Red: From the Vault

What does “from the vault” mean? All of these songs (minus Ronan) are songs that have never been released by Taylor Swift in the past. They are songs that she either wrote and never recorded, or songs she wrote and gave to her other artists to sing. Either way, they are all songs that Taylor wrote while writing the rest of the album and did not release, partly due to her issues with her old label, and that she has now gifted to her fans while she re-records her albums.

Ronan: I refuse to provide any sort of reaction for Ronan because of what the song represents and the people affected by it. Ronan Thompson was a 4 year old boy who died in 2011 from cancer, and Taylor wrote a song with Maya Thompson’s (his mother) approval for a Stand Up 2 Cancer event. All profits from the song went to cancer charities and into Maya’s foundation, the Ronan Foundation.

To learn more about Ronan, click here to check out the Ronan Foundation website. 

Better Man: My favorite “from the vault” track on the album. I have been waiting for her to release this as her own song since Big Little Town recorded it in 2016. This song is a lyrical masterpiece, and is truly heartbreaking. Another amazing song that had me reaching for the tissues.

Nothing New (feat. Phoebe Bridgers): From my interpretation, it’s reminiscent of The Lucky One with feelings of the public/fans getting bored or feeling like Taylor’s not special anymore. She writes about feeling like she knows less at 22 than she did at 18 when she started getting more popular. Her and Phoebe Bridgers sound amazing together on this duet, and Phoebe is the first female artist to get a full verse on one of Taylor’s albums so there is hope for more female collabs like this in the future. 

Babe: This version is so much better than the Sugarland version that Taylor collabed on. Another example of Taylor Swift writing a song and giving it away to another band, but in the Sugarland version, Taylor does background vocals. Taylor’s version sounds a bit different than Sugarland’s, and it is absolutely amazing. 

Message In A Bottle: This song took me a few listens to start to enjoy it, but once again, Taylor has created the perfect pop song. It is about falling in love/having a crush and not knowing how to express it. A message in a bottle being the only way to get to them… 

I Bet You Think About Me (feat. Chris Stapleton): One of my favorites from the vault tracks! It is so country, which is different from the rest of the album which leans more towards country-pop and away from the sounds of her debut album. It is a very sassy song about how she bet her ex (Jake…) still thinks about her after he treated her terribly. 

Also, Taylor just released a music video for this song on Monday November 15th, which was directed by a close friend of hers: Blake Lively. The video is a must watch for all Taylor Swift fans. 

Forever Winter: This song is about loving someone with mental illness and desperately wanting to help them, despite them not opening up to you entirely. Taylor captures the emotions accurately, and the song features amazing lyrics that tear your heart out. 

Run (feat. Ed Sheeran): When Ed and Taylor team up, you can bet it is an adorable love song. The two of them write and sing about wanting to run away with the one you love “like you’re running from the law” and it is astounding. This was their very first song they wrote together and I am so happy Taylor released it from the vault.

The Very First Night: More pop perfection. This is another love song, but this time associating happiness and longing all in one. It was not what I was expecting, just like Run, it took me by surprise, but I absolutely love it. It is super fun and cute.