Written by Ashley Friedman
You know, it’s funny. I heard this song when it first came out and I thought eh — it’s a catchy pop track that Swifties are going to love because they’re die-hard fans and it’s also that song that Pitchfork is going to shit on because it seems like no song can ever be good enough for them:
“‘You Need to Calm Down’ is like one of those fancy unicorn cupcakes, an impossibly cute confection designed to distract you from the fact that it’s a mediocre dessert. I cannot think of something I would rather buy into less.’– Pitchfork
At first listen, I expected more myself — it’s off of her forthcoming album Lover and for some reason, I just wanted a less upbeat, catchy pop-song and a more mature track than what she has been releasing. I’m an original Taylor Swift fan and I miss the days of songs like “Love Story.”
But… look at me… there I was doing the exact thing Taylor Swift wanted me to do: Judging and critiquing someone who, at the end of the day, is a human being like me, like you, like your friends, like everyone that knew there was:
‘Sunshine on the street at the parade..‘
But, like Taylor says, we ‘would rather be in the dark age…’ thriving on the negative, ignoring the positive and hitching a ride on the bandwagon.
I’ve contemplated this article for a few days — since the song came out actually. ‘Do I really want to express my opinion on what seems like such a touchy, touchy subject?‘ Elicit Magazine isn’t known for ‘pushing the limit’ so to speak, but it wasn’t until “You Need To Calm Down” kept popping on my Spotify playlist, that I really listened to the lyrics and needed to write this.
It has caught the attention of the PRIDE community and yeah, it has “angered” a lot of people. But, have you followed Taylor Swift’s career? I mean, have you really paid attention to the things that she has accomplished because to me — there’s always a reason behind what she does. Not only is she a musician, but Taylor Swift is also a businesswoman.
Wholeheartedly… do you really think that Taylor Swift would feature a large amount of the PRIDE community in a video just to bring them down or just to make fun of them? Wait, wait, wait…
If you think that — are you calling the people that were part of this video stupid? The people that have played such a huge role in the PRIDE community and a positive one at that.
Wait, wait, wait…
Are you really shaming Ellen Degeneres — one of the first celebrities to come out — one of the first celebrities to allow people to not be ashamed in expressing who they are, what they stand for, what love is — whether it’s between a man or a woman, woman and woman etc.?
Are you ready to hop off that bandwagon yet? We’re hitting a few bumps here, and shit, you’re really starting to lose your balance on that thing.
The truth is, you’re the person that Taylor Swift wrote this song about.
‘And I ain’t tryna mess with your self-expression / But I’ve learned a lesson that stressin’ and obsessin’ ’bout somebody else is no fun…‘
As Taylor Swift put it in a recent Tumblr post:
‘Anyone trying to twist this positivity into something it isn’t needs to calm down.‘
Congratulations on your success Taylor, you never cease to amaze me. You used your clout to make a point and hey, I got it, I just hope that everyone else does too.