“Mean”

The number one song on iTunes this week is once again another Taylor Swift song called “Mean.”  It is not a shock to me that she has a number one song two weeks in a row considering her increased popularity and unbelievable talent.  This one is also along the same lines as the number one hit from last week, “Back to December.”  In this song she is talking about a guy that is constantly hurting her and essentially being “mean” to her but she won’t let it affect her.

“Someday,

I’ll be,

Big enough so you can’t hit me.”

But what she keeps asking, which is repeated in her chorus, is the question of why.  She persistently asks, “why you gotta be so mean?” because she just wants to know the reason for treating her this way.  What I took out of this was that this guy that she is talking about used to be possibly an old boyfriend that treated her poorly and she doesn’t know why.  Taylor is great because she is basically ripping this guy to pieces in such a graceful and upbeat way, proving to this guy and her audience that she truly won’t let this guy affect her.  The examples of her ripping this guy to pieces is when she says, which a gracious, cheerful voice, mind you:

“All you are is mean,

And a liar, and pathetic,

And alone in life and mean.”

This is why Taylor is such a great role model to young girls out there.  Taylor is showing everyone out there that if you do come across a partner that is a liar, or pathetic, or just flat out mean, you can move on and show that person that you are better than him or her.  Also, this song is about how Taylor had a guy that treated her poorly but with the upbeat and happy tone of this song it gives young girls out there the impression that Taylor will not let this guy get to her and it is proven in her singing in such a way that she seems happy that this guy is now out of her life.  To read between the lines of Taylor’s words, she is saying to her audience that no matter what bad things happen in your life you should always keep your head held up high because you will become better than that person.  Taylor single handedly gives young girls and women the strength to keep moving forward, regardless of a tough breakup in their lives, through her words.

Just like last week’s number one hit, “Back to December” Taylor Swift seems to be developing a trend in her new album.  This trend is Taylor going through a rough break up and she expresses this through most of her songs on this new album.  For starters, the name of this new album is “Speak Now” and one can interpret that she is inferring that her Ex “speaks now” and talks to her about the breakup.  Also, besides “Back to December” and “Mean” you can just tell by her other song titles that they are about relationships.  For instance, one of the first songs on her album is called “Sparks Fly” which can possibly talk about the start of the relationship and just meeting this guy.  She than has a song called “Last Kiss” which is one of her last songs on the album, that may talk about the “goodbye” that her and her boyfriend went through.  By the theme of these songs it sounds like Taylor is almost telling a little story through her words telling you from start to finish about her relationship.

Forget about Taylor Swift’s beautiful voice and extremely talented guitar and piano playing, Taylor has another gift that truly separates the good musicians to the great musicians and that is creativity.  Taylor writes every single one of her songs and there is real passion that goes into every one.  Also, the ability of her to think of a way to get across a story of her relationship through an entire album is phenomenal.  There are many artists that create albums where each song has nothing to do with the other.  That is fine and it has worked for many artists, but it is by no means original.  Taylor’s idea of writing a story through an entire album is one that I am sure will be copied in the future due to how brilliant of an idea it really is.  Taylor never ceases to amaze me and rarely ceases to amaze the public as a whole.  This is my second post in a row on Taylor and her number one hit song and I will not be shocked if I continue to write about her and her brilliance.

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One Response to “Mean”

  1. Gina Maffezzoli says:

    Okay, so first off I LOVE Taylor Swift and am obsessed with this song. I completely agree with you when you talk about how even though she is talking about a previous boyfriend who was so mean to her, she sings it in such a cheerful way that is so uplifting. She had another song very similar in style to Mean in her last album called Tell Me Why-which starts out “I took a chance, I took a shot, and you might think I’m bulletproof but I’m not. You took a swing, I took it hard, and down here from the ground I see who you are.” Then the chorus ends with “And I know that you see what you’re doing to me, tell me why.” Its very similar to Mean in multiple senses. First, the lyrics are pretty similar. In both Mean and Tell Me Why she refers to a boyfriend who treats her very badly, possibly even somewhat abusive. She also has that same question appear-why? “why you gotta be so mean”, and “tell me why.” Which leads me to think that these songs could have been written about the same guy, who knows. Another way in which they are similar is the music. They are both very up beat, catchy songs and Taylor sings them in a cheerful voice just like you said. She makes the song sound happy and I agree with you, it is inspiring to girls everywhere. What I really liked about this post was how you connected the very first and last song of Taylor’s new album. I have been obsessed with this album since day 1 and have not once even thought about connecting her songs together to tell a story. That was very smart and creative of you to link it all together. Taylor is one of the most talented singer/song writer/guitar player I have ever heard of and cannot wait for her to make more new songs!

    Gina Maffezzoli

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