As if we hadn’t already cried enough today! Taylor Swift gave a heartfelt speech at the All Too Well short film premiere in NYC today, essentially giving fans credit for the re-release of her old albums.
In front of a crowd of about a hundred or so fans, she said,
“Getting to rerelease these albums is something I wouldn’t be doing if you hadn’t empowered me and emboldened me to do so. You guys are so amazing about a very tough, hard thing I went through.”
“This is happening because you made this happen.”
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Taylor also explained that she no longer associates the song with the rough time she went through, but with her love affair with her fans. She told the crowd,
“[At the time], to me, it was very hard to perform it live. Now for me, honestly, this song is 100% about us and for you.”
In an interview on the red carpet, Taylor reiterated the same sentiment, saying,
“It’s a real celebration between [the fans and me] because we’ve been like this (crosses her fingers) for a long time and I love honoring that and I’m so happy they’re having fun.”
Taylor also sang “All Too Well (10 Minute Version)(Taylor’s Version)” at the premiere live for the first time. The performance was incredibly intimate as she sang an acoustic rendition with just her and her guitar.
“And I was thinking on the drive down, any time now / He’s gonna say it’s love, you never called it what it was.”
— Variety (@Variety) November 12, 2021
Fans have always surmised that the song was about Taylor’s 3-month-long relationship with Jake, which lasted from October 2010- January 2011. Neither Taylor nor Jake has ever confirmed the romance but tabloids claim that he broke her heart after a whirlwind romance.
The original recorded version of the song “All Too Well” was 5 minutes 27 seconds but rumors had swirled about a 10-minute version for years. So when Taylor announced that the long version of the song would finally be released on her album Red (Taylor’s Version), fans immediately jumped for joy. And it definitely did *not* disappoint. (You can see all the lyric differences in the two versions of “All Too Well” here).
In an interview with Jimmy Fallon on The Tonight Show on Thursday, November 12, Taylor gave us the backstory for the 10-minute version and it was certainly heartbreaking. She recalled,
“I was going through a bit of a sad time. And I was 22 and I was in band rehearsals and — I think I was 21 when I wrote this and I was in band rehearsals for a tour that I was about to go out on called the Speak Now Tour and I showed up for rehearsals and I just was really upset and sad and everyone could tell. It was really, like, not fun to be around me that day.”
“I started playing guitar and kind of like playing the same four chords over and over again. And I just started kind of — and the band sort of joined in and I started ad-libbing what I was going through and what I was feeling and it went on and the song kept building and building and building in intensity. And the song just went on for about you know 10 to 15 minutes of us doing this.”
Fortunately, Taylor’s sound guy was smart enough to record it and Taylor’s mom quickly nabbed it.
The musician eventually cut the sound down to about five minutes but the rumors of the 10-minute version always lingered.
So when Taylor went to re-record Red, she took the opportunity to give fans what they wanted for years. While on Late Night With Seth Meyers, she said,
“I get to really, I get to do things that I know [fans] wish I would have done the first time.”
“Because I’m always listening and I’m always lurking!”
You can listen to “All Too Well (10 Minute Version)(Taylor’s Version)” on Spotify among other streaming platforms. You can also watch the premiere of the All Too Well short film on YouTube at 7 pm EST.