Fearless (Background)

Content

Background

Fearless is the second studio album by American singer and songwriter, Taylor Swift. Released on November, 11, 2008 by Big Machine Records, the album was a commercial success being certified Diamond by the RIAA in 2017. The album spent 11 weeks atop the Billboard 200 and thirty-five on the Country Top Album charts and peaked in the top five in five other countries. The album won Album of the Year at both the CMAs and the ACM Awards in 2009 and in 2010 at the Grammys where it also won Best Country Album.

To promote the album Swift released five songs digitally, four through Amazon and iTunes and one through Rhapsody. The four released to Amazon and iTunes were part of a Countdown to Fearless promotion. “Change” was released as a promotional single on August 8, 2008, “Fearless” followed on October 14, 2008, “Breathe” (released through Rhapsody and not part of the Countdown) was released on October 21, 2008, “You’re Not Sorry” was released on October 28, 2008 and the final song “You Belong with Me” was released on November 4, 2008. Swift would also embark on her first headlining tour, known as the Fearless Tour, beginning on April 23, 2009 and ending on June 5, 2010.

Swift wrote seven of the thirteen original songs on the standard album by herself, while the remaining six were written with co-writers. Additionally, on the album’s release, a Target exclusive version featured a limited time DVD featuring behind-the-scene recordings of two songs on the album was released. A Rhapsody exclusive was also released with a bonus track featuring an acoustic version of “Tell Me Why”. A karaoke edition with a CD+G and DVD version was released on March 31, 2009.

In September of 2009, Swift announced a reissue of Fearless, subtitled as the Platinum Edition, would be released on October 26, 2009. The Platinum Edition featured five new songs and a piano version of the song, “Forever & Always”, that was featured on the original album. It also contained a bonus DVD featuring music videos Swift had released at the time as well as behind the scenes footage of the making of three of the videos, a photo gallery of the 2009 leg of the Fearless Tour, as well as behind the scenes footage of the first show of the tour and Swift’s “Thug Story” video short featuring T-Pain, which was exclusively for the 2009 CMA Music Awards and when bought at US Target stores, two bonus Clear Channel Stripped performances were included as bonus content on the DVD, while when bought at US Walmart stores, two performances from V-Fest UK were included, both for a limited time.

In a publicized dispute over the ownership of Swift’s master recordings to her first six albums being sold off twice without her being allowed to purchase them and Scooter Braun still being able to make money off her original work after Braun purchased Big Machine Records and later sold her back catalogue to Shamrock Holdings, on April 9, 2021, Swift released Fearless (Taylor’s Version) to regain control of her original work and subsequently diminish the value of the original masters.

Singles

Five singles were released radio to promote the album between 2008 and 2010. The lead single “Love Story” was released on September 15, 2008 and was a success, peaking at number one on the Billboard Hot Country Songs, Adult Contemporary and Mainstream Top 40 charts, making it the first country song to top the Mainstream Top 40 and a success on pop radio. The song also peaking at number four on the Billboard Hot 100. “White Horse” was released as the second single from the album on December 8, 2008 and gained critical acclaim and won Best Country Song and Best Female Country Vocal Performance at the 2010 Grammy Awards. The song peaked at number 2 on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart, while peaking at number 13 on the Billboard 100. On April 18, 2009, “You Belong with Me” was released as the third single and peaked at number one on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart, two on the Billboard Hot 100 and became the first country song to reach number one on the all-genre Billboard Radio Songs chart. The song also won Best Female Video at the 2009 VMA Awards. The fourth single, “Fifteen” was released August 31, 2009 and did not do as well at the first three singles that preceded it. While peaking in the top 10 of the Hot Country Songs chart, the song only reached number 7 and number 10 on the Billboard Mainstream Top 40. The song only got as high as 23 on the Billboard Hot 100, 12 on the Adult Contemporary chart and 14 on the Adult Top 40. The fifth and final single to be released off the album would be the title-track, “Fearless”, on January 4, 2010. The song peaked at number 9 on the Billboard Hot 100, 18 on the Billboard Pop 100 and 10 on the Top Country Songs chart.

Track listing

Standard
Track/TitleWritersProducersLength
1. “Fearless”Hilary Lindsey, Liz Rose, Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift4:02
2. “Fifteen”Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift4:54
3. “Love Story”Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift3:55
4.”Hey Stephen”Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift4:15
5. “White Horse”Liz Rose, Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift3:54
6. “You Belong with Me”Liz Rose, Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift3:51
7. “Breathe” (featuring Colbie Caillat)Colbie Caillat, Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift4:24
8. “Tell Me Why”Liz Rose, Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift3:20
9. “You’re Not Sorry”Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift4:22
10. “The Way I Loved You”John Rich, Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift4:04
11. “Forever & Always”Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift3:45
12. “The Best Day”Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift4:05
13. “Change”Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift4:39
Rhapsody Exclusive Bonus Track
14. “Tell Me Why” (Rhapsody Exclusive)Liz Rose, Taylor Swift3:12
International Bonus Tracks
14. “Our Song”Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman3:20
15. “Teardrops on My Guitar”Liz Rose, Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman3:14
16. “Should’ve Said No”Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman4:05
Australian Tour Edition Bonus Track
17. “Love Story” (U.S. Pop Mix)Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift3:54
Japanese Edition Bonus Tracks
17. “Beautiful Eyes”Taylor SwiftRobert Ellis Orrall2:58
18. “Picture to Burn”Liz Rose, Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman2:53
19. “I’m Only Me When I’m With You”Angelo, Rober Ellis Orrall, Taylor SwiftAngelo, Robert Ellis Orrall3:33
20. “I Heart ?”Taylor SwiftRobert Ellis Orrall3:14
Fearless Platinum Edition
1. “Jump Then Fall”Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift3:57
2. “Untouchable”Cary Barlowe, Nathan Barlowe, Taylor Swift, Tommy Lee JamesNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift5:11
3. “Forever & Always” (Piano Version)Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift4:27
4. “Come in with the Rain”Liz Rose; Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift
5. “Superstar”Liz Rose, Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift4:22
6. “The Other Side of the Door”Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift3:57
7. “Fearless”Hilary Lindsey, Liz Rose, Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift4:02
8. “Fifteen”Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift4:54
9. “Love Story”Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift3:55
10.”Hey Stephen”Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift4:15
11. “White Horse”Liz Rose, Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift3:54
12. “You Belong with Me”Liz Rose, Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift3:51
13. “Breathe” (featuring Colbie Caillat)Colbie Caillat, Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift4:24
14. “Tell Me Why”Liz Rose, Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift3:20
15. “You’re Not Sorry”Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift4:22
16. “The Way I Loved You”John Rich, Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift4:04
17. “Forever & Always”Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift3:45
18. “The Best Day”Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift4:05
19. “Change”Taylor SwiftNathan Chapman, Taylor Swift4:39

top