Like any sentient human being, I am a huge fan of Taylor Swift. Her amazing lyricism and great vocals have won her a much deserved spot in the music industry and my heart. As such, I have decided to list my top ten favorite Taylor Swift songs. For this list, I focused on lyrics, melody, vocals, and instrumentals. Although I am a staunch admirer of Taylor’s more popular songs, I have left out some classics in lieu of more underrated tracks that I believe are of higher quality. Here we go!!
10.) Style – The song most symbolic of Taylor’s transformation from country to pop, “Style” will always hold an important place in her discography. The hook is phenomenal, and her lyrics are utterly effortless. The guitar intro has become iconic and demonstrates Taylor’s ability to craft catchy pop songs that still retain a “cool” element.
Best Lyric: “So it goes, he can’t keep his wild eyes on the road/Takes me home, lights are off he’s taking off his coat”
9.) Haunted – Featuring fantastic violins, “Haunted” is one of Taylor’s more instrumentally complex songs. She conveys her deep sorrow from a recent breakup in a beautifully wistful and regretful tone. As the song reaches its powerful climax, her vocals can be described as nothing except haunting.
Best Lyric: “Holding my breath, won’t lose you again/Something’s made your eyes go cold”
8.) Innocent – One of Taylor’s most comforting songs, “Innocent” reassures a friend that he can overcome the mistakes of his past. She evokes strong sentiments of nostalgia as she sings about one’s “lunchbox” and “firefly-catchin’ days.” Though she acknowledges the errors of her friend, she reminds him that he is not tainted in her eyes.
Best Lyric: “Who you are is not what you did/You’re still an innocent”
7.) State of Grace – “State of Grace” is the opener on “Red,” and sets the tone for the entire album. It is both beautifully composed and expertly worded, demonstrating Taylor’s poetic nature. Though it may not be one of her catchier songs, it is perhaps her best execution of what it feels like to unexpectedly fall in love.
Best Lyric: “We fall in love ’til it hurts or bleeds or fades in time”
6.) I Did Something Bad – The best song on “Reputation,” “I Did Something Bad” is a pop powerhouse. Taylor’s voice is dripping with spite as she belts out the incredible chorus. The way she emphasizes “I” in the lyric: “And I’d do it over and over and over again if I could” makes even the most timid listener feel like a total badass. It is her most successful attempt at shedding her “good-girl” persona.
Best Lyric: “But if he drops my name, then I owe him nothin’/And if he spends my change, then he had it comin’”
5.) Fearless – A remnant of Taylor’s country era, “Fearless” is the title track from her second, grammy-winning album. Though it’s replete with poignant and tenderly crafted tracks, “Fearless” best demonstrates Taylor’s inherent whimsy. Unsurprisingly, she sings about the effects that a new love interest has on her spirit and actions, declaring that “with you’d i’d dance in a storm in my best dress.”
Best Lyric: ‘It’s the first kiss, it’s flawless, really something, it’s fearless.”
4.) Clean – Also underrated, “Clean” is a top-tier Taylor Swift song. Co-written with Imogen Heap, “Clean” assumes a more vulnerable tone as Taylor reflects upon an ended relationship from which she has finally moved on. She cleverly compares her new singlehood to being “sober” from her previous significant other. Anyone who has experienced love and loss can relate to finally getting over romantic feelings for an ex.
Best Lyric: “And by morning, gone was any trace of you, I think I am finally clean”
3.) Enchanted – One of Taylor’s seriously underrated songs, “Enchanted” is phenomenal. It is both delicate and powerful, complemented by her strong vocals. Again, Taylor’s lyricism cannot be understated; she beautifully depicts the excitement one feels upon meeting a new romantic interest.
Best Lyric: “Please don’t be in love with someone else/Please don’t have somebody waiting on you”
2.) Blank Space – Although “Blank Space” was insanely popular, it is also an amazingly constructed song with a fire hook and killer lyrics. Plus, it demonstrates Taylor’s ingenuity (the sound of the pen click before she sings “I’ll write your name”) and her ability to make fun of herself (and earn millions of dollars and fans in the process). It is not merely a good pop song, but a terrific song in general. In addition, the music video is probably one of the best of all time (Sorry, Beyoncé).
Best Lyric: “‘Cause darling I’m a nightmare dressed like a daydream”
1.) All Too Well – Despite my difficulties crafting this list (I almost made it a Top 20), I always knew “All Too Well” would be #1. At 5:28 seconds, it is one of Taylor’s longer songs, but she capitalizes on each second. Her lyricism and storytelling has never been better than in “All Too Well,” in which she ruminates upon an ended relationship. The song gradually builds both instrumentally and emotionally, culminating in a devastatingly beautiful bridge.
Best Lyric: “Hey, you call me up again just to break me like a promise/ So casually cruel in the name of being honest.”
Do you agree? Which Taylor Swift songs are your favorite? Let me know in the comments!