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Daylight

Lover (2019)

On “Daylight”, the final song on her seventh studio album Lover (2019), Taylor sings about struggling through previous relationships, beginning to doubt her ability to find true love, until she meets someone who brightens her life in a new way.

Background

Taylor released Lover on August 23, 2019, through Republic Records. It is the first album she owns the masters to. She has described the album as a “love letter to love itself.” It explores the “full spectrum of love”, inspired by the connections she felt with her fans during her “reputation Stadium Tour” (2018). The track list of Lover consists of 18 songs, of which three were solely written by Taylor: “Lover“, “Cornelia Street“, and “Daylight”. All three songs were produced by Taylor and Jack Antonoff.

Lyrical Theme

Taylor refers to being unlucky in love in the past, but when she meets her new partner, she only wants to focus on them and their happiness together. Taylor closed a 2019 piece for ELLE Magazine writing: “I’ve come to a realization that I need to be able to forgive myself for making the wrong choice, trusting the wrong person, or figuratively falling on my face in front of everyone. Step into the daylight and let it go.” At the iHeartRadioLover Secret Session“, she explained the meaning of the song by reflecting on her previous album, reputation (2017):

«reputation for me, aesthetically and thematically, felt like a very long night of storms and volcanic eruptions, blood, hurricanes, hale, tornadoes, endless fire, an asteroid hit. It felt like trying to figure out what’s what throughout all of that. I did gain an insight that I didn’t have before, which was: even though all this stuff has happened and at times you feel really down about the past, letting it go is a really important step, even if you never fully get there. Reminding yourself to let things go as they present themselves, even if you can’t seem to let them go yet, is a helpful exercise. And realizing that you can find love and friendships in literally the worst times in your life. You can find the best things in your life that you’ll have forever, in temporary, really awful times that will pass.»

Taylor Swift
Taylor also said that she chose “Daylight” as the last song on the album “because it recognizes past damage and pain but shows that it doesn’t have to define you.”

Lover Instead of Daylight

In the “Lover’s Lounge”, Taylor revealed that the original album title for Lover was Daylight. She also mentioned this in a 2019 interview with Rolling Stone:

«It almost was the title track. I thought it might be a little bit too sentimental. I was kind of in my head referring to the album as Daylight for a while. But Lover, to me, was a more interesting title, more of an accurate theme in my head, and more elastic as a concept.»

Taylor Swift

Live Performance

Taylor first sang the song live at the “City of Lover” one-day concert at the Olympia on September 9, 2019, in Paris, France. She performed a piano version of “Daylight”, mashing it up with “Red” (2012). The concert was filmed and later aired as a TV special on ABC on May 17, 2020. The performance of “Daylight” was released for digital download the following day, on May 18, 2020. She also performed the song during her SiriusXM “Hits1” set in August 2019.

Commercial Performance

Upon the release of Lover, during the week ending September 7, 2019, “Daylight” peaked at No. 89 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Lyrics

[Verse 1]
My love was as cruel as the cities I lived in
Everyone looked worse in the light
There are so many lines that I’ve crossed unforgiven
I’ll tell you the truth, but never goodbye

[Chorus]
I don’t wanna look at anything else now that I saw you
I don’t wanna think of anything else now that I thought of you
I’ve been sleeping so long in a 20-year dark night
And now I see daylight
I only see daylight

[Verse 2]
Luck of the draw only draws the unlucky
And so I became the butt of the joke
I wounded the good and I trusted the wicked
Clearing the air, I breathed in the smoke
Maybe you ran with the wolves and refused to settle down
Maybe I’ve stormed out of every single room in this town
Threw out our cloaks and our daggers because it’s morning now
It’s brighter now, now

[Chorus]
I don’t wanna look at anything else now that I saw you (I can never look away)
I don’t wanna think of anything else now that I thought of you (Things will never be the same)
I’ve been sleeping so long in a 20-year dark night (Now I’m wide awake)
And now I see daylight (Daylight)
I only see daylight (Daylight)
I only see daylight, daylight, daylight, daylight
I only see daylight, daylight, daylight, daylight

[Bridge]
And I can still see it all (In my mind)
All of you, all of me (Intertwined)
I once believed love would be (Black and white)
But it’s golden (Golden)
And I can still see it all (In my head)
Back and forth from New York (Sneaking in your bed)
I once believed love would be (Burning red)
But it’s golden
Like daylight, like daylight
Like daylight, daylight

[Chorus Variation]
I don’t wanna look at anything else now that I saw you (I can never look away)
I don’t wanna think of anything else now that I thought of you (Things will never be the same)
I’ve been sleeping so long in a 20-year dark night (Now I’m wide awake)
And now I see daylight (I see daylight)
I only see daylight (Ah)
I only see daylight, daylight, daylight, daylight
I only see daylight, daylight, daylight, daylight
(And I can still see it all)

I only see daylight, daylight, daylight, daylight
(I can still see it all, back and forth from New York)
I only see daylight, daylight, daylight, daylight
(I once believed love would be burning red)

[Outro]
Like daylight
It’s golden, like daylight
You gotta step into the daylight and let it go
Just let it go, let it go

[Spoken Outro]
I wanna be defined by the things that I love
Not the things I hate
Not the things I’m afraid of, I’m afraid of
Or the things that haunt me in the middle of the night
I, I just think that
You are what you love

General Information
AlbumLover
ReleasedAugust 23, 2019
StudioElectric Lady (New York City)
Golden Age West (Auckland)
GenreSynth Pop
Length4:53
LabelRepublic Records
SongwriterTaylor Swift
ProducersJack Antonoff
Taylor Swift
LOVER CHRONOLOGY
It’s Nice To Have A FriendDaylight
Song Artwork
Live Performance
Official Audio
Official Live Audio
Handwritten Lyrics