Taylor Swift wears a golden celebrity crown (or cowboy hat, as it were) but did she steal lyrics to get it?
A controversy surrounding the Grammy Award-winning country/pop singer is currently brewing, suggesting that she may have plagiarized lyrics from another artist.
With the release of Taylor Swift’s Red, some took note of the lyrics to the song “All Too Well,” pointing out one line that seems to be a direct and nearly word-for-word rip-off of Matt Nathanson’s 2003 song “I Saw.”
Swift’s lyric reads “And I forget about you long enough to forget why I needed to,” while Nathanson’s reads “And I’ll forget about you long enough to forget why I need to.”
What’s worse for Swift, she has admitted in the past to being a fan of Nathanson, and has performed with his lyrics written on her arm.
Red sold 1.2 million copies in its first week of release, debuting at number one on the Billboard 200 chart. The album has topped charts worldwide, and scored the highest number one debut in the US for the 2010s decade. Red has also earned Swift significant critical praise, with commentators applauding her versatility and experimentation. The meteoric success of Taylor Swift and Red, as well as the attention afforded to the singer, seem to have made a plagiarism accusation inevitable, but is it true?
Nathanson himself took to Twitter, calling Swift a thief:
His critical tweets have since been deleted, and thus far, Swift’s reps have not commented on the brewing controversy.
Here’s a side-by-side comparison of Taylor Swift’s “All Too Well” and Matt Nathanson’s “I Saw.” What do you think? Did Taylor Swift plagiarize Nathanson’s song, or is it an honest mistake? Sound off in the comments below the videos.