Albarn commented on how Taylor Swift “does not write her own songs”, prompting Swift to rise to her own defense, and the Swifties, swiftly followed. Here’s how it all went down.
The Explosive Statement Made By Damon Albarn
Instagram | Damon Albarn
It all started when Damon Albarn basically spoke how he thought modern music was all about sound editing and so, and that the times of actual live music have passed, in an interview with LA Times. The interviewer asked the Iceland-phile if he thought that a lot of modern musicians relied on sound and attitude and Albarn challenged him, asking him to name someone who doesn’t.
The interviewers then named Taylor Swift, calling her an excellent songwriter, to which Albarn said, “She doesn’t write her own songs.”
The interviewer disagreed, saying that of course, she did, to which Albarn replied, “That doesn’t count. I know what co-writing is. Co-writing is very different [from] writing. I’m not hating on anybody, I’m just saying there’s a big difference between a songwriter and a songwriter who co-writes. That doesn’t mean that the outcome can’t be really great.”
He also gave a shout-out to Billie Eilish, saying she was an interesting songwriter. “I’m more attracted to that than to Taylor Swift. It’s just darker — less endlessly upbeat. Way more minor and odd. I think she’s exceptional.”
Along with being the frontman of Blur, Albarn is also the lyricist and lead vocalist for the virtual band Gorillaz, best known for their song, “Clint Eastwood”.
Taylor Swift Was Quick To React
Taylor Swift seems to have seen red and took to Twitter to call out Albarn for his behavior.
She tweeted, “@DamonAlbarn I was such a big fan of yours until I saw this. I write ALL of my own songs. Your hot take is completely false and SO damaging. You don’t have to like my songs but it’s really f***ed up to try and discredit my writing. WOW.”
Fans stood up for her pretty quickly, but so did people who have collaborated with her.
Here’s is Aaron Dressner‘s take.
Not sure why you @Damonalbarn would try to discredit Taylor’s brilliant songwriting but as someone who has gotten to press record around her …your statements couldn’t be further from the truth…you’re obviously completely clueless as to her actual writing and work process
— Aaron Dessner (@aaron_dessner) January 24, 2022
Simon Curtis also added his bit, writing, “Also, Damon, if you’ve lost faith or feel disillusioned with the world’s current generation of prolific songwriters (which seems a bit ignorant, bitter, and snide, tbh) do yourself a favor listen to Folklore and Evermore. The greatest living songwriter at the peak of her craft.”
Damon Albarn Issues Swift Apology To Taylor
Swift has gone all out in her defense. Her last tweet to Albarn was a snide remark, which admittedly made most of her fans root for her even more.
PS I wrote this tweet all by myself in case you were wondering 😑
— Taylor Swift (@taylorswift13) January 24, 2022
Seeing the tsunami of backlash headed his way, Albarn sang a different tune and apologized. He tweeted, “@taylorswift13 I totally agree with you. I had a conversation about songwriting and sadly it was reduced to clickbait. I apologize unreservedly and unconditionally. The last thing I would want to do is discredit your songwriting. I hope you understand. – Damon”
But the industry is still upset with Albarn, as is clear with the rallying cry, “of course, she writes her song”.
I can personally guarantee that she was a major part of the songwriting on Safe and Sound. She proved to be one of the best I’ve ever worked with. Selfless, generous, insightful, nuanced – with a CLEAR understanding of the assignment. https://t.co/z5oIhzvccX
— John Paul White (@johnpaulwhite) January 24, 2022
His apology has not been well received as a Twitter user, actress Chrishell wrote, “I just read the full quote in context. Nope, that’s all on you to own buddy. Context did NOT help. A moody musician that works to discredit a wildly more successful artist bc they deem their music less than. Original.”