Why is Taylor Swift rerecording her old albums?

Taylor Swift’s 1989 will be released in October  (Isabel Infantes / PA Archive)
Taylor Swift’s 1989 will be released in October (Isabel Infantes / PA Archive)

Taylor Swift has released 1989 (Taylor’s Version), the fourth album she has rerecorded from her back catalogue due to her feud over her master rights.

Released on Friday, the new version of her 2014 album contains new versions of all of the original songs - including hits Blank Space, Bad Blood, Shake it Off, and Welcome to New York. Taylor’s Version expands 1989 to 21 songs - eight songs longer than the original, with production from the likes of Jack Antonoff and Ryan Tedder.

The album has been met with rave reviews, with Metacritic currently listing it at a rare, perfect, 100. It comes hot on the heels of Speak Now (Taylor’s Version), released in July, while Red (Taylor’s Version) and Fearless (Taylor’s Version) were released in 2021.

Swift announced plans to rerecord her first six albums (originally released between 2006 and 2017) after leaving Big Machine Records for the Universal Music Group in 2018 as part of a controversial takeover. She has not set a date for rerecording Taylor Swift, her debut, or Reputation, her sixth album, but the latter is predicted to be the next on her agenda.

Swift currently has a film of her Eras Tour in cinemas, however the tour will continue in the UK in 2024 with several dates at Wembley Stadium.

Why is Taylor Swift re-recording her old albums?

The singer has been working on rerecording her entire back catalogue to regain control of her master recordings.

Her first six albums’ master recordings were acquired by famed talent manager Scooter Braun when he bought Taylor’s former label. Since then, her masters have changed hands, with investment firm Shamrock Capital taking over.

Taylor’s deal with Universal Music’s Republic Records, which she signed in 2018, is believed to give her control of her master recordings but she is still determined to take back ownership of her music by creating new versions of her songs.

Which albums are left for Taylor Swift to rerecord?

The remaining albums that Taylor Swift will have to rerecord to regain control of her creative work are:

Taylor Swift (2006)

Reputation (2017)

As Taylor recorded Lover (2019), Folklore (2020), Evermore (2020), and Midnights (2022) under her new deal with Republic Records, she won’t have to rerecord those albums.