August

Album: Folklore (2020)
Charted: 23

Songfacts®:

  • Here, Swift sings of a summer romance that was destined not to last. It is part two of three Folklore tracks about a teenage love triangle between the characters Betty, James and an unnamed girl. This song is from the perspective of the unnamed girl, who Swift imagines being called either Augusta or Augustine; the first part, "Cardigan," is from Betty's, and the third part, "Betty," is from James'.
  • Swift doesn't tell us why Inez's relationship with Augusta/Augustine ended, but on the third part she explains it was because James was also seeing his regular girlfriend, Betty. However, there is a hint in the chorus when Inez admits to James, "'Cause you were never mine."
  • Swift wrote and produced the song with Jack Antonoff, who is also known for his work with Lorde and Lana Del Rey. A regular Swift collaborator, he has credits on six Folklore tracks. Antonoff tweeted that this song and another Folklore track, "My Tears Ricochet," are his favorite things he's ever done with Swift.
  • The song title comes from it being set in August. According to Swift, it started with imagery of "the sun-drenched month of August, sipped away like a bottle of wine." Swift likely placed it as the eighth track on Folklore's track listing as August is the eighth month of the year.
  • This was the first song Swift wrote of the "Betty" love triangle. She admitted to Entertainment Weekly it's strange this was the first of the three as "it's the song from the other girl's perspective."
  • Swift's original intention was to write a song from the perspective of a girl who was experiencing love for the first time. "And then all of a sudden," said the singer, "she's treated like she's the other girl, because there was another situation that had already been in place, but 'August' girl thought she was really falling in love."

    Swift added that after Antonoff sent her the instrumental, she "wrote the song pretty much on the spot; it just was an intuitive thing."

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