Location: It was a temporary mural and is no longer up.
Be still Swiftie hearts, the social media countdown tease may be over, but in addition to Taylor’s new single, she has also commissioned a mural in the Gulch neighborhood in Nashville. For days leading up to the release of new music, Taylor left cryptic clues all over her social media. The new Kelsey Montague wings were a piece of the puzzle to unveiling the new single “ME!”, and now that it’s out, let’s break it down with a mural and lyric analysis.
What’s in the Wings?
Kelsey Montague is famous for hiding symbols within her murals to represent various cities across the globe. Taylor Swift has a reputation of including “easter eggs” in posts, lyrics, and music videos. Together they make the perfect pair, and there are many classic Taylor icons in the new wings, so let’s take a closer look.
- There are 13 hearts in the wings, which we all know is Taylor’s lucky number.
- There are 7 stars, and the next studio album will be her 7th.
- Cats! Taylor famously adores her cats, and they even make a cameo in the music video for “ME!” She constantly posts pictures of her two cats Olivia and Meredith, however there are 3 in the mural. She has since confirmed on social media she now has added a new furry member to her family.
There are two ladybugs embedded in the wings. Ladybugs are a symbol of good luck and could possibly represent that bad omens are behind Taylor (the Reputation era).
- Pastel colors and rainbows of the mural match the color scheme of the teaser posts Taylor used as a countdown to the new single.
- Butterfly wings seem to represent a metamorphosis taking place as Taylor begins a new chapter of her life with new music (and an impending album).
- Taylor has posed with one of Kelsey Montague’s murals before. Back in 2014, Taylor snapped a photo with Montague’s New York City wings, which went viral.
Photo: Kelsey Montague & Taylor Swift
How does it tie to the lyrics?
The song “ME!” seems as though “Blank Space” and “You Belong With Me” had an ultra-pop baby. She embraces her “psycho” girlfriend persona, while still remaining adamant that she is worthy of the relationship in the song lyrics. Although Taylor claims she knows that she’s a handful and “I know I never think before I jump,” and “trouble’s gonna follow where I go,” she still proclaims, “you’ll never find another like me.” Right before the release at midnight on 4/26, Taylor noted that this song is about embracing individuality.
Before the release of the debut single, Taylor embraced the snake moniker given to her through nasty feuds and social media bullies. She seems to be turning a corner, embracing a change into the light (literally), with colorful flowers, hearts, and rainbows. In addition to being spotted wearing cowboy boots in the music video and a quick camera shot featuring a Dixie Chicks portrait, Taylor’s location selection of the mural might be an indicator of the new music to come. She famously bowed out of the country music scene and moved to New York City to create the 80’s synth-pop inspired album 1989. Since her Music City departure however, she has written the song “Better Man” for Little Big Town and collaborated with Sugarland on “Babe.” Could this new mural indicate that she is returning to her Nashville country roots? Whether sonically, thematically, lyrically, or through major collaborations, it will be interesting to see if Nashville has a presence in her 7th studio album. One thing we can be sure of however, is that if Reputation was a resurrection, this is a metamorphosis.
Heather Brown, a Nashville Guide writer
Hailing from the Old Dominion, I've easily adapted my "Virginia is for Lovers" slogan to the "Nashville is for Music Lovers" lifestyle. After moving to Music City from Oklahoma City, I've explored middle Tennessee through the lens of artists' paintbrushes and urban canvasses. I've enjoyed eating, sipping, and dancing my way through Tennessee's capital while pausing periodically to strike a pose throughout the journey.