Taylor Swift - "Shake It Off" Video

Taylor Swift hosted a live webcast this afternoon from a studio at the top of the Empire State building, during which she announced three not-that-surprising surprises. The first was the debut of her new single, a haters-gonna-hate anthem called “Shake It Off” produced by Max Martin and Shellback; she danced with her studio audience while the minimalist dance-pop tune played. The second “surprise” was that her fifth album, 1989, which she described as “my very first documented official pop album,” will be out 10/27. She says it was inspired by the “bold” risk-taking of ’80s pop. The deluxe version will include three voice memos from Swift’s phone, and the album cover is the Polaroid picture above. There will also be a “Swiftstakes” that will dole out 1,989 prizes including 1,000 tickets and 500 meet-and-greets. Lastly, she debuted Mark Romanek’s video for “Shake It Off,” which finds Swift poking fun at her own much-maligned dancing skills in myriad costumes and contexts. It’s all quite slick! Watch the video and see the album cover below.

1989 is out 10/27 via Big Machine. Pre-order it at Swift’s site or iTunes.

Comments (90)
  1. I applaud Taylor trying to be bold but abandoning her highly original talent to sound like everyone else is not the way to do it.

    • ”her highly original talent”


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        • What is “original” about her talent, exactly?

          • She wrote songs that feel real to teenage girls. In theory, that shouldn’t be particularly original, but in reality it’s extremely rare. She was the “My So-Called Life” of music.

            Unfortunately, her ripped-from-my-diary style can easily veer into predictable shtick, as is the case in a bad way with this song. The next step for Taylor is to learn how to write killer songs that aren’t about Taylor Swift.

          • She’s both the champion and the underdog. Very few artists, if any can pull that off, and no one has built a better career out of than she has.

          • great point sd

    • …by original talent you mean being a totally manufactured pop star? Listen I get it, she’s somewhat cute, approachable and all but short of appearing on American Idol, her career is made by pleasing the lowest common music fan with the safest trite music around… Her “bold new directions” are only offensive in that they are never bold nor a new direction.

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  2. Meh. This is pretty boring. The last thing we need is more artists moving toward the middle–the dark side of the monogenre thing.

    • But the monogenre is the sound of the future!

      Well that or KIX.

    • I agree with your last sentence. She’s really moving towards the middle monogenre of today’s pop. That said, I’ll give Taylor credit this is extremely catchy and she can still write a superbly singable melody but parts of this feel a way bit too contrived. She’s always been basic in a musical (and public persona) sense but her songwriting was at least solid and honest. In this track it seems like she is just trying to be like everyone else. I feel she’s always been a pop star at heart but this is a song that might sound better with someone else performing it.

    • Taylor Swift is, was, and always will be the “middle”

  3. Wait, is this a Gap commercial or a Diet Coke commercial?

    I don’t hate the song, though.

    I do think it’s funny that she kept using the awkward term “prebuy” on the webcast. As if Big Machine marketing thought the conventional “preorder” might be too vague.

    Stereogum is just a few blocks from the webcast. I’m gonna go out and get some iced coffee now and look for her (not in a creepy way).

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  5. Grimes is gonna love this.

  6. Two things about this song/video

    #1 – This is the single most trite thing I’ve ever heard and/or seen in my life
    #2 – I neither watched nor listened to this video

  7. I do appreciate the HudMo-like flourishes going on in the production.

    In an Iggy Azlea world, I fully welcome this song and video.

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    • dude no no no do not compare this to Yeezus

    • yes. I think you are the only one.

    • I like it too, NO APOLOGIES.

    • Wow. You’re serious. OWWWOOOOOOOOO!

      • Hahaha yep there was a brief period where I was up to like +3 (likely out of pity)… but reading all these comments it seems my view is not welcome here. Perhaps “great” was too strong a word as the bridge is not very good but I still think it’s a good song.

        The production (from the simultaneously evil and irresistible Max Martin) is for the most part very impressive; the horn is distinctive (I’m sorry it does remind me of Yeezus) without being generic/obnoxious, and all the snaps and vocals — though a awkward at times — come together perfectly in the mix. Also the song is catchy as hell.

        As for the message? It’s stupid, unpretentious, self-deprecating, and fun. It’s silly to get so worked up about this stuff.

        With that said I get if you don’t like it

  9. This song is corny but the good kind of corny.

  10. How about just “no” to this? This is just really bad pop music. It’s that simple. Pop music doesn’t have to be like this. Listen to the last Allo Darlin’ or the new Alvvays. Those are really clever people operating in the realm of pop without being insipid and saccharine. I don’t have a problem with Taylor Swift. I THINK SHE’S REALLY GOOD AT WHAT SHE DOES. It’s just I personally aspire to more than this.

  11. I dont hate this, and by “i dont hate this” I mean im probably about to listen to it 20 times in a row and then never again.

  12. I mean, if we’re going to extol the virtues of Charli XCX and trash this… just, what’s the difference? Mainstream radio play?

    (This is coming from a guy who unashamedly loves Katy and Miley, though, so.)

  13. I’m enjoying this way too much. And I saw that she wrote with Imogen Heap for a track on the new album. Looking forward to that one. Would be cool if IH had a Sia-esque rise!

  14. Man those lyrics were just about cringe inducing. I guess she admitted that it was straight up pop and pop really doesn’t make an attempt at anything interesting in that department, but man that was rough. The chorus is pretty catchy but overall it’s a little bland, especially since she’s claiming some 80′s influence (sidenote: who isn’t these days?).
    Overall, it seems like it’ll into everything else on the radio and it will likely because the biggest damn thing pretty quickly.

  15. Vampire Weekend cover??

  16. That is actually one catchy-ass song.

    And you will NEVER hear me admit that in public.

  17. According to Wikipedia, Taylor Swift was born on December 13th, 1989.

    She lived in the 80′s for about two weeks, so naturally, she’s about to teach us all about how 80′s pop was done.

    • She did mention in the webcast that she researched the era, and that the late ’80s were a time of limitless potential or something.

      I think we can all agree this song sounds nothing like 1989, though.

  18. This kinda gave me a headache.

    • That’s the blood rushing to your eyes, trying to make sense of the imagery. “Is this the 80s?” your eyes are asking, “Did Taylor Swift conquer time??”

  19. Is that Robyn allusion intentional or just a coincidence?

    In either case, I could see myself liking this song. It’s a little too early to tell. It’s definitely catchy. And unique for a TSwift song in that it doesn’t appear to be about one specific person or event. Not sure which decade this song even reminds me of, but definitely not the 80s.

  20. ON BOARD.

  21. Red was mostly pop, wasn’t it? At least the singles were.

  22. So, by the“ ‘bold’ risk-taking of ’80s pop”, she was referring to Debbie Gibson?

  23. I really like it, so there.

  24. “Guys I changed my mind I’m indie now”

  25. “my very first documented official pop album”

    I wonder if that means “Red” will be her very last documented official country record? (“Country” record?)

  26. Sometimes I think you deviant SG writers dangle articles like these around just to get a rise out of us…poke the bear, go ahead, do it!

  27. This is terrible.

    What bold, risk-taking 80s pop is she referring to? I am genuinely curious.

  28. I totally accept Taylor being a big pop star. She’s pretty and has a voice that connects and she’s got a down to earthness about her. But when she’s going on about her “sonic evolution” and talking about her “inspirations” as if Max Martin gave a crap about it when laying this down in the studio she’s reaching for something beyond a pop star. This isn’t Dylan here, and she’s trying to get to this place of “importance”, which is horseshit. I hope the fans who are of a certain age when they should be outgrowing this see that, but I’m not so sure. I worry that some people see her as a serious “artiste” based on the BS she is spewing when she’s rolling this stuff out.

    • I’ve posted on this topic approximately 1,237,457 times. And your post is so much more concise and accurate than any of earlier bluster it actually makes me feel dumb. Perfectly stated.

  29. Didn’t Jewel do the same thing where she went pop and then tried to front like she was making fun of pop?

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  31. I love it when a shitty pop artist makes a REALLY shitty pop song, and their fans suddenly realize they’ve been listening to shitty pop music for so long.

  32. Is it just me or is this is this the second major pop song this year that seems to be borrowing from Le1f’s Wut

  33. This sounds like a rejected Pharrell demo.

    By going full-on into pop music, Taylor has now become as faceless as the music she idolizes.

  34. I’ve come to the conclusion that this is Taylor Swift doing her best Katy Perry impression but doing it way better than Katy Perry ever could

  35. I don’t know, man…

    Between the contrived self-deprecation, the lame sarcasm (“with some indie record that’s much cooler than mine”), her Wall Street Journal article (“It’s my opinion that music should not be free, and my prediction is that individual artists and their labels will someday decide what an album’s price point is”), the constant milking of the “Kanye incident” (almost as bad as people still making the “fish dicks” joke), her co-signing of Ed Sheeran (aka, the human Snuggie), and THIS song, Taylor Swift is just really, REALLY corny.

    (“You Belong With Me” is still a 10/10 song tho)

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