1989

AlbumbyTaylor Swift

Released in 2014, 13 tracks, 49 min

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Narratives

"1989"

1989: The Rebirth Of Taylor Swift’s Sound

The album "1989" is the fifth studio album recorded by the pop singer, Taylor Swift through her record label- Big Machine Records. The album title depicts her year of birth which is 1989 and this has a lot to say about her music and personality, being that her music had the touch of sensation from the ‘90s. The album is a pop-synth record with processed vocals and heavy musical instruments that has no ounce of country style in it. 1989, like the Fearless album, was written by Swift when touring for her previous album and was released on October 27, 2014, with a total number of 13 songs in the standard edition. A deluxe edition was later released with 3 additional bonus tracks to the original edition all made of voice memos – The muse for this groundbreaking record according to the singer was listening to lots of pop music from the late ‘80s since revolution is key in the industry, Swift has always brought a twist to each successive album. Thereby making the evolution “poco a poco” and at the same time not being greatly noticed. 1989 edges towards an all pop sound which will broaden the scope of the artiste and bring a new audience to her sound – Taylor did a great job singing country music but felt a need to switch from country music to pop if she really needed to reach the peak of her career. The departure from country music was noted by prying critics. She recalls being told by people to include a handful of country music in the album to remind the world of her background but she did not budge. "Making two genres of music in the same album is not an idea of an album" says Swift. "It portrays the singer as being confused of her sound or where she stands". Swift matured in age and never left her music lagging but carried it along with her. 1989 features Swift as a grownup that has experienced her first break-up and fears and is ready to face whatever the world has left to give. She made the album 1989 formidable by teaming with the constellation of high-classed music artiste; the likes of Kendrick Lamar whom she collaborated with and Jack Antonoff who shaped her music to fit her new audience – The album won Album of the Year and 3 Grammy Awards at the 58th Grammy Awards for Taylor Swift. 1989 outsold Swift’s fourth album Red in just 19 weeks after release, although, Red had been on sale for 228 weeks.

May 24, 2019

The Country Queen of Nashville Takes on Pop with ‘1989’

I remember that sunny Friday afternoon like it was yesterday. I had just heard on the radio that Taylor Swift had just dropped her 5th studio album. Funny enough, I had just re-downloaded her 4th studio album Red and had been vibing to it days leading up to her official release of 1989. She had released “Shake It Off” as a lead single, which had given fans and critics alike a taste of what seemed to be a genre shift for the sweet songstress from Nashville. I had listened to Shake It Off” with an air of uncertainty, as I wasn’t really sure if I was ready for the new Taylor as one thing was evident, she was about to break out of a space that had been a comfort zone for her for almost a decade. Country music had been her comfort zone - to good effect - for years. She had grown to embody what the genre stands for as she had seen the likes of Shania Twain and Carrie Underwood clear out the path perfectly for her. Young Taylor faced almost no direct competition there as she had a genre that embraces success. This made her breakout decision a brave one as she delved into a whole new genre, albeit a seemingly saturated one. Pop stars like Katy Perry, Selena Gomez, Rihanna, Justin Timberlake, Justin Bieber and a whole lot more had already built a niche for themselves as leading pop singers and Taylor Swift might just be about to battle her way into the circle. No album could possibly signify Taylor’s shift away from the innocent young naive country singer who was rattled on stage by Kanye West’s infamous antics years ago than the body of music that is 1989. The album seems a far cry from the Taylor Swift whose heartbreaking sojourns with the likes of Harry Styles and John Mayer led to smash hits like “Dear John”, this was a woman who was coming into her own with a new found confidence. 1989 was released through Big Machine Records, and its official first single “Shake It Off”, opened with a No. 1 ranking in the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. Popular music producer Max Martin co-produced nine tracks of the 13-song album after he had worked with Swift on her 2012 album Red, in which he co-produced the album’s first single “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together”. The album has an 80’s sought of vibe around it, with its sound totally different to what fans of Taylor had been used to. It proved to be a successful transition from country to pop for the lovable girl from Nashville and what other way could she talk about her transition than by opening the album with “Welcome To New York.” The first track off the album typifies what it would feel like eventually gaining freedom. Having dreamt about the big city before finally taking the leap, it was only natural that Miss Swift pay an ode to a city she now calls home; I mean, she has multi-million dollar real estate investments in the city now. The song has a high-tempo sound that will have you move your body to the rhythm of heavy 80’s beats but offers not so much beyond that. A total deviation from the old Taylor style and a representative of a whole lot more to come in the album. Although “Wildest Dreams” reeks of Lana Del Rey all over it, but boy isn’t it beautiful? What the song lacked in content, it more than made up for in sound and beautiful vocals that Taylor pulled off pretty well. “Style” that portrays Taylor in all of the maturity she now basks in. The sound is fire, the lyrics you’ve got that James Dean daydream look in your eyes is one that just won’t be leaving your head anytime soon. This woman is making the transition to pop look pretty easy. “Shake It Off” earned her 3 Grammy nominations in 2015; Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Pop Solo Performance of the Year. While in 2016, the album was nominated in 3 different categories. It won Best Pop Vocal Album, against Kelly Clarkson’s Piece by Piece, James Taylor’s Before This World, Mark Ronson’s Uptown Special, and Florence and the Machine’s How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful. It also won Album of the year ahead of Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp A Butterfly, Alabama Shakes’ Sound & Color, Chris Stapleton’s Traveller, and The Weeknd’s Beauty behind the Madness. “Blank Spaces” also garnered 3 nominations at the 2016 Grammys for Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Pop Solo Performance. Although it didn’t win any of the nominations, it up her nominations to 7 (including “Bad Blood” remix, a single after the album) and 3 awards from the 7 nominations.

Written by @OBP from Omobaba Pension
May 17, 2019

Taylor Swift Leaves Her Country Identity Behind Like Another Bad Ex In 1989

If you’ve read my Narrative about Taylor Swift’s 2012 album Red, you’ll know I was wholeheartedly impressed with not only how compelling it was as a formative work of music in her career but how astonishingly-impactful it was on an emotionally-abusive relationship I was in around the time of its release, convincing me I had nothing to be ashamed about in ravenously consuming the record as it was a genuinely solid collection of tunes that put others in her demographic to shame; I found joy in its endearing lyrical content & plenty of material to jam to on long car rides from my now home of Los Angeles to my old stomping-grounds of San Francisco, believing this was the start of a beautiful relationship with mainstream media the likes of which I hadn’t experienced since the late-nineties wave of Alternative Rock & Electronica that informed my adolescence, but – regrettably – this period of acceptance would be short-lived when her follow-up record 1989 dropped, relegating her back to radio-only-listening for me as her sound fell into generic obscurity along with the rest of the industry – To dial things back a few steps, Swift had shown audiences with her last record that she was ready to grow up as an individual & as an artist, generating much more expressive compositions with a real sense of identity you could latch on to in some truly jam-worthy tracks you’d easily find yourself blasting on a weekly or even daily basis, proving she had what it took to making a lasting impression on the music industry as a whole in the years to come; She was no longer the bright-eyed, bushy-tailed youngster with a penchant for naiveté who couldn’t help but sing about her horrible celebrity dating track record, opening things up for a more engaging sonic experience for a wider audience than she ever could’ve achieved with a strictly-Country aesthetic, but the fame unfortunately went to her head like a silver bullet in a werewolf film, corrupting her aesthetic irrevocably with what is easily my least-favourite Swift record 1989, tainting her image moving forward & making me sad that my birth-year was associated with such derivative dribble – You may think I’m being a tad harsh seeing as this was easily Swift’s most critically-appreciated album, but if you search your heart on deeper analysis, you’ll find my words are nothing if not the truth.

Mar 04, 2019

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"1989"

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"1989"

Album Info

"1989"

Released

  • Jan 01, 2014

Genres

  • Pop
  • Country

Label

  • Big Machine

Producer

  • Max Martin (also exec.)
  • Taylor Swift (also exec.)
  • Jack Antonoff
  • Nathan Chapman
  • Imogen Heap
  • Greg Kurstin
  • Mattman & Robin
  • Ali Payami
  • Shellback
  • Ryan Tedder
  • Noel Zancanella

About

1989 is the fifth studio album by American singer-songwriter Taylor Swift, released on October 27, 2014 through Big Machine Records. Swift began composing the album following the release of her previous studio effort, Red (2012). Over the course of the two-year songwriting period, she collaborated with producers Max Martin and Shellback—Martin served as the album's executive producer alongside Swift. The album's title was named after the singer's birth year and its music was inspired by the pop music of the 1980s.
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