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Courtney Love in Dazed, January 2011
Courtney Love in Dazed, January 2011Photography Yelena Yemchuk, styling Karen Langley

Courtney Love slags off Taylor Swift, praises Sky Ferreira

‘Taylor is not important. She might be a safe space for girls, but she’s not interesting as an artist’

Courtney Love has a history of speaking truth to power: way back in 2005, over a decade before the revelations which sparked the #MeToo movement were made public, she warned young women in Hollywood against spending time alone with Harvey Weinstein. Now, she has taken aim at another formidable opponent: Taylor Swift

Speaking to The Evening Standard last week, Love said, “Taylor is not important. She might be a safe space for girls, and she’s probably the Madonna of now, but she’s not interesting as an artist.” This didn’t go down well with the Swiftie community – many of whom accused her of tearing down other women – but was she so wrong? Taylor is a good songwriter, sure, and she is almost objectively “important”, but is her music interesting? And would we really expect Courtney Love – someone who began her career in the alternative subcultures of the 1990s, the woman who wrote “Miss World” and “Doll Parts” – to think so? 

Love also slagged off Madonna, saying “I don’t like her and she doesn’t like me” – which isn’t surprising if you’ve ever seen this excruciatingly awkward clip from the 1995 VMA’s where she drunkenly gate-crashes an interview that Madonna is doing (“Courtney Love is in dire need of attention right now,” deadpans the latter.)

So Courtney Love just hates other women, right? Wrong! In the Evening Standard interview, she was extremely effusive about Sky Ferreira. “She is the best artist of her generation and a true icon. Sky opened doors for depressed women and twinks. She is THE it girl of the 2010s,” she said.

She also made some comments about Lana del Rey that were kind of mixed. “I haven’t liked Lana since she covered a John Denver song “Take Me Home Country Roads”, and I think she should take seven years off,” she said. Quite harsh, but she also revealed that she was a huge fan of hers up until that point: “I thought she was great. When I was recording my new album, I had to stop listening to her as she was influencing me too much.” If I was Lana, I’d still take these comments as a W. 

Maybe some of what Courtney said was unfair, but people being salty in interviews is good for the culture – and if anyone has earned the right, it’s her.

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