Taylor Swift on Quitting Drinking for Her Eras Tour, Beyoncé, and Watching Her ‘Enemies’ Defeat Themselves

Taylor Swift on Quitting Drinking for Her Eras Tour, Beyoncé, and Watching Her ‘Enemies’ Defeat Themselves
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Taylor Swift is ready to talk about the past six years at length. In addition to opening up about her Travis Kelce romance for the first time, Swift spoke to Time about the course of her career, what actually went into preparing for the Eras tour, and watching her “enemies,” particularly Scooter Braun, go down by their own doing.

Swift also touched on being compared to Beyoncé since both women launched major tours this year, saying, “She’s the most precious gem of a person—warm and open and funny. And she’s such a great disrupter of music-industry norms. She taught every artist how to flip the table and challenge archaic business practices.”

“There were so many stadium tours this summer, but the only ones that were compared were me and Beyoncé,” she added. “Clearly it’s very lucrative for the media and stan culture to pit two women against each other, even when those two artists in question refuse to participate in that discussion.”

Here, other highlights from her discussion:

On this moment in her career being her “breakthrough“:

“I’ve been raised up and down the flagpole of public opinion so many times in the last 20 years,” Swift said. “I’ve been given a tiara, then had it taken away. It feels like the breakthrough moment of my career, happening at 33. And for the first time in my life, I was mentally tough enough to take what comes with that.”

“This is the proudest and happiest I’ve ever felt, and the most creatively fulfilled and free I’ve ever been. Ultimately, we can convolute it all we want, or try to overcomplicate it, but there’s only one question: Are you not entertained?”

She also added: “It’s not lost on me that the two great catalysts for this happening were two horrendous things that happened to me. The first was getting canceled within an inch of my life and sanity. The second was having my life’s work taken away from me by someone who hates me [Scooter Braun, who purchased Swift’s masters for her first six albums in 2019].”

On the aftermath of Kim Kardashian’s Snapchat takedown of her and why she saw it as a “career death”:

“Make no mistake—my career was taken away from me. You have a fully manufactured frame job, in an illegally recorded phone call, which Kim Kardashian edited and then put out to say to everyone that I was a liar. That took me down psychologically to a place I’ve never been before. I moved to a foreign country. I didn’t leave a rental house for a year. I was afraid to get on phone calls. I pushed away most people in my life because I didn’t trust anyone anymore. I went down really, really hard.”

On watching her “enemies”, including Scooter Braun, have their own downfalls from afar:

“Nothing is permanent. So I’m very careful to be grateful every second that I get to be doing this at this level, because I’ve had it taken away from me before. There is one thing I’ve learned: My response to anything that happens, good or bad, is to keep making things. Keep making art. But I’ve also learned there’s no point in actively trying to quote unquote defeat your enemies. Trash takes itself out every single time.”

On preparing for the Eras tour—and quitting drinking due to performing:

Swift said she started training six months ahead of the tour: “Every day I would run on the treadmill, singing the entire set list out loud. Fast for fast songs, and a jog or a fast walk for slow songs.”

She did a program her gym, Dogpound, made for her, incorporating strength training and conditioning. “Then I had three months of dance training, because I wanted to get it in my bones. I wanted to be so over-rehearsed that I could be silly with the fans, and not lose my train of thought,” she said, adding, “Learning choreography is not my strong suit.”

She called her Grammys night drinking “hilarious” but shared otherwise that she has stopped: “Doing that show with a hangover, I don’t want to know that world.”

On no longer being afraid living her life in the public eye:

“Over the years, I’ve learned I don’t have the time or bandwidth to get pressed about things that don’t matter,” Swift said. “Yes, if I go out to dinner, there’s going to be a whole chaotic situation outside the restaurant. But I still want to go to dinner with my friends. Life is short. Have adventures. Me locking myself away in my house for a lot of years—I’ll never get that time back. I’m more trusting now than I was six years ago.”

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