Taylor Swift has been someone I have looked up to and admired since I was eight years old. I fell in love with her and her music the moment I heard “I’m Only Me When I’m With You” from her debut album and spent the rest of my childhood listening to all the records to follow, each song making me feel even more connected to her.
More than a decade later, Taylor continues to captivate me with the same charm from elementary school – which is why now, as a college student, her newest era is so important to me.
In true Taylor fashion, she came back with a story to tell and a statement to make. As someone who’s been making music since 2006, she’s dealt with being in the public eye for quite a while, but nonetheless, has never let anything get in the way of the honest and genuine way she connects with all her adoring fans. Because of this, each new music release feels personal and it’s encouraging to see her come back with a celebration of self-love.
Although her video for “ME!” is ultra extravagant, it feels reminiscent of her enchanting and romantic videos like “Begin Again” and familiar pop sound found in hits like “How You Get The Girl”. It’s a style that I loved in 3rd grade when I would play “Love Story” on the school bus, in 6th grade when I wore my t-shirt with her Speak Now album cover art on it, in 11th grade when I saw her in concert for the first time, and when I listened to her on my 20th birthday.
With a new stage of Swift underway, it feels like the perfect follow up to the dark and powerful Reputation album and brings a new light to the poetry that went with it, especially the lines from “Why She Disappeared” that read:
“without your past,
you could never have arrived-
so wondrously and brutally,
By design or some violent, exquisite happenstance
And in the death of her reputation,
She felt truly alive.
Taylor has always kept her poise and confidence, but seeing her come out of her past feeling so self-assured is something I’m just as excited to embrace in this new era as she is. She has an effortless way of making fans feel special through her gentle spirit and extraordinary storytelling abilities.
Needless to say, Taylor Swift inspires me and I’m grateful to have an artist like her to grow up with. And the best part is, her success comes from shaking it off, staying true to herself, and knowing that it’s the people that support you that matter the most.