There's a new (and quite extensive) interview with Taylor Swift out via Rolling Stone Wednesday, and headline-based thinking will have readers initially focused on the fact that the discussion touches on the topic of Kanye West's fraught-with-controversy relationship with the Lover artist.
Asked about a certain phone call, Taylor said "the context and the events" leading up to it were not fully understood by the public. Noting a "chain reaction of things," Taylor recalled how the two were starting to seemingly grow toward being on good terms.
"I started to feel like we reconnected, which felt great for me—because all I ever wanted my whole career after that thing happened in 2009 was for him to respect me," she said. "When someone doesn't respect you so loudly and says you literally don't deserve to be here—I just so badly wanted that respect from him, and I hate that about myself, that I was like, 'This guy who's antagonizing me, I just want his approval.' But that’s where I was . . . It just felt like I was healing some childhood rejection or something from when I was 19."
Moving the discussion to the issues surrounding Kanye's Vanguard Award moment at the 2015 MTV Video Music Awards, Taylor said the Jesus Is King–crafter called and talked with her for over an hour about getting her to present the award. "He can be the sweetest," she said, adding that she wrote up a speech for the presentation, only to arrive at the VMAs ceremony to watch Kanye tell the audience that MTV had gotten her to present the award solely for a ratings boost.
"And I'm standing in the audience with my arm around his wife, and this chill ran through my body," she said. "I realized he is so two-faced. That he wants to be nice to me behind the scenes, but then he wants to look cool, get up in front of everyone and talk shit. And I was so upset."
Still, she said she tried to move beyond this after Kanye apologized and later called her regarding a lyric that references her on the Pablo track "Famous." When she heard the final version of the song, however, she accepted the "bad terms" of their relationships.
"And then he literally did the same thing to Drake," she said. "He gravely affected the trajectory of Drake’s family and their lives. It's the same thing. Getting close to you, earning your trust, detonating you. I really don't want to talk about it anymore because I get worked up, and I don't want to just talk about negative shit all day, but it’s the same thing."
The full cover story interview, penned by the reliably readable Brian Hiatt, is well worth your time. Taylor also talks Big Machine, how Fall Out Boy lyrically influenced her "maybe more than anyone else," the 2020 election, Game of Thrones, and more.
Earlier this week, Taylor announced Lover Fest East and Lover Fest West, a pair of two-night runs celebrating her new album's spirit of "open fields, sunsets, and summer." Lover Fest East hits the Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts July 31 and Aug. 1. The West edition, meanwhile, is set for July 25 and July 26 at the SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles, California.