From The Record Crate: Taylor Swift – “Taylor Swift”

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In a matter of just 10 years, Taylor Swift has become one of the biggest names in pop culture history. She has quickly become a household name that has taken the music world on by storm. Since Taylor’s Swift self-titled album released on October 24, 2006, the singer-songwriter has taken home 10 Grammy Awards, 8 Academy of Country Music Awards, 23 Billboard Music Awards and the list goes on. This pop star has transformed the music industry to the point that it’s become hard to think of a day where Taylor Swift wasn’t a part of our pop culture vocabulary. As the songstress celebrates 10 years and yet another milestone of many, we take a look back at the album that started it all- Taylor Swift.

Taylor Swift started her music career composing and singing country music. Her first album consisted of raw and emotional lyrics that resonated with the feels that every teenager had at the time. Just a 16-year-old freshman at the time, she wrote with enough emotion that ensued a level of true, unapologetic honesty that became a sort of Taylor Swift trademark for albums to come. From broken hearts, horrible break ups and finding “A Place in This World”, Taylor’s lyrics hit home on so many levels.

Though the album was a solid effort from the young artist, no one knew that it was going to escalate her to the level of pop stardom that she’s at today. The 11 track album consists of hits such as “Picture To Burn” and “Teardrops On My Guitar” but one that immediately captivated music executives was the first track on the album, “Tim McGraw”.

“Tim McGraw” is a tribute to the country music icon and is a slow ballad-like melody that starts off the album. But Taylor’s debut album quickly picks up with the second song on the album, “Picture To Burn”. The song has a fiery country spark that immediately gives you a taste as to how honest Taylor can get. It’s one of her many power anthems that everyone should listen to after a bad breakup.

But she takes it down a notch or two and shows how much a heart breakup can hurt. Sure, we can throw out our ex’s belongings and burn their photos but behind that firecracker of emotions, we’re still hurting inside. That brings us to one of my favorite songs of her debut album, which is “Teardrops On My Guitar”. The soft, melodic tune is a bit slow in tempo but captures the essence of a fragile, broken heart. This was one of the first songs I heard from the artist that made me immediately fall in love with her music and who knew it’d escalate to the fandom and stardom she has today.

Despite this hit song, there were other personal favorites that music listeners shouldn’t shy away from. “A Place in This World” is pretty self-explanation, given the title but still holds enough honesty that it shouldn’t get overlooked amongst the other tracks on the album. “A Place in This World” is the perfect track that young adults and millennials alike can relate to as it brings forth the message that it’s okay to feel like lost and confused because no matter what, there’s a place for everyone out there in this crazy world. It just takes some time to find it. Perhaps it was then that Taylor was still trying to find her own place amidst the music industry.

Later in the album, Taylor Swift’s “Should’ve Said No” is one of my favorite pre-pop Taylor songs as it has powerhouse vocals, anger, frustration and honesty. This particular track also later shows up again in Taylor Swift’s album, Fearless. For one’s who have been cheated on and ones who found themselves in unfaithful relationships. Even though Taylor was quite young, her music already displayed a level of emotion that’s deeply rooted in this old soul.

Taylor Swift was more than just a collection of songs from a teen who had a lot to say. It became an album that started Taylor Swift’s rise into stardom and a music legacy that continues to grow. Though long gone are the days that the songstress sang country tunes, the pop singer has mastered the art of songwriting and continues to develop and fine-tune her skill no matter in whatever direction she sees fit. Her music continues to attract a global audience, cure broken hearts and empower fans from across the world. Her debut album paved a path to one of the most notable music artists to-date. It became the start of Taylor Swift.

Camille lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. You will most likely find her wandering around local bookstores, going to a concert or enjoying the sights of the city by the bay. This Captain America fangirl enjoys attending book events, re-watching her favorite Disney movies and obsessing over the latest entertainment news. You can find her on Twitter @itscamille_ann.