Grimes Says She Came Up With Her Song ‘California’ by ‘Doing Taylor Swift Cosplay’


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Taylor Swift may be one of the most prolific songwriters of our time, but for one of Grimes‘ songs, she actually serves as the muse.


In a Tuesday (Oct. 24) conversation with K-Pop girl group Aespa hosted by Rolling Stone in celebration of both acts’ love of tech innovation, Grimes revealed that her song “California” was made with the “Anti-Hero” singer in mind. “‘California,’ I think I was just doing Taylor Swift cosplay,” the musician said of the track, which came out in 2015 as part of her album Art Angels.

“But it’s also vaguely about how the media is obsessed with portraying you as this troubled soul or something,” Grimes added. “I don’t know if you guys get that the same way in your media.”

“Oh, we definitely get that,” agreed Aespa’s Giselle, adding to bandmates Karina, Winter and Ningning in Korean, “Like how the media tries to portray us badly, scandals, things like that.”

The lyrics on “California” reflect the pressures of public scrutiny and exploitation, themes Swift herself has sung about on songs such as “Nothing New” and “Lucky One.” “‘Cause I get carried away/ Commodifying all the pain,” Grimes sings on the track. “Bad things they see in me, I cannot see myself/ When you get bored of me, I’ll be back on the shelf.”

The “Oblivion” artist’s revelation comes shortly after she endorsed the idea of a Swift presidential bid on Twitter, writing, “In many ways Taylor Swift is the only presidential candidate who can unite the country.” She added at the time, “Trump v Swift is totally occurring in a parallel universe rn.”

Swift has never hinted at being interested in running for President of the United States, not that she’s even old enough to do so. Grimes, however, isn’t the only person who’s taken to the idea. The View‘s Alyssa Farah Griffin, a former communications staffer for Trump, recently said that the “Karma” pop star is “probably the only person” who could defeat Trump “once and for all.”

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