Taylor Swift Rips Gorillaz Frontman For Claiming She Doesn't Write Her Own Songs In Blistering Takedown
Musicians sniping at each other is a tradition nearly as long as the music industry itself, but the music world's most recent beef comes via a most unexpected pairing: Singer/songwriter Taylor Swift and frontman for the bands Gorillaz and Blur, Damon Albarn.
After Albarn told a Los Angeles Times interviewer that Swift doesn't write her own songs, which he derided as "endlessly upbeat," Swift fired right back on Twitter.
She posted a blistering clapback that not only put Albarn in place but sparked a backlash so intense that Albarn ended up sending Swift an apology.
See Swift's tweet below.
@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\u2019t have to like my songs but it\u2019s really fucked up to try and discredit my writing. WOW.https://twitter.com/latimes/status/1485693067684319234\u00a0\u2026— Taylor Swift (@Taylor Swift) 1643056858
"@DamonAlbarn I was such a big fan of yours until I saw [your comments]. 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 fu*ked up to try and discredit my writing. WOW."
Albarn's comments about Swift came after The Los Angeles Times' Mikael Wood called Swift's songwriting "excellent" even if it's not "to your taste." Albarn replied flatly, "She doesn't write her own songs."
When Wood pushed back and mentioned that she both writes and co-writes her material, Albarn explained that co-writing isn't valid.
“That doesn’t count. I know what co-writing is. Co-writing is very different to 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. Doesn’t mean that the outcome can’t be really great.”
Albarn then cited as one of his favorite contemporary songwriters Billie Eilish--and her co-writer, her brother Finneas Eilish.
“A really interesting songwriter is Billie Eilish and her brother. 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.”
The backlash against Albarn's was practically instantaneous--including from fellow music-industry heavyweights like Jack Antonoff, who has frequently produced Swift's music, and fellow singer-songwriter Maren Morris. Even the new President of Chile weighed in.
Here in Chile you have a huge group of supporters who knows that you write you own songs from the heart. Dont take seriously guys that need to insult or lie to get attention. Hugs from the south Taylor— Gabriel Boric Font (@Gabriel Boric Font) 1643072406
The response reached such a fever pitch that Albarn responded to Swift directly with an apology in which he essentially claimed he was taken out of context. He wrote:
I totally agree with you. i had a conversation about songwriting and sadly it was reduced to clickbait. I apologise unreservedly and unconditionally. The last thing I would want to do is discredit your songwriting. I hope you understand. - Damon— Damon Albarn (@Damon Albarn) 1643061026
But many people weren't buying Albarn's apology and it did little to quell the backlash--especially given that Albarn's most recent album is almost entirely co-written.
Damon Albarn criticising Taylor Swift for not being a real songwriter because sometimes she has cowriters, and this is the first track on his current albumpic.twitter.com/NpmJYzPBtA— SHANE REACTION (@SHANE REACTION) 1643058613
damon albarn wrote two out of the eleven songs on his most recent album by himself, taylor swift wrote speak now in it\u2019s entirety on her own at the age of nineteen truly what is this man chatting— mia with two ll\u2019s\ud83d\udc69\u200d\u2764\ufe0f\u200d\ud83d\udc8b\u200d\ud83d\udc69\ud83d\udc69\u200d\u2764\ufe0f\u200d\ud83d\udc8b\u200d\ud83d\udc69 (@mia with two ll\u2019s\ud83d\udc69\u200d\u2764\ufe0f\u200d\ud83d\udc8b\u200d\ud83d\udc69\ud83d\udc69\u200d\u2764\ufe0f\u200d\ud83d\udc8b\u200d\ud83d\udc69) 1643059496
The thing about Damon Albarn's comments about Taylor Swift that makes me completely enraged is the fact that there are videos of her and Jack Antonoff working on songs together and there's literally nothing about it that looks different than how The Beatles' process in "Get Back"— Valerie Insinna (@Valerie Insinna) 1643061872
Taylor Swift could write Country House but Damon Albarn couldn\u2019t write All Too Well. Gobshite.https://twitter.com/taylorswift13/status/1485714265675812866\u00a0\u2026— Billy \ud83e\udd20\u2728\u2601\ufe0f (@Billy \ud83e\udd20\u2728\u2601\ufe0f) 1643057103
I just read the full quote in context. Nope, that\u2019s all on you to own buddy. Context did NOT help.\nA moody musician that works to discredit a wildly more successful artist bc they deem their music less than. Original— Chrishell (@Chrishell) 1643071134
This whole Damon Albarn/Taylor Swift story is really just another clueless sexist dude trying to discredit the work of a successful woman.\n\nIt's complete bullshit. \n\nDon't be like Damon Albarn, be better.— Denise Salcedo (@Denise Salcedo) 1643061262
taylor swift is the only female to ever win album of the year three times and she shares that feat with stevie wonder and frank sinatra. damon albarn has one won grammy??????/ ok babe— Paige Skinner (@Paige Skinner) 1643061089
taylor swift could write song 2 but damon albarn could never write all too well 10 minute version— maisie peters signed up for this (@maisie peters signed up for this) 1643060045
Nah. The whole "co-writing isn't writing" thing is still BS, especially if you name Billie Eilish as a shining example of a songwriter when Billie has never even written any song by herself. Taylor wrote an entire album by herself. This was a personal attack.— Tragic Bronson (@Tragic Bronson) 1643061421
Men in music being condescending to women songwriters? TIRED. \n\nMen looking down on the music that is typically seen as "women's music"? CLICHED. \n\nMen pitting two women against each other to make a point about how utterly fascinating he is? BORING.https://variety.com/2022/music/news/taylor-swift-damon-albarn-write-songs-1235161967/\u00a0\u2026— Julie S. Lalonde (@Julie S. Lalonde) 1643060490
Swift, who Rolling Stone named as one of the 100 greatest songwriters of all time in 2015, is the winner of several prestigious songwriting awards and was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2010.