Clara Bow’s Family Reacts to Taylor Swift’s ‘Tortured Poets Department’ Song Named After Late Actress

When Taylor Swift unveiled the tracklist to The Tortured Poets Department, shortly after announcing the album at the 2024 Grammys, one song title in particular captured fans’ attention: “Clara Bow.”

Clearly named after the famous silent film actress, who passed away in 1965 at age 60, “Clara Bow” already has people asking questions — including Bow’s descendants. In a Wednesday (Feb. 14) interview with People, the icon’s great-granddaughters Nicole Sisneros and Brittany Grace Bell revealed they were just as mystified as everyone else to see their great-grandmother’s name at No. 16 on the Tortured Poets song listing.

“[During her Grammy speech Swift] said she was working on this the past two years,” Sisneros told the publication. “[We] just want to know what prompted it and where the connection is coming from.”

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As lifelong Swifties, Sisneros and Bell say they’re equally excited and intrigued. “We could not believe it,” said Sisneros, who took her daughter to an Eras Tour show last year, of finding out the pop star had penned a track in Bow’s honor. “No one from our family has been contacted or knew about this prior. We found out via the Instagram post like everybody else.”

“They’re both pioneers in their field,” Bell added. “Clara Bow was one of the first really big movie stars and had to pave a way. She just had that larger-than-life presence on screen and was able to portray any role.”

“Her tenacity to focus on her career [is] very similar to Taylor,” agreed Sisneros, pointing out the two women’s shared grace in the face of public scrutiny.

Sisneros and Bell aren’t the only ones to have found parallels between the “Anti-Hero” singer and It actress. Swifties have been dissecting the track list’s possible meanings since it dropped earlier this month, with many theorizing that Bow’s relationship with husband Rex Bell and status as a silent film star mirror Swift’s 2023 breakup from Joe Alwyn.

Bell added, “I think Clara Bow would feel the same kinship and protectiveness over someone who’s of the same level of fame as her in dealing with the media and how heavy the crown is to carry.”

The Tortured Poets Department arrives April 19.

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