Taylor Swift gave fans four gifts the night before her first show on The Eras tour. She dropped four new songs: three Taylor’s Versions of songs she had already released, and a track from her Lover album that had never been heard before called “All the Girls You Loved Before.”
The title seems to be a play on the popular young adult book and Netflix series To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before. The first movie version of the book came out in 2018, around the same time that Swift was making Lover.
And the lyrics seem to be Swift thinking about her boyfriend Joe Alwyn’s life before she met him and thanking the people who came before her for making him the man he is now.
Swift’s lyrics like “Every woman you knew brought you here/I want to teach you what forever feels like” and “All the girls you’ve loved before (Ooh)/Made you the one I’ve fallen for/Every dead-end street led you straight to me” show how serious she is about him and how she sees their love as serious, the endgame, and fated.
Many of the love songs on Lover were actually about Swift’s current boyfriend, Alwyn, who she has been with since the fall of 2016. Fans even thought that they might have gotten married in secret after hearing the album.
Since then, Swift and Alwyn haven’t even confirmed this rumor or the other one that says they’re secretly engaged. In April, Alwyn told WSJ magazine, “If I had a pound for every time I think I’ve been told I’m engaged, I’d have a lot of pound coins. I mean, if the answer was yes, I wouldn’t say, and if it was no, I wouldn’t say either.”
Still, when Lover came out in August 2019, Alwyn and Swift had been dating for about three years and were very serious about it.
It doesn’t seem out of place at all for Swift to write another love song about Alwyn and Taylor about their relationship and how they met. This is especially true if the lyrics refer to other songs Swift has written about Alwyn.
Here are the lyrics from Genius for you to read and think about, along with a few notes on the references. Here’s where you can hear the song: