Does Taylor Swift’s Social-Media Blackout Mean New Music Is Coming?August 18, 2017 9:30pm

Taylor Swift sent fans into a frenzy today by wiping clean her Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook accounts, which combined have approximately 250 million followers, setting the Internet alight with speculation about whether a new album is imminent. But that’s not the only reason Swift’s fan base is snapping into anticipatory mode.

For one, more time has passed since the release of 2014’s “1989” than any of her previous albums (each of which had a two-year gap). Swift is usually savvy about the cycles of media and fan attention and oversaturation and presumably calculated that, considering how much bigger her stardom has become since “1989,” it was wise to wait a bit longer.

For another, It’s also because the singer tends to lead with new singles in August, something she’s done on each of her last three albums, leading “1989” with “Shake It Off,” 2012’s “Red” with “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” and 2010’s “Speak Now” with “Mine.”

Similarly, she has released four of her five studio albums thus far on October 20-something — the only exception was her sophomore album “Fearless,” which dropped on Nov. 11, 2008.

In a sense, it feels like Swift began the campaign for her new album on June 9, when she suddenly returned her music to major streaming services after removing them prior to the release of “1989” (it was surely no coincidence that it was also the date that Katy Perry, with whom she’s publicly sparred, released her new album). Yet a wild card was the recent “groping” trial with Denver DJ David Mueller, who’d sued her after he was fired for allegedly groping Swift during a 2013 pre-concert photo op. (Swift countersued; Mueller has continued to deny her claims.) If she’d lost that case or come out not looking good, it would have been an awkward time to launch a new album campaign.

But she emerged not only triumphant but acquitted herself well on the stand — speaking forcefully and even using a little humor — and in the process managed to make herself into a global symbol for female opposition to sexual harassment.

And considering that the aftermath of the “groping” incident went on for four years, it seems more than likely that it will be addressed in some form in the lyrics to her next album, which we’d be willing to bet will be dropping later this year.

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