Most know how the inspiration behind the lyrics to “Royals” came about, but few know how Lorde decided on the title of the megahit. A few months ago, the singer sat down with VH1 and disclosed exactly how she came about the word: “[I] had this image from the National Geographic of this dude just signing baseballs. He was a baseball player and his shirt said, ‘Royals.’ [...] It was just that word. It’s really cool.”
The photo, as confirmed by National Geographic, was published in the magazine’s July 1976 issue, and shows Kansas City Royals’ third baseman, George Brett, surrounded by fans. When photographer Ted Spiegel was asked about the photo, he was able to draw the connection between the royals in Lorde’s song and Brett’s fame in sports, perhaps making Lorde’s choice much less random. The more you know, right?