Taylor Swift on the Profanity in Her Newest Albums: ‘It’s Just Been That Kind of Year’
The year is wrapping up, and we are probably more excited for New Year’s than we’ve ever been before. Most of us probably weren’t very productive during this year when just surviving from one day to the next was the top priority. Many businesses went under this year and the ones that didn’t still suffered in one way or another. While this was the common pattern for 2020, some people thrived during quarantine--like Taylor Swift. It seems that literally nothing can stop that superstar…
Taylor Swift surprised us all in 2020
While many of us were wallowing in quarantine isolation, Taylor Swift was busy tapping into her never-ending creativity. Our first surprise came in July when Swift announced her new album, Folklore, would be dropping in just 16 hours, as reported by NPR.
Swift routinely releases new albums every few years, so this release just 11 months after her last album was a huge surprise for fans. The cancellation of many of her planned events left the singer with plenty of time on her hands.
When December rolled around, many of us were still listening to (and greatly enjoying) Folklore on repeat. So imagine everyone’s shock when the singer made yet another surprise album drop. Evermore was released on December 11, just five months after Folklore, according to Elle.
Evermore is a “sister album” to Folklore. Swift says when they finished Folklore, it just didn’t really feel complete. She explained it very poetically, saying “it feels like we were standing on the edge of the folklorian woods and had a choice: to turn and go back or to travel further into the forest of this music. We chose to wander deeper in.”
How are ‘Folklore’ and ‘Evermore’ different from her typical albums?
Taylor Swift’s 2020 sound is quite a bit different from her last few pop albums, and fans are loving it. Both Folklore and Evermore are a welcome departure from the overly energetic pop hits that seem to be written solely to please the masses.
The albums have a raw, honest appeal, with touching lyrics and mellow music that seems to come straight from Swift’s soul. Even the album covers boast a rustic, cozy feel, with subdued colors, foggy woods, and warm flannel.
Swift’s past albums have been polished to perfection, where the two latest installments seem to have a grittier feel that shows us a more vulnerable side of the singer. In addition to the difference in the sound of the songs, we’ve also seen a significant change in the lyrics. While her previous albums are fairly clean in terms of explicit lyrics, the new ones have quite a few explicit songs.
Folklore was Swift’s first album to ever sport an “explicit” label, according to Mashable. Evermore followed in its footsteps, with several songs containing profanities. Why the sudden change? Well, she is an adult now and can use whatever language she sees fit to get her message across. Also, it’s 2020. Let’s be real–we’ve all been using quite a few more profanities this year.
Will she continue to drop surprise albums?
Musical artists typically don’t release surprise albums. There’s usually a big “roll-out” process, in which the album is marketed for months before its release. Singles are released one-at-a-time, merchandise is sold, and it all drums up a fair amount of excitement which is meant to boost album sales.
This conventional method of releasing albums may soon be a thing of the past. If we take a look at the incredible success of Folklore and Evermore, it proves that all the fanfare that’s built up during that roll-out process doesn’t really matter. Record-setting sales made both albums some of the most successful of the year. Swift also debuted an album AND a song at No. 1 this year.
While none of us know with certainty whether the singer will continue to drop surprise albums on us like this, we hope so. It seems to have benefited Swift, and the surprises were a lot of fun during a year that wasn’t so fun. The talented musician put it best when, according to NPR, she said “The times we’re living in keep reminding me that nothing is guaranteed. My gut is telling me that if you make something you love, you should just put it out into the world.”