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Speaking to Total Access on 96.4FM The Wave, the singer recalled the experience saying "he came to see my show at this huge gay bar in New York and it was totally off the chain.He gets up on stage, takes all his clothes off except his underwear and starts making out with a tranny.The song's instrumentation was by Gamson, with the exception of the accordion, which was played by Kesha.Kesha wrote the song about a boy that she had been stalking and who had refused to call the singer.In 2008, Taylor Swift's then-just-released album, ' Fearless,' became a monster hit and garnered lots of attention not only for the singer but for the subjects of her deeply personal songs.One such tune was ' Hey Stephen,' which included dreamy, romantic lines such as, "I can't help it if you look like an angel / Can't help it if I wanna kiss you in the rain" and "come feel this magic I've been feeling since I met you." Taylor revealed later that the song's inspiration was Stephen Barker Liles of the group Love and Theft, whom the then-teenaged superstar cited as one of her favorite bands.The song was written by Kesha in collaboration with David Gamson, Pebe Sebert, Oliver Leiber.It was produced by Gamson with additional production done by Leiber.
The song received some positive reviews from music critics upon its release.
After the endless scrutinizing of Taylor's body of work became a favorite national pastime, the then-trio released their debut album, and naturally, the song came up in conversation with them often."I hadn't heard it yet," Stephen revealed to The Boot at the time. But she didn't say like, ' I wrote a nice song about you,' so I'm just thinking, ' What did I do?
'  Because she doesn't really write very many nice songs about guys.
Fraser Mc Alpine of BBC Music used "Stephen" as an example of the songs on Animal that exemplified the singer's vocals, saying it had "beautiful layered a cappella harmonies.
Sure, it tumbles into clunky pop straight afterwards, but then, that also seems to be what she does: beautiful things are bashed against ugly things, pretty melodies ruined by silly noises, emotional lyrics stuffed with buzzwords." Daniel Brockman of The Boston Phoenix wrote of the album that "in a post–'Birthday Sex' pop landscape, there's plenty of room for dumb if it's done well." He described "Stephen" as "an ode to forcing your sexual advances on your high-school history teacher." The video opens with the singer looking through a scrapbook; following this the video then proceeds into depicting the singer's interactions with the protagonist.