Monday, February 11, 2013

On Taylor Swift

Every time Taylor Swift does a live televised performance, the Internet has the same conversation. It goes something like this:

“Wow! Taylor Swift can’t sing!”
“Holy crap, Taylor Swift can’t sing!”
“What was that? Man, Taylor Swift sounded awful.”
“I didn’t know Taylor Swift couldn’t sing.”

Yes, you did know Taylor Swift couldn’t sing. You said the exact same thing last time Taylor Swift sang — and every other time Taylor Swift sings. She was awful at last year’s whatever awards show, she was awful on Saturday Night Live (both singing and acting) and she’ll be awful again next time she performs. Why? Because she doesn’t care. She’ll never take a singing lesson because she doesn’t have to. She does just fine turning out crappy, poorly sung pop songs.

My wife decided to defend Taylor Swift by saying she’s a good songwriter. Incorrect. Her music is amazingly simple and her lyrics are basically her reading from her diary (or from a 14-year-old’s diary, if I’m being generous). It’s awful, whiny pop music that appeals to teenage girls. If there’s one thing we learned from New Kids On the Block it’s that appealing to teenage girls is the quickest way to make a ton of money in the music industry. That’s the one thing she’s done right.

Let’s stop treating Taylor Swift like she’s some kind of delicate flower who cannot be criticized. Everyone jumps to her defense and says, “But she’s young.” She’s 23. You know, the same age Monica Lewinsky was when she was giving the President blowjobs. Once someone is too old to be an Olympic gymnast, we need to stop treating her like a child. Guess what, Frank Ocean is two years older than her and no one bothered to hold back on his performance for fear of upsetting him, but I’m not here to write about race. Simon Cowell would have sent her home after three notes.

Why would anyone famous ever date Taylor Swift? Once you break up (and you will because you’ll eventually realize you’re dating Taylor Swift) you’re screwed. She gets to set the narrative. She’ll write about six crappy breakup songs about you and her legions of teenage fans will make sure the world knows you are the devil. If there’s a second thing I know about teenage girls it’s that they can’t be reasoned with and they’ll believe whatever their pop icons say and defend it to ridiculous lengths. I’m so glad we grow out of that when we become adults… oh, wait. I forgot about religion. 

If you think this criticism is harsh or unnecessary or unfair, remember that no one is forcing Taylor Swift to sing her poorly written songs badly. She’s become very wealthy from this. She’s a celebrity. If she wants to avoid this kind of shit, she’s free to quit. 

Please quit, Taylor Swift.


  1. So true. Although I read it in the hopes you would mention something about her beady little eyeballs. I hate them.

  2. You pretty much covered the profile of 90% of today's so-called music artists. If Cher had never used auto-tune then we'd be back in the day when singers were true vocalists and wrote heartwarming poetic lyrics. They truly EARNED their money then. I'm actually surprised that you referred to Taylor Swift having talent to write songs poorly. Now that's interesting; at least more than her lyrics. Still, maybe they're not her words at all? She probably has some song generator app on her iPad that she got from in the group Black Eyed Peas. We never can really know, can we.