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5 TRACKS YOU NEED TO HEAR ON RED (TAYLOR’S VERSION)

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

November 12th, 2021 is going to be a day for the history books. Why? Because that’s when we’re going to be blessed with the album Red (Taylor’s Version). That’s right, a 30 track album, nine of which are “From the Vault”, which are songs that she originally wrote for Red that never made it to the original album. If you’re unlike me and don’t plan on listening to 30 Taylor Swift songs, but want to listen to at least a little bit from this historic album, I’ve compiled the list for you.

All Too well (10 minute version) (Taylor’s version) (from the vault)

“All Too Well” is undoubtedly a universal fan favorite. Its imagery, raw emotion, and storytelling are what make it so special. Red scarves, T-Ball team stories and autumn leaves. It’s also an infamous track five, which means that it is a very vulnerable and personal song to Taylor. Despite the original version sitting at a five-minute length, it was cut down from 10-minutes for the original Red album. It’s only fitting for the re-recording that she releases a vault track that includes the additional five minutes.

“You call me up again just to break me like a promise, so casually cruel in the name of being honest, I’m a crumpled up piece of paper standing here, because I remember it all too well…” Yeah. 10-minutes of that? It might just take me out. Even Rob Sheffield from The Rolling Stone’s ranked All Too Well as Taylor’s best song to date

better man (Taylor’s version) (From the vault)

You may recognize the title from a popular Little Big Town song, and you would be correct. Taylor Swift wrote this track and intended it for the original Red album, but when it didn’t make the cut she sent it over to Little Big Town. This song is so emotional, and one of my favorites to scream in my car when I’m driving. And I can’t wait to have “Better Man (Taylor’s Version)”. 

A demo of Taylor singing “Better Man” was leaked on Tik Tok, so I’ll link that here for you to enjoy. I won’t lie, I have plugged this Tik Tok audio into my car’s aux cord. 

red (taylor’s version)

For this article, I wanted to choose one lead single that I was most excited about. It was a hard decision, but I decided on the title track, “Red”. This one has always been one of my favorites not only because of its beat but the way that she compares the feelings of love and heartbreak to something so simple as colors. Red, blue and dark gray all alone. “Forgetting him was like trying to know somebody you’ve never met.” It’s killer. And it bops. 

The Last Time (Featuring Gary Lightbody of Snow Patrol) (Taylor’s Version)

When Taylor released Red in 2012, I wasn’t old enough to appreciate this track for what it is. I remembered it as a slow ballad with some man’s voice on it, and I would always skip it, to be honest. But, when Red (Taylor’s Version) was announced last summer, I went back and listened again. Quickly, I realized I stood corrected. The harmonies are beautiful and the storytelling is so relatable. One partner begging the other to prioritize them, the other promising they will change, both of them knowing it ultimately won’t happen. “This is the last time I won’t hurt you anymore”. Just listen to it. I promise you won’t be disappointed. 

the moment i knew (Taylor’s version)

Ah, the age-old story of a boy bailing on you at the last minute. This song is controversial among Taylor Swift enthusiasts, but it is one of my all-time favorites. I obviously wasn’t at Taylor’s 21st birthday party, but this song tells me everything I need to know about it. It was literally her party and she cried because she wanted to! The lyrics walk us through to her final realization that things are never going to work out in her relationship, because her partner ditched her birthday party, even when all of his friends showed up. I have no proof of this, but I firmly believe that Taylor just copied and pasted sentences from her diary and put them into the song. And I am totally here for it. 

It was insanely hard for me to choose just 5 tracks to recommend because these 30 songs are likely all I’ll be listening to, at least until the end of 2021. Red (Taylor’s Version) is, as she said herself, truly a “mosaic of broken hearts”. The album is full of upbeat songs, and emotional ballads. There’s a song to match every mood on Red. That’s why we’re happy, free, confused, and lonely at the same time, right? 

Happy listening.

Hi! I'm Ashley and I am currently studying Writing, Rhetoric, and Technical Communication at James Madison University. I also have a minor in Political Science. I serve as the JMU Her Campus Chapter's Senior Editor on the Executive Board. Thank you for taking the time to read my articles!
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