If you’re a regular visitor of Mindful Banter you know that I have a major thing for singer-songwriters.
I admire their ability to weave a powerful, engaging story that can sometimes feel like it was written with our personal experience in mind.
What I admire even more is the courage they show in revealing their vulnerabilities and imperfections to the world, no matter how painful. Taylor Swift is a master at both.
While I listen to a wide range of music genres, I’ll admit I’d barely noticed Taylor before she was Kanye’d at the MTV Music Awards a few years ago. But once I did take notice, I was impressed by her poise, voice and remarkable ability as a storyteller.
Her Speak Now album is one of my favorites of the past few years and would probably make my top 100 faves of all times.
There are so many great songs on the album. Dear John and Back to December both tell the story of heartbreak. The first lays blame, the latter expresses regret. Both make us think of past heartbreaks of our own. Mean is an anthem for anyone who has ever been physically or emotionally bullied by others. Never Grow Up and Enchanted are gorgeous, moving songs.
Writers can learn so much from songwriters about cadence, word selection, the use of metaphors and an economy of words. Taylor Swift uses all of these tools to maximum effect which, in my book, makes her a phenomenal storyteller.
Which songwriters do you think have an amazing gift for storytelling?