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COVER FEATURE


“LOVE STORY IS ACTUALLY ABOUT A GUY THAT I ALMOST DATED... BUT WHEN I INTRODUCED HIM TO MY FAMILY AND MY FRIENDS, THEY ALL SAID THEY DIDN’T LIKE HIM. ALL OF THEM! FOR THE FIRST TIME, I COULD RELATE TO THAT ROMEO-AND-JULIET SITUATION WHERE THE ONLY PEOPLE WHO WANTED THEM TO BE TOGETHER WERE THEM.”


the 22-year-old’s career as she takes a bold step from teenager to adulthood, more so than any other of her previous studio albums. “All the different emotions that are written about on this album are all pretty much about the kind of tumultu- ous, crazy, insane, intense, semi-toxic relationships that I’ve experienced in the last two years,” Taylor says during her live YouTube chat, as she explained the reasons behind her bold, new title. “All those emotions spanning from intense love, intense frustration, jealousy, confusion, all of that, in my mind, all those emotions are red. You know, there’s nothing in between. There’s nothing beige about any of those feelings.” The quality of the music and particularly the fusion of


genres very much suggest that Taylor has taken a matured stance, not only as songwriter, but also as collaborator, singer, producer and above all, human being. Described by Rolling Stone magazine, as her ‘…most eclectic set ever…’ (whilst her existing producer Nathan Chapman still remains dominant on this album) Taylor has teamed up with a number of pro- ducers and writers from right across the musical spectrum, including Dan Wilson, Butch Walker, Max Martin, Lori McKenna, Mark Foster and Ed Sheeran—with whom she has seamlessly collaborated with on one of the album’s songs, the organic I Just Want To Know You Better. Feeling inspired by the way he writes his own material, Taylor invited Ed to Nashville and wrote the simplistically composed number whilst sat on a trampoline; their vocals deliciously melting into one. So what are the reasons behind these mature moves and incredibly artistic risks? “I really wanted every single song to operate from an


emotional place,” Taylor explained during her video premier. “Take the song, listen to it acoustically—what does that emotion sound like on a bigger scale? Like, if you’re dealing with the sound of being completely let down by someone and feeling that frustration and complex emotion there, and that sounds like kind of intense, bass-heavy production— that’s what we did. We didn’t overthink it; we just kind of went to a place of: ‘Alright, if you’re feeling this way, and you’re feeling this way in your head, what does that sound like?’ I worked with a bunch of different amazing producers and there are some incredible risks taken musically on this album, but they’re all risks I’m really proud to take.”


Fear not, the familiar Taylor Swift sound still remains


but reverts to an acoustic, country undercurrent amid heavy bass lines, explosive guitars and dominant beats. Having always written about American youth, her maturity will surely extend to her songwriting as she continues to write about her experiences as she transmutes from a teenage girl to a woman. Her new single, We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together was written with Swedish producer and songwriter, Max Martin; a country pop song that depicts a lover that wants to rekindle their relationship. As if evidence was ever needed as to whether her fans will accept her bold, artis- tic risks or not, the single shot to number one on the US Billboard Hot 100 charts, with the album set to follow. A promotional tour is also scheduled; her fans will be excited to hear. Taylor seems to be going from strength to strength, col-


lecting more and more awards for her hard work and dedi- cation to her beloved craft as well as trying her hand at all manner of other things. She’s partaken in a handful of films including 2010 comedy, Valentine’s Day and provided the voice over for Audrey in 2012’s animation, The Lorax. A phi- lanthropist through an through and a giving person at heart, she’s also had a hand in several charity organisations and donation endeavours throughout America, including a $4 million donation to build an education centre at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville. Even though she has a lot of it, money and how much of it she can make will never be a priority for Taylor; making music, writing songs and maintaining that special bond she has with her fans however, is and will always be her drive. Emily Saxton


Grand Ole Opry Maverick 63


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