Taylor Swift’s past few albums received major launch support at mainstream radio. The lead singles received “hourly” opening day airplay from the majority of stations, while just about all tracks received an ample number of spins in conjunction with the full album release.
Given the surprise nature of its release and potentially due to its departure in sound, Taylor Swift’s “folklore” understandably did not receive that caliber of opening day radio support. It still did, however, have a first-day presence at Swift’s core pop and hot adult contemporary formats.
“Cardigan,” the album’s first official single, received multiple first-day spins from dozens of pop radio stations. According to Mediabase, SiriusXM Hits 1 had played “cardigan” a whopping 15 times by the end of Friday, July 24. Macon’s B95.1 offered 13 spins, while four stations provided 9 opening day plays. Many others played the song between 2-8 times.
The song received proportionately more support at hot adult contemporary radio, earning enough airplay to take #37 on Mediabase’s building Hot AC chart.
“Cardigan” additionally received spins from one adult contemporary station and one alternative station.
None of the other tracks received enough airplay to flirt with a radio[ chart debut, but songs like “the 1,” “exile (featuring Bon Iver),” “the last great american dynasty,” “my tears ricochet,” “seven,” “august,” “betty,” and “hoax” did receive a few plays at the format. The spins largely came from Louisville’s 99.7 DJX and/or Music Choice’s Top 40 channel, but some other stations got in on the action in select cases.
New Bedford/Providence’s Fun 107 played “the last great american dynasty,” for instance. “the 1” received spins from a few other stations, with Z100 New York, Nashville’s The River, Portland’s Live 95.5 and Madison’s Z104 joining DJX and Music Choice in their support.
— “Folklore” is, of course, faring well on the digital consumption front. The explicit and clean versions occupy the Top 2 spots on the US iTunes sales chart, while tracks from “folklore” enjoyed a dominant first day on Spotify and Apple Music.