Taylor Swift promised that with the release of Red (Taylor’s Version) — her upcoming re-recorded Red album, due out on Nov. 19 — “this will be the first time you hear all 30 songs that were meant to go on Red.”
The original Red album, which arrived in 2012, was already packed with 16 tracks, plus some extras on a deluxe edition release. Still, that leaves quite a few blank spaces on the 30-spot Red (Taylor’s Version) track list.
Below, Billboard makes some predictions about what fans might be able to expect from Swift’s re-recorded Red.
The Original 16 Songs of ‘Red’
This part of the list is a given, but just to jog your memory, here are the 16 songs that appeared on the standard version of Swift’s Red album in 2012: “State of Grace,” “Red,” “Treacherous,” “I Knew You Were Trouble,” “All Too Well,” “22,” “I Almost Do,” “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” “Stay Stay Stay,” “The Last Time” feat. Gary Lightbody, “Holy Ground,” “Sad Beautiful Tragic,” “The Lucky One,” “Everything Has Changed” feat. Ed Sheeran, “Starlight” and “Begin Again.”
The Deluxe Edition Bonus Tracks
A few more obvious choices for the Red (Taylor’s Version) track list are “The Moment I Knew” (“about the worst party I ever had … My boyfriend decided not to show up, and we broke up,” Swift has said), “Come Back… Be Here” and “Girl at Home,” a trio of tunes that were not on the standard release of Red in 2012, but added to the deluxe edition.
The deluxe edition of Red also had demo recordings of “Treacherous” and “Red,” as well as an acoustic take of “State of Grace.” “State of Grace” acoustic could very well be re-recorded for Red (Taylor’s Version), if this release follows the same formula of Fearless (Taylor’s Version), which included the piano take of album track “Forever & Always.”
The Uncensored, 10-Minute Take of ‘All Too Well’
As Billboard theorized earlier, a 10-minute version of “All Too Well” could very well be on Red (Taylor’s Version), in addition to the more standard album-length cut of the song.
Swift possibly gave a nod to the fan-favorite when she revealed that one of the 30 tracks on the re-recorded Red “is even ten minutes long.”
You can see all the reasons we think that 10-minute track is likely “All Too Well” here, but to summarize: Thanks to tidbits Swift and co-writer Liz Rose have told over the years, it’s widely known among Swifties that there once was a 10-minute “All Too Well” that was whittled down to a run time of about five-and-a-half minutes for the original Red album.
“It had probably seven extra verses and it included the F-word,” Swift recalled.
‘Nothin New,’ Inspired by Joni Mitchell & Getting Older
When Swift released Lover in 2019, she included booklets featuring personal, handwritten old journal entries with the deluxe editions of the album. One journal entry detailed her experience writing a song that mentioned her being 22 years old, which would be around the age she was while writing for Red.
“I wrote a song on the plane ride from Sydney to Perth on the Appalachian dulcimer I bought the day of my flight,” Swift’s journal entry read. “I bought it because Joni played on most of her Blue record. I taught myself to play ‘A Case of You.’ Anyway, I wrote a song on it called ‘Nothin New’ and it’s about being scared of aging and things changing and losing what you have.”
She shared the following lyrics: “I’m getting older and less sure of what you like about me anyway/ How can a person know everything at 18 and nothing at 22/ And will you still want me when I’m nothing new?”
💿 | The Lover journals revealed ￼the unreleased song ‘Nothin' New’ that was for Red. #RedTaylorsVersion
“I’m getting older & less sure of what you like about me anyway.
How can a person know everything at 18 and nothing at 22?
And will you still want me when I’m nothing new?” pic.twitter.com/KH6Ev4ZqbR
— Taylor Swift News 🧣 (@TSwiftNZ) June 19, 2021
Taylor’s Recording of ‘Better Man’
In 2016, country group Little Big Town released (and later won many awards for) “Better Man,” a song written by Swift that just didn’t make the final cut for any of her own albums (though she did once perform it live, at Nashville’s Bluebird Cafe).
In an interview with On Air With Ryan Seacrest in 2019, while talking about her upcoming album re-recordings, Swift confirmed “Better Man” was indeed a track she “wrote during Red — it was originally going to be on the Red album.”
And she made it very clear that she loved the idea of eventually putting it on Red (Taylor’s Version). “Fans were like, ‘Maybe she’ll put ‘Better Man,’ her version, on the Red album?’ And I was like, ‘That’s an amazing idea!'” noted Swift.
Taylor’s Recording of ‘Babe’
In 2018, Sugarland released “Babe,” a song written by Swift and Train‘s Pat Monahan. While Swift never released the song on her own, she did record guest vocals on Sugarland’s take — and she treated some lucky fans to a solo acoustic performance of the track on a stop of her Reputation Stadium Tour.
As Monahan recalled in an interview with ABC News Radio in 2013, he’d first asked Swift to collaborate with him on a song for a Train album — but they ended up writing “Babe” for Red instead. Unfortunately, “Babe” didn’t end up on the original Red track list, though Monahan said “the song, I think, will be on” the deluxe edition of the album. Of course, that didn’t happen either, but perhaps it finally will find a home on a Swift album with Red (Taylor’s Version).
“I was just lucky enough to be a part of it with her, and I’m gonna ask the same of her in the future,” Monahan said at the time.
A Never-Before-Heard Song With Mark Foster
In the summer of 2012, just months before Red was released, Foster the People‘s Mark Foster confirmed that he’d recently penned a song with Swift — one that still has yet to surface.
“We wrote a song … It’s a really cool song, you know?” he said in an interview at Bonnaroo that summer. “We kind of just went into it casually, like let’s just jam and just have fun, and something really cool came out of it. We’ll see what happens with it. She’s been writing a lot for her next record. It was a lot of fun working with her — she’s super talented.”
An Ed Sheeran Collab From the Vault
Longtime friends and collaborators Swift and Sheeran first got together to write music in 2012. Their sweet duet “Everything Has Changed” made it onto the original Red album, but the pair have both implied there is at least one more song out there from their Red-era session.
In a pair of now-deleted old tweets, they’d written cute coordinating messages while working on music:
“In and out burger, defacing guitars and writing music with @taylorswift13,” Sheeran had written with a smiley face.
Swift confirmed that scenario, also with a smiley face: “Eating cheeseburgers, scribbling on guitars, writing songs with @edsheeran.”
And in an interview with Rolling Stone that summer, Sheeran added that they “wrote two tunes, actually, one on the record [Red] and another that’s still out in the ether somewhere.”
On June 27, a little more than a week after Swift announced Red (Taylor’s Version), Sheeran confirmed he’d already re-recorded “Everything Has Changed” with her for the project, and he hinted that there might be something else in the works: “Taylor’s got a few surprises in store for you, I’ll say that,” he teased in an interview with U.K. radio chart show The Official Big Top 40.
A Home for ‘Ronan’
On July 30, Billboard confirmed that Swift will include a re-recording of “Ronan” on Red (Taylor’s Version). Although it was written in the Red era, the heart-wrenching ballad was a one-off record Swift wrote following almost four-year-old Ronan Thompson’s sadly fatal battle with cancer, and is a somewhat unexpected addition to the re-recorded Red‘s track list.
But Ronan’s mother, Maya Thompson, who is credited as co-writer of the song, shared an excerpt on her blog of a recent email from Swift in which she explained why she wanted to include “Ronan” on the album, and asked for her permission to do so: “I’ve recently completed the re-recording of my 4th album, Red. It’s really exceeded my expectations in so many ways, and one of those ways is that I thought it would be appropriate to add ‘Ronan’ to this album. Red was an album of heartbreak and healing, of rage and rawness, of tragedy and trauma, and of the loss of an imagined future alongside someone. I wrote Ronan while I was making Red and discovered your story as you so honestly and devastatingly told it. My genuine hope is that you’ll agree with me that this song should be included on this album. As my co-writer and the rightful owner of this story in its entirety, your opinion and approval of this idea really matters to me, and I’ll honor your wishes here.”
Thompson “of course” agreed to this plan. Speaking to her late son, who passed away in 2011, she wrote, “I tried my best to articulate how much this meant to me through my tears, but there are not enough words in the English language that will ever be able to appropriately convey my feelings about this. Taylor has anchored you to this world so you will never be lost, and now she has ensured you will forever be safe in a new, permanent home.”