Are Taylor Swift's 'Clara Bow' Lyrics About Olivia Rodrigo?

22 April 2024, 10:59 | Updated: 22 April 2024, 17:24

Did Taylor Swift write Clara Bow about/for Olivia Rodrigo? Here's a breakdown of the lyrics.
Did Taylor Swift write Clara Bow about/for Olivia Rodrigo? Here's a breakdown of the lyrics. Picture: Getty

By Abbie Reynolds

Fans are convinced the final lyrics of The Tortured Poets Department's closing track 'Clara Bow' prove Taylor Swift wrote the song about Olivia Rodrigo - here's why.

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The Tortured Poets Department effect is real, Taylor Swift's 11th studio album has had all the Swifties up all night trying to decode every lyric.

And the latest theory is that the album's closing track 'Clara Bow' was penned about 'Obsessed' singer Olivia Rodrigo. Many fans have pointed out that the name Clara Bow rhymes with Olivia Rodrigo.

Clara's legacy is also believed to be a cautionary tale for women living in the spotlight, and therefore could be Taylor's way of warning the young star, much like Billie Eilish did with her song 'GOLDWING'.

Taylor and Olivia were believed to of had an ongoing feud over writing credits but at the 2024 Grammys both artists disproved the rumours with Olivia blowing Taylor a kiss during her performance and Taylor giving the 'Vampire' singer a standing ovation.

So, why are fans so sure Clara Bow was written for/about Olivia, here's a look at the lyrics.

Fans are convinced Taylor Swift penned 'Clara Bow' about Olivia Rodrigo
Fans are convinced Taylor Swift penned 'Clara Bow' about Olivia Rodrigo. Picture: Getty

Are Taylor Swift's Clara Bow lyrics about Olivia Rodrigo?

The final verse of 'Clara Bow' is what has Taylor's fans so sure it's about Olivia Rodrigo. She sings: You look like Taylor Swift / In this light / We're loving it / You've got edge she never did / The future's bright... Dazzling.

These lyrics had Swifties spiralling as it was the was the first time Taylor had used her own name in a song. However, You look like Taylor Swift could very easily reference how much Olivia has been compared to Tay, especially as her songwriting is inspired by her love-life much like Taylor's.

You've got edge she never did could also be a nod to Olivia's more punk rock approach to pop music. Taylor stepped into punk pop during her Reputation era but overall you wouldn't associate punk with the majority of Taylor's discography.

Taylor Swift gave Olivia a standing ovation at the 2024 Grammys
Taylor Swift gave Olivia a standing ovation at the 2024 Grammys. Picture: Getty

So many Swifties are convinced the track is about Olivia and they have been posting things like: "clara bow is about olivia rodrigo and you can’t change my mind otherwise."

And: "i’m sorry clara bow is so obviously about olivia. i’m pretty there are articles that specifically said olivia is 19 year old taylor with more edge."

Another fan articulated it pretty well saying: "Clara Bow is a reflection on rising as society’s it girl. Once you get there, there’s always a new it girl who is “better” than the last. Her outro might be about Olivia Rodrigo. Olivia was initially compared to Taylor but now she has the edge she never did…"

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Of course, Taylor's art is always full of Easter eggs, nothing is a coincidence, everything has a purpose. When she released the music video for 'Fortnight' she explained this, saying: "Pretty much everything in it is a metaphor or a reference to one corner of the album or another."

So when a fan takes to X to say, "now is it only a coincidence that Clara Bow rhymes with Olivia Rodrigo or ……….." we'd have to say, has anything Taylor's done been a coincidence?

What has Taylor Swift said about her song Clara Bow?

Not revealing a specific name, Taylor revealed the track is a 'commentary on what she's seen in the industry over time'.

On the track-by-track experience with Amazon Music, Taylor says: “I used to sit in record labels trying to get a record deal when I was a little kid. And they’d say, ‘you know, you remind us of’ and then they’d name an artist, and then they’d kind of say something disparaging about her, ‘but you’re this, you’re so much better in this way or that way.’

"And that’s how we teach women to see themselves, as like you could be the new replacement for this woman who’s done something great before you."

She's not wrong, as after she dropped 'The Tortured Poets Department' Rolling Stone Germany named Taylor Swift 'the better Adele' furthering her point.

She goes on: “I picked women who have done great things in the past and have been these archetypes of greatness in the entertainment industry. Clara Bow was the first ‘it girl.’ Stevie Nicks is an icon and an incredible example for anyone who wants to write songs and make music.”

She doesn't name Olivia but she is reflecting on her younger self in the early days of her career where she was compared to other artists, much like Olivia is.

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