Ever felt intimidated by a musician’s extensive back catalog? Been trying to get into a band, but you just don’t know where to begin? In 10 Songs is here to help, providing a clearcut entry point into the daunting discographies of iconic artists of all genres. This is your first step toward fandom — now all you have to do is take it.
At the end of the day, trying to narrow down Taylor Swift‘s discography to just ten songs is a fool’s errand. Swift is one of a kind — by tapping into her own emotions and stories navigating young love, coming of age, and chasing big dreams, she carved her own niche in the country music genre before evolving into a pop star for the history books.
Swift retooled the concept of fandom, too, using social media and her infamous “secret sessions” to connect with fans on a level rarely seen from artists her size. To maintain the level of success Swift has achieved for fifteen years is no small feat, either. At the end of the day, if you were to take away the tabloid stories and romantic drama, you’re left with an incredibly inventive, influential songwriter who has also been a vocal advocate for the rights of fellow artists.
So many listeners grew up with Swift, and it’s been a joy to watch her explore different genres, styles, and sides of her identity as an artist and songwriter. She lets herself experiment, whether it was in the revenge-soaked reputation or the more mature, woodland escape of folklore and evermore.
Ask ten Swifties to narrow her enormous discography down to ten songs to tell the story of her journey so far and you’d probably end up with a list of a hundred different songs. To that end, consider each track on this list a window into each era she’s offered us so far — there are so many gems in every album. (I tend to gravitate towards random b-sides, and could probably write an entire essay on “peace” if given the opportunity.)
With Taylor Swift’s tenth album on the horizon, we tried our very best to highlight ten of the tracks that speak to her discography. While we wait for Midnights, due out for release on October 21st, enjoy this tour through her catalogue, from her self-titled debut to 2020’s evermore.
Check out Taylor Swift in 10 Songs below, and scroll to the end for a playlist of every track.