Taylor Swift is Re-Recording her Masters and Here is Why



Taylor Swift strives to own her masters.

Reese Hyman, Staff Writer

Taylor Swift’s song All Too Well (10 Minute Version) (Taylor’s Version) (From the Vault) is the longest song to ever reach the Billboard Hot 100. After re-recording Fearless, Swift’s second album, Swift announced that she would be releasing Red (Taylor’s Version) on November 12th, 2021. But why is Taylor Swift re-recording her masters anyways, what even are her masters, and why is this important to society?

 To understand why Taylor Swift is re-recording her masters, we need to first understand what her masters really are. An artist’s masters are considered to be the first recording of a song. It’s the original version. Anything that comes after would be a copy. Amuse Music Recording Company says that if a record label has the rights to music, then they have the right to license out music, and collect the royalties. Swift’s masters include her first self titled debut album Taylor Swift, Fearless (which was rerecorded and released on April 9th, 2021), Speak Now, Red (Rerecorded and released November 12th 2021), 1989, and Reputation. The albums that Swift owns include Fearless (Taylor’s Version), Red (Taylor’s Version), Lover, Folklore, and Evermore. An artist’s masters are important in owning their own music and being able to use it however they choose to.

 Now the real question is why is Taylor Swift re-recording her masters? Putting it simply and plainly, owning your masters means you have full control over what is done with the song or album. According to Taylor Swift’s Instagram post, she believes that “artists should own their own work for so many reasons.” Not only do you have control over what is done with the music, but you also receive the money that is gained from when the music is streamed. Although this is not what Swift is concerned about, it’s nice to be able to receive a reward for your hard work. At the end of the day, it is important for artists to own their music, especially when you aren’t receiving any income from four of your albums.

 If you want to know if you are streaming music that Swift owns, you can look for “Taylor’s Version” in the title. While only Fearless (Taylor’s Version) and Red (Taylor’s Version) have this in their title, Swift also owns Lover, Folklore, and Evermore. Albums with ‘Taylor’s Version” in the title mean that Swift has re-recorded these albums and you should no longer steam the old versions. With Swift re-recording her albums, it sets an example for other artists whose masters they no longer own. Swift is teaching society that even if something you own is stolen, there is always a work around and a way to gain control again. Even if you don’t like Swift, it’s important to stream Taylor’s Version to show other artists that they can do the same thing with their music and demonstrate how to take back something that was stolen.

In conclusion, Taylor Swift has shown us how to take back control of something that was taken, and has become a role model to many artists now and to come.