Taylor Swift – Shake It Off (2014 – Part 7)

Before the release of 1989, Taylor Swift told Yahoo! that this is going to be her “first straight-up pop album”. The lead single delivered the promised departure, abandoning Swift’s country pop style in favor of upbeat pop. American Songwriter emphasized the departure by describing Shake It Off as “Loaded with synthesized horns and a bouncy beat”, adding that “the track falls somewhere between Janelle Monáe and “Hey Ya,” and that’s a left-turn worth following.”

Taylor explained the metaphor in the title as well as her inspiration behind the song to Rolling Stone: “I’ve had every part of my life dissected — my choices, my actions, my words, my body, my style, my music. When you live your life under that kind of scrutiny, you can either let it break you, or you can get really good at dodging punches. And when one lands, you know how to deal with it. And I guess the way that I deal with it is to shake it off.”

The song’s video was directed by Mark Romanek, whose repertoire includes Johnny Cash’s Hurt, Nine Inch Nails’ Closer and Michael & Janet Jackson’s Scream. According to Music Times, the video features Swift “embracing her inner dorky dancer by submerging herself with some of the world’s best dancers in the styles of hip hop, lyrical, ballet, jazz and even cheerleader.” Taylor herself commented on the silly character of the video: “I was putting myself in all these awkward situations where the dancers are incredible, and I’m having fun with it, but not fitting in. They’re doing the most beautiful things, and I’m being embarrassingly bad at it.”

Shake It Off spent 4 non-consecutive weeks at number one in Billboard Top 100, first being dethroned by Meghan Trainor’s All About That Bass and second by Swift’s very own Blank Space.

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