By now, you’ve probably heard the news: Taylor Swift is re-recording her old music. More specifically, she’s re-recording the albums she put out under her old label, Big Machine Label Group, ranging from her debut album, Taylor Swift, to Reputation. If you’re anything like me, despite being a die-hard Swiftie, this whole situation has been pretty hard to follow. We get it, she’s re-recording her old songs. What’s the big deal? Let’s talk about it.
First off, in order to fully appreciate Swift’s insane power move, you have to understand the events that led up to it. To sum it up: back in June of 2019, Scott Borchetta’s Big Machine Label Group announced they were acquired by Scooter Braun’s Ithaca Holdings. Okay, that sentence was a mouthful. Let’s break it down. As most Swifties will know, Scooter Braun has been on the wrong side of many of Swift’s disagreements with many artists, most notably with Kanye West. Swift also wrote in a blog post that when she heard the news, “all [she] could think about was the incessant, manipulative bullying [she’d] received at his hands for years.” Clearly, Braun is not someone Swift likes at all—in fact, he is quite the opposite. Picture your worst enemy being in control of your most prized work—not a great feeling, right? Taylor affirms this feeling in her Tumblr post, saying that she felt “sad and grossed out” about the whole situation, but thankful that she “left [her] past in Scott’s hands and not [her future].” Though I can’t even begin to truly understand the betrayal she felt from Borchetta—he knew her feelings towards Braun, yet still sold her masters to him—I think we can all breathe a sigh of relief knowing that Swift is now taking control of her music, as well as her future.
Not only is this decision a huge power move—talk about being a “fearless leader”— but this is likely going to be a great financial move for Swift, as well. Without going too much into the not-so-fun details (I know better than most that discussing the specifics of money can be a bore), let’s look at what this decision means financially. Releasing re-recordings of her old music means that Taylor will own both their master rights and publishing rights. This is extremely important for her, because by owning both of those rights, not only will she have complete control over how her songs are used. She will also earn every single cent they bring in. Though it will definitely be a lot of work and a very long process, it will all be worth it. Swift is a firm believer that artists “deserve to own the art [they] make.”
Though realistically this is a pretty brief overview of the situation, I hope you learned something new about the events leading up to Swift’s re-recordings, and that this (potentially) newfound knowledge will allow you to appreciate her new recordings even more. She’s been through a lot during her musical career, much of which I didn’t even touch upon in this article, so I’m absolutely ecstatic that she’s finally coming out on top. If you want to support her endeavor, make sure to listen to “Love Story (Taylor’s Version)” here, or on any streaming platform, and keep an eye out for her first re-recorded album, Fearless, coming out on April 9.
Here’s to a plethora of Taylor Swift re-recordings we have to look forward to, and more importantly, here’s to a fearless future!