Taylor Swift fans were surprised to discover her boyfriend Joe Alwyn penned some songs on Folklore, and he got to flex his writing muscles even more on her recent follow-up Evermore. On Nov. 25, Swift revealed that Alwyn is William Bowery, a songwriter credited on two of the tracks on her eighth studio album. Then Tay surprised fans with yet another narrative album, Folklore’s sister album, Evermore. Like her last album, there are songs from Bowery (aka Alwyn) on Evermore. If you’re wondering which Evermore songs were written by Joe Alwyn, basically they’re all the moody ones.
In the Disney+ concert film, folklore: the long pond studio sessions, Swift revealed Bowery was Alwyn, confirming fans’ suspicions of her beau using a pseudonym. Once fans knew Alwyn co-penned "Betty," the song named after Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds’ daughter, and "Exile," it wasn’t hard to imagine he ~might~ contribute to further Swift projects. Now that Evermore is here, it’s happened sooner rather than later, with her boyfriend co-writing three of the moodiest tracks on the album: "Champagne Problems," "Coney Island," and "Evermore."
Fans figured out the songs in one fell swoop thanks to Swift, who commented that she wrote "3 songs with William Bowery" in the comment section of the official music video for "Willow." Once fans knew that, they scoured the writing credits.
The songs feature moody vibes and plenty of references to past tunes in Swift’s catalog. For starters, "Champagne Problems" takes on college sweethearts "who had very different plans for the same night, one to end it and one who brought a ring," as Swift described in her album announcement to fans. But the song is bringing up some huge "All Too Well" vibes.
Swifties are also finding connections between "Champagne Problems" and "All Too Well," noting that the songs merge together near-seamlessly. According to TikTok user @faithcore, the two tunes use the same chord progression.
"Coney Island" takes on a few song references, drawing parallels to Swift’s "Delicate," the Red bonus track "The Moment I Knew," and "Dear John" in its lyrics, and may have even referenced "Exile" from Folklore.
For example, the line, "Did I close my fist around something delicate? Did I shatter you?" sounds like a direct reference to the title of "Delicate." The National’s Matt Berninger, who is featured on the track, sings the line, "Were you standing in the hallway with a big cake, happy birthday?" which should take Swifties back to that Red bonus track. The song also manages to bring up "Dear John" in the line, "Did I paint your bluest skies the darkest grey?"
And finally, "Evermore" may have referenced Swift’s Reputation era track "Call It What You Want," by talking about "gray November" in the lyrics. To make Evermore even more special, Alwyn also plays the piano on the titular track.
Each of the moodiest tunes showcases Bowery’s *ahem, Alwyn’s* hidden songwriting skills, because who knew Swift’s songs with her man would manage to seamlessly blend references and the feels simultaneously? Here’s hoping for even more collaboration from this loved up songwriting duo in the future.
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