Pepsi remained in the game through 2022, after which Apple Music took over as the halftime show sponsor—and reportedly asked Swift if she’d do the honors at Super Bowl LVII in February 2023. Her fans were convinced it was finally going to happen, connecting every imagined dot.
Swift declined, however, purportedly because she was in the thick of rerecording the albums she made for Big Machine Records, her response to Scooter Braun acquiring the rights to her back catalogue when his company Ithaca Holdings bought the label in 2019. That ambitious project dovetailed with her most prolific period to date, which saw the release of Lover, folklore, evermore and Midnights between 2019 and 2022.
Moreover, TMZ reported in 2022 that sources with direct knowledge of the halftime show said Swift didn’t want to take that particular stage until she’d finished re-recording her first six albums. She’s still got two to go, her 2005 self-titled debut and 2017’s persona-redefining Reputation, teasing the latter as “a goth-punk moment of female rage at being gaslit by an entire social structure.”
Adding to the 2023 time crunch was preparation for her career-spanning Eras Tour, which began last April. And, while collecting her 13th Grammy on Feb. 4, Swift announced her 11th studio album, The Tortured Poets Department, will drop April 19. Not even performing dozens of sold-out dates and releasing a blockbuster concert film could slow down the muses.