Taylor Swift’s ‘1989’ Takes Singer in New Direction
The debut single from the pop project, ‘Shake It Off,’ which the singer says was born from her own challenges, is already at radio.
“I want this song to go out into the world and not be about my critics,” she explains to Fusion. “I want it to be about the girl who’s criticizing someone in 11th grade because she thinks that her hair looks stupid. And that girl then goes and cries in the bathroom because of it. These are things that we go through in every phase of our life, starting with your job, and there’s just someone who has it out for you.
“I had a lot of days where I would come home from school and get in the car, and my mom would try so hard to console me because someone had made fun of me or someone had said something about me or not invited me to something that I was dying to go to,” she continues. “And she would always try to find songs that would bring me out of that. Music always helped distract me from that. So I think my greatest hope is that this started out to be about my life, and I just want it to go out into cars and speakers and earphones and become about their lives.”
Swift’s previous album, ‘Red,’ soared to No. 1 and sold more than eight million copies, but she says ‘Red’ and ‘1989’ hold very few similarities.
“[With ‘Red’], one thing I liked about it, but one thing that’s very different than ‘1989,’ is that you’d hear mandolin on one song, and then on the next song you’d hear dubstep,” Swift says. “And you’d just sort of think, ‘What?’ And it was also emotionally — it was a very devastating record. It was about dealing with an intense heartbreak, and ’1989′ is about the phase after that where you brush yourself off, and you’re okay, and you write about what your life is like then.”
While the Pennsylvania native is known for writing about love gone wrong in songs like ‘Picture to Burn,’ ‘We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together’ and ‘I Knew You Were Trouble,’ ‘1989’ focuses more on friendship than relationships — a fact that is startling even to Swift.
“I think my life has changed in ways that have surprised me,” she notes. “Deciding to spend my time in New York, cutting my hair, becoming all of a sudden surrounded by this great group of strong, beautiful, smart women who challenge me and push me forward — those are all changes in my life.”
The 24-year-old says she is happy to embrace the women in her life, even if it doesn’t leave a lot of time for romance.
“I am such a girl’s girl … I really like spontaneous friends. A lot of my friends, I know I could call up and say, ‘Hey, are you busy the next day? Road trip. Let’s do it,'” she says of her gal pals. “I love people like that, who have a sense of ambition and passion for what they do, but also spontaneous and fun and can make you laugh when you’re having a bad day.”
‘1989’ is available for pre-order here.