Taylor Swift breaks down her mega 1989 record in a three-part series for Grammy Pro.
Swift details how things lead up to the album, Max Martin as the album’s co-executive producer, describes “Blank Space,” “Out of the Woods” and “I Know Places,” collaborating with Imogen Heap on ‘Clean’ and more in this candid and revealing sit-down.
On ‘Red’ losing Album of the Year at the Grammys:
“When they announced the Album of the Year winner it was like, ‘And the album of the year goes to … Reeeeeandom Access Memories, Daft Punk!’ And they really dragged out the ‘reeee’… And for a second there, I kind of thought we had it, and we didn’t. I remember not going to after-parties,” she admits. “I went home and I cried a little bit, and I got In-N-Out Burger and ate a lot. Going up to it, everybody comes up to you and they’re like, ‘Oh, you got this, you’re gonna win, you’re gonna win,’ and I wish they wouldn’t do that ’cause you don’t know if you’re gonna win –and someone else could very well win — and someone else very well did,”
“The media decided that I dated too many people. You know, you’re sitting at an awards show, and you know there’s gonna be a joke about you being a serial dater in the monologue, and you’re just sitting there like, I’m 22, and this is rude. But instead of writing a song like, ‘It’s so rude, stop picking on me,’ I kind of sat back and thought about how complex this character was that they’d drawn up for me, and I just thought, ‘This is amazing.’ I need to write a song from this girl’s perspective,” she says about how the hit eventually came about. “If you want to play this way, we can play this way, and I just decided to be her for one song.”
Out Of The Woods:
“The song itself, it just kind of conjured up all these feelings of anxiety I had in a relationship where everybody was watching, everybody was commenting on it. You’re constantly just feeling like, ‘Are we out of the woods yet? What’s the next thing gonna be? What’s the next hurdle we’re gonna have to jump over? Are we gonna make it to next week? It was interesting to write about a relationship where you’re just honestly like, ‘This is probably not gonna last, but how long is it gonna last?’ Those fragile relationships…It doesn’t mean they’re not supposed to happen. The whole time we were having happy memories or crazy memories or ridiculously anxious times, in my head it was just like, ‘Are we OK yet? Are we there yet? Are we out of this yet?’”
Writing “I Know Places” with Ryan Tedder:
“I had this idea of like, you know, when you’re in love — along the lines of ‘Out of the Woods’ — it’s very precious, it’s fragile. As soon as the world gets ahold of it, whether it’s your friends or people around town hear about it … it’s kind of like the first thing people want to do when they hear that people are in love is just kind of try to ruin it, if they’re not the greatest human beings. I kind of was in a place where I was like, ‘No one is gonna sign up for this. There are just too many cameras pointed at me. There are too many ridiculous elaborations on my life. It’s just not ever gonna work.’ But I decided to write a love song, just kind of like, ‘What would I say if I met someone really awesome and they were like, hey, I’m worried about all this attention you get?’ So I wrote this song called ‘I Know Places’ about, like, ‘Hey, I know places we can hide. We could outrun them.’”
Watch the entire three-part interview here: