We can all probably agree that the worst fate a song can suffer is that of being overplayed on the radio. Even as a longtime Taylor Swift fan, I’ll be the first to admit that just listening to “Shake It Off” (among many more) makes my blood pressure spike with flashbacks of the annoyance-inducing constant and never-ending radio repeat. I’m already sick of “Look What You Made Me Do” and it’s been like, less than a month. No matter how good a song is, if you listen to it a million and a half times, you’re going to grow to resent it. Trust me, been there done that.
With five (nearly six!) studio albums and over 80 songs, you’d think we’d get a little more variety! In need of a refresh?
Here are the 21 most underrated Taylor Swift songs to date:
1. “A Place In This World” from Taylor Swift
“Maybe I’m just a girl on a mission but I’m ready to fly.”
She might be one of the most well-established 27-year-olds in the spotlight, but back in the day, Taylor was just as lost as the rest of us. She wrote this one about finding her (yep, you guessed it) place in the world, feeling alone, and just figuring it all out day-by-day. Can you say #relatable?
2. “All Too Well” from Red
“Time won’t fly, it’s like I’m paralyzed by it. I’d like to be my old self again, but I’m still trying to find it.”
Okay, I know what you’re thinking: another break-up song from T.Swift?! But this one takes the cake when it comes to leaving you feeling heartbroken. The lyrics walk listeners through a relationship, from hopeful beginning to devastating end, and seriously hit home for anyone who just can’t seem to let go of that one person. Apparently, this one was penned for Jake Gyllenhaal.
3. “Change” from Fearless
“You can walk away, say we don’t need this but there’s something in your eyes says we can beat this.”
There’s no need for therapy when you have this cure-all track. Taylor uses “Change” to encourage positivity and confidence in listeners. And let me tell you — it works like a charm.
Fair warning: I only listen to this one when I’m feeling defeated, so that it doesn’t lose it’s effect.
4. “Forever and Always: Acoustic Version” from the plantinum re-issue of Fearless
“It rains in your bedroom, everything is wrong. It rains when you’re here and it rains when you’re gone”
You’ve definitely heard the original, which Taylor’s admitted to writing about ex-boyfriend Joe Jonas, but this version is arguably life changing. The slower, more emotional acoustic offers a raw and untouched side of the country-turned-pop singer.
5. “Haunted” from Speak Now
“You and I walk a fragile line, I have known it all this time. Never ever thought I’d see it break.”
Before “Look What You Made Me Do” came into our lives, this one took the crown for most dramatic and intense Taylor track. If you don’t believe me, just watch the girl perform it live; she literally thrashes her body around with so much force (in the best way possible), that you know the meaning behind the song is out-of-this-world powerful.
6. “Holy Ground” from Red
“Tonight I’m gonna dance for all that we’ve been through. But I don’t wanna dance if I’m not dancing with you.”
Nothing can turn my mood around like this song. There’s something about the upbeat, faster-than-fast feel-good lyrics that makes me feel like I’m on cloud nine, even when I’m not. It celebrates being surrounded by the people you love and enjoying life. What more could you ask for?
7. “I Know Places” from 1989
“Loose lips sink ships all the damn time. Not this time.”
Diving into a new relationship is always scary. We’ve all been there and done that. But have you ever wondered what it’s like to jump in head-first when the whole world is watching? Now you know.
Miss Swift perfectly summed up dating in the spotlight with this eerie and mysterious jam.
8. “Innocent” from Speak Now
“Wasn’t it easier in your firefly-catchin’ days? When everything out of reach, someone bigger brought down to you.”
Infamously the follow-up to Kanye West‘s VMA snafu, this one’s all about forgiveness and understanding. Taylor sympathizes with his mistakes in this reflective ballad and makes it clear that the song’s about him by including undeniable details like his age at the time (32) and the month of the incident (September).
9. “Long Live” from Speak Now
“I was screaming ‘long live all the magic we made’ and bring on all the pretenders. One day we will be remembered.”
Unlike the majority of her songs, which usually focus on her love life in one way or another, this one’s about Taylor’s love for her fans, her band and their journey to fame. Every true Swiftie has “Long Live” in their all-time favorites list. It’s uniquely inspiring, connecting, and full of energy.
10. “Never Grow Up” from Speak Now
“Take pictures in your mind of your childhood room. Memorize what it sounded like when your dad gets home. Remember the footsteps, remember the words said, and all your little brother’s favorite songs. I just realized everything I have is someday gonna be gone.”
I’m not going to lie: belting this out on a rainy day hits me right in the feels. It chronicles Taylor’s regret, and her undying desire to grow up, until of course — she realizes that she is grown up.
Looking back, the now ten-time Grammy Award winner can’t help but feel like she rushed into adulthood, and we’re right there with her.
11. “New Romantics” from 1989
“I could build a castle out of all the bricks they threw at me. And every day is like a battle, but every night with us is like a dream.”
She just gets us! “New Romantics” sums up millennials in all their complexity. It’s the unifying anthem we’ve been looking for all along. So raise the flag and we’ll pledge our allegiance to T-Swift, herself.
12. “Picture To Burn” from Taylor Swift
“There’s no time for tears. I’m just sitting here planning my revenge. There’s nothing stopping me from going out with all of your best friends.”
Say hello to the original revenge track. Before releasing any of her latest and greatest spiteful hits, Taylor Swift got her message across loud and clear. Social media users might’ve just recently started sending her snakes, but this blonde beauty’s made it clear from day one: you don’t mess with her.
13. “Ronan” (Non-Album Single)
“What if I really thought some miracle would see us through? What if the miracle was even getting one moment with you?”
This one’s unlike any other song she’s ever written. After following a blog detailing four-year-old Ronan Thompson’s battle with and eventual loss to childhood cancer, Taylor co-wrote “Ronan” with his mother and donated all the proceeds to The Ronan Thompson Foundation. It’s without a doubt a sure-fire tear-jerker.
14. “Should’ve Said No” from Taylor Swift
“It’s strange to think the songs we used to sing, the smiles, the flowers, everything is gone. Yesterday I found out about you. Even now just looking at you feels wrong.”
This one is oozing with girl power. After being cheated on, Taylor took to her song-writing to artfully express the way she felt, and it’s the ultimate anthem for anyone going through the same thing. This one’s about a pre-fame boyfriend, Sam Armstrong, who she dated in high school.
15. “Stay Beautiful” from Taylor Swift
“Cory finds another way to be the highlight of my day. I’m taking pictures in my mind so I can save them for a rainy day.”
Fans who’ve been there since the start know that T.S.’s songs used to almost always include the names of the boys they were about. And “Stay Beautiful” is no different! This one’s all about recognizing the beauty in the people she loves (well, one person in particular). It’s full of positivity and comfort, and screams “the old Taylor.”
16. “The Best Day” from Fearless
“And now I know why all the trees change in the fall. I know you were on my side even when I was wrong.”
She’s a mama’s girl! This oh-so-cute tribute to Taylor’s mom never fails to make Andrea Swift cry. The lyrics are chock-full of meaningful life lessons and the importance of family. Her mom was there through it all, and this song couldn’t be any more adorable.
17. “The Outside” from Taylor Swift
“You could have helped if you had wanted to, but no one notices until it’s too late to do anything.”
It’s high school in a nutshell. There are always those kids that fit right in and skate by with social ease, and then those kids who spend their days on the outside looking in. This one will pull at your heartstrings and make you feel all kinds of sympathy for a teen Taylor and all the outcasts out there.
18. “The Way I Loved You” from Fearless
“You were wild and crazy, just so frustrating, intoxicating, complicated, got away by some mistake and now.”
Being smack dab in the middle of a love triangle doesn’t sound like the worst case scenario. This one’s all about Taylor realizing the guy she’s with isn’t the guy she wants to be with. Hey, I’m not going to pretend like I haven’t compared a current bae to a former bae. No shame, Tay!
19. “Tim McGraw” from Taylor Swift
“Someday you’ll turn your radio on. I hope it takes you back to that place.”
An oldie, but a goodie! This was her first-ever single, so it’ll always be an important part of Taylor Swift’s story, but that doesn’t mean it didn’t earn its spot on this list. “Tim McGraw” is bursting at the seams with that young, fleeting butterfly feeling we’ve all felt. It’s the original country sound she became known for early on, spilling with teen desperation.
20. “Wonderland” from 1989
“We found wonderland. You and I got lost in it and life was never worse but never better.”
Last but not least, this one is magic in a bottle (or…in a song). Inspired by Alice in Wonderland, Taylor unleashes her inner fairytale, weaving her own romantic life with the the classic tale. It has whimsical written all over it, and never fails to whisk me off to another place.