From The Blue Nile to Charlie Puth, here are all the artists named in Taylor Swift's 'The Tortured Poets Department'

Taylor Swift Eras Tour in Singapore on March 2, 2024.
Taylor Swift.Ashok Kumar/TAS24/Getty Images
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  • Taylor Swift debuted her 11th studio album, "The Dead Poets Department," on Friday.

  • The project is a double album featuring 31 songs, some of which reference other artists.

  • Steve Nicks is mentioned on a track called "Clara Bow," which references a famed actor.

Taylor Swift has done it again.

After dropping her new album "The Tortured Poets Department," the singer dropped jaws by releasing a second part to the album mere hours later called "The Tortured Poets Department: The Anthology." The double album has a total of 31 songs.

In it, she outlines the loves and losses she's had while paying tribute to some of the artists and celebrities who have influenced her along the way — for better or worse.

Charlie Puth

Charlie Puth.
Charlie Puth.Lester Cohen/Getty Images

In the title track, "The Tortured Poets Department," Swift name-drops several famed artists, past and present. The first in the lineup is singer Charlie Puth.

"You smokеd, then ate seven bars of chocolate/ We declared Charlie Puth should be a bigger artist," Swift sings.

The name-drop caused some confusion among Swift's fans, who noticed that she and Puth hadn't worked together in the past. The only connection appears to be that Puth had a brief fling several years ago with Swift's close friend Selena Gomez.

Dylan Thomas

Dylan Thomas.
Dylan Thomas.Francis Reiss/Getty Images

Swift also makes a reference to Dylan Thomas, the famed Welsh poet.

In the chorus of her song, Swift sings: "I laughed in your face and said/ 'You're not Dylan Thomas, I'm not Patti Smith/ This ain't the Chelsea Hotel, we're modern idiots'/ And who's gonna hold you like me?"

Thomas, who is known for his poem, "Do not go gentle into that good night," frequented The Hotel Chelsea in New York City and lived there with his wife before his death in 1953, according to a website about the poet run by his family. The hotel was where Thomas worked on one of his final pieces before he was hospitalized and died.

A plaque outside the hotel was erected about a decade after Thomas' death, commemorating that he "lived and labored last here at the Chelsea Hotel and from here sailed out to die."

Patti Smith

Patti Smith performs in Santa Barbara, California.
Patti Smith.Scott Dudelson/Getty

In the same line, Swift also names Patti Smith, a poet and singer inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

By mentioning Thomas and Smith, Swift seems to suggest that she and her lost lover can't compare to the great artists who came before them.

Like Thomas, Smith also frequented The Hotel Chelsea and is named and quoted on the historic hotel's website.

"I loved this place, its shabby elegance, and the history it held so possessively… So many had written, conversed, and convulsed in these Victorian dollhouse rooms," Smith once said of the hotel, according to its website.

The Blue Nile

The Blue Nile band around 1980.
The Blue Nile.Kerstin Rodgers/Getty Images

Track nine of "The Dead Poets Department" featured a callout to The Blue Nile, a Scottish band formed in the 1980s. Swift's lyrics reference the band's 1989 song, "The Downtown Lights."

"Drownin' in the Blue Nile/ He sent me 'Downtown Lights'/ I hadn't heard it in a while," the lyrics read.

Swift's former beau Matty Healy said his band, The 1975, drew inspiration from The Blue Nile for their song, "Love It If We Made It."

"That definitely started out as us just killing 'Hats' every night before we went onstage, listening to that record until it broke. It's slightly different; it's like Blue Nile on steroids," Healy told Pitchfork in November 2018. "We wanted it to sound really machine-like, in an industrial sense."

Clara Bow

clara bow portrait 1928
Clara Bow in a portrait circa 1928.John Kobal Foundation/Getty Images

Swift named one song after Clara Bow, an actor who found fame in the 1920s amid the silent film era. Bow is considered the be the original Hollywood "It Girl," according to

"You look like Clara Bow/ In this light, remarkable/ All your life, did you know/ You'd be picked like a rose?" the lyrics read.

Swift's lyrics discuss finding fame, which she appears to relate to Bow.

"I'm not trying to exaggerate/ But I think I might die if I made it, die if I made it/ No one in my small town thought I'd meet these suits in LA," the lyrics read.

Stevie Nicks

Stevie Nicks photographed in the 70s.
Stevie Nicks in the 70s.Fin Costello/Getty

Swift also name-dropped Stevie Nicks in "Clara Bow." The legendary singer is known for her solo work and her time in the band Fleetwood Mac.

"You look like Stevie Nicks/ In '75, the hair and lips/ Crowd goes wild at her fingertips/ Half moonshine, a full eclipse," Swift sings.

The pair have a long friendship. They performed together at the 2010 Grammy Awards — just months after Swift was thrust into the spotlight when Ye, formerly Kanye West, snatched the mic from her hands at the 2009 VMAs.

Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift performs during her Eras Tour.
Taylor Swift performs during her Eras Tour.Kevin Mazur/TAS23/Getty

Swift finally names herself in "Clara Bow," though it seems to be in a less complimentary light. She sings that she lacks "edge" compared to the star she's praising, whose future is "dazzling."

"You look like Taylor Swift/ In this light, we're lovin' it/ You've got edge, she never did/ The future's bright, dazzling," Swift sings.

It's not the first time Swift mentioned herself by her full name in a song, and she tends to be self-deprecating when she does it.

"Who is Taylor Swift anyway? Ew," she sings in "22," a pop hit off her "Red" album.

The Starting Line

The Starting Line at Vans Warped Tour in May 2005.
The Starting Line.Marsaili McGrath/Getty Images

The Starting Line is a pop-punk band Swift referenced in "The Black Dog," the first song on "The Tortured Poets Department: The Anthology."

"How you don't miss me/ In The Black Dog/ when someone plays The Starting Line/ And you jump up/ but she's too young to know this song," the lyrics read.

Fans online speculated that Swift mentioned The Starting Line as an allusion to her former flame, Healy. Healy's band, The 1975, covered a 2002 song by "The Starting Line" while touring in 2023, according to The Independent.

Kim Kardashian

Kim Kardashian.
Kim Kardashian.Christopher Polk/Variety via Getty Images

Although Kim Kardashian is never mentioned by name is Swift's lyrics, many fans and outlets think "ThanK you aIMee" is about the pair's beef.

The song's title has the letters "K," "I," and "M," capitalized, spelling "KIM."

"When I picture my hometown/ There's a bronze spray-tanned statue of you/ And a plaque underneath it/ That threatens to push me down the stairs, at our school," the lyrics read.

The feud began in 2016 when Kardashian defended her former husband Ye — formally known as Kanye West — and his song "Famous."

"I feel like me and Taylor might still have sex / Why? I made that bitch famous," Ye's lyrics read.

Swift's publicist said she was not aware that West planned to describe her as "that bitch" in a February 2016 statement. However, West said in X posts that he and Swift had a phone conversation about the lyric, during which she "gave her blessings."

By July, Kardashian shared a series of snapchats showing a purported phone call between Swift and West. The videos showed Swift and West talking, but there was no direct reference to the lyrics in question. Swift then called out the former couple, sparking a wave of backlash that inspired KimYe fans to use snake emojis to describe Swift.

Swift later dropped her 2017 album "Reputation," which some fans considered a career-shifting album that contains jabs at West and Kardashian.

The feud sparked again in 2020 when the full phone conversation between West and Swift leaked. Fans of Swift noted that the leaked call didn't make reference to the "that bitch" lyric, but Kardashian doubled down on her support for West with X posts.

Read the original article on Business Insider