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Taylor Swift's Cruel Summer becoming a single?

This might be a dumb question but I've heard a lot of Swifties talking about how Cruel Summer should have been a single and I definitely agree. But they also say that Taylor should 'make it a single' now, years after its original release so I'm just wondering how that works?

Can an artist just release an album and decide years later that they want one of the songs from the album to be considered a single? Or do they re-release it and just call it a single? Or do they make a music video for it or something? I'm just very confused as to how a non-single can become a single, like what are the requirements or changes needed to do so?
What actually makes a song a single in the first place - is it just being released before the rest of the album? Because then in that case wouldn't it be impossible to make Cruel Summer a single (unless of course, she re-releases the entire Lover album as Taylor's Version and just calls Cruel Summer a single instead of whatever it was last time)? If anyone can explain this that would be great.
Also I've heard The Weeknd's Die For You was originally released in 2016 but only became a single more recently? How? Is it just because he did a remix featuring Ariana Grande? Does the song have to change to become a single? I really don't get it lol.
It can be released as a single if they want to, it just means a single song but its often a couple, you don't need special permission. They are generally released before an album as a preview/stronger tracks and less common afterwards, as most people who bought the album won't buy it, but you'll often get other B sides, extra tracks, remixes, fancy box ect to make it look worthwhile. Past a point you would expect an artist or label to be accused of lazy greed though.
Original post by StriderHort
It can be released as a single if they want to, it just means a single song but its often a couple, you don't need special permission. They are generally released before an album as a preview/stronger tracks and less common afterwards, as most people who bought the album won't buy it, but you'll often get other B sides, extra tracks, remixes, fancy box ect to make it look worthwhile. Past a point you would expect an artist or label to be accused of lazy greed though.


But I don't understand how it just 'becomes' a single if the album has already been released? Is the whole album going to be re-released or the song changed in some way? Still confused :confused:
Original post by spill_the_tea
But I don't understand how it just 'becomes' a single if the album has already been released? Is the whole album going to be re-released or the song changed in some way? Still confused :confused:


Why would the album stop it being released as a single? It would not have any bearing on the rest of the album being re released or not and the song may or not be changed in some way - like a 'Greatest Hits' album is often a collection of singles essentially re -released from previous albums... which a lot of die hard fans or maybe collectors will still buy, even though they already own all the albums/material.

As said, they don't need permission to do it, it would just often be a questionable business choice and harder to market, but if you have a large fan base asking for it and some existing remixes/live material to pad it out then sure, release it as a single.
She might change the song slightly the same way she's rereleased many of her old songs and rerecorded them because they were stolen from her or something.

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