Although Taylor Swift was already massively successful prior to the release of her record-breaking fifth studio album, 1989, it is, without a doubt, her most popular album. Producing hit singles like Shake It Off, Blank Space, and Wildest Dreams, the singer-songwriter’s most recent album is definitely thought to be her best. However, despite the fact that 1989 is a glorious album full of glorious songs, Taylor was releasing hot hits way before the album’s release in fall of 2014.
Here are eight of her most underrated songs:
8. A Perfectly Good Heart
From Taylor’s self-titled debut album, A Perfectly Good Heart is a ballad in which she pleads with a past lover, begging to know why they would “want to take [their] love and tear it all apart.”
Released when Taylor was still in her teenage years, the song perfectly encompasses the feelings a young person goes through after the end of their first serious relationship.
Best lyric: “Maybe I should’ve seen the signs; I should’ve read the writing on the wall. And realized by the distance in your eyes that I would be the one to fall.”
7. If This Was a Movie
If This Was a Movie was originally released as a promotional single for Taylor’s third album, Speak Now. The song tells the story of a young girl who is still holding on to hope that her ex-lover will return to her, even though six months have passed since the end of their relationship.
What makes this song one of Taylor’s best is the fact that she alludes to the cliché movie plot where the guy and girl have a big fight, just to get back together in the end. She wishes something similar would happen with her and her ex, crooning, “come back, come back, come back to me like you would, you would if this was a movie.”
Best lyric: “Six months gone and I’m still reaching, even though I know you’re not there.”
Another song from her Speak Now, Innocent has a completely different message than the previous song. In normal Taylor fashion, the song is about someone who has wronged her. And although she has never explicitly said it, it’s pretty clear that the song is in reference to Kanye West and the 2009 VMA incident in which he stormed the stage, stealing her spotlight as she went up to accept an award. But before you start thinking that it’s some crazy revenge song, it’s not.
In fact, Taylor offers some comfort to Kanye, who, after the incident, was written off by millions. She assures him that his career is not over and that he will recover, singing, “who you are is not where you’ve been.” And with that simple phrase, you begin to realize that Taylor, who had every reason in the world to despise Kanye for his actions, still wished the best for him.
Best lyric: “Minds change like the weather; I hope you remember: today is never too late to be brand new.”
5. All Too Well
Although Taylor performed All Too Well at the 2014 Grammys, it seemed as if people were too focused on her hair flipping to realize the true beauty of the song. Arguably one of Taylor’s most intimate songs, All Too Well chronicles a past relationship of Taylor’s from start to finish.
The raw emotion Taylor puts into the song is what makes it so great. Midway through the song, she sings about knowing that her relationship has ended, but can’t accept it. She has invested so much time and so much love into the relationship that she can’t stand to see it end. And although she would like nothing more than to forget, she can’t. She remembers every moment “all too well.”
Best lyric: “I’d like to be my old self again, but I’m still trying to find it.”
4. I Almost Do
From Taylor’s fourth studio album, Red, I Almost Do is the song that Taylor wrote for her ex-boyfriend, rather than calling him, according to the secret message found in the lyric booklet. A song known only to some of Taylor’s most hardcore fans, I Almost Do is a lyrical masterpiece and we think everyone deserves to hear it at least once in their lifetime.
Taylor sings about wanting to go back to her ex and try to rekindle their relationship, as they both still have feelings for each other. However, she simply can’t, because she the pain she’s currently going through is far too much for her to encounter again if the relationship were to fail a second time. Throughout the song, Taylor admits to constantly thinking about her ex and wants him to know that “it takes everything in [her] not to call him.”
Best lyric: “I can’t say “hello” to you and risk another goodbye.”
3. Dear John
It’s no secret that this ballad from Speak Now was written about Taylor’s short-lived relationship with singer-songwriter John Mayer. Dear John is basically the All Too Well of Speak Now in that it is an incredibly intimate song, one that is sure to evoke strong feelings of sadness and nostalgia.
In the song, Taylor conveys her feelings of frustration she had in the relationship as she constantly felt as though she was being manipulated by John. She mentions that her “mother accused [her] of losing [her] mind” when she got involved with John and although she knew the risks, she still pursued him.
Through the entirety of the relationship, she tried so hard to make it work, not wanting to go through yet another painful breakup. However, when the two did eventually break up, she realized how badly she was treated by her lover.
His “dark, twisted games,” constant mood swings, and the way he would “give love and take it away,” were all things that contributed to the downfall of the relationship and although at the time Taylor didn’t understand, she is now glad that she got out of the relationship before he could completely ruin her.
Best lyric: “I’m shining like fireworks over your sad empty town.”
2. The Moment I Knew
Appearing as a bonus track from Red, The Moment I Know is perhaps Taylor’s most personal song. Rumored to be about Jake Gyllenhaal, Taylor sings about how his absence at her 21st birthday party, which he promised to attend, was the final straw for her and how she knew the relationship would never work out the way she wanted it to.
A heartbreaking narrative, Taylor sings about the events of the birthday party, from the beginning to the end. She explains that she stared at the door all night, waiting for him to show, but he never did. Then, as the hours passed by, it began to dawn on Taylor that her boyfriend wasn’t coming, a realization that leads her to break down crying in the bathroom, surrounded by her friends.
In the most heartbreaking line of the song, Taylor talks about how great the party is and how happy she should’ve been, but couldn’t be, because her beau was missing.
The song fades out with Taylor saying that at the end of the night, her boyfriend called and apologized for not being able to make it. And so did she, saying “I’m sorry too,” but not because he didn’t show, but because she put her trust and faith in him.
Best lyric: “What do you say when tears are streaming down your face in front of everyone you know?”
1. Come Back…Be Here
Another bonus track from Red, Come Back…Be Here is quite possibly the greatest song Taylor Swift has ever written. Reportedly about her relationship with England native Harry Styles, the song goes into detail about how Taylor and her lover struggled to keep their relationship strong, despite the fact that they loved each other dearly.
At the start of the song, Taylor explains how she “told [herself] don’t get attached” because she knew that it would never work out, what with the fact that the guy was always busy traveling. If the rumor is true and the song actually is about Harry, that makes perfect sense, as he and his One Direction bandmates were touring at the time that the song was written, as well as for a large portion of their relationship.
Taylor doesn’t realize until her boyfriend is away, for whatever reason, how much she truly misses him and wishes that he had taken her with him. There is a juxtaposition between the first chorus and the second, where in the first Taylor beau was in New York and in the second he was in London, hinting at the fact that the time the two got to spend together was incredibly limited, which no doubt put a great strain on the two.
She ends the song begging him to come back home, as she can no longer stand missing him.
Best lyric: “This is falling for you and you are worlds away.”
What do you think Taylor’s most underrated song is and did we include it on the list? Comment down below or tweet us at @CelebMix.