Taylor Swift has not been quiet about wanting to own the masters to her own music. She has made it publicly known that she was never given the opportunity to buy her masters from Big Machine Records after her contract was over.
Swift began re-recording her songs in April, when she released “Fearless (Taylor’s Version).” These re-recordings are fully owned by Swift. She continues her fight to own her masters and recently released “Red (Taylor’s Version)” on November 12.
Red was originally released in October 2012 under her previous label. The album was categorized as country-pop. Red marks the beginning of Swift’s transition into the pop sphere. With tracks such as ‘22,’ ‘I Knew You Were Trouble’ and “We Are Never Getting Back Together,’ Swift was experimenting to gauge a reaction to her stepping into pop music.
In an interview on Late Night with Seth Meyers, Swift said “Red” was her widening her musical horizons.
“There are like 14 different genres on this one,” Swift said. “It’s a real patchwork quilt of genre. I was really experimenting.”
The album is a reflection of the intense emotions of being in your early 20s. The tracklist gives listeners emotional whiplash with happy, upbeat songs being followed by more mellow ones.
The re-recorded album has 30 tracks on it, including the fan-anticipated “All Too Well (10 Minute Version).” The track has made it to the number one spot on the Billboard’s Hot 100 Charts for the week of November 27. Swift also made a short film for the song starring Sadie Sink and Dylan O’Brian.
“Red (Taylor’s Version)” leans into pop, and is no longer fearful of the public perception of her. There are three more pop tracks included on Taylor’s Version. Swift has included “From the Vault” tracks, which are songs she originally wrote for the album, but did not make the final cut. These bonus tracks include collaborations like “I Bet You Think About Me” featuring Chris Stapleton, “Nothing New” featuring Phoebe Bridgers and “Run” featuring Ed Sheeran.
Swift took more creative liberties when re-recording Red than with Fearless. Swift’s voice has matured since Fearless was originally released in 2008, but remains almost identical in production. “Girl at Home” was only a bonus track when “Red” was first released, and was a country song. However, on Taylor’s Version, the song is a techno-pop track produced by Elvira Anderfjärd, who has worked with Swift before for remixes of her songs.
“Red (Taylor’s Version)” is unapologetically itself, and Swift owns it.