Sugarland featuring Taylor Swift
Written by Pat Monahan and Taylor Swift
“Babe” exists for the sole purpose of its own existence.
It makes for great PR copy. Two of the biggest acts to break out in the early aughts. One went on to pop superstardom, the other on an extended hiatus. Now they’re back with a song not only written by that pop star, but also with perfunctory background vocals in the chorus!
Whereas finding out Taylor Swift wrote “Better Man” for Little Big Town was a stunning revelation, it’s like both Swift and Sugarland knew “Babe” wasn’t strong enough to survive on initial anonymity. There’s no hook, the lyrical conceit isn’t clever (“This is the last time I’ll call you babe”), and Nettles’ best efforts at a heartfelt vocal are completely undercut by Swift’s clinical repetition of the title in the chorus.
I hope that the ABBA comeback is way better than this.