Taylor Swift has been declared one of The Hollywood Reporter’s “Rule Breakers 2014.” It might not seem like an obvious choice – after all, Taylor Swift is a perfect blonde Barbie doll of a girl, all sweetness and light and rule-abiding. But once I watched THR’s video of Swifty’s interview, I got it. It clicked. Tay-Tay IS a rule-breaker. She defied the music industry’s norms about what a young female artist could and should do with an album. She had to fight to promote her album the way she wanted, and she’s been waging a war to keep her music profitable. That’s the same war that led her to pull all of her music off of Spotify and write a Wall Street Journal op-ed arguing that music is worth something, financially. Here’s the video:
Again with the Kendrick Lamar love! And did you know that Kendrick is a Swift-loonie too? They met backstage at some event recently he thanked her for name-checking him in interviews and he sang some “Shake It off” for her. It was really sweet!
You guys have yelled at me before when I’ve said that I think Swifty is a marketing genius, but I don’t even care. I think she’s a really smart businesswoman and she has an otherworldly gift for marketing, branding and fan-management. And here’s something else: the fact that Swifty is taking on this fight – the Fight to Keep Musicians Rich – helps other artists too. It helps artists just starting out, it helps artists trying to get a foothold in the industry. And Swifty’s my-way-or-the-highway attitude helps a lot of young women in the industry fight for their own vision.
In the print interview, Swifty explained the aftermath of her decision to pull her music from Spotify, saying that she didn’t really think it would be a big deal, and that “I could never have expected so many text messages, emails and phone calls from other artists, writers and producers saying thank you.”
Photos courtesy of THR.