Swift shakes off country roots, moves to pop with new album “1989”


Hannah Simon

By Hannah Simon

 Taylor Swift has effortlessly strutted through music genres from country, to country pop, and has finally landed in strictly pop music in the recently released album “1989.”

   Swift’s debut album, “Taylor Swift,” featuring the songs “Teardrops On My Guitar” and “Tim McGraw,” was released in 2006 by Big Machine Records when Swift was only 16 years old.

   A lot has changed since. The differences in Swift’s music style are apparent when songs from the 2012 album “Red,” such as “22,” are contrasted with those from the older album “Fearless,” like her song “Love Story.” “Red” was on the line between country and pop, whereas past albums “Speak Now,” “Fearless” and “Taylor Swift” were considered to be closer to country. “At a certain point, if you chase two rabbits, you lose them both,” said Swift in an interview with Rolling Stone, explaining why she abandoned her country roots.

   In the past, Swift was accompanied by acoustic instruments. “1989’s” sound, though, is more techno and upbeat. Despite the large changes in sound, Swift’s song-writing abilities have never dwindled.    

   An especially relatable song on the album is the track  “Clean.”  Swift’s meaning behind the song is that even on the darkest days, one can find clarity if he or she accepts the struggle he or she faces. A common theme found in “1989” is self-improvement and acceptance.

   “‘1989’ can be described using the words strength, power and independence,” said junior Madison Banker. “While Taylor’s previous albums focused on heartbreaks, ‘1989’ is about having a strong relationship with yourself.” 

   Swift’s hard work paid off. Billboard reports that “1989” has sold over two million copies, ranking as 2014’s second largest selling album following the “Frozen” soundtrack.

  Swift, a seven-time Grammy award winner, is the youngest winner in history to win the music industry’s highest honor, the Grammy Album of the Year. According to the Internet Movie Database, Swift has 35 award nominations and 19 wins. Swift received three Grammy nominations for “Shake It Off,” including  Song of the Year, Record of the Year and Best Pop Solo. 

   Swift will continue to have huge success, and although making the switch to pop was hard on some original fans, “1989” is definitely not a disappointment.