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The Virtual Hub for the Media of the The Benjamin School's Upper School

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Who Will Win the Super Bowl?

  • Chiefs (67%, 2 Votes)
  • 49ers (33%, 1 Votes)
  • Taylor Swift (0%, 0 Votes)

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Album Review: Speak Now (Taylor’s Version)

This is the new album cover for Speak Now (Taylors Version), in which Swift is wearing a purple dress similar to the original.
This is the new album cover for Speak Now (Taylor’s Version), in which Swift is wearing a purple dress similar to the original.

On May 5, 2023, Taylor Swift was in the midst of the first part of The Eras Tour. This tour has changed state’s economies, grossed one billion dollars in ticket sales, brought so much joy to s

upporters all over, and had many other effects on the world. May 5th was the first night of Swift’s Nashville set. Nashville holds a special place in Swift’s heart because she moved from Pennsylvania to Tennessee as a child to have more opportunities to become a country music star. On this night, she announced that she’d be releasing Speak Now (Taylor’s Version) on July 7th. 

 

Speak Now originally came out in 2010 and has always been a fan favorite. The original sold over one million copies in just one week and has continued to sell for years after its release. The album featured three songs in the top ten songs on the Billboard 100, these songs were “Mine,” “Back to December,” and “If This Was a Movie”. The album won many accolades including the American Music Award for Favorite Country album and the Billboard Music Award for Top Country Album. The song “Mean,” from the album won a Grammy for Country Solo Performance and for Best Country Song at the 54th annual Grammy Awards.

Included in Swift’s re-recording of old albums, she releases “Vault tracks,” which are songs that she wrote but never released with the original album. The Vault tracks on this new album include “Electric Touch (feat. Fall Out Boy)(Taylor’s Version)(From the Vault),” “When Emma Falls in Love (Taylor’s Version)(From the Vault),” “I Can See You (Taylor’s Version)(From the Vault),” “Castles Crumbling (feat. Hayley Williams)(Taylor’s Version)(From the Vault),” “Foolish One (Taylor’s Version)(From the Vault),” and “Timeless (Taylor’s Version)(From the Vault).” 

 

The album’s re-recordings are extremely similar to the originals, with the main change being that Swift’s voice has matured and gotten stronger over time. The main change in Speak Now (Taylor’s Version) is that in the song “Better Than Revenge (Taylor’s Version),” Swift changed the lyrics “She’s better known for the things that she does on the mattress” to “He was a moth and she was holding the matches.” She did this because she disapproved of the old lyrics and thought that they were not appropriate since they were shaming other women and putting them down. This song is about a girl who stole Taylor Swift’s boyfriend as a teenager and her anger for both of the people involved. However, she wanted to take the blame off of just the girl which is what the old lyrics seemed to do according to the press and to Taylor Swift herself.

Another change that seems insignificant but is greatly missed in the rerecording is the shaky voice in the song “Last Kiss (Taylor’s Version).” This very sad and mournful song is about a relationship that has

ended. Many details of the relationship and the break up are in the song such as “Fresh on the pavement, I ran off the plane, that July ninth, the beat of your heart. It jumps through your shirt.” Related to this sound change, the other songs also have this new and mature voice compared to the original recordings of the albums which were made earlier on in her career. Taylor Swift has always had a lot of talent but her voice has gotten noticeably smoother and more advanced as a singer.

Speak Now (Taylor’s Version) has since made it to the number one spot on the Billboard 200, making it Swift’s twelfth top-charting album. Twenty of the twenty-two songs on the album have charted on the Streaming Songs list. The album has helped her break her own previous record for most songs taken up by a female artist on the Streaming Songs chart.

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About the Contributor
Caroline Groffman, Associate Editor
Caroline Groffman is a sophomore at The Benjamin School. She is going into her second year on The Pharcyde and is excited to continue her writing. Caroline has been a part of The Benjamin School community since Kindergarten. She loves seeing family and friends, and going to the beach.

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