Red (Taylor’s Version) is the second re-recorded album by American singer and songwriter, Taylor Swift. The album is a re-recording of her fourth studio album, Red. Released November 12, 2021 through Republic Records, the re-recording is the second of her first six albums she has planned to release to regain ownership of her original work through Big Machine Records after Scott Borchetta, then president of the record label, sold the label, along with the ownership of the master recordings to Swift’s early work through Big Machine after she left in 2018 to sign on with Republic Records, to Scooter Braun for $300 million. Swift publicly condemned the selling of the label via social media explaining she had been trying to buy the masters for years only to be offered unfavorable conditions and denounced Braun as an “incessant, manipulative bully”. In August of 2019 Swift revealed her intentions on re-recording her old music as soon as she was allowed to. With Swift also being the publisher of the music due to her being the main songwriter to all her songs she released through Big Machine, this allowed her, per the artist-label agreement that stipulates the artist cannot re-record a song for a fixed period of time, to re-record her music any time she wanted if she so chose to. By re-recording, Swift is technically covering her own songs into new sound recordings, resulting in new masters that she fully owns, which would enable her to control the licensing of her songs for commercial use, bypassing the owners of the older masters and subsequently devaluing them.
In October 2020, it was announced that Braun had sold the masters, artwork and music videos to Shamrock Holdings for $405 million. Swift later revealed that Braun had offered her a chance to bid on her work on condition she signed a non-disclosure agreement regarding her public statements against him in an attempt to try and gag Swift from making any further public remarks against him, an offer she refused. Swift also revealed, upon being reached out to by Shamrock Holdings, that Braun had put a non-disclosure agreement on the company to not say a word to Swift about the purchase until it was completed. Swift attempted to become an equity partner with Shamrock Holdings but would decline upon learning that Braun would still continue to profit off of her work and in November 2020 Swift returned to her original plan and began working on re-recording her first six albums.
Red (Taylor’s Version) retains the nineteen tracks that were featured on the deluxe edition of Red as well as the acoustic version of “State of Grace”. The re-recorded album also includes Swift’s charity single, “Ronan”, that was released around the same time. As an incentive to get fans to buy her new recording of the album, Swift also went back into what she deems as “The Vault” and released eight new songs that were original supposed to appear on the original Red album but were cut due to, as Swift publicly stated, that she wanted to use the songs on the next album but the album would turn into something else and the songs got left behind. Two of the “vault” tracks on the re-recording that had been original intended for Red were given to other country acts. “Better Man” was recorded by Little Big Town for the album, The Breaker, and was released as a single in 2016. “Babe” was recorded by Sugarland for their return album after a seven-year hiatus, Bigger, and featured Swift as guest vocals. The song was also released as a single in 2018. The re-recorded album also contains the unabridged and 10-minute version of “All Too Well” bringing the re-recorded album to a grand total of 30 tracks. Apple Music versions contains a 25 second message from Swift is included with the album as the 31st track.
To promote the re-recording, on the day of the its release Swift released All Too Well: The Short Film, based on the premises of the lyrics to the 10-minute version which Swift wrote, directed and starred in alongside Sadie Sink and Dylan O’Brian, who Swift had cast in the lead roles. The song was also released for a limited time digitally, in both explicit and clean version, as a promotional single from the album on November 15, 2021 along with the live performance recorded at ACM Theater where the short film had premiered. The 10-minute version would enter at the top of both the Billboard Hot 100 and Hot Country Songs Chart, becoming the longest song in history to top the both charts.
Commercially, Red (Taylor’s Version) did well debuting at number one on the Billboard 200, making Swift the fastest solo artist in the history of the Billboard 200 to have four consecutive albums chart at number one in a short period of time, in under 16 months, surpassing Elton John’s 46 year long standing record.
“Message In a Bottle”, one of the “vault” tracks on the album, was released as the first single from the album to pop and adult pop radio stations on November 12, 2021. It peaked at number ten on the Adult Top 40 chart. “I Bet You Think About Me”, another “vault” track from the album and featuring Chris Stapleton, was released as the second single from the album impacting country radio on November 15, 2021 and entered the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart at number three.
|1. “State of Grace”||Taylor Swift||Christopher Rowe, Taylor Swift||4:54|
|2. “Red”||Taylor Swift||Christopher Rowe, Taylor Swift||3:42|
|3. “Treacherous”||Dan Wilson, Taylor Swift||Dan Wilson||4:02|
|4. ” I Knew You Were Trouble”||Max Martin, Shellback, Taylor Swift||Christopher Rowe, Shellback, Taylor Swift||3:39|
|5. “All Too Well”||Liz Rose, Taylor Swift||Christopher Rowe, Taylor Swift||5:28|
|6. “22”||Max Martin, Shellback, Taylor Swift||Christopher Rowe, Shellback, Taylor Swift||3:50|
|7. “I Almost Do”||Taylor Swift||Christopher Rowe, Taylor Swift||4:03|
|8. “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together”||Max Martin, Shellback, Taylor Swift||Christopher Rowe, Shellback, Taylor Swift||3:12|
|9. “Stay Stay Stay”||Taylor Swift||Christopher Rowe, Taylor Swift||3:25|
|10. “The Last Time” (featuring Gary Lightbody)||Gary Lightbody, Jacknife Lee, Taylor Swift||Jacknife Lee||4:58|
|11. “Holy Ground”||Taylor Swift||Jeff Bhasker||3:22|
|12. “Sad Beautiful Tragic”||Taylor Swift||Christopher Rowe, Paul Mirkovich, Taylor Swift||4:44|
|13. “The Lucky One”||Taylor Swift||Jeff Bhasker||3:59|
|14. “Everything Has Changed” (featuring Ed Sheeran)||Ed Sheeran, Taylor Swift||Butch Walker||4:04|
|15. “Starlight”||Taylor Swift||Christopher Rowe, Paul Mirkovich, Taylor Swift||3:39|
|16. “Begin Again”||Taylor Swift||Christopher Rowe, Taylor Swift||3:58|
|17. “The Moment I Knew”||Taylor Swift||Christopher Rowe, Paul Mirkovich, Taylor Swift||4:44|
|18. “Come Back… Be Here”||Dan Wilson, Taylor Swift||Dan Wilson||3:42|
|19. “Girl at Home”||Taylor Swift||Elvira Anderfjärd||3:39|
|20. “State of Grace” (Acoustic Version)||Taylor Swift||Christopher Rowe, Taylor Swift||5:20|
|21. “Ronan”||Maya Thompson, Taylor Swift||Christopher Rowe, Taylor Swift||4:23|
|22. “Better Man”||Taylor Swift||Aaron Dessner, Taylor Swift||4:56|
|23. “Nothing New” (featuring Phoebe Bridgers)||Taylor Swift||Aaron Dessner, Taylor Swift||4:18|
|24. “Babe”||Patrick Monahan, Taylor Swift||Jack Antonoff, Taylor Swift||3:43|
|25. “Message in a Bottle”||Max Martin, Shellback, Taylor Swift||Elvira Anderfjärd, Shellback||3:45|
|26. “I Bet You Think About Me” (featuring Chris Stapleton)||Lori McKenna, Taylor Swift||Aaron Dessner, Taylor Swift||4:44|
|27. “Forever Winter”||Mark Foster, Taylor Swift||Jack Antonoff, Taylor Swift||4:22|
|28. “Run” (featuring Ed Sheeran)||Ed Sheeran, Taylor Swift||Aaron Dessner, Taylor Swift||3:59|
|29. The Very First Night||Amund Bjørklund, Espen Lind, Taylor Swift||Danny D, Espionage, Tim Blacksmith||3:19|
|30. “All Too Well” (10 Minute Version)||Liz Rose, Taylor Swift||Jack Antonoff, Taylor Swift||10:13|
|Apple Music Bonus Track|
|31. “A Message from Taylor”||Taylor Swift||0:25|
- All tracks are noted as “Taylor’s Version”. Tracks 22-30 are additionally noted as “From the Vault”.
- On the physical CD copies of the album, tracks 1-16 are on the first disc while disc two contains tracks 17-30.
- A clean and explicit version of the album was released. On the clean version:
- “I Bet You Think About Me” completely removes the word “shit”.
- “All Too Well” (10 Minute Version)” silences the word “fuck”.
- A video deluxe edition containing all thirty lyric videos, the music video for “I Bet You Think About Me” and the All Too Well: Short Film was released exclusively to Apple Music.
- Like with folklore, evermore, and Fearless (Taylor’s Version), Swift released four compilation albums, known as a chapters, exclusively to digital and streaming services.
- Red (Taylor’s Version): Could You Be The One Chapter was released on January 13, 2022.
- Red (Taylor’s Version): She Wrote A Song About Me Chapter was released on January 18, 2022.
- Red (Taylor’s Version): The Slow Motion Chapter was released on January 25, 2022.
- Red (Taylor’s Version): From The Vault Chapter was released January 31, 2022.