Here’s why Taylor Swift songs are all over the Summer I Turned Pretty soundtrack
11 July 2022, 16:56 | Updated: 18 July 2022, 15:51
The original The Summer I Turned Pretty book was actually partly inspired by a very iconic Taylor Swift song.
Listen to this article
If you've watched The Summer I Turned Pretty on Prime Video, chances are you've fallen in love with its soundtrack. Based on the Jenny Han books of the same name, the drama tells the story of a teenage girl named Belly (Lola Tung) who is torn between three boys. The series features iconic songs by everyone from Phoebe Bridgers to The Pussycat Dolls.
Naturally, the romantic, coming-of-age drama is the perfect fit for Taylor Swift songs and, not one, not two, but five of them appear in the show. 'Lover', 'This Love (Taylor's Version)', 'False God', 'The Way I Loved You (Taylor's Version)' and 'Cruel Summer' are all in pivotal scenes and, as a result, their streams have skyrocketed since the series dropped.
What you may not realise though is that one of those songs helped inspire The Summer I Turned Pretty in the first place.
Revealing how Taylor Swift helped inspire The Summer I Turned Pretty, Jenny told Cinema Blend: "I make playlists for books and I tend to do that at the beginning of the writing process to help me sort of tap into the emotional vein of the stories." She then let slip: "'The Way I Loved You' - that's something I was listening to when I was writing it originally."
Jenny continued to say: "So the fact that we got it was just an incredible gift." The first The Summer I Turned Pretty book was originally published in 2009 shortly after Taylor released Fearless. Jenny also told E! that she almost dedicated the second book, It's Not Summer Without You, to Taylor: "These songs really helped me get to the finish line".
'The Way I Loved You' specifically is about dating someone who is perfect on paper, but missing the rush you felt with a previous lover that made you feel intense emotions. Naturally, it applies to Belly trying to make relationships work with Jeremiah and Cam only realise that she doesn't love either of them the way that she loves Conrad.
Which Taylor Swift songs are in The Summer I Turned Pretty soundtrack?
- 'Cruel Summer' - Plays in the background at the beginning of the episode when Belly is getting ready to go to Cousin's Beach and Taylor is asking if she will finally tell Conrad how she feels about him. (1:58)
- 'Lover' - Plays as soon as Conrad first appears on screen when Belly arrives at Cousin's. (8:17)
- 'False God' - Plays in the background when Belly and Conrad are about to kiss for the first time, but Jeremiah interrupts them. (39:34)
- 'The Way I Loved You (Taylor's Version)' - Plays during the ball scene when Jeremiah is missing and Conrad swoops in and asks Belly to dance; it becomes evident that they were always meant to be together. (29:19)
- 'This Love (Taylor's Version)' - Plays when Conrad apologises to Belly for being so closed off and the pair passionately kiss each other for the first time at the end of the episode. (39:55)
Discussing getting Taylor on the actual soundtrack, Jenny told Cinema Blend: "If you're a fan of The Summer I Turned Pretty, I'm pretty sure you're a fan of Taylor Swift. And I know this because so many fans have asked me to put her music on the show and I just never knew if we were gonna be able to or not."
She added: "So when we were, I just, I couldn't believe it. That's probably the most excited I've been in the whole process and the fact that we got like five total, which I'm really excited for the fans to see, because it will be like, I think maybe unexpected at times at certain big moments."
Taylor even debuted 'This Love (Taylor's Version)' in The Summer I Turned Pretty trailer. Via Instagram, she wrote: "Thank you @jennyhan for debuting my version of This Love!! I’ve always been so proud of this song and I’m very 🥺🥺🥺 about this turn of events."
Taylor hasn't specified why she gave Jenny the rights to five of her songs but, given how well they fit the story and how open Jenny has been about her love of Taylor, it's no wonder she said yes.
Fingers crossed we get more iconic Taylor moments in season 2!
Get to know The Summer I Turned Pretty cast here:
- Lola Tung: 13 facts about the Summer I Turned Pretty actress you need to know
- Christopher Briney: 16 facts about the Summer I Turned Pretty actor you need to know
- Gavin Casalegno: 17 facts about The Summer I Turned Pretty actor you need to know