On December 13, 1989, the most important artist of our time was born, capable, while still very young, of overshadowing all the brightest stars in music history. Taylor Swift is a musician, singer, and songwriter of undisputed talent, as well as a brilliant businesswoman. Are we exaggerating? Not so much, given the numbers that punctuate this girl's success, which has remained simple despite now being able to influence consumption and even the GDP of the United States. In this book by the journalist Michele Lallai (published in Italian by Pendragon), written not only for Swifties, Tay's life and career are traced, starting from her debut, characterised by typical country sounds, to Midnights and the triumphant Eras Tour, with sold-out dates all over the world and millions of fans under her stage. The first ten albums are described and analysed here, 144 songs in an unprecedented in-depth musical examination of her oeuvre. In parallel, the reader can witness the salient episodes of her life, both artistic and personal, made up of triumphs and fears, happy and dramatic relationships, collaborations, and betrayals, which compose a well-rounded portrait of a true media, social, cultural, and entrepreneurial phenomenon. The One.

I would start by asking you how the work came about, and how did you go about researching such a multifaceted character?

You are right—a multifaceted character with interesting insights coming from all aspects of his life. Writing, music, private life, character psychology, and gossip are inseparably linked. For this reason, the research was done on all these aspects at the same time. I wanted to make a book that focused not only on her music but also on her person and her artistic journey, and this made the work sometimes tiring for me. Also, the sources are not often true, and sensationalism and conjecture sometimes take over from the truth of the facts, so there was also a lot of fact-checking involved.

Do you think Taylor's origins and background are still evident in the artist we admire today?

Absolutely, both in terms of the themes addressed in the lyrics and the approach to the difficulties. Already with the pandemic albums, she has shown a new mature and delicate side that is nothing more than the expression of her soul as a dreamy child, while in Midnights she has decided to face the wounds and demons that she has been carrying around since childhood and that were more than evident in the simple genuineness of her first albums. I'm very curious about what's to come!

The song-by-song approach of your volume is truly magnificent. What do Taylor's songs tell us about his human and professional development?

Thank you very much! You know the game where you have to connect the dots? Every single one of Taylor's songs is one of those dots, and with the ‘song by song’ approach, I wanted to connect them to reach the final drawing, which is a portrait of the artist and the person. Those who know her know how intimate and personal taste there is in every verse she writes and how much one can identify with the situations, feelings, and images she expresses in her songwriting. I also did not want to leave out the technical musical analysis, which is something I particularly care about, because her journey through different instruments, genres, and production also speaks volumes about her expressive versatility.

The book is perfectly usable by fans and non-fans alike. What do you hope your readers will learn about Swift?

I wanted to write a book that was simple in its fruition, from the point of view of vocabulary and approach to analysis, but that could also go deep into the character. What I wanted to emphasise, beyond the simple biographical part or the study of lyrics and music, is that Taylor's entire career can show us the human and psychological evolution of an artist who, beyond her innate artistic, communicative, and entrepreneurial skills, is a person like any other who suffers and rejoices for things common to all human beings. In Taylor's growth path, there is everyone's growth path. The maturation from child to girl and then to woman, with all the psychological pain and problems that characterise the various stages of life. If she is followed and appreciated by millions and millions of people around the world, it is precisely for this reason.

Can I ask you what future projects you are working on?

I can tell you that Taylor still has a lot to say and tell, and given the success of this book and the demand from fans, I'm working on a new volume that delves even deeper into the discography and the person, also looking at bonus tracks from all the LPs, off-album singles, collaborations, etc. More news about it will come in due course!