Taylor Swift Includes a ‘From the Vault’ Version of ‘Babe’ on ‘Red (Taylor’s Version)’ [Listen]
Taylor Swift's Red (Taylor's Version) arrived last week, and with it came another batch of nine "From the Vault" tracks, including her latest submission to country radio: A Chris Stapleton duet called "I Bet You Think About Me."
That's not the only song with a strong country connection on Swift's new project. She also included her version of "Babe," a song that she co-wrote with Pat Monahan during the Red era but didn't wind up including on the first version of the album. Six years later, in 2018, the song found new life when country duo Sugarland cut it for their Bigger album. It was the band's first full-length release after a several-years-long hiatus, and their first album since 2010's The Incredible Machine.
At the time, Swift not only offered her country pals the song itself, but she also appeared in the music video for "Babe." The retro clip channeled '60s-esque Mad Men vibes, with Swift and Sugarland band mate Jennifer Nettles playing the part of a mistress and wife in a love triangle.
Intricate, cinematic music videos are a big part of Swift's Red (Taylor's Version) rollout, too: The day before the full album came out, she shared All Too Well The Short Film, a 10-minute version of her fan-favorite Red standout with a mesmerizing video to match.
Swift's version of "Babe" carries over all the introspective emotional depth and heartache that Sugarland captured in 2018, with a slightly more muted delivery. In the first bars of the song, Swift's shimmering vocals repeat, "What about your promises?" over and over, a detail that wasn't part off Sugarland's version of the song.
Else on Red (Taylor's Version), Swift offers her own version of another song she wrote that was a hit for another country group, "Better Man." In 2016, that song became a chart-topping hit for Little Big Town, and it won the quartet a CMA Award and a Grammy.