Taylor Swift is a pop icon who was all over my childhood. With the singer releasing re-recorded songs from her old albums like Red, I realise how years after these songs were released, they still hold onto you like dried flowers pressed in a book. So this feels like the best time to revisit her old songs and see the charm in them.
1. Love Story
Ah! This song was in the heart of every teenage girl when it was released in 2008. Taylor herself was 19 years old. The song is a part of her second album Fearless and came under the country-pop genre. The track was one of the best-selling singles worldwide in 2009. You can listen to Taylor’s version here.
2. I Knew You Were Trouble
This song is the go-to breakup anthem IMO. It gives me the angsty teen vibes, which I absolutely love. The track is rumoured to be based on Taylor’s relationship with the singer Harry Styles and deals with the theme of toxic love. The best part is the chorus. It hits you right in the feels even now. You can listen to Taylor’s version here.
3. You Belong With Me
Taylor got the inspiration for this song when she saw a male friend fighting his girlfriend over the phone. The best part of the song was Taylor doing a double role in the music video. The song was released in 2008. The trackwas nominated for Song of the Year, Record of the Year, and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance in the 2010 Grammy Awards. You can listen to Taylor’s version here.
4. Shake It Off
1989 was Taylor’s first pop album and this song was a dance-pop number featuring a saxophone in it. The song is about Taylor’s indifference towards her haters and detractors and their negative comments towards her image. The peppy music always gets me grooving. The video had Taylor being her clumsy self trying to learn to dance and that is relatable AF.
5. All Too Well
Taylor’s All Too Well was released ten years ago as a part of the album Red. The song is a breakup song that was rumoured to be about Taylor’s relationship with Jake Gyllenhall. It highlighted the age gap between Taylor and Jake and the gaslighting nature of the relationship. This year also saw the release of All Too Well-The Short Film and All Too Well-Ten Minute Version (Taylor’s version) and brought back so many memories from a decade ago.
6. We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together
This song is inspired by Taylor’s on and off relationship with her then-boyfriend. The song is allegedly based on Jake Gyllenhaal. We love a good breakup song and this was one of the best of its time. The song was Taylor’s first number one on Billboard HOT 100 CHART in the United States. You can listen to Taylor’s version here.
7. Blank Space
Blank Space is inspired by the media labelling Taylor a “psycho serial dater girl”. The song is part of the album 1989 and the video was a delight to watch. Taylor revealed in a live interview that at first, the tag felt offensive to her, but later she thought it was interesting and wrote a song about it. You can listen to Taylor’s version here.
8. Bad Blood
Taylor loves to take inspiration from real life and it shows. This hit is inspired by Taylor’s public feud with pop icon Katy Perry. The feud was allegedly about poaching backup dancers on tour in 2012-2013. Even the video shows two groups fighting. Katy Perry later released a Swift-bashing song called 1984.
9. Wildest Dreams
This was a big change from Taylor’s usual country-pop and pop songs. The track is the fifth single from the album 1989 and was released in 2015. The music video was reminiscent of classical Hollywood romances. Critics compared the song to Lana Del Ray’s music and the video was shot in Africa and California. You can listen to Taylor’s version here.
This song too is about the singer Harry Styles and the lyrics of the track are about an unhealthy relationship which the couple cannot escape, case in point, Taylor Swift and Harry Styles. Taylor has made it quite apparent with Harry’s description in the lyrics. The song was released in 2015 as part of the fifth album 1989.
11. Dear John
Dear John is allegedly based on Taylor’s short-lived relationship with singer John Mayer. The music track was released in 2010 in the album Speak Now. The lyrics have various references to John’s behaviour towards her and their ten-year age gap. You can listen to Taylor’s version concept here.
12. Our Song
Taylor wrote the song for a high school talent show during her freshman year. The lyrics are about a young couple using events in their lives to create their own song. The song became so popular among her classmates that she convinced her producers to add the song to her debut album, Taylor Swift. The song was released in 2007 and became a hit instantly marking her as a country artist.
13. Look What You Made Me Do
If I could, I would put it under the category of ‘revenge song’. Taylor displays her good-girl-gone-bad attitude with complete reinvention in this 2017 song. The track is allegedly based on all her exes and haters and interpolates the melody of the famous pop song I’m Too Sexy. Years later, this still hits right in the spot.
14. Begin Again
Begin Again is a country song in all its glory from the album Red. The song deals with the theme of finding love after a failed relationship and it makes me nostalgic for teenage romance. The song was widely acclaimed by critics and was nominated for Best Country Song at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards. You can listen to Taylor’s version here.
15. Hey Stephen
While Taylor cleared that Hey Stephen is about Stephen King and not Stephen Colbert, the lyrics of the song say otherwise. In the printed lyrics, “love and theft” are capitalised which refer to Stephen Barker Liles of the country duo Love and Theft whom she toured with. Taylor allegedly had a crush on Stephen. The song is a country-pop released as a part of the second album Fearless in 2008. You can listen to Taylor’s version here.
This track is the ninth song from the album Speak Now and was released in 2010. The song was also the theme song for her fragrance. The song is about the singer Adam Young from Owl City. Taylor allegedly developed a crush on Adam during their interaction which lead to the birth of the song.
This song and the album was what defined Taylor Swift for me. Of course, this is allegedly about her ex Harry Styles too. Taylor was also known for her red lip and her relationship with Harry which the song constantly hints at. You can listen to Taylor’s version here.
Ours is a song from the deluxe edition of Taylor’s album Speak Now. The track is a country ballad. It was released as the fifth and final song of the album. The song is about somebody her friends and family dislike and was rumoured to be on one of her exes-Jake Gyllenhaal, Toby Hemingway, or John Mayer. However, Taylor focuses on the hope for love in the lyrics.
This particular song is from the album Red. The song starts off with an acoustic guitar and soon turns into an upbeat dance-pop number. The melody is catchy AF and I dare you to not dance to it. You can listen to Taylor’s version here.
All the Swifties raise their hand in the air. *raises both hands*