10 Taylor Swift Songs For the Reluctant Beginner
So, it’s been three months and Taylor Swift’s “Shake if Off” is still stuck in your head. You finally decide to suck it up and listen to her newest album, 1989, on Spotify- er…another place! Taylor Swift has evolved so much musically these last eight years that her newest album doesn’t fully represent everything Swift is about. So, if you’ve been actively avoiding her music (or living under a rock), here are 10 Taylor Swift songs for the reluctant beginner.
1. “Our Song”
Before Swift became the ultimate pop princess, she was introducing country music to a younger crowd. Although her first song was technically “Tim McGraw” (and that song was a big hit), her strongest single from the first album was the peppy, romantic “Our Song.” It really details the preciousness of young love.
And “Picture to Burn” details the harsh realities of young love. Most high school relationships don’t last forever. Some of them don’t end amicably. This is the song that cemented Taylor Swift as the master of the revenge song. A few years later, Swift would express some regret over this song; however, the song’s honestly definitely makes it stand out.
3. “Love Story”
“Love Story” remains Taylor Swift’s best selling country hit. Although the song’s inspiration (Romeo and Juliet) may not be completely original, the song is melodically lovely and proved that Swift wasn’t a one-hit (or, rather, five-hit) wonder.
So, this is the song Taylor Swift won that infamous VMA for (the one where Kanye West crashed her acceptance speech). However, it’s also a really catchy song about a dorky band geek and her pining love for the boy next door. The song is sweet and the music video is actually funny (at least it was in 2009).
OK. This may be a personal favorite for me. The song isn’t technically one of Swift’s bigger hits. But her performance of it during the 2010 ACM Awards indicates her clear admiration for the song. It’s a very uplifting song that anyone can relate to (even if you’ve never dated Joe Jonas). Very underrated.
After she surprisingly won the 2010 Grammy for Best Album, many people criticized Swift for her “underwhelming” singing voice. She fired back at her critics with “Mean.” Her “saying I can’t sing” line particularly shows some self-awareness on her part.
This is one of her last bonafide country hits. This ballad is about the preciousness of the perfect relationship. I particularly like the music video, which made me laugh and tear up at the same time the first time I watched it.
This song marked her clear shift from “country pop” to “bubblegum pop.” Although her music has changed, the subject is still all too familiar. Apparently, this song is about Jake Gyllenhaal. Also…does anyone remember when those two were a couple??
This was Swift’s first foray into dubstep. You’ve probably watched those “goat parodies” on Youtube. Yes, the are funny. However, the actually song may surprise you.
If after listening to “Shake it Off” you still have little interest in pursuing Swift’s newest album, at least consider checking out 1989‘s closer “Clean,” which Swift co-wrote with the amazing Imogen Heap. It’s lyrically complex. It’s melodically cool and beautiful. It’s just the type of song you want to listen to over and over again. It is not technically a single (yet), but it’s my favorite song from the album.
I think this is a nice representation o Swift’s music, but maybe I’m missing something? Well, anyway, thanks for reading.