Taylor Swift truly is a mad woman (a compliment, truly) with all these facts from folklore: the long pond studio sessions, released on Disney+.
Imagine sitting in front of a campfire outside a cabin in the woods–you’re bundled up in a cozy blanket as you wear your most comfortable cardigan underneath it, all while holding a glass of red wine in one hand. As you take a sip, the first few notes of Taylor Swift’s the 1 starts playing in the background. That was definitely what I envisioned as I was watching folklore: the long pond studio sessions.
The Fearless singer-songwriter knows how to keep us all on the edge of our seats with every Instagram post because more often than not, they have at least one hidden meaning. This is why after she posted a photo with the caption, “Not a lot going on at the moment,” it wasn’t completely shocking that we were graced with another Taylor Swift creation—a documentary film streaming on Disney+. The film features goosebump-inducing performances, behind-the-scenes clips, and intimate discussions about her first 2020 surprise, folklore. Thanks to this mad, sneaky woman we adore, we found out quite a lot from her latest treasure.
Art in isolation
“It just became an album really quickly, and really, really beautifully,” said Swift at the beginning of the documentary. Since the entire album was created in isolation, separated from her collaborators like Jack Antonoff and Aaron Dessner—something she has never done before—she still considers it a big mirage. Even Antonoff mentioned he has never worked on any album like that before.
Shining just for you
As we all know, Taylor Swift is a genius when it comes to creating metaphors in her songs, and in folklore, she didn’t disappoint. According to her, mirrorball is a metaphor for what a celebrity is and what they go through. “[Mirrorballs] are broken a million times, and that’s what makes them so shiny. We have people like that in society, too. They hang there, and every time they break, it entertains us.”
William Bowery… Who?
Actor Joe Alwyn, Swift’s long-time boyfriend, actually co-wrote exile and betty. However, he was credited on the album as William Bowery instead. According to Swift, Alwyn plays the piano beautifully, and as he was doing so on a random day, he also started singing the first few lines of exile. Because of this, Swift asked if they could finish the song together, along with Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon.
Twisted in bedsheets
When folklore was released, Swift revealed there were three songs revolving around the same love triangle, namely cardigan, august, and betty. In august, she always imagined the girl was named Augusta or Augustine, and that she wasn’t necessarily the villain of the love triangle. Like every other person, she simply wanted to be loved, which was what she experienced during her summer romance with James that eventually just slipped away into a moment in time, like a bottle of wine.
Songwriting that goes all over the place
“It’s a weird experience to work with you,” said Antonoff as he was talking to Swift. Apparently, her songwriting process goes from one place to another and another as she comes up with different and even better lyrics as time goes by.
There truly is nothing like it
As soon as Taylor Swift heard a piano piece Dessner had written, she immediately knew the ominous strings underneath it signified female rage, thus the creation of mad woman. She ended up thinking about the most rage-provoking element of being a female, which is the gaslighting being done by a man. Oftentimes, when women respond to that type of male behavior, Swift said, “That response is treated like the offense itself.”
An escape that’s been a long time coming
Swift considers the folklore bonus track the lakes a testament of not only what she wanted to escape from, but also where she sees herself escaping to. This was inspired by a visit to some cottages in Lake District in England where hundreds of years ago, poets from different places moved to. They were heckled and made fun of because of their eccentric nature but as an artist herself, Swift understood why they all wanted to live there. Coincidentally, ever since she was 20 years old, she has written about having a backup plan of escaping to a cottage and just bidding farewell to living a life in front of thousands of cameras.