Right after surprising fans with her tenth album, Midnights, the shock barely faded before Taylor Swift revealed a long-awaited collaboration with singer and songwriter Lana Del Rey, who lends her vocals to the slow treaded “Snow on the Beach,” a dream-like song about falling in love simultaneously.
Just Like a Dream
“The song is about falling in love with someone at the same time as they’re falling in love with you,” said Swift, elaborating on the meaning of the song, “sort of in this sort of cataclysmic, fated moment where you realize someone feels exactly the same way that you feel.”
Swift sings through the first verse, an introduction to finding that unexpected love.
One night, a few moons ago
I saw flecks of what could’ve been lights
But it might just have been you
Passing by unbeknownst to me
Life is emotionally abusive
And time can’t stop me quite like you did
And my flight was awful, thanks for asking
I’m unglued, thanks to you
By the chorus, Swift and Lana’s vocals combine at the moment when everything aligns in a relationship, almost like a dream.
“You’re kind of looking around going, “Wait, is this real? Is this a dream,” added Swift, “kind of like it would be if you were to see snow falling on a beach.”
And it’s like snow at the beach
Weird but fuckin’ beautiful
Flying in a dream
Stars by the pocketful
You wanting me Tonight
But it’s comin’ down, no sound, it’s all around
Like snow on the beach
Swift and Del Rey sing the second and final verse of the song together. Still in a dream-like state, love is compared to something out of a movie, or like catching a glimpse of the Northern Lights (aurora borealis).
This scene feels like what I once saw on a screen
I searched “aurora borealis green”
I’ve never seen someone lit from within
Blurring out my periphery
My smile is like I won a contest
And to hide that would be so dishonest
And it’s fine to fake it ’til you make it
‘Til you do, ’til it’s true
The Swift-Rey Connect
A fan of Del Rey’s for some time, Swift previously called Del Rey “the most influential artist in pop” during her 2019 Billboard Women in Music speech.
Del Rey was likely connected to Swift by her longtime collaborator Jack Antonoff—who also co-wrote and co-produced Del Rey’s 2019 album, Norman Fucking Rockwell! and Chemtrails Over the Country Club, in 2021.
“Lana Del Rey is, in my opinion, one of the best musical artists ever,” said Swift in her Instagram post for the song. “The fact that I get to exist at the same time as her is an honor and a privilege, and the fact that she would be so generous as to collaborate with us on this song is something I’m gonna be grateful for life.”
Photo: Terry Wyatt/Getty Images