She reached out — she’s very hands-on and in control of what she’s doing. So she came to my little studio in Venice [Calif.], showed up by herself, with no entourage. She brought her guitar and sat down and said, ‘Hey, thanks for meeting with me – I’ve got this song I’d love you to produce. Here it is.’ And she played this song all the way through on her guitar on my couch, and said, ‘What do you think?’ And I’m like, ‘That’s amazing.’ Here’s a complete thought, a complete thing. She did the homework, she laid all the groundwork beforehand. There’s no smoke and mirrors or fluke or trendiness going on with her – this is music she writes from her experiences. That’s a real artist.
I’ll tell you one other little tidbit about Taylor’s sessions, to give you an idea of how tough this girl is. It was a summer day, and in my vocal booth, sometimes I turn the air conditioning off so it won’t make noise while we’re recording. I had kind of forgotten about that, and she’d been in there for a long time. And she was like, ‘Can I come out? It’s kind of hot in here.’ And she came out, and she’s all sweating – it was hotboxed in there. I’m about to kill this poor girl! I almost sent Taylor Swift to the hospital for dehydration! And she did not complain, she did not diva out – she came to work. I was just mortified. [laughs]
But that was one of the big things where I realized Man, she’s a really hard worker. Talent is important, but the common denominator with all these people we’re talking about is that they’re the hardest working people out there. And that’s all you can ask for, as a producer – to ride with them. You need a buddy. You [the artist] need someone there where, like, if you’re tired, you keep going, you pick each other up, you encourage each other, you challenge each other. You always want to be around people who are smarter and better than you.” —
Jeff Bhasker on Taylor Swift- Holy Ground, The Lucky One (x)