A TALE OF TWO TAYLORS
Taylor SWIFT is on the brink of something big. Last week, it emerged that the singer/songwriter could become the first ever billionaire pop star when she renegotiates her music contract in November – for the first time since finding fame aged 16. How did she celebrate? With a low-key dinner with her boyfriend, British actor Joe Alwyn, at Covent Garden’s Hawksmoor (a £4.50 bowl of thrice-cooked chips, anyone?).
But then herein lies the ‘reinvention of Taylor’. There’s Taylor the recordbreaking mega star currently in the midst of a sell-out world tour. And there’s Taylor who, according to friends, has spent the last year secretly dating Joe and is ‘desperate to keep her feet on the ground amid the fanfare of her stratospheric career’.
‘From the very early stages of their meeting, Taylor’s relationship with Joe has been anything but showy,’ said an insider. ‘She’s tried very hard to keep it that way because, historically, things have always gone wrong for Taylor when her relationships become seen as public property and they become a circus.
‘One of their first dates was a dive bar in New York, and it wasn’t long before Joe took Taylor to his favourite pub in North London for fish and chips. She makes a huge effort in leaving her entourage behind and sometimes even her security, so she and Joe can enjoy relatively normal date nights to keep their relationship grounded. They’ve managed to slip out numerous times completely under the radar.’
In June this year, during a five-day break from her record-selling Reputation world tour, the pair were seen at British pub The Flask in North London, near where Joe lives, and reportedly enjoyed a pint of London Pride beer each before leaving in a waiting car.
It’s in stark contrast to the circus that surrounded Taylor’s last high-profile relationship, with British actor Tom Hiddleston in 2016, when the pair became infamous for their public displays of affection. The singer was widely mocked when she hosted a 4 July party in Rhode Island where Tom wore a T-shirt emblazoned with the message ‘I heart TS’. After the pair split, Taylor disappeared from the public eye for months.
‘Joe is relatively new to showbusiness compared to Taylor, and she loves that he still has an innocence about him and isn’t jaded by the industry. When he’s not filming a movie he prefers to hang out with his friends in London or his brothers, who are all big fans of Taylor.
‘She’s had many a Sunday roast with his mates and with his family and she blends in perfectly. They’re both enjoying keeping their relationship as much out of the spotlight as they can for now, and they’ve made a pact not to talk about one another yet in the press. It really boils down to Taylor not wanting to jinx this relationship and have it turn out like her others. She wants this one to last the distance,’ we’re told.
Reports surfaced last week that when Taylor’s deal with Big Machine Records expires in November, she could be offered anything up to $200 million by a rival record company. But our insider reveals the figures could reach even higher. No other artist of her generation has made this kind of business move.
‘ Taylor is at a hugely pivotal moment in her career right now; the music industry is a hotbed of gossip over what she’s going to do when her contract is up. There’s talk of her staying and taking control, but whatever happens, this is more than likely shaping up to be a billion-dollar deal that will make Taylor one of the most successful recording artists of all time,’ the insider explains.
Despite this, Taylor is adamant that her unflashy romance with Joe will remain exactly how it is. ‘ This is also a big turning point for Taylor in her love life. It’s one of the longest relationships she’s had, and to her, that’s more important than anything,’ our source says. She certainly doesn’t want the huge success of her career to put a strain on her and Joe, and she will fight to keep what they have to themselves for as long as she can.’
taylor will fight to keep what they have to themselves
From far left: Taylor on stage; in Covent Garden with Joe; leaving a Highgate pub