Taylor Swift, winner of Favorite Pop Album, Favorite Female Pop Artist, Favorite Music Video, Favorite Country Album, Favorite Female Country Artist, and Artist of the Year, poses in the press room during the 2022 American Music Awards at Microsoft Theater on November 20, 2022 in Los Angeles, California.
Taylor Swift’s newly released music video for “Lavender Haze” on Friday featured a groundbreaking co-star. In the video, which Swift wrote and directed, the musician casted transgender model Laith Ashley as her romantic partner.
Ashley thanked Swift on social media and didn’t shy away from the importance of the moment. He wrote in an Instagram post: “Thank you @taylorswift for allowing me to play a small part in your story. You are brilliant and this is an experience I will never forget. It was truly magical. Your storytelling abilities through your music and visuals continues to leave me in awe, inspired, and hopeful. Thank you for being an ally. Representation matters. AND LOVE WILL ALWAYS WIN!”
Swift added that she “adored” working with Ashley in posts of her own. She captioned an Instagram photo of herself from the music video set with the perfect description of the aesthetics: “The Lavender Haze video is out now. There is lots of lavender. There is lots of haze. There is my incredible costar @laith_ashley who I absolutely adored working with. This was the first video I wrote out of the 3 that have been released, and this one really helped me conceptualize the world and mood of Midnights, like a sultry sleepless 70’s fever dream. Hope you like it.”
One fan on Twitter wrote about Swift’s inclusion of a trans model and artist came at “a time when trans rights are increasingly under attack, this representation is major.” Commenting on the tweet, one fan said, “I was so moved by that! Taylor making a trans man of color her love interest in a video is wonderful. So happy for Laith!” Another wrote, “Love this song. Happy to see this representation.”
Watch the music video for “Lavender Haze” below:
Taylor Swift Reveals 'Midnights' Tracklist, Lana Del Rey Collaboration
Taylor Swift has been teasing her upcoming tenth studio album Midnights since the night of the MTV Video Music Awards on August 28 after her win for Best Video of the Year for “All Too Well (Taylor’s Version).” Via a fun segment on TikTok titled “Midnights Mayhem with Me,” Swift would reveal a track title from the album. To keep things random and fun for fans, the award-winning singer-songwriter used a bingo ball cage to randomly select which track title she would reveal. Numbered 1-13, the first track number she pulled was fittingly track number 13, Swift’s favorite number.
On Friday (October 7), Swift pulled her last and most shocking track reveal, track number 4. After admitting, “It’s been genuinely chaotic and I’ve enjoyed every second of it,” Taylor revealed the track is titled, “Snow On The Beach.” With a slight pause for dramatic effect, she adds, “featuring… Lana Del Rey.” The artist bashfully smiles and then hides away in the final episode of “Midnights Mayhem with Me.”
Taylor also shared a snippet of “the making of Midnights” on TikTok, featuring clips from being in the studio, playing piano, at home and other glimpses of her life.
Fans freaked out when they found out about Lana’s involvement in the album, with one person commenting, “QUEEN MOTHER LANA AND QUEEN TAYLOR.” Another wrote, “SHE KNOWS WHAT SHE DID.” Even the official TikTok account chimed in, writing, “this is literally the best ending to mayhem.”
Midnights will be released on Friday, October 21. Swift described Midnights as “the stories of 13 sleepless nights scattered” throughout her life. “We lie awake in love and in fear, in turmoil and in tears,” she shared. “We stare at walls and drink until they speak back. We twist in our self-made cages and pray that we aren’t—right in this minute—about to make some fateful life-altering mistake. This is a collection of music written in the middle of the night, a journey through terrors and sweet dreams. The floors we pace and the demons we face. For all of us who have tossed and turned and decided to keep the lanterns lit and go searching—hoping that just maybe, when the clock strikes twelve… we’ll meet ourselves.”
Below we have assembled Taylor’s TikToks in track sequential order: