Taylor Swift Unveils The Three 'Secret Genres' She Uses To Write Songs

21 September 2022, 11:57

Taylor spilled on her songwriting styles
Taylor spilled on her songwriting styles. Picture: Getty

By Savannah Roberts

Taylor Swift opened up about her songwriting process, revealing that all of her tracks fall into three unique genres...

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Taylor Swift has been surprising us left, right and centre in recent weeks – and she's only turning up the heat as the release of 'Midnights' fast approaches.

The pop sensation hit another career milestone on Tuesday night (September 20) when she was awarded Songwriter-Artist of the Decade by the Nashville Songwriters Association International – talk about high praise!

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Of course, as Taylor accepted the prestigious accolade she delivered an inspiring speech and even illustrated her unique songwriting techniques in the process.

The 'All Too Well' songstress unveiled that she actually writes in three distinct styles, saying to the Nashville Songwriter Awards audience: "I’ve never talked about this publicly before, because, well, it’s dorky."

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Taylor explained her genre-subversive approach to songwriting
Taylor explained her genre-subversive approach to songwriting. Picture: Getty

Before the pop music icon delved into how she crafts her industry-defining songs, she dropped a little wisdom on genres – which has come at the perfect time considering the discourse online surrounding the undisclosed genre of her tenth studio album.

Taylor said: "I used to dream about one day getting to bounce around the different musical worlds of my various sonic influences, and change up the production of my albums. I hoped that one day, the blending of genres wouldn’t be such a big deal.

"There’s so much discussion about genre and it always usually leads back to a conversation about melody and production. But that leaves out possibly my favourite part of songwriting: lyricism," the musician teased.

She went on to boil down her songwriting process – which of course she has down to an art – she revealed: "I also have, in my mind, secretly, established genres categories for lyrics I write.

Taylor Swift was awarded Songwriter of the Decade
Taylor Swift was awarded Songwriter of the Decade. Picture: Getty
Taylor is dropping her tenth studio album 'Midnights' on October 21
Taylor is dropping her tenth studio album 'Midnights' on October 21. Picture: Taylor Swift/Twitter

"Three of them, to be exact. They are affectionately titled Quill Lyrics, Fountain Pen Lyrics, and Glitter Gel Pen Lyrics," Taylor listed off her original styles of writing.

Swift further explained her self-professed 'confusing' approach to music: "I came up with these categories based on what writing tool I imagine having in my hand when I scribbled it down, figuratively. I don’t actually have a quill. Anymore."

In the 13-minute speech, the 32-year-old went into fine detail when describing each unique category she has created for herself.

The 'Quill' style denotes songs that hold an old-fashioned essence, in Taylor's words: "If my lyrics sound like a letter written by Emily Dickinson’s great grandmother while sewing a lace curtain, that’s me writing in the Quill genre."

The 'Fountain Pen' style refers to tracks that have a "modern storyline or references with a poetic twist", which the singer claimed is the category most of her songs fall into.

Then finally, the 'Glitter Gel Pen' style the inventive pop star playfully deemed as "frivolous, carefree, bouncy".

"Glitter Gel Pen lyrics are the drunk girl at the party who tells you that you look like an Angel in the bathroom," she explained.

Well the more you know! We don't know about you, but we want further insight into how Taylor Swift's mind works...

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