It has been nine years since the original 1989 album was released, and on Oct. 27, Taylor Swift released the re-recorded 1989 (Taylor’s Version) album.
As a moderate Swifty myself, I was ecstatic when the album was released. I woke up that morning and instantly listened to the album from start to finish. Being able to hear a more mature and revamped version of some of my favorite songs was a great start to my day.
Clearly, I have nothing but great things to say about Swift’s new release, so I wanted to get some insight into what other Elmhurst University students thought about the album.
A survey was distributed via the EU Snapchat story, where students from the classes of 2024, 2025, 2026, and 2027 could respond. First, survey takers were asked which re-recorded track was their favorite — a very tough question to ask.
The track “I Know Places” got the most votes with 18.2% of votes. The rest of the students’ responses were spread across a wide range of songs, with some voting for popular songs such as “Shake It Off,” or some voting for a lesser-known song like “Clean.”
I cannot get over “Out Of The Woods,” it sounds more mellow and less like Swift was out of breath and yelling the lyrics instead of singing.
When asked if there was any reasoning behind why a certain track was their favorite, students had a similar theme throughout their answers.
Alex Rodgers, a survey respondent, said, “‘You Are In Love’ was my initial favorite song on the original album, so hearing it in a more mature voice and clearer just made it ten times better.”
Respondent Tommy Calderone had a similar response, “It’s always been one of my favorite songs on the album and her matured vocals on the re-record make it sound so good.”
With a nine-year gap between the original and the re-recording, Swift’s voice has matured along with the equipment used to record the album, leaving better-sounding audio. Students enjoyed being able to hear a more mature, cleaner, and new version of their favorite songs.
Most people have heard the popular song “Bad Blood (feat. Kendrick Lamar),” which was released in 2014. Swift also decided to include a re-recording of this song on the deluxe version of 1989 (Taylor’s Version).
Over three-fourths of survey respondents were moderately or extremely excited to hear the track, while the other one-fourth of respondents were slightly excited or not at all.
Some students even mentioned how they thought Kendrick Lamar “Carried the song” or said, “He ate.”
One student commented on how they believed that “He’s a better artist than Taylor Swift for sure.”
Regardless of how the track sounds compared to the original, I am just thankful that Kendrick Lamar pulled through and agreed to do a re-re- cording because, without him, it wouldn’t feel like a true revamp of 1989.
Swift also released five more songs from “The Vault” on this album, meaning they were written in the past but never made it onto an album until now. These five tracks, “Is It Over Now?,” “Now That We Don’t Talk,” “Say Don’t Go,” “Suburban Legends,” and “Slut!” are being devoured by fans.
TikTok dances have been created, and theories of who the songs are about are circulating all over the internet. Most EU respondents thought that “Now That We Don’t Talk” and “Slut!” were the most likable vault tracks.
The vault track “Suburban Legends” had the most varying survey results. Six students said they strongly liked it, while six students said they were indifferent about the track.
It also had the most votes, with five students saying they strongly disliked it out of all the vault tracks. EU students had great things to say about their favorite vault tracks.
Student Kayla Tutunji said, “I really wish ‘Now That We Don’t Talk’ was longer because it is so good!”
Student Ella Hardy commented on how the vault tracks affected the 1989 album as a whole.
“I loved all the vault tracks,” Hardy said. “I think they add greatly to 1989. These vault tracks may be my favorite that Taylor has released.”
Having new songs for fans to enjoy adds to the value of the re-recorded album. Fans get something new to listen to while also getting to listen to an updated version of the songs they already know by heart.
We all know Taylor Swift is the queen of eras; she is constantly reinventing her public image for each album release. This Era of Swift, the Era of 1989 (Taylor’s Version), includes the Eras tour, releasing a movie, and dating an NFL superstar.
Swifties and non-Swifties have lots to say about what Swift has been up to recently. When asked how students felt about the current era of Swift, 81.8% of respondents said they were satisfied with her current era, saying, “So happy for her.” and “My fav!”
While 18.2% of respondents said they were strongly dissatisfied with her era, commenting about how “It sucks.” and that it “Does feel a little different and almost empty, maybe it’s the proximity to the last era but it does feel stranger.”
I love this era of Taylor Swift; she is on top of the world right now, having a world tour with 146 dates, releasing a movie that received more than $100 million in pre-sales globally, and getting all 21 songs from her new album on the Billboard Hot 100.
She’s making history in the music and film industries like no other artist has before.
Regardless of what people’s opinions are about Taylor Swift, we have to take a minute to admire the amount of work she is putting into her career and congratulate her for fighting back and finding a way to gain the rights to her songs.
Like many other fans of the 1989 album, I wish we could go back and relisten to everything for the first time, but the re-recording does a great job of creating a new listening experience.
With the re-recording, fans can listen to their favorite songs and think about the good times associated with the original album.
Now that this era of Taylor Swift has started, I would wait forever and ever to see what it has in store, or is it gonna go down in flames?