I’ve never thought about songwriting as a weapon, I’ve only thought about it as a way to help me get through love and loss and sadness and loneliness and growing up. When I write songs it’s never a conscious decision—it’s an idea that floats down in front of me at four in the morning or in the middle of a conversation or on a tour bus or in the mall or in an airport bathroom. I never know when I’m gonna get an idea and I never know what it’s gonna be.
2013: Taylor Swift opened the 2013 Billboard Music Awards with a… well, a happy-go-lucky stroll, which turned into a spectacularly choreographed dance party through the halls of the MGM Grand Garden Arena, which morphed into a ride on the back of a bicycle through the crowd, which transformed into a soaring rendition of the back half of “22” when she finally reached the stage. Swift would go on to win Top Artist of the Year later that evening for an incredible run behind her Red album, but really, she would have been a strong contender based solely on that on-the-go opening show.