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Top 10 Taylor Swift Songs
It's the song that introduced Taylor to country music fans in the summer of 2006, and began our long and enduring fascination with the singing sensation. Barely old enough to drive when it hit the airwaves, Taylor says she wrote this tune during math class, inspired by a break-up with her high school boyfriend.
'Should've Said No'
We don't know if it's the catchy melody or admonishing lyric that draws us to this hit, but we'd like to thank the ex who foolishly cheated on Taylor, causing her to write this No.1 smash. "You should've said no / You should've gone home / You should've thought twice 'fore you let it all go" echoes the sentiments of scorned lovers twice Taylor's age.
The fourth single from her sophomore album, Taylor wrote this especially for high school students who struggle with fitting in during the awkward adolescent years. Clearly reliving a few of her own painful memories, she urges fellow teens to "count to ten / take it all in / this is life before you know who you're gonna be."
This smash entered the airwaves a full two weeks before it was scheduled, thanks to some impatient fans who leaked the single online ahead of its release date. We can't say we blame them. The first track from her highly anticipated 'Speak Now' album shows Taylor's depth and growth as a songwriter. Lines including, "You made a rebel of a careless man's careful daughter / You are the best thing that's ever been mine," propelled the song to No.1 and solidified Taylor's reputation as a grown-up singer-songwriter.
This tune from her debut album was particularly telling of Taylor's precocious abilities as a writer. She penned this song for a high school talent contest, sparked by the realization that she didn't have a song that reminded her of her current beau. Singing "our song is the slamming screen door / Sneaking out late tapping on your window," Taylor's story of teen romance became her first No.1 at radio.
The title track from her sophomore album also perfectly describes the young superstar as she headlined her first international tour, at only 19 years old. Taylor explains that she wrote it when she was single and looking forward to "the best first date [she] hadn't had yet." Clearly Taylor is an eternal optimist, expressing an idyllic view of love.
'You Belong With Me'
We're not sure if it's the clever lyric, the soaring melody or the theatrical video that we like the most, but either way, 'You Belong With Me' became one of Taylor's biggest hits, hitting No.1 on both the country and pop charts. The tune, which pits sneakers-sporting Taylor against her crush's high-heeled girlfriend, ultimately finds Taylor triumphant. In the video, Taylor played both roles, and earned the MTV Video Music Award for Best Female Video -- in spite of what Kanye West had to say about it.
One year after the infamous Kanye incident, Taylor performed this on the very same MTV VMA stage. Singing (presumably) directly to the disgraced rapper, a gracious Taylor offered, "Your strangled lights are still bright to me / Oh, who you are is not what you've been / You're still an innocent," to thunderous applause. While Taylor asserted that she preferred not to discuss the debacle, she still felt "it was very important" for her to be able sing about it.
The debut single from 'Fearless' is proof positive that Taylor is a hopeless romantic. Citing one of history's most well-known love stories, Taylor sings, "Romeo take me somewhere we can be alone / I'll be waiting, all there's left to do is run." Another timeless charmer from pop and country's reigning fairy princess in search of her prince.
'Back to December'
While her penchant for writing about other people's errant behavior is well-documented, this one points the finger at someone surprising: Taylor herself. Singing, "This is me swallowing my pride / Standing in front of you / Saying I'm sorry for that night / And I go back to December all the time," Taylor describes this song as about someone "who was incredible to me ... and I was really careless with him. This is a song full of words that I would say to him." The combination of honesty and humility make this our choice for Taylor's top tune.