Olivia Rodrigo can hold not just a grudge, but “The Grudge”! The singer-songwriter spilled her GUTS on Friday, September 8, and we have to thank her for that. Following her sophomore album drop, fans are scurrying to figure out the meaning behind each track — and who they could be about.
Keep reading to uncover our lyric breakdown for “The Grudge.”
What Is Olivia Rodrigo’s ‘The Grudge’ About? Lyric Breakdown
To put it simply, “The Grudge” reflects on Olivia’s lingering emotional turmoil after she was betrayed by someone close to her.
“And I try to be tough, but I wanna scream, how could anybody do the things you did so easily?” she croons in the chorus. “And I say I don’t care, I say that I’m fine. But you know I can’t let it go, I’ve tried, I’ve tried, I’ve tried for so long.”
The Grammy-winning songstress explains the specifics on when this grudge began, explaining she has “nightmares each week ’bout that Friday in May,” where she found out something that changed her “entire world” in a single phone call.
“Trust that you betrayed, confusion that still lingers, took everything I loved and crushed it in between your fingers. And I doubt you ever think about the damage that you did, but I hold onto every detail like my life depends on it. My undying love, now I hold it like a grudge, and I hear your voice every time that I think I’m not enough.”
The former Disney star explained the process of making GUTS, and what the album means to her during an interview with Apple Music.
“Sometimes you just wake up and go into the studio and see what comes out of you,” she explained. “In hindsight, I think that a lot of this album is about the confusion that comes with becoming a young adult and figuring out your place in this world and figuring out who you want to be and who you want to hang out with and all of that stuff. I think that that’s probably an experience that everyone has had in their life before, is just that rising from that disillusionment.”
Who Is Olivia Rodrigo’s ‘The Grudge’ About? Fan Theories
While it’s unclear who Olivia is talking about in “The Grudge,” some fans have theorized the track could reference the rumored feud between the SOUR singer and Taylor Swift, or, of course, her ex-boyfriend Zack Bia.
However, fans have immediately crafted their own meanings from it, making it their own.
Some have compared it to ex-lovers, friends who’ve betrayed them and even, parental figures. One fan wrote, “The grudge is mine tho like that was made for me,” while another hilariously asked to cut out the comparisons to The Summer I Turned Pretty, “Somebody please stop the grudge Belly/Conrad edits from showing up on my FYP already.”
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