I was eight years old when Taylor Swift’s “Fearless” came out.
Now I’m 21 and have some life experience under my belt. I loved this album as a child — I made my mom listen to it every time we got in the car — but I don’t think I understood the weight of the lyrics then.
Swift rerecorded this album — as well as additional songs — to regain control of the rights to her music. Swift signed with Big Machine Records towards the beginning of her career, who eventually sold her masters to music manager Scooter Braun. Neither would sell the masters back to Swift.
Now, she takes back her songs and appropriately named them “Fearless (Taylor’s Version).”
Back then, this was an album filled with love songs. Listening now, I find other meanings in the lyrics. And boy, it hurts my soul but also makes me look back fondly at how, frankly, inexperienced I was.
My current favorite song on the album, “Fifteen,” makes my soul hurt in such a good way. I am transported back to being fifteen and feeling love for the first time. The lyrics, “And your first kiss makes your head spin round / But in your life you’ll do things greater than dating the boy on the football team / But I didn’t know it at fifteen,” really hit home for me.
I remember thinking all that mattered at the time was having a boyfriend, and when we broke up, I thought it was the end of the world. Now, I have accomplished some pretty great things. When I am a mother in the future, I might just make my children listen to this song to get some quality life advice.
If they’re anything like me though, they won’t listen to advice. Dad, I finally know what you meant when you said, “You’ll understand when you’re older.”
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Another favorite of mine, “Fearless,” applies to my life right now. I won’t go into details, but the lyrics “‘Cause I don’t know how it gets better than this / You take my hand and drag me head first / Fearless / And I don’t know why but with you I’d dance in a storm in my best dress / Fearless,” make me happy.
My favorite song from age eight has been “You Belong With Me.” I don’t know why, but it was. Now, while I appreciate it, it’s more of a scream-at-the-top-of-your-lungs song when you feel unrequited love. How much time have I wasted pining over someone who won’t pay attention to me? Probably more than I would like to admit.
Also, I kind of relate to being the girl who wears sneakers and sits on the bleachers — which is perfectly fine and makes me happy. Some girls wear short skirts, which is also cool. I’m not here to judge.
This album gives me the chance to reflect on things I have experienced and understand I am not alone. It’s perfect, just as it was 13 years ago, but has a different meaning now.
Long story short, I feel old. It’s like watching “The Little Mermaid” now and yelling at the screen, “Listen to your parents!” when Triton tells Ariel no.
Bailey Britton is the Collegian’s editor-in-chief and a junior in mass communications and English. The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Collegian. Please send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.