Taylor or even quote a price, she was told she would need to agree to sign a permanent NDA agreeing to never say another negative thing about Scooter Braun. This request was a dealbreaker for Taylor. She says plainly, “These master recordings were not for sale to me.”
Been getting a lot of questions about the recent sale of my old masters. I hope this clears things up. pic.twitter.com/sscKXp2ibD
— Taylor Swift (@taylorswift13) November 16, 2020
Then, she gets into the stuff with Shamrock Holdings. She says she received a letter from the private equity company after the deal was done, and they told her that Scooter Braun made it clear the deal would be off if they told Taylor before it was completed. While Taylor says she was initially “hopeful and open to the possibility of a partnership with Shamrock,” she soon found out that under the deal, Scooter Braun will continue to profit from the masters for the foreseeable future. Taylor writes that “Scooter’s participation is a non-starter,” and makes it clear that she will be moving forward with her previous plan to re-record the songs from her first six albums.
So at the end of the day, we’re basically in the exact same place as before. Taylor Swift still doesn’t have any ownership over the recordings from the first decade of her career, and Scooter Braun is still profiting off of the work of someone who hates his guts. Nothing has really changed, yet here we are (things I say about being on day 287 of quarantine).
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Images: tinseltown / shutterstock.com; scooterbraun / Instagram; taylorswift13 / Twitter
As I’m sure you’re aware by now, there’s a new Taylor Swift album! Announced just 16 hours before its release, folklore comes less than a year after Taylor’s last album, and it’s a major departure from her recent music. She wrote and recorded the album entirely in quarantine, which officially makes me feel like the least productive person on the planet. Oh well.
The album is actually pretty great, and it’s the perfect soundtrack to what is definitely the saddest summer in recent memory. Taylor Swift stans are already picking apart the hidden meanings in every little lyric, but I don’t have the attention span (or the desire) to do that, so instead, I picked out the lyrics that will make the best Instagram captions for all your summer 2020 posts.
I’m Doing Good, I’m On Some New Sh*t
Song: “the 1”
This is the very first line of the album (the song is “the 1”), and right away, Taylor lets us know she’s not f*cking around. Idk exactly what being “on some new sh*t” means for Taylor, but it’s an instant classic caption. This works for any photo where you want to convey that you’re a queen, like a beach pic or a rooftop shot. This summer might be lame, but you can still remind everyone how hot you are and rake in the likes on Instagram.
“I’m doing good I’m on some new shit” – me, on the same exact shit I was on before
— Betches (@betchesluvthis) July 24, 2020
You Know The Greatest Films Of All Time Were Never Made
Song: “the 1”
Wow, a second banger of a caption, and we’re still on the first verse of “the 1”. This lyric stuck out to be because it’s basically the 2o20 version of “you are a cinema, I could watch you forever.” If you didn’t have a Facebook album with that as the title, you’re too young to be reading this. This is definitely a caption for an annoyingly cute photo of you and your S.O., which I will begrudgingly double tap.
When You Are Young They Assume You Know Nothing
I’m still deciding how I feel about “cardigan,” but this lyric is perfect for any photo that makes you look smart. Reading a book, posing with a book, just wearing glasses, you get the idea. I wouldn’t personally use this caption, but I went to college with about 500 people who definitely would.
There Goes The Maddest Woman This Town Has Ever Seen
Song: “the last great american dynasty”
The title “the last great american dynasty” sounds like a Lana Del Rey knock-off, but I digress. This lyric is a fun general vibe that could basically go with any picture of you. It’s kind of like a modern update of “well-behaved women seldom make history,” meaning it’s only a matter of time before your middle school English teacher has it printed on a bookmark.
I Think I’ve Seen This Film Before, And I Didn’t Like The Ending
I mean, talk about a 2020 mood. This year feels like a combination of 2016, 1918 (I imagine), and every sh*tty year in between. This second film-themed option feels appropriate for any post that’s generally about 2020 being awful, which is like, most posts these days. Also, Bon Iver is perfect, so “exile” is automatically one of my favorite songs on the album.
I Want You To Know I’m A Mirrorball
The actual song “mirrorball” is pretty depressing, but when it comes to Instagram captions, the mental image of a shiny disco ball is too good to pass up. Sadly, going out photos aren’t really a thing right now, but if you’re doing fun makeup for any reason, or wearing something sparkly, this is a solid option.
August Sipped Away Like A Bottle Of Wine
August is somehow only a week away (what is time?), so file this one away to use in a month. July went by way too fast, and next month will probably be the same. This will be THE caption for any posts complaining about how another lame month has already come and gone. Summer 2020 is basically just a blur at this point, but at least Taylor found a creative way to say it.
This Is Me Trying
Song: “this is me trying”
Whomst among us cannot relate to this?? Both in quarantimes and like, always, “this is me trying” is basically my response to anyone asking me for anything. Especially in 2020, this is an ideal caption for a photo where you did the bare minimum (but still look hot). Think pajama pics, no makeup selfies, or bragging that you finally washed your hair. You’re doing amazing, sweetie.
when my boss says I need to give 50% more effort pic.twitter.com/WuIpijDyAN
— Betches (@betchesluvthis) July 24, 2020
Gave Me The Blues And Then Purple Pink Skies
Song: “invisible string”
If you’re posting any kind of sunset pic, this is IT. This lyric from “invisible string” strikes the perfect balance between sad girl summer vibes and just sounding vaguely pretty, so it kind of goes with anything. Everyone loves a caption that goes with the color scheme of the photo.
It’s Obvious That Wanting Me Dead Has Really Brought You Two Together
Song: “mad woman”
There’s a rumor that this lyric from “mad woman” is about Kim and Kanye, which like, maybe. But speculation aside, this is the perfect caption if you have an ex who still follows you that you absolutely hate. He knows what he did! Or even if you’re perpetually single and the whole dramatic ex scenario is just in your imagination, it’s still kind of a fun and mysterious caption idea.
when you tell a Karen she can’t get a haircut for three months pic.twitter.com/3pn1KDl5ua
— Betches (@betchesluvthis) July 24, 2020
Happy listening, and happy captioning! This is probably the nicest article I’ve ever written about Taylor Swift, so if you have thoughts on these caption ideas, please feel free to not slide into my DMs. It’s not that deep.
Images: Tinseltown / Shutterstock.com
When the historians look back at the year 2020, I have a feeling they’re going to be confused. They’ll see a global pandemic, with massive lifestyle changes, economic upheaval, and great loss. But right in the midst of it, they’ll see everyone talking about something else: a video of a phone call that happened in 2016. Ladies and gentlemen, Kim Kardashian and Taylor Swift are taking shots at each other on social media, and I hate to say it, but this is my happy place.
As we all know, way back in July 2016, Kim Kardashian posted a video of her husband Kanye West on the phone with Taylor Swift. On the call, Swift seemingly approves West’s controversial lyric about having sex with her, despite Taylor publicly taking offense with the lyric. In case you’re wondering, I actually wrote the original Betches article about the phone call way back in 2016, so I feel like we’ve really come full circle together.
Aside from some subtle shots at each other in more recent lyrics, I really thought this feud was done and dusted, but lo and behold, I WAS WRONG! Over the weekend, someone leaked an extended video of the phone call, which provides a lot more context to what actually happened. First of all, I feel like someone needs to check Kris Jenner’s computer history, because I feel like there’s at least a 50/50 chance this leak is coming directly from her. Even if Kim Kardashian doesn’t come out of this looking amazing, there just so happens to be a new season of Keeping Up premiering… THIS WEEK. There might be a pandemic right now, but Kris Jenner is going to get her publicity, god damn it.
So let’s get into the actual video. Really, most of the conversation is pretty hard to follow, because Kanye West’s mind is possibly the most chaotic place in the world. He rambles about vibes, and how “Famous” is going to win Grammys, and how people are accusing him of bullying Nike, but the real interesting stuff boils down to a couple specific parts of the conversation.
As we knew before, Kanye shared his lyric about having sex with Taylor, and she really wasn’t mad about it. He actually told her two different versions of the lyric, one of which (“I feel like Taylor Swift might owe me sex”) is even more graphic than the version that made it into the final song. Taylor actually seems relieved, saying that the lyric is “not mean,” and she thought it would be way worse. But the really crucial thing here is that Kanye never asked Taylor about the line “I made that bitch famous.” He phrases it as “I made that girl famous,” and Taylor seems okay with it, but the word “bitch” never came into the conversation.
So. Where does this leave us? Of course, the Taylor Swift fans feel totally vindicated, and the Kanye West fans feel like the longer video doesn’t really change things. Honestly, I feel like most of the fans have already decided how they feel, and this video won’t change much, but that hasn’t stopped Taylor and Kim from coming for each other online. Late on Monday night, Taylor posted an Instagram story, in which she addressed the video in a backhanded way that I’m kind of obsessed with.
This is god-tier petty. Taylor basically pulled a “I’m not gonna talk about her outfit, even though it’s the ugliest outfit I’ve ever seen and I would never wear something so ugly, but I’m not gonna talk about it.” This is such a Real Housewives move, and it works. But while she’s keeping her cool, the tone of this also shows that she’s 100% not over it. She will literally be 80 years old and still mad at Kanye, and I love that for her. Oh, and the swipe up link goes to Feeding America, so she took the absolute high road. We have no choice but to stan.
In response to Taylor’s post, Mrs. Kim Kardashian West had some THOUGHTS. She popped up on Instagram stories and Twitter, posting a series of messages addressing the situation. First, she dragged Taylor for “reignit an old exchange”, saying that it feels “very self-serving given the suffering millions of real victims are facing right now.” Okay Lady Liberty, cool it with the grand statements. Y’all are both tweeting about something insignificant that happened years ago.
.@taylorswift13 has chosen to reignite an old exchange – that at this point in time feels very self-serving given the suffering millions of real victims are facing right now.
— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) March 24, 2020
After reiterating that she didn’t even want to address the new leak, she flat-out accused Taylor Swift of being liar. She is adamant that no one ever claimed that Taylor approved the use of the word “bitch”, and that the actual issue was that Taylor’s publicist said that Kanye didn’t call her to ask for permission in general. This seems like a technicality, but there’s no argument that the phone conversation didn’t happen. I just sat through it for 20 minutes—you’re welcome.
To be clear, the only issue I ever had around the situation was that Taylor lied through her publicist who stated that “Kanye never called to ask for permission…” They clearly spoke so I let you all see that. Nobody ever denied the word “bitch” was used without her permission.
— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) March 24, 2020
One of Taylor’s big claims about the video has always been that it was somehow edited to manipulate the truth. Kim reasserts that she didn’t edit the video in any way, she just chose a few clips to post on Snapchat “to make my point.” Damn, this has been going on for so long that Snapchat was still a relevant social media platform when it all started. While I agree with Kim that the full video doesn’t really change the narrative here, choosing 30 seconds of a 20-minute video is, in and of itself, editing.
I know Kim is more familiar with the Facetune variety of editing, but this is like TV show editing. Just think of Keeping Up With The Kardashians. After filming them sitting around eating salads for 100 hours, then the EDITORS go through the footage and find 40 minutes of watchable content. Kim, you of all people should know how this works!
I never edited the footage (another lie) – I only posted a few clips on Snapchat to make my point and the full video that recently leaked doesn’t change the narrative.
— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) March 24, 2020
She also hit back at Taylor’s “illegal recording” claim, saying that all artists document the process of putting an album together. She points out that Taylor Swift recently released a Netflix documentary full of the same type of footage, which isn’t a bad point, I guess. She also claims that this video would have gone “in the trash” had this whole drama with the phone call’s existence not started in the first place.
Kanye has documented the making of all of his albums for his personal archive, however has never released any of it for public consumption & the call between the two of them would have remained private or would have gone in the trash had she not lied & forced me to defend him.
— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) March 24, 2020
That’s cool, but doesn’t change the fact that recording the call in the first place was illegal. However, unless Taylor is going to sue Kim and Kanye for recording her without her consent, I don’t see why we have to keep bringing up that issue—the video already is out, it is what it is, and nobody can unring that bell.
This will be the last time I speak on this because honestly, nobody cares.
Sorry to bore you all with this. I know you are all dealing with more serious and important matters.
— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) March 24, 2020
To finish things off, Kim declared that this is the last time she’ll speak on this, “because honestly, nobody cares.” My initial instinct was to agree that no one cares anymore, but then I realized that I just furiously typed 1,000 words about this. What can I say, I still care! But if we’re being real, this should probably be the last time we talk about this, because there are truly so many more important things happening in the world. I know that Kim isn’t one to sit back and let people talk sh*t about her, but it just seems like she should really stop adding fuel to the fire.
So, will Kim and Taylor finally actually put this to rest (along with Kanye)? I’m hopeful, but nothing would surprise me at this point. At the very least, I expect Taylor to have one thinly veiled dig at Kanye on each of her albums until the end of time, and I also expect Kris Jenner to drop more breadcrumbs of drama in the future, because that’s just how she rolls. It just feels right. Will this be the last time I speak on this? Tbh, probably not—stay tuned!
Images: Dejui Eiraqius / YouTube; taylorswift / Instagram; kimkardashian / Twitter
The Grammys were like, four days ago, so normally we wouldn’t even be thinking about them anymore. We’ve got the Super Bowl this weekend, and then the Oscars after that, so yeah, it feels like the Grammys were six months ago. But you never know when messy drama is going to strike, and today there’s some Taylor Swift/Grammys messiness that we absolutely must talk about.
As you’ll know if you watched the Grammys on Sunday, Taylor Swift was not in attendance. There were reports that she was going to make a surprise appearance to perform her song “The Man,” but it apparently wasn’t meant to be. Because Taylor Swift was never actually announced as a performer, there was no announcement made about the cancelation, but people still speculated about why she chose not to show up. Initially, many thought the reason was likely tied to former Recording Academy CEO Deborah Dugan, who recently filed a legal complaint against the Academy, alleging gender discrimination and sexual harassment (more on Deborah Dugan in a minute).
But a new Page Six report suggests a much slimier reason for Taylor Swift’s conspicuous Grammy absence. According to multiple “music insiders,” Taylor didn’t go because they wouldn’t promise her that she’d win. This year, Taylor was nominated for three Grammys, but the one she supposedly really wanted was Song of the Year. A Page Six source says that her team “called and wanted to be assured that she would win the Grammy. And while it wasn’t an explicit demand, they certainly were fishing to find out if Taylor was a winner.” What’s more, the source claims, “It was understood in the conversation that if she’s not winning, she’s not coming to the Grammys.”
Another source backed this up, saying “It’s widely known in the industry that called to find out if she was getting a Grammy, they wouldn’t tell her, so she didn’t go. It’s not uncommon to want to know. And everyone knows Taylor loves to win, win, win.”
When I first read these quotes about Taylor’s DL phone call, I felt like it was pretty shady behavior. I mean, just go to the Grammys, what else are you doing that day? But thinking about it more, I kind of understand why she would do it. Let’s be real, Taylor Swift is a busy woman, and she doesn’t really need the Grammys at this point in her career. She’s already won Album of the Year twice, and I’m sure the novelty of walking a red carpet has fully worn off. It’s understandable that she wouldn’t really feel like going if there wasn’t something ~in it for her~.
Okay, yeah, so we all know Taylor Swift loves to win, but who doesn’t? To me, the most telling part of these quotes is the bit about how “it’s not uncommon for an artist to want to know.” Of course everyone wants to know if they’re going to win an award before they sit through a four-hour music industry circle-jerk, but what kind of bullsh*t awards voting process is this, if all the artists feel like they can expect to find out (or even influence) the results before the show happens? I thought the only people who were supposed to know ahead of time were like, two accountants with briefcases handcuffed to them?
This report about Taylor Swift comes at a time when the processes surrounding the Grammys are already under intense scrutiny. Last week, ousted Recording Academy CEO Deborah Dugan filed a huge complaint against her former employer with the EEOC. Along with shocking and disturbing sexual misconduct allegations, she also detailed the corruption within the Grammy systems. According to the complaint, board members have “secret committees” which decide nominations, often favoring artists with whom they have personal relationships. She also accused these committees of prioritizing artists who they want to perform at the Grammys, even if they didn’t get the most votes.
If all of this is true, it doesn’t seem that crazy that a major artist like Taylor Swift would be able to pick up the phone and get some advance info. For what it’s worth, a rep for Taylor fully denied the report, saying that “These statements by anonymous, unidentified ‘sources’ are absolutely 100 percent false and laughable. She just didn’t go to the Grammys. You guys need to calm down.” LOL, leave it to Taylor Swift’s publicist to troll us with a TS lyric in a statement like this. Bravo, I’m impressed.
Personally, I believe the phone call rumor, because I just love a good scandal involving Taylor Swift and a supposed phone call. In all seriousness, given everything we’ve heard about the Grammys behind the scenes, it doesn’t even seem that crazy that artists might do this. If I was going to put myself through the torture that is sitting through the entire Grammys in person, and not being able to switch to Netflix, I’d want to make sure it was going to be worth my while too. Don’t hate the player, hate the absurdly long award show!
Welcome to the 2020 Golden Globes! While us normos are actively avoiding any human interaction after three weeks of non-stop partying and soul-crushing fights with our family members, Hollywood is getting together for yet another rager. Well, technically it’s an award show, but what would you call a night filled with 1,500 bottles of champagne, rambling monologues, awkward run-ins with exes, that all ends with a trip to a fast food joint? That’s what I thought.
This year, the Golden Globes were hosted by Ricky Gervais, marking the fifth time he’s held the honor, and his first time hosting since 2016. Now, I’m a fan of Ricky because at his best he is scathing, and at his worst he makes everyone so uncomfortable you can actually physically feel the hatred emanating off of them, and that’s a reaction I’m very used to. What can I say, you like what you know. But I can understand if he’s not your cup of tea. Well, I can’t, but one of my New Year’s resolutions was to be more understanding and it’s only January 6th, so I’m being magnanimous. You’re welcome. Anyway, this year he was better than I could have even imagined. Ricky immediately came for the people who hired him, called everyone in the room dumb perverts, and made a “Jeffrey Epstein didn’t kill himself” joke. If that wasn’t 90% of you after three cocktails at your office holiday party, then you’re lying.
Ricky Gervais 🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥 pic.twitter.com/z4LxMWj9ev
— Jack McGuire (@JackMacCFB) January 6, 2020
Ricky started the show off super strong, and it only got more preachy bonkers from there. So instead of a full recap, which none of us have time for unless you were fired after said office holiday party, I’ve broken the show into highs and lows. Let’s get to it!
☆ I know I already talked about the monologue, but bear with me while I just say that Ricky throwing out the line, “It’s the last time, who cares” after every insult he slung at the HFPA is a level of who gives a sh*t that we should all aspire to. (Also, special shout-out to Ricky for calling out Leo DiCaprio’s refusal to date age-appropriate women.)
☆ In toasting the three nominations for Knives Out, Ricky Gervais took an easy shot at Cats, everyone’s least favorite movie of the year: “See what happens when you don’t dress people up as cats?” Boom. Roasted. Honestly, that’s gonna be my philosophy whenever I accomplish anything from now on.
☆ Ramy Youssef admitting during his acceptance speech for “Best Performance by an Actor – Comedy or Musical,” that no one knows who he is. Fine, I’m mostly including this because he’s from Jersey, HOW DO YOU ALL SEE THROUGH ME? Hooray, New Jersey! We will take over the world like we’ve been secretly plotting! Soon everyone will be referring to their hometown by their exit on the parkway mwahahaahahahhahah!
☆ Celebrities raising awareness for the bush fires in Australia. I legit think that’s the only reason they gave Russell Crowe an award, because no one I know even saw The Loudest Voice. If they wanted to watch Roger Ailes prey on women they just waited to see Charlize Theron in Megyn Kelly cosplay in Bombshell. But really, those fires are BAD. Please help if you can!
☆ Bill Hader and Rachel Bilson showing up on the red carpet together for the first time. If you’re not watching Barry, you’re missing out on one of the best dark comedies on TV, plus you’ve yet to realize that Bill Hader is stealthily hot. And Summer Roberts deserves her happy ending. I stan.
☆ Just like at the Emmys, Fleabag won the Best Comedy Series, and Phoebe Waller-Bridge won Best Actress for her performance. These were some of the least surprising wins of the night, but sometimes the best show wins for a reason. Now that Fleabag is over, I can’t wait to see what Phoebe does next, because the world is truly her oyster. When will the world be my oyster?
☆ Succession wins! Succession won best drama and Brian Cox aka Logan Roy aka possibly the most mentally abusive father in America won Best Actor. Damn, that show is good. I actually screamed at the end of the second season when something insane happens that I won’t mention here, because I don’t want to get lit up in the comments over spoiling something that ended months ago. So I won’t spoil it, but WATCH IT ALREADY. And we were BLESSED that Brian Cox won because it allowed us the absolute best moment of the night, a Jason Momoa in a tank top sighting. It’s like someone knew we needed to start 2020 out that way.
My sexual orientation is Jason Momoa in a tank top at the Golden Globes pic.twitter.com/h0wwCl47Oa
— Sam Stryker (@sbstryker) January 6, 2020
☆ Kate McKinnon presenting the Carol Burnett award to Ellen. It was heartfelt, inspiring, and also funny. However, I was confused when Ellen said that people tell her that her show inspires them to go out every day and help people, and that’s what TV should do. The TV I watch inspires me to go out there and mercilessly mock Florida. Am I watching the wrong things?
☆ Brad Pitt’s face. Whoever is keeping Brad looking this refreshed is doing a fantastic job. It looks natural even though I know it’s not, and he could get it over Leo ANY. DAY. Fight me.
☆ While introducing Jojo Rabbit, Sacha Baron Cohen joked that Mark Zuckerberg is a “naive, misguided child who spreads Nazi propaganda.” LMAO. Where is the lie? Why do I feel like Sacha wrote that one himself? This definitely made some people in the room uncomfortable, but none of the other presenters had material that good.
Sacha Baron Cohen just roasted Mark Zuckerberg. #GoldenGlobes pic.twitter.com/lc4m9WiTgc
— Lights, Camera, Pod (@LightsCameraPod) January 6, 2020
☆ Tom Hanks. Man, has that guy been in a lot of great movies. And THE EMOTION. Over his family. And he has a kid who is a white rapper and goes by the name Chet Haze! And he still loves them! For that alone he deserves an award.
☆ The cameraman who was smart enough to cutaway to Jennifer Aniston during Brad Pitt’s acceptance speech. I know some of you might be over this love triangle, but I didn’t invent it, and the media has made me invested in it for over half my life, so thank you, sir, for rewarding all the time and dedication I have put into this relationship. Now, if only her reaction had been more scandalous. We’ll have to work on that for next year, Jen.
☆ Also, Brad Pitt for acknowledging what we all know to be true, Leo COULD HAVE FIT ON THE DOOR and that Kate Winslet is a cold-blooded murderer. I also liked what he said about being kind to someone tomorrow. And I will, tomorrow! Today I have to write this recap.
☆ Awkwafina won Best Actress for her heartbreaking performance in The Farewell, and her acceptance speech was as funny as you’d expect. When she said “I told you I’d get a job, dad,” I really felt that. Way to stick it to dads everywhere that begged us to just be accountants.
☆ So I was about to put Joaquin Phoenix’s win on the “lows” list because I find him exhausting, pompous, and a little crazy behind the eyes, but then he called out everyone in the room for being hypocrites and I shrieked. Stop preaching about climate change and then hopping on your private jets, assholes! I loved it. Good luck at the after parties, Joaquin. Leo is not going to be happy.
Joaquin Phoenix did seem quite drunk BUT telling a room full of famous people to stop taking private jets to Palm Springs….you DO love to see it #GoldenGlobes
— Tyler McCall (@eiffeltyler) January 6, 2020
☆ Michelle Williams won for her performance in Fosse/Verdon, and she used her speech as an opportunity to speak out on the importance of women’s rights, especially when it comes to abortion. She’s known for keeping her personal life very private, so to hear her speak so passionately was truly a special moment.
☆ WHERE WAS LITTLE WOMEN?!! This movie was beautiful. I laughed, I cried, I remembered how much this story meant to someone like me, who fancies herself a writer. And the HFPA couldn’t give a sh*t about this movie. Couldn’t fathom how it would be important. Barely nominated it. It makes me believe everything Ricky Gervais said about them. Oscars, your move. Are you going to make me call you sexist trash bags, too?
☆ WTF was J.Lo wearing? Girl, we already know you’re a gift, you didn’t have to dress like the Christmas wrapping paper my mom bought at Paper Source on January 1st for 60% off.
☆ Laura Dern’s acceptance speech. I mean, she was funny, and charming, and she looked gorgeous, but the whole thing was hijacked by Gwyneth Paltrow’s ass. Come on, cameraman. We know she looked hot, but this is about Laura! Maybe film the winner’s acceptance speech from the front next time, and Google pictures of Gwyneth’s body at home later on your free time. This is your job, cameraman!
☆ Pairing Amy Poehler and Taylor Swift as presenters was BRILLIANT, because as you will remember, one of the years that Tina and Amy hosted the show they made a joke about Taylor Swift dating younger guys, and she responded later saying “there’s a special place in hell for women who don’t support other women.” Which is something I still laugh about to this day because it was such an overreaction. But this presentation was a missed opportunity. They didn’t even address it! I couldn’t even tell you what they presented, that was how boring it was. The fact that they didn’t take advantage of this pairing just made it pointless. I know you had something to say Amy, YOU SHOULD HAVE.
☆ Jason Momoa put his jacket back on to present.
☆ I find it unbelievable that Unbelievable didn’t win anything. As a true crime junkie, I can honestly say that that series was a cut above the rest of the genre, and Kaitlyn, Merritt, and Toni each gave heart-wrenching performances. And seriously, WHO IS WATCHING CHERNOBYL?!
☆ Another year where the best actor in a musical/comedy was from a musical biopic. I love Taron Egerton, but if he was going to win for anything it obviously should have been Kingsman. It takes great talent to play a character named Eggsy without laughing.
☆ The presenters. As I mentioned earlier, they were all kind of nothing-burgers. Was Tom Hanks passing around his cold medicine at the pre-show?
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood winning multiple awards, proving once again that Hollywood loves nothing more than to jerk itself off.
That Pierce Brosnan’s sons, this year’s Golden Globe Ambassadors, were nowhere near as hot as Pierce Brosnan.
The length. Over 3 hours?!?! Did I spend 11 hours binging the entire season of Spinning Out just yesterday? Yes, but what’s your point?
At that’s all folks! Have a good day! As Ricky says, get drunk, take your drugs! Happy New Year!
Images: Jackmacdfb ,sbstryker, lightscamerapod, eiffeltyler/Twitter; enews, betches/Instagram; Giphy
Love her or hate her, you can’t deny that Taylor Swift has had a pretty iconic decade. Today, she turns 30, which surprised me at first, but then I remembered that being born in 1989 is like, a major part of her image. We’ve followed along with Taylor’s life since she was a teenager, so I guess this should make me feel old, but really I’m just taking this as an opportunity to reflect. Not on like, my personal growth or some boring sh*t like that, but on all the amazing moments Taylor has given us this decade.
It might sound like I’m sucking up to Taylor here, but I don’t just mean “amazing moments” like her winning awards and selling a bunch of albums. I mean all the petty, passive-aggressive, and cringeworthy moments that only Taylor Alison Swift could possibly have created. My personal relationship with Taylor has come a long way in the last 10 years, so it’s time to take a walk down memory lane. Here are all the best Taylor Swift moments that you might have forgotten about in the past decade.
The Kanye Phone Call
Kim exposing the phone call between Kanye and Taylor about his line in Famous. RT to save a life pic.twitter.com/FLBkEXkJTZ
— claire 🌻 (@ohaiclaireee) July 18, 2016
Okay, so no one has really forgotten about Taylor’s decade-long feud with Kanye, but this one specific moment felt a pivotal moment in our pop culture history. After Taylor Swift publicly called out Kanye West for his lyric about having sex with her in his song “Famous”, Kim Kardashian defended her husband by releasing a video of Kanye calling Taylor to get her approval before the song ever came out. It was the Snapchat story heard around the world, and it re-ignited one of the biggest celebrity feuds ever.
In response to the video, Taylor clarified that she was actually angry about the use of the word “bitch” to describe her, and that she would very much like to excluded from this narrative. Her lawyers also reportedly sent Kim and Kanye a letter demanding that they destroy the video, which, as you can see from the video embedded above, was too little, too late. Taylor then went on to release an entire album inspired by Kanye being mean to her, and it’s fair to say that they’ll probably never truly get along. God, I love Kim for being messy and posting this video.
The Time She Was (Allegedly) In A Box
Taylor Swift has reportedly been carried out of her house in this massive suitcase https://t.co/iIeamTRfFM pic.twitter.com/bdmZyIKIsB
— SPIN 1038 (@spin1038) July 17, 2017
This is a deep cut from the Taylor Swift vault, but I felt it was vital to include. Back in 2017, paparazzi service Splash News published a bunch of photos with the caption “Taylor Swift being transported in a huge suitcase from her Tribeca apartment into her truck.” They later retracted the caption, saying that it wasn’t verified, but a huge rumor had been born nonetheless. We’ve never gotten confirmation one way or the other, but I personally 100% believe this to be true. If you asked me which celebrity would make people carry her inside a giant case to avoid photographers, it would absolutely be Taylor Swift.
We’ll probably never know for sure whether Taylor is inside the box, but we got a major clue last year, when Zayn mentioned in a British Vogue interview that Taylor “was traveling around in a suitcase.” SEE?!! Say what you will about this theory, but it’s basically confirmed in my mind.
As if the box mystery wasn’t compelling enough, let’s move onto another legendary mystery about Taylor Swift’s life: the infamous scarf. In her 2012 song “All Too Well” Taylor sings about her relationship with Jake Gyllenhaal, which you also may have forgotten about. The song is masterfully written, but there’s one lyric that fans couldn’t stop thinking about: “I left my scarf there at your sister’s house, and you’ve still got it in your drawer even now.”
For years, people fixated on this scarf, and whether or not Jake (or Maggie) Gyllenhaal knew its whereabouts. Then, in 2017, the pop culture gods smiled down on us, and Andy Cohen asked Maggie about the scarf when she appeared on Watch What Happens Live!. Maggie said that people always ask her about it, but had no idea about what the song was actually referencing. She did say, though, that “it’s possible.” Case closed, Maggie Gyllenhaal has Taylor Swift’s scarf somewhere.
No It’s Becky
If you know anything about Taylor Swift, you know she’s always been a Tumblr girl at heart. She prefers a petty text post to a Notes App apology any day, and she’s also not afraid to troll the good people of Tumblr. To understand this story, we have to go back to a vintage Tumblr meme:
God, I loved Tumblr. This whole post is iconic, but “no its becky” literally needs to be carved on my grave. This post made its way around Tumblr for a few years, and then in 2014, it reached a peak. Taylor Swift stepped out in New York wearing a T-shirt that said, and I cannot make this up, “no its becky.”
PEOPLE IN NYC WILL BE CONFUSED THATS BECKY OKAY NOT TAYLOR SWIFT SHES BECKY pic.twitter.com/o566D7fPo1
— chels (@taylorspurr) September 25, 2014
Tumblr, and the internet as a whole, obviously ate this sh*t up, and I have to hand it to Taylor. This was really an epic moment in pop culture, and it proved that despite being annoying sometimes, she really does have a sense of humor.
The Tom Hiddleston Relationship
Is there anything more cringeworthy in Taylor Swift’s history than her short-lived relationship with Tom Hiddleston? I mean, maybe she once waved at someone she didn’t actually know, but I haven’t heard about that, so the Tom Hiddleston relationship it is! We all know how this began—with that awkward dance at the Met Gala. I’ll take any opportunity to use this gif, so feast your eyes on this baby.
I guess they really did find love in a hopeless place. If your eyes aren’t bleeding after watching that, let’s continue. Taylor and Tom had a brief but intense relationship, getting photographed up-close in multiple locations (Rhode Island, Italy) that some people thought it was a fake relationship just for a music video. The embarrassment culminated in his appearance at her Fourth of July party wearing an “I Heart T. S.” tank, which thankfully, Robert Downey, Jr. won’t let us forget. You’re doing the lord’s work, sir.
After that, they quickly broke up, and Tom Hiddleston presumably burned that hideous f*cking tank top. I hope he spent a lot of time thinking about what he had done, because honestly, what was he thinking?
Her Relationship With A Kennedy
Of course we haven’t forgotten about Taylor Swift’s high-profile relationships with celebs like John Mayer or Harry Styles, but when was the last time you thought about Conor Kennedy? He and Taylor dated in the summer of 2012, and my favorite moment was when they crashed the wedding of another Kennedy family member, an event which thankfully made its way to the tabloids. Specifically, the bride said that Conor texted her an hour before the wedding asking if they could come, and she specifically responded “Please do not come.” Well, they came anyway, and the bride asked Taylor to leave. Why don’t more people know about this??
taylor meeting an american man after dating conor kennedy pic.twitter.com/MGERoH1XDx
— giselle🧚🏼♂️ (@inagetawaycar) September 24, 2019
Additional fun fact: since her relationship with Conor, Taylor has never dated another American guy. Guess he ruined Americans for her, sad!
The Apple Music Letter
While the wedding crashing wasn’t her best behavior, Taylor has frequently used her power for good. In 2015, she penned an open letter to Apple Music, bashing them for their announcement that artists wouldn’t be paid for streams during users’ free trial periods. This was obviously a f*cked up decision, and Apple quickly walked back their earlier announcements, but the damage was done. Taylor withheld her new album from the streaming platform, and also pulled her music from Spotify over their less-than-ideal payment system.
In the years since this went down, Taylor Swift has fixed her relationship with Apple, and her music is also back on Spotify. But in that moment in 2015, she proved that she wasn’t afraid to use her voice to fight for what she believed was fair. She d0esn’t always get it right, but this was a pretty great moment.
The “Bad Blood” Video
No one does petty like Taylor Swift, and what’s pettier than assembling an entire group of friends to sh*t on someone you don’t get along with? For Taylor’s “Bad Blood” video, she did just that, giving life to the “girl squad” trend and basically throwing Katy Perry under several buses.
While Katy obviously didn’t make an appearance (that would take a few more years), this sh*t had Selena, Gigi, Martha Hunt, Cara Delevingne, Karlie Kloss, Jessica Alba, Lena Dunham, Mariska Hargitay, Ellen Pompeo, and Cindy Crawford and other people that I haven’t even listed here because I’m sick of commas. It was a huge deal, and premiered during the Billboard Awards. And then Taylor continued to trot out her celebrity friends like pretty little show ponies for the entirety of her tour. Still mad I didn’t buy tickets tbh.
The Scooter Braun Feud
This drama recently unfolded, so if you don’t remember what happened you probably need to use more anti-aging cream than me. DM me your address and I’ll share my routine. We’ve covered the multiple stages of this feud in detail, so I’ll just link info here and here, but we can’t just not mention it here. This summer, Taylor Swift made everyone choose sides (and Google “what are masters”) when she accused Scooter Braun and Scott Borchetta of basically ruining her life by buying her entire musical catalogue.
Then, a few weeks ago, she started phase two of this war when she claimed that these men weren’t going to let her perform her old hits at the American Music Awards. Scooter finally posted a lengthy statement, refuting her claims claiming that he was receiving death threats, and Taylor performed her old songs without a mention of the drama. I don’t know where this feud is headed in the future, but it’s definitely been a bumpy ride this year.
I could talk about Taylor Swift all day (and I kind of feel like I have), but if anyone deserves the attention, it’s her. Whether you love her, or love to hate her (or fall somewhere in the middle), she’s had a massive decade, and I’m sure her 30s will be no different. Taylor—keep being petty, I literally don’t know what I would do without you!
Images: ohaiclaireee, spin1038, taylorspurr, inagetawaycar / Twitter; Watch What Happens Live / YouTube; dundermilfflin / Tumblr; Giphy (5); robertdowneyjr, scooterbraun /Instagram
This morning, the nominations were announced for the 62nd Annual GRAMMY Awards, which means awards season has officially begun. As expected, many of this year’s biggest stars cleaned up in the top categories, with Billie Eilish and Lizzo included in all of the big four categories, and Ariana Grande and Lana Del Rey scoring their first Album of the Year nominations. Lizzo is the artist with the most nominations this year, which is undeniably well-deserved. Even “Old Town Road” got a Record of the Year nomination, which is a good thing, because I was gonna riot if Lil Nas X got snubbed.
But even though the nominations went according to plan for a lot of major artists, there are some others who are probably rage texting their managers/agents/publicists right now. Some of them are more surprising than others, but here’s who got snubbed in this year’s GRAMMY nominations.
Over the course of her career, Taylor Swift has basically been the teacher’s pet of the GRAMMYs. She’s won 10 awards, including two for Album of the Year, but this wasn’t really her year. For her new album, Lover, she came away with three nominations, including one for Song of the Year, but missed out on Album and Record of the Year—the two biggest categories. Considering that her last album, Reputation, only got one nomination, this is still an improvement, but it’s a far cry from 1989, which got a total of 10 nominations for all its songs.
Another year has passed, and Halsey has still never gotten a GRAMMY nomination for her own song (she’s been nominated twice as a featured artist). After “Without Me” became her biggest solo hit to date, I felt sure that this would be her year, but it wasn’t meant to be. Her next album will be out in January, and her songs “Graveyard” and “Clementine” missed the eligibility window for this year’s awards, so I’m sure she already has her prayer candles lit for next year.
Shawn Mendes & Camila Cabello
Despite “Señorita” being one of the biggest songs of the year, and their intense awards campaign of making out in public places, Shawn and Camila fell flat in this year’s GRAMMY nominations. They were nominated for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance, but weren’t included in Record or Song of the Year. Maybe now they can give their PR stunt of a relationship a rest?? Shawn was also probably hoping for nominations for “If I Can’t Have You,” which didn’t happen. Sad!
Okay, so maybe I was foolish to hope that the Jonas Brothers were going to get an Album of the Year nomination, but I’m a little surprised that “Sucker” didn’t sneak into Record of the Year. Like Shawn and Camila, they were only nominated for Pop Duo/Group Performance, which I guess is a small victory. If you had told me a year ago that the Jonas Brothers would be noninated for a GRAMMY in 2020, I literally wouldn’t have believed you. Still, I wanted more for them. Oh well, they’ll always have their Teen Choice Awards surfboards.
If you didn’t remember that Beyoncé released an album this year, low-key same. But her The Lion King: The Gift album actually got four nominations. For anyone else, this would basically be a dream scenario, but Beyoncé isn’t like anyone else. Along with last year’s joint album with Jay-Z, this is the second year in a row that Bey hasn’t gotten noms in the big four categories. I’m not saying The Gift was her absolute best work, but Beyoncé isn’t used to being relegated to the genre categories.
Ed Sheeran’s collaborations album had about 100 famous people on it, but the GRAMMY nominations voters weren’t impressed. He was nominated for Pop Vocal Album, but literally nothing else. Even Justin Bieber’s appearance on “I Don’t Care” wasn’t en0ugh for a single nomination. Now that Ed is taking an 18-month hiatus from music, I guess he’ll be absent from the GRAMMY nominations for the next couple of years, but it looks like the voters won’t even miss him that much.
This year’s GRAMMY Awards are on January 26th, so you have a couple months to make your final predictions. Personally, my bets are on a Lizzo sweep, but who knows if all the old people who actually vote for this sh*t will do what they should. And honestly, it’s not like it matters all that much. Cheers!