Taylor Swift recreates herself with 1989


Taylor Swift in her music video for “Shake If Off.” Courtesy of billboard.com

Taylor Swift drifted away from her classic country melodies and has taken a new course towards more contemporary, mature tones with her newest album 1989. Despite the album’s shift in genre, it recently became the first platinum album of 2014 according to washingtonpost.com

Taylor Swift in her music video for "Shake If Off." Courtesy of billboard.com
Taylor Swift in her music video for “Shake If Off.”
Courtesy of billboard.com

In the album, whose name corresponds to her birth year, Ms. Swift reveals an unseen side of herself that surprised some of her fans. Although she initially gained popularity for her country music, her 1989 tunes are completely pop. These new sounds have transformed Ms. Swift from America’s country sweetheart into a pop icon. 
In spite of these changes, Convent of the Sacred Heart sophomore Delia Hughes believes that Ms. Swift remains true to herself in 1989. 
“Her lyrics remain truthful and relatable,” Delia said. “Also, she uses a bigger range of her voice on this album and created a completely different sound then her previous albums.”
There are 13 songs on the album, coincidental to Ms. Swift’s lucky number, including the lead single “Shake It Off” and the first track on 1989 “Welcome to New York.”
“Welcome to New York” sets the tone for the rest of the album. Upbeat and fast-paced, the song captivates listeners and introduces them to the new Swift era. However, Mr. Jason Lipshutz, who critiqued Ms. Swift’s song, said that it “is a step down from the first two songs released from 1989 due to the fact that lyrics feel slipshod,” according to billboard.com.
Although Ms. Swift received negative feedback about the song from critics, she redeemed herself for some fans by donating all proceeds from the song to New York City’s public school system, according to TIME.
Contrary to the upbeat songs in the beginning of the album, “Out of the Woods” offers a more relaxed and calm beat. The song’s chorus is simple as it repeats itself with the titular lines. Delia agrees that the song is subpar to others and does not keep listeners entertained.
“I think it’s repetitive and I don’t listen through to the end of the song most times,” Delia said.
“Blank Space” provides a catchy tempo and clever lyrics that give insight into Ms. Swift’s attitude about love. She has shown her new perspective of love in other songs too such as “Bad Blood” and “This Love.”
Although Ms. Swift’s new album seems to be a favorite among listeners, she pulled 1989 and her four previous albums from Spotify, a popular music streaming service, according to theguardian.com.
Ms. Swift ultimately chose to withdraw her music from Spotify because she feels that the company doesn’t “fairly compensates the writers, producers, artists, and creators of this music,” according to The New York Times. Nevertheless, her decision upset many Spotify listeners.
“So many people use Spotify and so by her taking her music off of Spotify she is cutting off a whole population of music listeners,” sophomore Sophia Mortell said.
From a business perspective, Ms. Swift’s choice may have played to her advantage. According to CNN, Ms. Swift sold almost 1.3 million copies of her album in the first week of its release, a feat that hasn’t been accomplished since 2002, when Eminem sold over 1.3 million copies in the first week of release of his album The Eminem Show.
Ms. Swift is currently planning a world tour for 1989 in 2015. The tour will begin in Tokyo, Japan May 5, 2015 and conclude in Tampa, Florida October 31, 2015.
Freshman Erin Cleary thinks that Ms. Swift will continue to be prosperous for the rest of her musical career.
“Even though Taylor Swift is getting older, I think that any music she will make in the future will be a hit and she will still be successful,” Erin said.
-Morgan Johnson, Staff Writer