Taylor Swift gave a rare interview to Rolling Stone in which she explained the backstory behind the notorious, secretly recorded phone call with Kanye West that his wife, Kim Kardashian, leaked on Snapchat in 2016.
Kardashian leaked the call amid a feud over the song “Famous” from West’s Life of Pablo album, which contained the lyrics “I feel like me and Taylor might still have sex / Why? I made that bitch famous.” For anyone who may have spent the last decade frozen in a cryogenic chamber, the lyrics were a reference to West rushing the stage at the 2009 MTV VMAs during Swift’s acceptance speech.
After Kardashian shared the phone conversation that seemingly confirmed Swift was fine with being referenced in the song, the pop star put out a statement claiming she never actually consented to the line “I made that bitch famous.” In the Rolling Stone interview, Swift maintains that she never consented to being called a “bitch.”
“I started to feel like we reconnected, which felt great for me—because all I ever wanted my whole career after that thing happened in 2009 was for him to respect me,” Swift told the magazine in regards to forging a friendship with West and being tapped to present him with the MTV Video Vanguard award in 2015. “He called me up, maybe a week or so before the event, and we had maybe over an hour-long conversation, and he’s like, ‘I really, really would like for you to present this Vanguard Award to me. This would mean so much to me,’ and went into all the reasons why it means so much, because he can be so sweet.”
She added: “And so I wrote this speech up, and then we get to the VMAs and I make this speech and he screams, ‘MTV got Taylor Swift up here to present me this award for ratings!’ And I’m standing in the audience with my arm around his wife, and this chill ran through my body. I realized he is so two-faced. That he wants to be nice to me behind the scenes, but then he wants to look cool, get up in front of everyone, and talk shit.”
Although Swift was angry, she says she took the slight in stride after Yeezy sent her a bouquet of apology flowers. “And I was like, ‘You know what? I really don’t want us to be on bad terms again. So whatever, I’m just going to move past this.’ So when he gets on the phone with me, and I was so touched that he would be respectful and, like, tell me about this one line in the song,” Swift explained of the line about the two of them maybe having sex in the future.
“When I heard the song, I was like, ‘I’m done with this. If you want to be on bad terms, let’s be on bad terms, but just be real about it,'” Swift said before pointing out that he pulled the same thing on Drake. “He gravely affected the trajectory of Drake’s family and their lives. … Getting close to you, earning your trust, detonating you.”