Taylor Swift reclaims what’s hers with “Fearless (Taylor’s Version)”

The Grammy award-winning artist re-records bestselling album after record dispute

Taylor Swift released her first re-recorded album, “Fearless (Taylor’s version),” earlier this month, giving fans not only waves of nostalgia, but also six new tracks “From the Vault” to her discography. 

In November 2020, Swift confirmed her music catalogue was sold to a private equity fund for $300 million without her knowledge or consent. The news crushed her hopes of regaining control of her music after Ithaca Holdings, owned by entrepreneur Scooter Braun, who purchased her masters from record label Big Machine earlier that year. As a way to take ownership of her story, the singer decided to re-record the discography sold to investors, which included her first six albums. At this time, however, Swift cannot record her version of “Reputation” (2017) according to a contract with Big Machine that prevents her from doing so until five years following the album’s release. 

“I think that artists deserve to own their work, I just feel very passionately about that,” Swift said in an interview with Good Morning America in August 2019

The first album in Swift’s re-recording saga is her sophomore record, “Fearless.” Although many fans were worried about the possibility of some of her most iconic songs, such as “Love Story” and “You Belong With Me,” being drastically altered, the singer provided them with a near replica of the 13-year-old album. This characteristic becomes extremely important as many fans hope to boycott the original songs and solely stream “Taylor’s Version,” ensuring that profits go to Swift and not Big Machine. 

Although the songs are almost identical, the change in Swift’s voice is evident as she has obviously matured over the years, filling fans with pride as they notice how much the singer has evolved. At the same time, listeners can take a trip down memory lane with songs that were originally released in 2008. 

On the other hand, the “From the Vault” tracks (unreleased songs from the Fearless era) create a comforting and welcoming space for fans, taking them back in time while also giving them a new taste of what the then 18-year-old had up her sleeve. The clear star of this catalogue is “Mr. Perfectly Fine,” a song about a person moving on quickly after a breakup while the other is heartbroken. With an upbeat tune and clever lyrics, Swift has us wanting to question our former lovers: “How’s your heart after breaking mine?”

Fans now have the opportunity to ethically listen to Swift’s second album, which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart. With “Fearless (Taylor’s version),” fans must prepare themselves for an era of love, heartbreak, nostalgia and as Swift does, “dancing in a storm in your best dress.”