Taylor Swift knows a thing or two about music. Her most recent album, Red, debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart, selling an incredible 1.2 million copies in the first week. It was the biggest sales week for an album in a decade. Taylor has 41.7 million Twitter followers, and she's been on her Red tour for over a year. And somehow, in the midst of all that, she had time to throw the most star-studded Fourth of July party in recent memory. This week, Taylor also wrote an op-ed for The Wall Street Journal, and we're sharing our favorite parts of her piece. Keep scrolling for Taylor's realest quotes about music.
1. The collapse of the music industry is not set in stone. "There are many (many) people who predict the downfall of music sales and the irrelevancy of the album as an economic entity. I am not one of them. In my opinion, the value of an album is, and will continue to be, based on the amount of heart and soul an artist has bled into a body of work."
2. People are still buying albums. "They are buying only the ones that hit them like an arrow through the heart or have made them feel strong or allowed them to feel like they really aren't alone in feeling so alone."
3. It's time to rise to the challenge, not give up. "It isn't as easy today as it was 20 years ago to have a multiplatinum-selling album, and as artists, that should challenge and motivate us."
4. It's not about finding the next great club banger. "There are always going to be those artists who break through on an emotional level and end up in people's lives forever. The way I see it, fans view music the way they view their relationships. Some music is just for fun, a passing fling (the ones they dance to at clubs and parties for a month while the song is a huge radio hit, that they will soon forget they ever danced to)."
5. It's all about the connection. "Some artists will be like finding 'the one.' We will cherish every album they put out until they retire and we will play their music for our children and grandchildren. As an artist, this is the dream bond we hope to establish with our fans."
6. Don't underestimate the element of surprise. "I think forming a bond with fans in the future will come in the form of constantly providing them with the element of surprise. No, I did not say 'shock'; I said 'surprise.' I believe couples can stay in love for decades if they just continue to surprise each other, so why can't this love affair exist between an artist and their fans?"
7. It's all about the selfies (and it's a little sad). "There are a few things I have witnessed becoming obsolete in the past few years, the first being autographs. I haven't been asked for an autograph since the invention of the iPhone with a front-facing camera. The only memento 'kids these days' want is a selfie. It's part of the new currency, which seems to be 'how many followers you have on Instagram.'"
8. Taylor Swift was all up in MySpace, which was new in 2005. "For me, this dates back to 2005 when I walked into my first record-label meetings, explaining to them that I had been communicating directly with my fans on this new site called MySpace."
9. Multifaceted music is not necessarily a bad thing. "These days, nothing great you hear on the radio seems to come from just one musical influence. The wild, unpredictable fun in making music today is that anything goes. Pop sounds like hip hop; country sounds like rock; rock sounds like soul; and folk sounds like country—and to me, that's incredible progress."