Inspiration can come from anywhere, even from a good binge-watch. Just ask Taylor Swift, who has drawn from all sorts of places to create her lyrics and visuals (she is quoted The way we were, Love story, and Kramer versus Kramer as crucial for the elaboration of the Very good short film). The next Midnights album is no exception, with a song title straight out of the golden age of television.
“I came across the phrase ‘Lavender Haze’ when I was looking at Mad Men and I watched it because I thought it was cool, and it turns out it was a common phrase that was used in the 50s where they just described being in love,” Swift recently revealed in a post. track title announcement. “For example, if you were in the ‘Lavender Haze,’ it meant you were in that all-encompassing glow of love, and I thought that was really beautiful.”
Truth be told, a Google search of the term brings up more marijuana strains than 50s slang scholarship. It features in the second season though. Mad Men episode “The Mountain King”, co-written by showrunner Matthew Weiner and Robin Veith (by IMDb). In the episode, Anna Draper (Melinda Page Hamilton) observes that Don (Jon Hamm) is “in the lavender mist” early in his relationship with Betty (January Jones).
The Mad Men the writers are unlikely to get any credit beyond this social media announcement, although the music industry has been dealing with credit issues lately. The tweens on Olivia Rodrigo’s album led to a flurry of post-release credits (including Swift for “déjà vu”, inspired by Lover track “Cruel Summer”). Even more recently, Beyoncé close review of Right Said Fred on his excerpt from “I’m Too Sexy” on Renaissance“The Alien Superstar”. (Incidentally, Right Said Fred is too credited on “Look What You Made Me Do” by Swift,as Swift’s chorus cadence mimics the “I’m Too Sexy” stream.)
Yet one sentence is not likely to attract Weiner and Veith Midnights Grammy (there isn’t much precedent for official credits on this kind of inspirational seed). However, they have officially entered the Swiftie Library Historical Archive, which could at least increase the number of streams. (Mad Men maybe no help, but a few more residual checks can’t hurt.) And they’re in good company; the collection of books, films, and TV shows that are part of the Swiftian lexicon is nothing to say either.
In recent years, Swift has moved away from the diaristic style of songwriting for which she is (in)famous—yet Midnightsbilled as “the stories of 13 sleepless nights scattered throughout my life”, could herald a return to form. Instead of attributing inspiration to diverse and varied love interests, the musician instead highlighted fictional characters and stories as the basis of her hits. For instance: Reputation“Look what you made me do” was assigned to Arya Stark from game of thrones; Lover‘Death By A Thousand Cuts’ Goes Back To Netflix’s Romantic Comedy A good person; folklore“My tears ricochet” would have been written after watching Marriage story; and still“Tolerate it” was inspired by the novel Rebecca Daphne Du Maurier, to name just a few examples.
When the clock strikes for Midnightsfans will no doubt be able to add a few more tracks to their playlists and watchlists alongside Mad Men. Bet now on the other media that may have inspired this latest era of Taylor Swift.