Taylor Swift 'blown away' by Butch Walker cover of 'You Belong with Me'

“This weekend rules,” Taylor Swift gushed in a tweet last night. It’s probably not too much of a jump to assume she’s referring partly to her bravura double-duty hosting gig on SNL, but the declaration was actually prompted by another bit of good news: Swift’s mega-hit single “You Belong With Me” got lovingly covered by musician Butch Walker. And apparently Swift was happy with the result: “I’m losing my MIND listening to it! Blown away.”

You might not recognize Walker’s name, but you definitely know his music. A part-time solo artist (and former member of ’90s one-hitters Marvelous 3), the Georgia native has become a go-to writer/producer for acts like Avril Lavigne (“When You’re Gone”), Pink (“Bad Influence,” “Long Way to Happy”), and Weezer (“(If You’re Wondering If I Want You To) I Want You To”), among others. (Sad side note: The master tapes for every one of his recordings went up in flames two years ago when the house that Walker rented from Red Hot Chili Pepper bassist Flea burned down in the Malibu wildfires.)

For his take (or as he dubs it, “a little late-night Tayloring”) on “You Belong With Me,” Walker ditches Swift’s pop-radio sheen for a stripped-down, folksy shuffle and throws in few clever swap-outs for some of the lyrics: “girlfriend” becomes “boyfriend”; “she wears short skirts” becomes “he wears izods”, etc.

Walker also documented the whole process in a video on his official YouTube channel. Check it out below (the real action starts around the three-minute mark), and let us know if you’re as stoked as Swift:

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Comments (37 total) Add your comment
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  • Louboutinheels

    This has to be the best Taylor Swift cover yet. I love the guitar playing in the song and I love his voice when he sings. I would love to hear how he and Taylor sound together.

    • doory

      It’s a mandolin.

  • whoops!

    I think you mean “You Belong With Me,” right?

    • tracy

      Hey, this is EW, typos are in abundance…

      • tracy

        …or a requirement.

  • Louboutinheels

    Yes,”You Belong With Me,” best cover yet!!

  • mg

    HOLY GUACAMOLE that was AWESOME!!! Amazing cover. Major props to Butch…

  • The Platypus

    Been a fan of the Marvelous 3 and Butch’s solo work for quite some time — not surprised he’d kick butt on a cover of a (let’s admit it) really good pop song.

    • John

      I have been a fan for longer than most people! His career goes quite a bit deeper than just that. He was the guitarist and 1/2 of the main songwriting team in a ban called Southgang in the early 90′s, he formed The Floyds, Floyd’s Funk Revival, 1969, and Butch Walker and the Black Widows! So many people either forget about that or just don’t know.

      • This Girl

        Hahaha…

      • This Girl

        To John not you Platypus… aren’t you cool?

  • alex

    i’m not a rabid taylor swift fan but i think it’s awesome of her as a young artist to acknowledge that it’s awesome to have a talented musician cover your music. i think it shows that she’s grounded..

    • alex

      i said “awesome” a lot there.. it’s late

  • Via

    Yeah, I’m “feelin it” too

  • Heidi

    I like it very much especially the way he does the chorus. He’s made it less ‘pop’ but more playful. Bottom line is its just a great, well written song with a great melody – so kudos to Taylor

  • Heidi

    Go to youtube to hear another great cover -I didn’t realize how good a song it was until someone else sang it- its Kelly Clarkson and her backup singers Jill and Kate at home, no makeup, in sweats singing “The Climb”. It’s gorgeous. Called “Kelly Clarkson cover of ‘The Climb’”

  • Jessi

    I love Butch Walker! I’m not surprised Taylor was impressed.

  • intr0vert

    He actually performed this song live for the first time Last Wednesday @ The Hotel Cafe in LA. The show was him and some friends performing his album “Letters” beginning-to-end. For this song he had Jake Sinclair joining him (with a Tambourine boot) and was mixed with Butch’s song “Uncomfortably Numb”. It was by far the highpoint of a wonderful night.

    Its good to see Butch getting some much needed recognition. When most people ask you who you are into and you say Butch Walker, 9 times out of 10 theyll say, “Who?”

    The Fans get it.

    Butch also used to do a rocking cover of Kelly Clarkson’s “Since You’ve Been Gone”

    You can find all of this on youTube.

  • butchwalkerisgod

    I am very happy that this song is proving to be successful for him. I think I am the only one who does not like it. Sorry.

  • jailbaitTM

    This is a great match up. Butch is such an amazing artist, its great to see some big time recognition get tossed his way. Like intr0vert said, when you say you love Butch Walker most folks are clueless.

    I’m glad Taylor finally caught wind of this and loves it. She and Butch could do some great collaborations :)

  • Jim

    I never cared for the song when Taylor did it, but when Butch does it, it is worth listening too. Butch’s version is far superior to Taylor’s version without a doubt or question.

  • kerry

    Butch’s cover song with the semi-falsetto and ukelele arrangement sounds like Jason Mraz covering Taylor Smith. ROFLMAO

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