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Secret Sessions

2014 | 2017 | 2019

The “Secret Sessions”, which first began in 2014, are fan-only listening parties, where Taylor previews her new album for Swifties, weeks before it hits stores. Taylor personally selects the fans that get invited into her various homes for a sneak peek of all her soon-to-be-released songs.
Taylor’s secret sessions have become a regular tradition — as long as the many secrets around the upcoming album don’t get leaked by fans who heard it in advance. “What happens in the secret sessions, STAYS in the secret sessions,” Taylor said. No two listening parties are the same, and they are customized to fit the themes and motifs of the corresponding album.

1989 Secret Sessions

Taylor — in anticipation of the release of her fifth album, 1989 (2014) — held a series of “1989 Secret Sessions” over the course of several weeks in September and October 2014, at her various homes in New York, Los Angeles and Rhode Island, as well as  her mother‘s mansion in Nashville and a hotel room in London. For each location, 89 carefully-selected fans were told they were attending some sort of secret event, with no knowledge of what was in store for them. Taylor pulled out all the stops to throw them a good party, and even baked cookies: “I’m making bulk batches of chocolate chip and toasted coconut cookies.” For the first secret session, held on September 20, 2014, in Los Angeles, she explained:

«This is the first of the secret sessions which are little mini living room house parties where I’m going to be playing my fans the album first. So we wanted to surprise them. They’re here, they’re out mingling and eating and things like that. They know something is going on but I don’t know if they think this is going on.»

Taylor Swift
After piling on to a bus after being contacted by Taylor Nation, the lucky fans arrived at the houses and were treated to a buffet as they chatted about what might be going on, with some clocking that they were at the home of their idol. After climbing into her shower to sneak a peek outside the window while fans lined up about her Los Angeles mansion, Taylor was thrilled to see they were ‘excitedly mingling’. She then emerged, naturally to some intense screaming, and played her yet to be released album 1989 for the crowd. Afterwards, Taylor shared her baked goods and danced around the living room with her admirers, even letting one of them stroke her cat Olivia Benson. Before they headed home, she took a Polaroid photo with all 89 guests in each location.

reputation Secret Sessions

The Secret Sessions have a big reputation within the Swiftie fandom. So much so that for her next album, reputation (2017), Taylor turned them into a “tradition.” 500 more lucky fans from around the world were hand-selected by her to hear the album an entire month before anybody else. Once again, Taylor hosted several exclusive secret sessions; in a rental home in London, at her Rhode Island beach mansion, her mother’s mansion in Nashville, and her new historic estate in Beverly Hills (Los Angeles). Each party had around 100 attendees, with a total of 500 fans chosen. Taylor spoke candidly about each song on the album before she played them during each secret session and also revealed some secrets that never got made public. Afterwards, she also spent copious amounts of time meeting with every fan and taking pictures. Overall, none of the fans leaked any of the music out ahead of the album’s release.

Lover Secret Sessions

Three weeks before the release of Lover (2019), Taylor held the third edition of the secret sessions; starting in a rental home in London on August 2, 2019. Once again, she personally selected a small group of Swifties to come to her houses for special listening parties ahead of the highly anticipated release. There were heart-shaped pink, purple, and blue Rice Krispies Treats, and fans were greeted with custom Lover M&Ms and dozens of board games. Naturally, Taylor posed for pictures with her guests, and everyone took home tote bags and other Lover merch as a souvenir. At the Nashville Lover Secret Session the last lot of fans didn’t leave until around 5am. Taylor spent around 12 hours meeting fans all the way from Australia to Uruguay, the US, Taiwan and more! Another session followed at a rented house in Los Angeles, which was attended by two of the album’s main producers, Jack Antonoff and Joel Little. This time around, a lot of the supposed secret information got leaked by various fans, including the complete track list. It is unclear whether Taylor will host secret sessions again in the future.

iHeartRadio Secret Sessions

For 1989, reputation and Lover, iHeartRadio and Taylor collaborated for exclusive listening sessions on the release date of each album.

For 1989, fans were also invited to a rooftop in New York City, where Taylor sang new songs from 1989 and explained the stories behind each one. Additionally, the Empire State Building lit up in different colors to the beat of Taylor’s songs. The session was streamed on iHeartRadio‘s website, so fans could join the concert from around the world.
General Information
YearsSeptember-October 2014
October 2017
August 2019
Eras1989
reputation
Lover
LocationsLos Angeles
Nashville
Rhode Island
New York City
London
iHeartRadio Secret Sessions