“Love Story” by Taylor Swift
It has been put forth that “Love Story” is about Taylor Swift’s relationship with fellow pop star Joe Jonas. But that theory wouldn’t be logical for a couple of reasons. First off, the actual history behind the song indicates that the dude she is signing about, in reality, is someone she never went as far as to hook up with.
And secondly, the track concludes on a happily-ever-after note. But in reality Joe Jonas proceeded to rather swiftly, no pun intended, break Taylor’s heart.
Lyrics of “Love Story”
What we have primarily is rather a tale which starts off as a forbidden love. Or at least that’s the way the singer’s family, represented by her “daddy”, considers the situation. He is simply not down with the addressee, the singer’s romantic interest, dating her.
Indeed the whole scenario at hand was further inspired by “Romeo and Juliet” (1597), William Shakespeare’s classic novel based on a similar theme of a romance not approved of. It is also inspired by what Taylor went through in real life.
But despite this notable resistance, the singer and the addressee are still feeling each other. So they do proceed to see each other, albeit on the low. But of course in sneaking around like this, a romance cannot be developed to its fullest.
So the relationship is to some degree reduced to fantasies of the two of them “(escaping) this town for a little while”, so that they can truly be in each other’s arms.
A Happy Ending
So the singer continues to endure what we can define as somewhat of a romantic nightmare. As revealed in the bridge, her love of the addressee is being put to the test. The challenge gets to the point where she starts to conclude that perhaps the two of them will never actually end up together.
However, the passage concludes with the addressee proposing to the singer. Or the way Taylor Swift has explained the featured narrative is as relating her personal experience with that of the aforementioned Romeo and Juliet.
She even goes as far as to refer to the addressee as “Romeo” and herself “Juliet” throughout. However, unlike said novel, she did not want this particular “love story” to end in tragedy.
So she instead gave it a happy ending where dude, with the consent of her father, proceeds to humbly request her hand in marriage.
So perhaps we can postulate that the beef dad had with him in the first place was based on his impression that the singer’s boyfriend was not serious. But now that he has proven that he is in the most-palpable way imaginable, the dad is now cool with the romance.
So if Taylor Swift wanted to instantly give away this song’s meaning, perhaps she would have more directly entitled it ‘Love Fantasy’ as opposed to “Love Story”.
Obviously the featured narrative is not something which she has experienced in its entirety in real life nor likely ever will.
Indeed as of the writing of this post, she has exceeded 30 years of age and if she does decide to get with someone wouldn’t need her father’s consent to do so. Moreover this tale reads like a standard romance-movie plot catered to a teenage audience (as Taylor was at the time).
At first the singer and addressee, a couple of young lovers, are met with a major, disheartening obstacle in terms of moving their relationship forward. But at the end of the day the situation is resolved. And it culminates in the two of them apparently pledging allegiance to each other for life with no other foreseeable hindrances in the way.
So it’s like at the end of the day love does indeed triumph, as it always does as far as romantic fantasies are concerned.
Trey Fanjoy, a filmographer who had earlier worked on a number of Taylor Swift music videos directed the official clip to this track.
Apparently inspired by the aforenoted Romeo and Juliet motif, it is partially set in the past. Setting it so is also meant to allude to the intended timelessness of the featured narrative.
And her romantic interest in the clip is portrayed by Justin Gaston, a singer/actor who is a year older than Taylor.
The video was filmed at a location known as Castle Gwynn, which happens to be located in Tennessee, Taylor’s musical base of operations.
It is the site of an annual event known as the Tennessee Renaissance Festival. And even though the castle looks quite medieval, it actually isn’t. It was built as recently as 1973.
And the whole affair proved to be quite successful, as the clip won two 2009 CMT Music Awards. It also received a Country Music Association Award (Music Video of the Year) that same year.
Writing, Recording and Release of “Love Story”
Taylor Swift is the sole writer of this song. And she also produced it, accomplishing that latter task in conjunction with Nathan Chapman.
Taylor and co. recorded this song in Nashville, at a venue known as Blackbird Studios. And Nathan Chapman provided a custom-designed microphone put together by another county singer/engineer Ray Kennedy, which he felt best catered to Swift’s voice.
Taylor ended up falling in love with the device to the point where she began to use it henceforth.
This track was issued by Big Machine Records as the lead single from “Fearless”, Taylor Swift’s second album, on 12 September 2008.
And doing so proved to be a sound decision, as the song sold phenomenally and proved to be Swift’s breakthrough tune.
Success of “Love Story”
It has gone octuple-platinum in the United States and septuple-platinum in Australia. It also went double-platinum in Canada and the UK.
In fact Love Story has reportedly sold in excess of 15,000,000 copies, about half physical and half digital, worldwide. Moreover Swift has used it as a mainstay on her tour setlists throughout the years.
This song did not top the Billboard Hot 100 or UK Singles chart, as one might expect considering its commercial success. Rather it respectively peaked at numbers four and two on those lists. But it did score a number one on Billboard’s Adult Contemporary, Mainstream Top 40 and Hot Country Songs charts.
And out of the 20 or so nations it charted in outside of the US and UK, it topped a handful of other charts, specifically in Australia and Canada. Furthermore, it was placed at number one on Billboard’s Radio Songs ranking for the entire year of 2009.
And just to note, in 2012, Taste of Country ranked this track at number 17 on its list of the “Top 100 Country Songs” of all time.
“Fearless (Taylor’s Version)”
Just as this song was released as the lead single from “Fearless”, it served the same role as far as the “Fearless (Taylor’s Version)” (2021) goes.
Accordingly, the updated 2021 rendition is likewise referred to as “Love Story (Taylor’s Version)”. And it came out via Republic Records on 12 February of that year.
And to note, the reason Taylor Swift re-recorded the entire “Fearless” album was due to the original masters being sold by the label she used to work with, Big Machine Records, against her will.
In fact her plan is to actually re-record all of her six first albums (in addition to apparently adding unreleased tracks from their respective eras to them). And whereas no one seems to know why she initiated this endeavor with “Fearless”, her second album overall, there has been a theory put forth that it has something to do with the number 13.