Taylor Swift's 1989 re-recording becomes fastest selling album of 2023

Credit: AP

Taylor Swift's re-recording of her hit 1989 album has become the fastest selling album of 2023 - almost a decade after it was first released.

The 33-year-old American singer has claimed the biggest opening week for any album released this year, according to the Official Charts Company.

It marks Swift's 11th number one album - and she is also comfortably dominating the single charts, with three tracks sitting in the top five.

Swift’s 21-track opus - the original first released in 2014 - has shifted 184,000 chart units, more than double the number of units from the original 1989’s opening week sales.

Prior to this, Scottish singer Lewis Capaldi had held the title for biggest opening of the year with the release of his album Broken By Desire To Be Heavenly Sent – which had accumulated 95,000 chart units during its first week on sale.

The release of the rerecorded album comes shortly after the launch of Swift’s concert film of her Eras Tour in cinemas, which has broken box office records.

Swift’s other chart-topping albums include Red (2012), 1989 (2014), Reputation (2017), Lover (2019), Folklore (2020), Evermore (2020) and Taylor’s new version of Fearless (2021), Red (2021), Midnights (2022) and Speak Now (2023).

Why does Swift keep releasing her old songs?

The Pennsylvania-born star has been rerecording her back catalogue so that she can regain control of her masters.

Swift signed with Republic Records in 2018 in a deal which meant she could keep the rights to her music.

She has since released three new albums and two re-recorded albums: Red (Taylor's Version) on November 12, 2021, Fearless (Taylor's Version) on 9 April, 2021, and Speak Now on July 7.

Re-recording them means Swift creates new master versions of her old tracks that she has ownership of. Therefore, when those versions are played on Spotify and Apple Music, she profits from them.

But any old versions of her songs still belong to Shamrock Holdings, meaning the company will continue to profit from the old tracks if people play them.

Talent manager Scooter Braun sold the master recordings to Swift's first six albums in November 2020 to Shamrock Holdings. But Swift says Braun will still profit from her music.

Swift has been embroiled in a public and bitter row with the high-profile music executive since he bought much of her back catalogue in 2019.

The rereleases are marked with (Taylor's Version) after the track name.

1989 (Taylor’s Version), which is number one on this week’s official vinyl charts, has also scooped the title of fastest-selling vinyl album of 2023 so far, having sold 62,000 copies.

In the singles charts, Swift’s new version of Is It Over Now? takes the top spot, whilst her recording of track Now That We Don’t Talk is positioned at number two.

There is also her new version of the song Slut, which has debuted at number five.

Sitting at number three in the singles chart is Prada by Casso, Raye and D-Block Europe – while Strangers by Kenya Grace takes the number four spot.

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