Taylor Swift, “Our Song”

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August 6, 2007

This song has been among the top country downloads for weeks, even though it’s yet to be a single.   Hearing it, it’s easy to see why.   Swift’s success is being powered by a startlingly passionate female teenage fan base.   Now, I’m not anywhere near that demographic, so she hasn’t done much for me, but she doesn’t irritate me in the way that some country stars who pander to their female teenage fan base do.    Taylor Swift is a teenage girl, and she’s sincerely writing from her perspective, and her audience is responding to it.

And I must admit, I smiled listening to “Our Song.”   There’s a youthful exuberance and enthusiasm to it, capturing the need to make mundane things bigger than they really are just because that’s how they seem when you’re a teenager.    I can’t relate to it at my age, but I imagine much of the songs I like these days wouldn’t resonate with Swift’s fan base, and we all need music to relate to, don’t we?

If her talent continues to grow with her age, she just might be one of those artists who indoctrinates a good chunk of her generation to the joys of country music.    If those young girls who swooned over “Wide Open Spaces” were able to jam to “Long Time Gone” a few years later, who knows what Swift might have them jamming to a few years after “Our Song”?

Grade: B+

Listen: Our Song

Buy: Our Song

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10 Comments

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  1. T-Country says:

    Kevin I don’t understand why you grade songs from country singers who are washed up so high and when a decent country song comes out like this one that has a great chance to go in the top 10 and do somthing just a B. Is the criteria for grading that have to have hits in the 80′s to get an A? Anyway, great song taylor your gonna be huge!
    AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

  2. KevinNo Gravatar says:

    First of all, it got a B+. That is a very high grade, reflecting the positive review that I wrote.

    Second, current or potential commercial success is absolutely irrelevant when judging the quality of a song, since I can only write what I honestly think and feel. What’s the point of trying to anticipate whether a song will be hit when writing a review? If I was good at that, I’d be doing A&R at some Nashville label instead of blogging in my spare time!

    Quite frankly, I suspect the regular readers of this site care more about what those “washed-up stars” are releasing than what’s coming out from the chart-topping artists, though my fave stars were at their peak in the 90′s, not the 80′s. I certainly praise a lot of the newbies as well, but you’re right, to get an A you do have to rise to the level of those “washed-up stars” at their peak, as do the “washed-up stars” themselves.

    You really don’t need to read Country Universe to find out about the new Taylor Swift single, but it may be the only way that someone hears about the new Suzy Bogguss, Hal Ketchum or Pam Tillis. I sincerely feel that’s the most significant purpose my site has going for it. If you click through and play those songs by “washed-up” stars I give an “A” to, and consistently don’t enjoy them as much as the songs I grade lower, then my reviews won’t be very helpful to you, since we have different tastes. The beautiful thing about music is that there’s enough of it out there to choose from, and we all find things that we love.

  3. T-Country says:

    I figured your grade was purely based on your feeling of the song and I can tell you are pure country music lover and not into this new pop stuff. I do respect your opinion though. Just some of this new stuff blows some of the songs you give an A to out of the water. Keep up the good work though!

  4. KevinNo Gravatar says:

    I actually like a lot of the pop-flavored stuff, as long as it’s done well. Sometimes I think the stuff that tries to sound pop, but doesn’t really know how to do it, ends up sounding watered down and not like anything distinctive. I think Shania Twain makes fantastic pop-country records. She has a real ear for pure pop.

  5. GabyNo Gravatar says:

    great review as usual kevin, i have to say though while taylors demographic doesn’t match me either, it tends to irk me a little. Maybe I just don’t like being thrown back to high school :) I am interested however, to see how she grows as an artist and performer, while I am not really excited about what she is doing now, I think in time she could be a great country artist!

  6. RogerNo Gravatar says:

    I think it’s a good song and performance but nothing earth shattering that warrants an A grade. I think B+ is just about right. To rate something at an A level I need to hear a superb vocal on a song with lyrics than either tell a story or have some meaning. Sometimes a full blown silly pop song can do it for me, but it has to hit on all cylinders. Taylor has tons of potential but so have a lot of people. Where she goes with the next albums will determine her staying power.

  7. Stephen says:

    I wish she had released “Picture to Burn” next, but that’s me.

  8. UnknownNo Gravatar says:

    I LOVE TAYLOR SWIFT!!!! I LOVE TAYLOR SWIFT!!!! I LOVE TAYLOR SWIFT!!!!

    this is such and awesome and fun song to listen too
    I know its going to be a successful song
    you all watch

  9. Leeann says:

    I think I commented on this song on the “Tear Drops On My Guitar” review. I’m just catching up on this awesome site. I just took issue with the line where she says “slow” as if talking slow will keep his phone conversation from his mother’s ears. Like I said before, wouldn’t talking “low” be more effective than talking “slow”? While I cannot relate to her high school topics anymore, I see a lot of potential in her. I like that she writes so much music, unlike Tanya Tucker or LeAnn Rhimes did in their young days. I even like to see that she writes songs by herself, which is something that shows me that a person can truly write a song…if they can do it without someone else. Then you know the writer’s full contribution rather than wondering if they simply wrote a couple of lines, most of the lines, the melody, etc.

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