The people behind the songs
Both photos: Robert E. Klein for the Boston Globe
Taylor Swift has never hidden the fact that she often gets song inspiration from real-life relationships. In her new album, "Speak Now," John Mayer serves as a muse for one of her songs. Writes the Globe's James Reed: "'Dear John'" is supposedly about fellow pop musician John Mayer, a rumor that gives the song an extra layer of resonance. Swift doesn't spare anyone's feelings, least of all his. 'Dear John/ I see it all/ Now that you're gone/ Don't you think I was too young to be messed with," she sings on the chorus, which swells beyond the song's acoustic beginnings. 'The girl in the dress cried the whole way home.'"
Browse through this collection of women and men who inspired songs that later became hits.