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"All Too Well" is the fifth track from Taylor Swift's fourth studio album, Red. It was written by Swift and Liz Rose. The song has received acclaim from music critics so far. Taylor also played the song on the Red Tour and at the 2014 Grammy Awards after requests from fans.

The original ten minute version was released on November 12, 2021 as the 30th track of Red (Taylor's Version).[1]

Background and release

While collaborating with different writers on Red, Swift wrote the song along with Liz Rose. The song has been inspired from Swift's ex-boyfriend Jake Gyllenhaal according to some blogs. The song has been produced by Swift and Nathan Chapman.

It was the first song that Swift wrote for Red. The heart-wrenching break-up tune came after a six-month writing block that followed a particularly painful ending of a relationship. "There's a kind of bad that gets so overpowering you can't even write about it," she told USA Today of that time.

Swift has a said that the song was "the hardest to write on the album", saying; "“All Too Well” [was difficult to write emotionally] because it took me a really long time to filter through everything I wanted to put in the song without it being a 10 minute song, which you can’t put on an album. I wanted a story that could work in the form of a song and I called my co-writer Liz Rose and said, ‘Come over, we’ve gotta filter this down,’ and it took me a really long time to get it."

Critical reception

The song has received acclaim from music critics, who praised her song writing skills, and her ability to tell a story through a song, with many highlighting it as a standout on the album. Billboard gave a positive review to the song saying "Just like that, Swift snaps back to her core demographic: "All Too Well" is sumptuous country, with Swift "dancing 'round the kitchen in the refrigerator light" in the memory of a romance that has seemingly been buried in time. The tune would have fit snugly on Speak Now, and even touches upon some of the same themes as "Mine," but on Red it serves as a reminder that these songs will always remain in Swift's wheelhouse." About.com gave the song 4 out of 5 stars, saying that the song is "A mincing guitar figure."

Chart performance

The week her album Red was released, all of the songs charted in different countries due to its strong digital sale downloads. With this, the song debuted at number 80 on Billboard Hot 100, at number 59 on the Canadian Hot 100 and number 17 on the Hot Country Songs.

The 10 Minute-Version of this song, debuted at number 1 on Billboard Hot 100, number 1 on Billboard Global 200, number 1 on Billboard Global excluding U.S, and number 1 on Billboard Hot Country Songs.

Live performances

Taylor performed this song at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards on January 26, 2014 acoustically, using her piano and had her band play to add more depth.

She also performed this track as a part of the set list of The Red Tour, with a speech before she played it on the piano.

The ten minute version of this song was performed by Taylor on Saturday Night Live on November 13, 2021.

Hidden message

Hidden message: Maple latte

Lyrics

Original

I walked through the door with you
The air was cold
But something about it felt like home somehow
And I left my scarf there, at your sister's house
And you've still got it in your drawer, even now

Oh your sweet disposition
And my wide-eyed gaze
We're singing in the car getting lost upstate
The autumn leaves falling down like pieces into place
And I can picture it after all these days

And I know it's long gone and that magic's not here no more
And I might be okay but I’m not fine at all

'Cause there we are again on that little town street
You almost ran the red 'cause you were lookin’ over at me
Wind in my hair, I was there, I remember it all too well

Photo album on the counter
Your cheeks were turning red
You used to be a little kid with glasses in a twin sized bed
And your mother's telling stories about you on a tee ball team
You tell me about your past thinking your future was me

And I know it's long gone and there was nothing else I could do
And I forget about you long enough to forget why I needed to

'Cause there we are again in the middle of the night
We're dancing 'round the kitchen in the refrigerator light
Down the stairs, I was there, I remember it all too well
Yeah

Well maybe we got lost in translation
Maybe I asked for too much
But maybe this thing was a masterpiece
'Till you tore it all up
Running scared, I was there, I remember it all too well

Hey you called me up again just to break me like a promise
So casually cruel in the name of being honest
I'm a crumpled up piece of paper lying here
'Cause I remember it all, all, all, too well

Time won't fly
It's like I’m paralyzed by it
I'd like to be my old self again but I’m still trying to find it
After plaid shirt days and nights when you made me your own
Now you mail back my things and I walk home alone

But you keep my old scarf
From that very first week
'Cause it reminds you of innocence and it smells like me
You can't get rid of it
'Cause you remember it all too well

'Cause there we are again when I loved you so
Back before you lost the one real thing you've ever known
It was rare, I was there, I remember it all too well

Wind in my hair, you were there, you remember it all
Down the stairs, you were there, you remember it all
It was rare, I was there, I remember it all too well

Ten Minutes

[Verse 1]
I walked through the door with you, the air was cold
But something 'bout it felt like home somehow
And I left my scarf there at your sister's house
And you've still got it in your drawer, even now
Oh, your sweet disposition and my wide-eyed gaze
We're singing in the car, getting lost upstate
Autumn leaves falling down like pieces into place
And I can picture it after all these days

[Pre-chorus]
And I know it's long gone and
That magic's not here no more
And I might be okay, but I'm not fine at all
Oh, oh, oh

[Chorus]
'Causе there we arе again on that little town street
You almost ran the red 'cause you were lookin' over at me
Wind in my hair, I was there
I remember it all too well

[Verse 2]
Photo album on the counter, your cheeks were turning red
You used to be a little kid with glasses in a twin-sized bed
And your mother's telling stories 'bout you on the tee-ball team
You taught me 'bout your past, thinking your future was me
And you were tossing me the car keys, "fuck the patriarchy"
Key chain on the ground, we were always skipping town
And I was thinking on the drive down, any time now
He's gonna say it's love, you never called it what it was
'Til we were dead and gone and buried
Check the pulse and come back swearing it's the same
After three months in the grave
And then you wondered where it went to as I reached for you
But all I felt was shame and you held my lifeless frame

[Pre-chorus]
And I know it's long gone and
There was nothing else I could do
And I forget about you long enough
To forget why I needed to

[Chorus]
'Cause there we are again in the middle of the night
We're dancing 'round the kitchen in the refrigerator light
Down the stairs, I was there
I remember it all too well

And there we are again when nobody had to know
You kept me like a secret, but I kept you like an oath
Sacred prayer and we'd swear
To remember it all too well, yeah

[Bridge]
Well, maybe we got lost in translation
Maybe I asked for too much
But maybe this thing was a masterpiece
'Til you tore it all up
Running scared, I was there
I remember it all too well

And you call me up again just to break me like a promise
So casually cruel in the name of being honest
I'm a crumpled up piece of paper lying here
'Cause I remember it all, all, all

[Verse 3]
They say all's well that ends well, but I'm in a new Hell
Every time you double-cross my mind
You said if we had been closer in age maybe it would have been fine
And that made me want to die

The idea you had of me, who was she?
A never-needy, ever-lovely jewel whose shine reflects on you
Not weeping in a party bathroom
Some actress asking me what happened, you
That's what happened, you

You who charmed my dad with self-effacing jokes
Sipping coffee like you're on a late-night show
But then he watched me watch the front door all night, willing you to come
And he said, "It's supposed to be fun turning twenty-one"

[Chorus]
Time won't fly, it's like I'm paralyzed by it
I'd like to be my old self again, but I'm still trying to find it
After plaid shirt days and nights when you made me your own
Now you mail back my things and I walk home alone

But you keep my old scarf from that very first week
'Cause it reminds you of innocence and it smells like me
You can't get rid of it
'Cause you remember it all too well, yeah
'Cause there we are again when I loved you so
Back before you lost the one real thing you've ever known

[Post-Chorus]
It was rare, I was there
I remember it all too well
Wind in my hair, you were there
You remember it all
Down the stairs, you were there
You remember it all
It was rare, I was there
I remember it all too well

[Verse 4]
And I was never good at telling jokes, but the punch line goes
I'll get older, but your lovers stay my age
From when your Brooklyn broke my skin and bones
I'm a soldier who's returning half her weight
And did the twin flame bruise paint you blue?

Just between us, did the love affair maim you, too?
'Cause in this city's barren cold
I still remember the first fall of snow
And how it glistened as it fell
I remember it all too well

[Outro]
Just between us, did the love affair maim you all too well?
Just between us, do you remember it all too well?
Just between us, I remember it (Just between us), all too well
Wind in my hair, I was there, I was there
Down the stairs, I was there, I was there
Sacred prayer, I was there, I was there
It was rare, you remember it all too well
Wind in my hair, I was there, I was there
Down the stairs, I was there, I was there
Sacred prayer, I was there, I was there
It was rare, you remember it
Wind in my hair, I was there, I was there
Down the stairs, I was there, I was there
Sacred prayer, I was there, I was there
It was rare, you remember it
Wind in my hair, I was there, I was there
Down the stairs, I was there, I was there
Sacred prayer, I was there, I was there
It was rare, you remember it

Trivia

The 10-Minute Version of this song broke the record previously held by Don Mclean's "American Pie (Part I & II)" as the longest song to top the charts on the Billboard Hot 100 charts. Mclean's "American Pie" is 8:42 minutes long, while Swift's "All Too Well 10 Minute Version" is 10:13 minutes long.

References

External links

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