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  • Writer's pictureAbby Hazlett

Not as Easy as Knowing All the Words to Your Old Favorite Songs: My Top 5 folklore Tracks

Updated: Mar 13

Taylor Swift released her eighth studio album, folklore, in 2020 as a surprise album during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Warning: opinions may vary from your own, and that's okay!

folklore is hands down one of my favorite Taylor Swift albums, bouncing around my top three albums, it's exact placement depending on the day. It was one of the albums that initially sparked my renewed love of Taylor Swift and her music during the pandemic.

This album simultaneously triggers me, wakes me up, and makes me feel seen. My top five songs were very hard to nail down, and they will probably change about a week after posting this, and again a week after that, and so on.

#5: the lakes

Songwriters: Taylor Swift, Jack Antonoff

In an un-shocking turn of events, a bonus track is in my top five. Why is it that Taylor so often saves some of her best work for the bonus tracks?! It's absolutely unhinged that she would even consider not putting this song on the original album, which obviously makes it so very Taylor of her. Also, the other versions of the song (long pond, original version) are also what makes this one of my favorites.

This song is also one of my absolutely favorite album closers (yes, I know it's technically not in the original track list, but I don't care! I only listen to the deluxe versions of the albums, so it closes the album for me!). It gives me three out of three necessities that make me unconditionally love a song: the lyrics sucker punch me in the head, I want to sing it in the car, and I want to choreograph a piece to it.

Favorite lyric:

I want aurora and sad prose. I want to watch wisteria grow right over my bare feet 'cause I haven't moved in years, and I want you right here.

Like Taylor, but definitely not at quite an intense scale, my relationships have always been put through the wringer by everyone else's thoughts and feelings and opinions. I definitely relate to the feeling of wanting to escape the chaos and madness with your person and just exist away from it all.

#4: peace

Songwriters: Taylor Swift, Aaron Dessner

Taylor Allison Swift really said, "I will give you cottage core, dreamy, honorary doctor of peak lyricism vibes, but I will not give you a singular moment of peace for the rest of your life." When I say that I haven't had a moment of peace since the lyrics of "peace" first entered my brain... I'm not kidding.

Favorite lyric:

But there's robbers to the east, clowns to the west. I'd give you my sunshine, give you my best, but the rain is always gonna come if you're standing with me.

Catch me singing this song with my whole chest (up the octave, because Taylor decided to become a bass for this album) in the car on every cloudy or rainy or overcast day from here through eternity.

#3: this is me trying

Songwriters: Taylor Swift, Jack Antonoff

I would like to reference back to my previous statement about Taylor Swift not allowing me a single moment of peace.

This song made me feel to incredibly understood and seen on so many levels.

Favorite lyric:

They told me all of my cages were mental, so I got wasted like all my potential.

#2: cardigan

Songwriters: Taylor Swift, Aaron Dessner

I will also include "august" and "betty" in my number two spot, because the love triangle trilogy cannot be denied.

This song holds a special place in my heart, as I've performed it many times live myself.

Favorite lyric:

But I knew you'd linger like a tattoo kiss. I knew you'd haunt all of my what-ifs, the smell of smoke would hang around this long, 'cause I knew everything when I was young.

Even though she's talking about these three teenagers, the messiness of a chaotic relationship turned break-up is so relatable no matter how old you are.

#1: my tears ricochet

Songwriter: Taylor Swift

Again - not a single moment of peace, Taylor.

Favorite lyric:

And I can go anywhere I want - anywhere I want - just not home.

My heart said, "Ow?"

folklore will always rain supreme for me on most days. It is truly peak Taylor lyricism, atmosphere building, and story writing for me. However... I will probably say this after ever album, so don't hold those statement with too much weight.

All music and lyrics discussed here are by Taylor Swift from her studio album folklore. Production credits for folklore and its various editions are as follows: the primary artist is Taylor Swift; originally released on July 24, 2020; released under the label Republic Records; produced by Taylor Swift, Aaron Dessner, Jack Antonoff, and Joe Alwyn; lyrics by Taylor Swift, Aaron Dessner, William Bowry, Justin Vernon, and Jack Antonoff. Learn more about Taylor Swift at and follow her on social media at the handles @taylornation and @taylorswift.

All photos featured in this article were taken by me. See my full Speak Now photo series on Instagram: @theabbyhazlett.

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