Kelly Clarkson covers Taylor Swift’s own

Kelly Clarkson let the rain fall. Weeks after Taylor Swift slipped “Clean” into her Eras Tour setlist in Arlington, TX on April 1, Clarson returned to the pop ballad in her own style for “Kellyoke.” With his band, Y’all, Clarkson let his voice shine and delivered every lyric with emotion. “There was no trace of you, I think I’m finally clean,” she sang on “The Kelly Clarkson Show,” looking directly at the camera.

Swift has included a few surprise songs for each performance on her ongoing Eras Tour. She chose “Clean” for the Arlington performance honoring singer-songwriter Gracie Abrams, who specifically requested the song “1989” over the text. (Abrams is also one of Swift’s first acts this tour.) “I didn’t know she was going to do that, obviously,” Abrams said in response to Swift’s dedication. “So you can imagine my shock.”

Swift rarely confirms the exact meaning of her songs, but “Clean” is widely believed to be about her former relationship with Harry Styles. “Someone I was dating — it hit me that I was in the same city as him for two weeks and I hadn’t thought about it,” she previously explained to Elle in 2015. “When that hit me, it was like, ‘Oh, I hope he’s okay.’ And nothing else.”

This realization is what ultimately brought “Clean” to fruition, and Clarkson perfectly captured the healing nature of the song in her own rendition. Watch the full version above to see how she put a unique spin on one of Swift’s most beloved tracks.


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