When you think Taylor Swift, I hope you think of her.
The Blonde With The Guitar Which Will Always Be Sparkly To Me is nominated for Artist Of The Year, Favorite Female Artist, Favorite Artist Adult Contemporary, Favorite Album for “Lover” and Favorite Music Video for “You Need To Calm Down” at the 2019 American Music Awards on November 24. Today is the last day to vote. No clear word yet on whether she will be singing a medley of her old songs or not.
You can read the first statement from Taylor’s former label and a second statement regarding Dick Clark Productions (Rolling Stone has obtained a statement from Dick Clark Productions denying that they were involved). The first one doesn’t mention whether she can perform her old catalog unconditionally. The second doesn’t mention her name and talks about recording artists and contracted artists. I don’t know whether Taylor is supposed to fall on either of those camps as a former recording artist.
When things are not made clear in carefully prepared statements, I can’t help but think that they were made intentionally unclear.
A lot of us have been fans of Taylor for a rather long period of time. We’ve shared her triumphs, we’ve had to dispel rumours and face a rather surprising amount of backlash and outright hate from anti-fans (a level of hate that I still find completely uncalled for, she’s done nothing to you for heaven’s sake). I have no doubt she’ll make it through this one. Worst case scenario, she’s got her own music to play but I still hold up hope that she’ll be allowed to perform her old songs either unconditionally or at least with reasonable conditions.
I want to address this directly with my own request.
My request to the business people involved is that as good business as it is to try to hold on to her old catalog of masters unchallenged by new recordings, it’s even better business to show you respect Taylor Swift’s craft and agree she should can perform her entire music catalog without trying to silence her. That is the request I make to the man who once took a chance on Taylor. Don’t deny her the right to her own legacy. Don’t taint your own legacy by setting conditions and restrictions to her performance of her own songs.
Think of it historically. Do you really want to be remembered as the man who the artist had to beg to sing? All so she could perform the music she made for an event where she is honored as the Artist of the Decade? Please think of the big picture here.
On another subject, the Grammy nominations are out. Taylor has three nominations: Song of the Year for “Lover”, Best Pop Solo Performance for “You Need To Calm Down” and Best Pop Vocal Album for “Lover”. And although that’s still amazing I can’t help but think that “Lover” being both commercially and critically acclaimed really deserved a nomination for Album of the Year. No, really – the album is fantastic. Not sure where the academy’s mind is at, but it does feel like an omission that hurts the Grammy’s credibility more than it does Taylor’s. Am I being harsh? Perhaps.
Then again, it’s not like I’m telling an artist she can’t sing the songs she wrote herself without renouncing to a ton of stuff. Now that’s something I would not want to be remembered for.
Taylor Swift will be the first to receive Billboard’s Woman of the Decade Award at the 2019 Billboard Women In Music on December 12 at the Hollywood Palladium in Los Angeles.
Coming up in the Calendar!
- November 24: The 2019 American Music Awards airs at 8pm ET on ABC. Taylor performs, will be awarded Artist of the Decade among other nominations.
- December 8: Taylor Swift headlines the second night of Capital’s Jingle Bell Ball at the O2 in London, UK.
- December 12: Taylor Swift will be the first to receive Billboard’s Woman of the Decade Award at the 2019 Billboard Women In Music.
- December 13: Someone’s THIRTY. We are so old now.
- December 13: Taylor headlines the iHeartRadio Jingle Ball in New York City, NY at the Madison Square Garden.
(Sources: BigMachineLabelGroup.com, RollingStone.com, Grammy.com. Featured Image: Taylor Swift)