Taylor Swift announced in 2019 that she would be re-recording her first five albums beginning in November of 2020. The masters of these albums, recorded with Big Machine Records, were acquired and then sold again to a private holding company.
Swift left Big Machine Records when her contract expired in 2018 and signed with Republic Records and Universal Music Group.
Swift’s contract with Republic and Universal ensures that she owns all the masters and copyrights to anything she records with them, with the stipulation that anyone who wants to use her work in the future will deal directly with her.
The first song to drop was “Love Story” (Swift’s version), released on February 12, 2021. The album Fearless (Swift’s version) will be released in April.
Though it has been 13 years since the original Love Story was released, Taylor’s Version shows how Swift’s voice has gained more color and experience, giving this recording layers that the original lacks.
This process is a big deal to Swift as owning her own music. In an interview with Robin Roberts on Good Morning, America, Swift said, “I think that artists deserve to own their work. I just feel very passionate about that.”