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Behind The Scenes: How she made it Out Of The Woods

February 9, 2016

It’s not like we had anything else to do, Taylor Nation.

We finally get a peek behind the scenes of the filming of “Out of the Woods” in gorgeous New Zealand. The video, directed by Joseph Khan (KHAAAAN!) had some real life scenery combined with some amazing set designs.

Watch on YouTube

“The entire video,” says Joseph Khan, “is basically Taylor suffering through an emotional landscape of trees and forests and snow and water, and all that is metaphor, but it’s being done practically on location here in New Zealand.”

“We’ve been in a desert. We’ve been on a rocky cliff. We’ve been on a glacier. We’ve been in a swamp,” says the Sparkly Dressed. “I think they have such amazing access to trees and plants in things in New Zealand that… That’s all I can come up with as to why the sets are so good. They’re really talented set designers.”

Coming up in the Calendar:

  • February 15: It’s the 58th Annual Grammy Awards! Taylor is nominated for Album of the Year for 1989, Record of the Year for “Blank Space”, Song of the Year for “Blank Space”, Best Pop Solo Performance for “Blank Space”, Best Pop Duo/Group Performance for “Bad Blood”, Best Pop Vocal Album for 1989 and Best Music Video for “Bad Blood”. Taylor Swift IS performing!

(Sources: Big Machine Records via YouTube)

Commentary: Taylor Swift will perform at the 58th GRAMMY awards!

February 8, 2016
(Photo: GRAMMY awards via Twitter)

(Photo: GRAMMY awards via Twitter)

Start your speculation engines, Taylor Nation!

Yes, it’s official. The Blonde With The Sparkly 1989 Microphone and seven more GRAMMY nominations will perform at the 58th Annual Grammy Awards. The immediate though comes to mind: What will she sing? The next thought that comes to mind after that is: Does this mean her chances of winning have improved?

Don’t worry your pretty little mind. This is an acknowledgement of Taylor’s massive star power to attract audiences. You have Taylor on the show and on stage and you get the fandom watching. She has competition on a massive scale for this one. I’m a bit conflicted because as much as she deserves her nominations, there’s a lot of other people for whom a GRAMMY award would mean the world for the first time.

I still want her to win because as much as everyone deserves a first win, she’s really made this album worthy of an entire year and a second win. That being said, I know Taylor will survive either way but we’re all going to be miffed if this doesn’t go the way of the Sparkly Dressed. So come next Monday, February 15… We’re watching.

As for the song, she could go with “Blank Space” or “Bad Blood” which are nominated. She could do a little of both. She could go with “Out of the Woods” too. However, I would really, really love it if she does “Clean”. It’s a song that would tie up the entire 1989 era with sparkly bow. It’s mature, it has a great lesson of overcoming the odds, and in my opinion is deeper that her other options.

Oh yeah, I have no idea what she will wear. Something that goes good with gold, I guess ;)

Coming up in the Calendar:

  • February 15: It’s the 58th Annual Grammy Awards! Taylor is nominated for Album of the Year for 1989, Record of the Year for “Blank Space”, Song of the Year for “Blank Space”, Best Pop Solo Performance for “Blank Space”, Best Pop Duo/Group Performance for “Bad Blood”, Best Pop Vocal Album for 1989 and Best Music Video for “Bad Blood”.

(Sources: The GRAMMYs via Twitter)

News Update: Taylor at iHeartMedia Summit. Band Together 1989 celebrates year and album.

February 6, 2016
(Photo: Tom Poleman/iHeartRadio via Instagram)

(Photo: Tom Poleman/iHeartRadio via Instagram)

Hang in there, Taylor Nation :)

I know we’re all running really low on Swift power right now. Here at the Swift Agency, just a guy and a bunch of cake-eating ninjas that are willing to settle for rice chips at this point, we heard about Taylor’s surprise appearance at the iHeartMedia Summit on February 2. Now someone explain to me how nobody in attendance took out their smartphone and recorded a freakin’ video! No? Not even one person? Everyone knows how to record a video on their phone, right? Am I asking for too much here?

Okey, guess everyone was lost in the moment. We’re going to let it slide, but hopefully there were a few Swifties in the audience. At least we have a picture via iHeartRadio’s President of Programming, Tom Poleman. However, I feel I have to do a little bit of rumor control here. Taylor was simple there to thank iHeartRadio for radio promotion, exposure and album sales. She announced nothing new. You can read the original post in Beautiful Ballad. I’m aware of the article on SPIN but here’s how you can tell they’re spinning an angle – their article ends with a question mark. Taylor has not announced any new music.

Nashville’s City Winery hosted a Musicians Corner fundraiser on February 5. Band Together 1989: Tribute to the Year in Music and Grammy Nominated album featured the likes of Matthew Perryman Jones, Caroline Glaser, and Zeke Duhon, Aubrey Peeples (Nashville’s Layla Grant), Griffin House, Morgan Myles, Olivia Lane, Alanna Royale, Korby Lenker, Heather Morgan, Marc Martel, Elise Davis, Angel Snow, Robby Hecht, Louisa Wendorff and Devin Dawson, Crystal Bowersox, Kris Allen, The Railers, Jill Andrews, John and Jacob, Jeffrey Austin (The Voice), and more.

Chris Willman, entertainment journalist who contributes for Billboard, the Hollywood Reporter, Yahoo and TV Guide was among the attendees and shared a few videos. Andrea Swift was also in attendance, but Taylor decided to sit this one out. It was for the best, you wouldn’t want her to take the spotlight off the performers, would you? (don’t answer that)

Heather Morgan’s cover of “I Wish You Would”

Watch on YouTube

Audrey Peeples’ cover of “All You Had To Do Was Stay”

Watch on YouTube

The Railers’ cover of “Blank Space”

Watch on YouTube

Jill Andrews’ cover of “Out of the Woods”

Watch on YouTube

Louisa Wendorff & Devin Dawson made a great mash-up cover of “Style” and “Blank Space”. You should listen to this one, it’s very good.

Watch on YouTube

Caroline Glaser’s cover of “Wildest Dreams”

Watch on YouTube

Korby Lenker’s cover of “Bad Blood”

Watch on YouTube

The evening concluded with a “Shake It Off” singalong leaded by Alanna Royale with everyone involved. You might want to check out this Periscope recording by Brian Mansfield.

(Source: blog.citywinery.com)

(Source: blog.citywinery.com)

We’re just a few days from the 58th Annual Grammy Awards! Seven more nominations and I hope the members of the Academy listened to 1989 at least once. Really, how could they not. Then again, I might be just a little tad biased about it.

Coming up in the Calendar:

  • February 15: It’s the 58th Annual Grammy Awards! Taylor is nominated for Album of the Year for 1989, Record of the Year for “Blank Space”, Song of the Year for “Blank Space”, Best Pop Solo Performance for “Blank Space”, Best Pop Duo/Group Performance for “Bad Blood”, Best Pop Vocal Album for 1989 and Best Music Video for “Bad Blood”.

(Sources: Beautiful BalladSPINChris Willman via YouTubeBrian Mansfield via Periscope)

Some indie record that’s much cooler than mine. An Editorial

February 1, 2016
(Source: Taylor Swift via Instagram)

(Source: Taylor Swift via Instagram)

You might as well face it you’re addicted to love, Taylor Nation.

It’s hard not to find it all a little bitter sweet. For us fans, it’s been the era of 1989 and we’re not willing to let it go. But here at the Swift Agency, just a guy who’s just some old man that blogs his opinion on the internet (really who else does that except a zillion other people), we’re once again going to share a thought and hope you consider it. I might be a card-carrying denizen of the Taylor Nation, but I’m also a listener of the world: take the time and listen to other music.

None of us will be forgetting Taylor. None of us are betraying her by having other artists on our walls or in our playlists. Listen to a little bit of everything. Find things that you like. I’m certainly not asking you to replace the Blonde With The Sparkly Guitar. I’m asking you to surround and expand your taste because we really should never become listeners of just one artist. T-Swizzle never goes out of style because she changes, and the way she does it is by listening to other music. She sometimes even hints at her fans that they should listen to some of the people she does. For example, that’s Taylor hanging out with Kelsea Ballerini. There are countless other examples.

If you can, try a few other genres. Don’t only stay on pop and don’t make country music your only choice. You don’t need to drop anything, just try adding something different once in a while. We all have a favorite book and a favorite author and still we like to read other stuff once in a while. That’s a bad comparison if you hate to read, but odds are you like to read a little… Because right now you’re in the third paragraph of one of my editorial rantings ;)

Here’s the other side of that thought. Taylor going on a break is a good thing. Now, put the pitchforks and the torches down for a moment… It’s a good thing. She’ll come back refreshed and with vibrant ideas on what new things to write. Music diversity is a good thing. You want to see Taylor expand her range and see what she can do with more time to write.

You got through all that, so here’s a prize. Meredith getting head scratches from her caretaker Tay. Purr.

"So how do you spend your time now that the tour is over?"

A video posted by Taylor Swift (@taylorswift) on

And we’re coming close to the 58th Annual Grammy Awards and that means we’re going to be all pins and needles very soon. Seven more nominations and I hope the members of the Academy listened to 1989 at least once. Really, how could they not. Then again, what do I know.

Coming up in the Calendar:

  • February 15: It’s the 58th Annual Grammy Awards! Taylor is nominated for Album of the Year for 1989, Record of the Year for “Blank Space”, Song of the Year for “Blank Space”, Best Pop Solo Performance for “Blank Space”, Best Pop Duo/Group Performance for “Bad Blood”, Best Pop Vocal Album for 1989 and Best Music Video for “Bad Blood”.

Video Showcase: Blank Space and Wildest Dreams at the GRAMMY museum

January 7, 2016

I can read you like a magazine, Taylor Nation.

Ok, ok. I can’t. I just like the way that sounds. Anyhow, nice to see you. How you’ve been? Here at the Swift Agency, just a guy who is really aware those two sentences are not the actual lyrics to Blank Space, we’re glad we’re getting an acoustic performance from the Blonde With The Sparkly 1989 Microphone from the Clive Davies GRAMMY Museum back in September 30, 2015.

I would love to attend a completely acoustic performance of Taylor like this one. Bare bones production with only Taylor playing and singing. But I understand she can’t do this all the time. Here’s Blank Space.

Watch on YouTube

Notice something that Taylor can do that most of us can’t? I’ll give you a clue. Try singing along with this song at the same pace that Taylor does. You will run out of breath before you reach the chorus. Taylor can control her breathing while singing. It’s not just taking air, she’s nailing the pitch and the tune dead on. This is particularly important with a song like Blank Space where the pacing is fast. A lot of lines are chained together. Taylor is writing songs more complicated to sing nowadays.

Another example is Wildest Dreams. Remember that bridge? That would be a killer to perform live. Wait, we got that one too. Take a look. Not only that, the lines put together are really high pitch. Yes, the Sparkly Dressed can keep that pitch up. Let’s go to the video!

Watch on YouTube

How about a bonus one? Although this was already posted back in October 27 last year, I thought you’d want to listen to it again. This is Out of the Woods from the same performance.

Watch on YouTube

On other news, Taylor Swift won the People’s Choice Awards for Favorite Pop Artist and Favorite Female Artist.

(Source: Big Machine Label Group)

(Source: Big Machine Label Group)

Coming up in the Calendar:

  • February 15: It’s the 58th Annual Grammy Awards! Taylor is nominated for Album of the Year for 1989, Record of the Year for “Blank Space”, Song of the Year for “Blank Space”, Best Pop Solo Performance for “Blank Space”, Best Pop Duo Group/Performance for “Bad Blood”, Best Pop Vocal Album for 1989 and Best Music Video for “Bad Blood”.

(Sources: YouTube)

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