Life changes every single day. One minute can turn a person’s entire journey upside down. As we get older, it is only natural that we grow. We mature physically, our likes and dislikes become different, and chapters close and new pages open in our book of life. We may not notice these differences because we are the ones experiencing them. It is much easier to see how other people grow and mature. One of the best examples of this is celebrities. They can’t go out the door without a paparazzi calling out that they are wearing a new designer shoe. Their whole lives are captured frame by frame as the world sees a close timeline of their journey. It is obvious to see how certain celebrities break away from where they began to where they are now. No one is a better example than Taylor Swift.
I still remember the first time I heard of this blonde hair, country singer who strummed her guitar as she sang about relationships, breakups, and love. I was driving home from school one day and the radio played her single “Love Story”. I was instantly hooked by the storyline and metaphor. She was in love with this guy that she knew her parents wouldn’t be happy with. So they kept their love a secret until her father finally approved. Not only were the lyrics catchy but her voice was so smooth and beautiful. I wasn’t posting statuses about my new favorite artist in fear of being judged by my friends, so I secretly just played the song on loop for a good few months on my car drives.
She wasn’t just a one hit wonder either. I downloaded her two albums Taylor Swift and Fearless and couldn’t stop listening. Every song seemed like it was written about another memory of my life. I don’t know how she did it but she was so honest with her lyrics that it felt like she stole they from your life. She didn’t hold anything back and wrote the more personal moments in her life like her album was a diary. There is no way that anyone could say that there isn’t one line that they can’t relate to in any Taylor Swift song.
The innocent singer has now broken away from her country image and turned to a more modern look. She still puts her true emotions and stories into her lyrics, but is far from the beginning singles like the song “Tim McGraw”. She has added a more pop beat into her music and with some electronic beats. A lot of people are complaining that they miss the old Taylor who sang with her guitar in music videos wearing blue jeans and cowboys boots. It is still the same singer, she has just matured. You can see her progression through each album. Her debut album was that country singer with nothing but a hope and dream pouring her emotions into every word in her lyrics. She has still kept that truth in her songs, but has evolved from the more pop album of Speak Now to the modern sounds of Red. The point of being an artist is to progress and show her maturity. I admit, I was a little taken back when I saw the video for “We Never Getting Back Together” with furry animals. But after listening to the album a couple times, I have fallen in love. I still can relate to her messages. If she didn’t grow as an artist, then everyone would be complaining that she is just writing the same material.
Taylor Swift is definitely not the same girl we first fell in love with. And this is a good thing. She has given us classics, but also matured to give us new music that we enjoy and appreciate. Because of her status as a celebrity, everything she does is captured and put under a magnifying glass. Yes, she is a young woman and will meet guys and become involved with them. But imagine for the past five years that every person you have talked to and been together with was publicized for the world to know. It would probably be a bigger number of people than you would expect. So instead of attacking everything she does, we should enjoy her growth not only as a person but as an artist. It is nice to finally see someone that has accomplished so much and not faltered from her true self.
Recently, my girlfriend’s mom took us to a restaurant to see a band play. They were a group of middle-aged men that come together every couple of weeks to cover songs. They mostly did classic Rock n’ Roll like Led Zeppelin, The Police, and as always Journey. I was a little apprehensive seeing a bunch of guys who didn’t realize it was time to grow up and stop pretending to sing like Mick Jagger and play the guitar like Slash. Even though their appearance was what you would expect from a cover band, they actually surprised me and were really good. The singer sounded better than most of the famous artists his age. I found myself singing along to the words. Halfway through the performance, I thought about how weird it must be for them to see music nowadays. It is totally different from what they grew up with. If music has changed this much for them, what is it going to be like when my generation gets older?
I think it is safe to say that Rock n’ Roll has been on a hiatus for awhile. I don’t even remember the last time I heard a rock song on the radio unless I changed to the oldies. Pop stepped in but even that has now changed from bubbly boy bands to songs with electronic bass lines and sexual innuendoes. Rap is another genre that has taken over. It has gone from meaningful songs about love and life to now repetitive nonsense about drugs, girls, and being rich. The big movement right now is probably the EDM/dubstep genre. It is taking over as clubs and arenas are selling out as people see their favorite Djs. I guarantee that our parents never would have thought music could be as intense and ear popping as a Skrillex song.
I’m not biased to any kind of music. I will listen to anything from country to dub step. Just as with any genre, there will be good songs that has memorable hooks and terrible ones that make you question what drugs the artist was on. As I was sitting in that restaurant, I couldn’t help but think what will it be like thirty years from now. Will there still be bands playing at local bars and restaurants covering classic rock anthems. Or will it be an all out rave with foam shooting from the walls and confetti dropping from the ceiling as your ear drums pop from the DJ’s bass drop. I don’t know what will happen, but I definitely can say I enjoy music now more than ever.