The Meaning Behind Taylor Swift's Song ‘Betty’

17 September 2020, 12:48 | Updated: 12 January 2024, 10:34

Taylor Swift does solo, acoustic set at the 2020 ACM Awards

Taylor Swift explained where the name of her new song ‘Betty’, from the ‘Folklore’ album, really came from.

Taylor Swift surprised fans when she announced the release of her eighth studio album, ‘Folklore’ at the end of July and the new EP naturally sent fans wild for a number of reasons, with 'Betty' fast becoming a firm favourite.

After Swifties put together theories behind the possible meanings of ‘Cardigan’ and who she was referring to in ‘Invisible String’, wild theories began to emerge about where the name ‘Betty’ came from in the song of the same name.

Taylor Swift has explained the inspiration behind 'Betty'
Taylor Swift has explained the inspiration behind 'Betty'. Picture: PA
Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds welcomed their third baby in October 2019
Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds welcomed their third baby in October 2019. Picture: PA

The song sparked some wild rumours, but Taylor finally explained a little more about the track’s name a few weeks after its release, saying it's from the perspective of a teenage boy losing his first love.

Within the lyrics Taylor refers to to characters James and Inez, which many fans speculated was after the children of Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds two daughters.

The name ‘Betty’ had fans speculating whether Taylor had spilled the name of the couple’s third daughter, whose name is yet to be confirmed by the showbiz pair since her arrival in October 2019.

Taylor has been friends with Gossip Girl star Blake and Deadpool actor Ryan for years and she revealed she used “her friends’ kids” for the characters of ‘Betty’.

Taylor Swift – betty (Official Lyric Video)

In an interview with Country Radio Taylor confirmed: “I named all the characters in this story after my friends' kids."

She also gave a deeper insight into the meaning behind the song itself, which is told from a teenage boy’s perspective about losing the love of his life after he cheated on her.

Taylor said: “He lost the love of his life, basically, and doesn't understand how to get it back. I think we all have these situations in our lives where we learn to really, really give a heartfelt apology for the first time.”

She continued: “This is a song that I wrote from the perspective of a 17-year-old boy. And I've always loved that in music you can kind of slip into different identifies and you can sing from other people's perspectives, and that's what I did in this one.”

Taylor is incredibly close to the Lively-Reynolds, using their eldest daughter James’ voice in the opening of her 2017 song ‘Gorgeous’.

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