Katy Perry and Taylor Swift's feud went on for years. Let's re-examine what really happened.

Taylor Swift has a list of names and Katy Perry's used to be underlined in bright red.

While the two are great friends now, it didn't always used to be that way - in fact, Swift and Perry were both embroiled in a public feud that lasted years.

Watch: Taylor Swift announces her new album at the 2024 Grammy Awards. Post continues below.

Video via The Grammys.

The two wildly successful singers had a falling out over backup dancers, a fact that was confirmed by Perry on The Late Show With James Cordon.

"Honestly, it's really like she started it and it's time for her to finish it," she said while revealing that she tried to talk to Swift about it, but was shut out. "It was a full shutdown and then she writes a song about me, and I'm like, 'Okay, cool, cool, cool, that's how you want to deal with it? Karma!'"

Two years after that interview, Perry and Swift both ended their feud as publically as it had started. But what happened? And why were the two going at it for so long?

To answer the above, we need to go all the way back to the beginning, so let's look at the timeline together.

July 2009.

In 2009, Swift complimented Perry on Twitter, writing: "Watching the Waking up in Vegas video. I love Katy Perry. I think I'm going to hang her poster on my wall now." To which Perry replied, "You're as sweet as pie! Let's write a song together about the subject we know best... for my new record. It'll be brilliant."


They didn't end up working together despite Perry's proposal.

September 2014.

From 2009 to 2014, the two would regularly post about each other on their birthdays, and Perry even performed Hot N Cold at Swift's Fearless tour.

But later in 2014, during an interview with Rolling Stone, Swift revealed that her song Bad Blood was about another woman in the music industry. 

"For years, I was never sure if we were friends or not," said Swift. "She would come up to me at awards shows and say something and walk away, and I would think, 'Are we friends, or did she just give me the harshest insult of my life?'"

Swift further explained that what the singer did was so bad, that she instantly became her enemy.

"And it wasn't even about a guy! It had to do with business. She basically tried to sabotage an entire arena tour. She tried to hire a bunch of people out from under me. And I'm surprisingly non-confrontational — you would not believe how much I hate conflict. So, now I have to avoid her. It's awkward, and I don't like it."

The day after the story was published, Perry tweeted, "Watch out for the Regina George in sheep's clothing..." when she was later asked to clarify, Perry said, "If somebody is trying to defame my character, you're going to hear about it."

May 2015.

In 2015, The Telegraph asked Swift about their feud, to which she responded: "I'm never going to talk about her in my interview. It's not going to happen."


She went on to say that it's only natural for her to have enemies.

"It's not real if someone appears to never have any issues with anyone," she said. "I have my friends. I have enemies."

July 2015.

In 2015, Swift butted heads with Nicki Minaj after the MTV Video Music Awards announced the year's nominees.

Minaj tweeted, "If your video celebrates women with very slim bodies, you will be nominated for vid of the year." Swift instantly responded, taking Minaj's tweet as a dig at her for her Bad Blood nomination.

"I've done nothing but love and support you. It's unlike you to pit women against each other. Maybe one of the men took your slot."

Perry then added in her two cents, saying: "Finding it ironic to parade the pit women against other women argument about as one immeasurably capitalises on the takedown of a woman..."

Minaj later cleared the air and told Swift that her comment was not intended to be a shot at her.

July 2016.

In 2016, Swift ended her relationship with Scottish DJ Calvin Harris, and shortly after, it was revealed that she had co-written his hit song with Rihanna, This Is What You Came For under the pseudonym Nils Sjoberg.

Harris addressed the timing of the reveal in a number of now-deleted tweets. "Hurtful to me at this point that her and her team would go so far out of their way to try and make ME look bad at this stage though," he said.

"I figure if you're happy in your new relationship, you should focus on that instead of trying to tear your ex bf down for something to do." Swift was dating Tom Hiddleston at the time. 


Harris then addressed her beef with Perry, saying: "I know you're off tour and you need someone new to try and bury like Katy etc. but I'm not that guy, sorry. I won't allow it."

Katy responded by retweeting an old tweet from 2015, which read: "Time, the ultimate truth teller."

September 2016.

A fan asked Perry on Twitter, "Will you collab with Taylor Swift?" to which she said, "If she says sorry, sure!"

October 2016.

Perry celebrated her 32nd birthday at a Kanye West concert in California and recorded herself jamming to the lyric that mentions Swift in West's song Famous

Sharing the footage to her Instagram Story, the singer is seen widening her eyes during the line, "I feel like me and Taylor might still have sex, why? I made the b**** famous."

May 2017.

Perry released Swish Swish featuring Nicki Minaj, which was seemingly a response to Swift's song, Bad Blood. The diss track contained lyrics like, "Don't you come for me/No, not today/You're calculated/I got your number/'Cause you're a joker/And I'm a courtside killer queen."

May 2017.

Perry made an appearance on James Corden's Late Late Show for Carpool Karaoke, where she opened up about the ongoing feud.

"That's true, there is a situation," she said when Corden asked her about her relationship with Swift. "Honestly, it's really like she started it and it's time for her to finish it."

She then confirmed that the relationship turned sour over backing dancers. "Okay, so there were like three backing dancers that went on tour with her tour, right? And they asked me before they went on tour if they could go, and I was like, 'Yeah, of course. I'm not on a record cycle and get the work, and she's great and all that. But I will be on a record cycle probably in about a year. So, be sure to put a 30-day contingency in your contract, so you can get out if you want to join me when I say I'm going back on," she said.


"So that year came up, right? And I texted all of them because I'm very close with them and I said, 'Look, just FYI, I'm about to start. I want to put the word out there.' They said, 'Okay, well we're gonna go and talk to management about it.' And they did, and they got fired."

Perry then claimed that Swift refused to talk to her despite her reaching out. "But what I want to say is that I'm ready for that BS to be done," she said. "Now, there is the law of cause and effect. You do something, and there's gonna be a reaction, and trust me, daddy, there's gonna be a reaction. It's all about karma, right?... I think, personally, that women together, not divided, and none of this petty bulls***, women together will heal the world."

June 2017.

Perry told NME about why she decided to open up about Swift on Corden's show. "I mean, I'm not Buddha — things irritate me," she said.

"I wish that I could turn the other cheek every single time, but I'm also not a pushover, you know? Especially when someone tries to assassinate my character with little girls [her fans]. That's so messed up!"

August 2017.

Swift released her first single from her album, Reputation, titled Look What You Made Me Do. The track seems to reference her feud with Perry, with the lyric, "Locked me out and threw a feast" being a direct response to Perry's single, Bon Appetit.


Swift also debuted her music video for Look What You Made Me Do at the MTV Video Music Awards which was hosted by Perry. Swift did not attend the VMAs, and Perry glossed over the music video on the night.

May 2018.

The day Swift's Reputation tour kicked off, Perry sent an olive branch, hoping to make amends. 

"I just got back to my dressing room and found this actual olive branch. This... means so much to me," said Swift in a video posted to her Instagram.

June 2019.

Swift sent Perry a plate of cookies a year later, with "peace at last" written in frosting. Perry captioned the post, 'it feels so good", and tagged Swift.

A week later, Perry made an appearance in Swift's music video for You Need to Calm Down, ending their feud once and for all.

September 2019.

Both Swift and Perry spoke about their newfound friendship in separate interviews. Perry went on The Ellen DeGeneres Show and said, "it was actually just a misunderstanding."

"It was really unfortunate," she said. "But we made amends and I'm all about redemption and forgiveness and for setting an example for those younger people that it can be cool to ask for forgiveness and confront someone that you may have an issue with or a problem with and talk it out."

Later, Swift opened up to Rolling Stone about the conversation she had with Perry.

"We were talking about how we've had miscommunications with people in the past, not even specifically with each other," said Swift. "She's like, 'I'm a Scorpio. Scorpios just strike when they feel threatened.' And I was like, 'Well, I'm an archer. We literally stand back, assess the situation, process how we feel about it, raise a bow, pull it back, and fire.'"


February 2024.

Most recently, Perry attended Swift's The Eras Tour concert in Sydney, and even shared a photo with Swift on her Instagram.

"Got to see an old friend shine tonight," she captioned the carousel, which also included a video of Perry dancing to Bad Blood.

Feature Image: Getty.

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