The decade's most triggering comedy
Taylor Swift is arguably the most famous pop star in the world right now. But is she also a witch?
She’s currently riding the wave of her massively popular, eternally sold out Eras Tour all the way to the bank. Industry insiders estimate the worldwide sensation will make the 33-year-old singer a billionaire.
There’s no denying that the “Karma” composer, who’s been releasing albums since 2006 and writing songs since the age of 14, is at the absolute top of her game right now. Swift’s success and massive influence is so extreme that some followers have accused her of using witchcraft to reach those levels of fame, with some referring to Swift’s devotees as her “coven.” The rumors are so pervasive that the singer herself addressed them in a social media post.
So what’s up with Taylor Swift? Why do so many people believe she’s achieving mega success through occult practices?
First, it’s important to clarify that the Pennsylvania-born singer has never expressly encouraged witchcraft or other occult practices to her hundreds of millions of followers. While Swift is notoriously private about most facets of her personal life, she did identify as a Christian in the 2018 documentary “Miss Americana.” The conversation was spurred by Swift coming out as politically progressive for the first time.
“I can’t see another commercial and see Marsha Blackburn disguising these policies behind the words ‘Tennessee Christian values.’ Those aren’t ‘Tennessee Christian values.’ I live in Tennessee. I’m a Christian. That’s not what we stand for,” the singer said at the time. Prior to this revelation, she’d been criticized for years for remaining politically neutral in public. That all changed following Donald Trump’s presidency and the implementation of conservative policies she disagreed with.
For example, Swift is also explicitly pro-choice, calling abortion bans in her home state “shocking and awful.”
Other than that comment, Swift has never publicly discussed her religious views and if she practices any form of worship.
She did, however, acknowledge the ongoing accusations of witchcraft in a post she shared on both X and Instagram on November 14.
The video clip showed Swift performing the song “Labyrinth” from her 2022 album, Midnights. The video showed how right at the point that Swift sang the lyric, “I thought the plane was going down / How’d you turn it right around,” an airplane could be seen flying over the concert venue.
“Never beating the sorcery allegations,” Swift joked in the caption.
Never beating the sorcery allegations ✨🛬✨ pic.twitter.com/d0mlvF4gZW
— Taylor Swift (@taylorswift13) November 13, 2023
This little dig likely refers to so many other similar events that have taken place at Swift’s shows. Taken apart, they may have been seen as coincidences, but since the timing always lines up so perfectly, it’s led some of Swift’s followers to accuse her of projecting some kind of otherworldly influence.
For example, earlier this year, a bolt of lightning struck above the venue just as Taylor sang the lyrics: “I’d dance in a storm / In my best dress” from her 2008 song “Fearless.” There was also literal lightning while Swift performed the 10-minute version of the song “All Too Well.” Right when the superstar sang the line, “F*** the patriarchy,” a bolt of lightning flashed across the sky.
Besides storms, there have been other coincidences at Swift’s concerts. On one occasion, fireworks went off in the distance during the instrumental part of the song “Enchanted.” In April, the Florida sky turned pink just in time for the performer to sing the romance-themed song, “Lover.”
taylor finally got her lover songs at sunset like she wanted and it is stunning pic.twitter.com/Tve4e5YCvF
— laura💜 (@folklorefairies) April 15, 2023
During the Mexican leg of the Eras tour in August, rain started pouring on Swift as she performed “Midnight Rain” for the cheering crowd.
It’s not just coincidences leading fans to speculations about witchcraft. Swift’s Eras tour, which kicked off in March 2023, faced some criticism in the beginning as the entire performance for the song “Willow” was rife with occult visuals.
During the song, Swift and a group of dancers don long cloaks and carry glowing orange orbs as they move around the stage in a deliberately ritualistic manner. One TikTok video questioning that portion of the show went viral, with the content creator saying, “This is Taylor Swift’s song ‘Willow’ where she is a witch during rituals. The first video you saw was taken by a fan the other night at the concert, and he says, ‘Yes, summon the demons, b*tch!’”
Swift herself commented on the original video, suggesting that “summon the demons, b*tch” could replace the current crowd chant, “1, 2, 3, let’s go b*tch,” which many fans already say at her shows. She added several laughing-crying emojis, indicating she believed it was all a big joke.
Other videos of movie audiences screening the movie version of the singer’s concert, “Taylor Swift: The Era’s Tour,” depict theater attendees dancing in circles during the “Willow” portion of the film.
Before the Eras Tour, Swift faced negative feedback about the official music video for “Willow,” which also includes occult and ritualistic imagery. In the video, Swift goes into the woods at night with other individuals in hooded cloaks and masks. They all dance around a fire in a display that some deemed a celebration of witchcraft.
During a 2020 YouTube Q&A, Swift said the instrumentals for the song reminded her of spell-casting, which was her reasoning for including those visuals despite them not matching up to the lyrics of the song.
“Willow is about intrigue, desire and the complexity that goes into wanting someone. I think it sounds like casting a spell to make someone fall in love with you (an oddly specific visual),” she said at the time.
The Grammy Award-winning artist mentioned witchcraft again with an X post about a new remix of “Willow” she shared in December 2020.
“Witches be like ‘Sometimes I just want to listen to music while pining away/sulking/staring out a window.’ It’s me. I’m witches. Never fear, the ‘willow lonely witch remix’ is here,” she wrote in December 2020 along with a crystal ball emoji.
Witches be like “Sometimes I just want to listen to music while pining away/sulking/staring out a window.” It’s me. I’m witches. Never fear, the “willow lonely witch remix” is here. 🔮 https://t.co/bJwRyvIOeM pic.twitter.com/NtpYsohJds
— Taylor Swift (@taylorswift13) December 15, 2020
“Willows” isn’t the only Swift song with evil-looking imagery. In the music video for “Karma,” there’s a brief moment when the singer can be seen dancing in a devil mask while surrounded by demon-looking creatures. It’s a brief moment and doesn’t encompass the whole aesthetic of the video, but it does help add fuel to the fire of anyone looking to associate Swift with witchcraft.
Finally, some critics online who equate Swift with witchcraft reference the highly publicized phenomenon of Eras Tour concertgoers experiencing “post-concert amnesia” and not remembering attending the show.
“Thinking back on it, I don’t have any one specific memory I can recall, it’s more like an overall memory of the event,” attendee Danielle Lake-Patterson Dickson told ABC News in an article published in October.
Nicole Booz related her experience to The New York Post in May, describing it as “an out-of-body experience, as though it didn’t really happen to me.”
While most fans blame this feeling on being so excited for the event that their brain can’t process it, a few social media users suggest that something more sinister could be at play.
One Christian YouTuber dove into the rumors, explaining how some fans think Swift is “casting spells that are causing memory loss” from the stage. He said while some blame the amnesia on “sensory overload,” others insist it’s more like “demonic overload.”
Ultimately, there’s not enough evidence available to call Swift a practicing witch. But as long as she keeps incorporating occult imagery into her performances, the rumors will likely persist. Especially if the “Bad Blood” composer keeps talking about it.