Taylor Swift’s ‘Folklore’ Decoded: What Every Song on Her Surprise Album Is About

by Jeremy Spirogis
Taylor Swift attends the 2019 American Music Awards on November 24, 2019 in Los Angeles, California.

On July 23, 2020, singer Taylor Swift took her followers (generally known as Swifties) unexpectedly, saying her eighth studio album, Folklore, was dropping the following day. Here’s a take a look at what the lyrics of all 17 tracks might be about, together with a few of Swift’s personal commentary.

‘The 1’

On the opening monitor, Swift retains it bit extra pop-like than the remainder of the album. She sings a bit wistfully about misplaced younger love, and the way she thought that individual may have been “the one.”


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Ahead of the music video premiere (above), Swift wrote within the chat: “The song is about a lost romance and why young love is often fixed so permanently without memories. Why it leaves such an indelible mark.”

‘The Last Great American Dynasty’

This monitor tells the story of a girl named Rebecca, who is available in and “ruins” a relationship. Despite all of those that name her a homewrecker, she enjoys her life and ignores what they should say about her — which appears like one thing Swift can relate to.

‘Exile (Featuring Bon Iver)’

This piano-based monitor is a dialog between two lovers on the finish of their rope. They rehash how their relationship has fallen aside, and notice they’ve at all times been headed this fashion.

‘My Tears Ricochet’

In the chat for the “Cardigan” video premiere, Swift revealed this was the primary monitor she wrote for the album, and he or she wrote it alone. She sings from the angle of a deceased (bodily or metaphorically) individual whose killer nonetheless thinks of them.


This dreamy monitor is a love music. Swift sings about pining for somebody, even when the percentages are in opposition to them.


This monitor is about an escape. Swift sings to somebody who she needs to run away with, as a result of they’re in a foul state of affairs. She paints an image of all of the locations they may go.


This one appears like a sultry summer time love music, as she sings to somebody she had a fling with, however they didn’t return her affections.

‘This is Me Trying’

On this monitor, Swift sings about how arduous she’s labored at all the things. She’s doing her finest, and it doesn’t at all times really feel like sufficient. It’s a reasonably clear message to her followers.

‘Illicit Affairs’

Given the title, it’s clear that this music is about an affair. Swift paints an image of an individual who’s bitter concerning the state of affairs they’re in, singing to the opposite individual that they really feel like a idiot.

‘Invisible String’

On this plucky monitor, she sings about transferring on together with her life in any case that she’s been by, and now that she’s discovered the individual she’s meant to be with.

‘Mad Woman’

RELATED: Taylor Swift on Why She Decided to Release Her New Album, folklore, Now

The mild piano tones of this music are in juxtaposition to Swift’s voice and the lyrics as she sings about being the lady who was cheated on. But it may be Swift speaking about how she’s been pushed “mad” by males (like Scooter Braun) within the trade.


This is without doubt one of the tracks that’s undoubtedly not autobiographical. In a Twitter post, she explains one music is about “My grandfather, Dean, landing at Guadalcanal in 1942.”


This music comes from the angle of the cheater. They’re apologizing for the summer time fling that that they had (presumably the one from “August.”) Of course, many took it to imply Swift herself was in love with somebody named Betty.


Taylor Swift attends the 2019 American Music Awards on November 24, 2019 in Los Angeles, California.
Taylor Swift attends the 2019 American Music Awards on November 24, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. | Rich Fury/Getty Images

On this monitor, Swift sings about caring for somebody, however understanding that there are such a lot of obstacles. It suits properly with Swift’s personal narrative — there are at all times folks standing in the best way of her “peace” with Joe Alwyn.


On the usual album, that is the ultimate monitor. It’s a comfortable, soothing music, the place she sings about being betrayed by somebody she cares about, in a manner that reminds her of how she’s been damage earlier than.

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