Worst Taylor Swift Songs
Taylor Swift's career has lasted over a decade with a variety of hits and a lot of misses, but how bad were those flops? Does Swift have some of the worst songs in the music industry, and if so, then what are her most dreadful adaptations. Below are the top eight worst Taylor Swift songs of all time, so you better have your earplugs ready.
1. "Look What You Made Me Do"—Reputation
At its launch, the music video for this song shattered the 24 hour YouTube viewing record and became one of the biggest hits of 2017 in weeks, but did it deserve that honor?
Critics of this song attacked Taylor's change of style and the excessive sampling of the song "I'm Too Sexy" by Right Said Fred, but there's something more sinister brewing.
This single appeared to be yet another parody-like feature of Taylor mocking and making fun of her past styles or selves. This would've been interesting had she not already done this in other songs like "Blank Space".
On a positive note, her music video was very creative and different from past videos, but that doesn't excuse the boring chorus and uninspired lyrics.
Her lyric, "I'm sorry, the old Taylor can't come to the phone right now, why? Oh, 'cause she's dead!" has been parodied so much that it's even become its own meme.
You're doing something wrong when everybody is making fun of you and not in the fun "Weird Al" Yankovic type of way either. Her 2017 hit single left much to be desired and is one of the worst songs Taylor Swift has ever produced.
2. "Bad Blood"—1989
This is yet another song with a cool, new-age influence music video that had shades of Britney Spear's "Toxic" thrown in.
However, the original song and not the remix with Kendrick Lamar is a travesty to the ears. The writing is awful, the melody is generic, and the chorus is tired.
It's a shame because the music video features a slew of talented female artists like Selena Gomez and Hailee Steinfeld with exquisite visual effects and dark undertones. The video very much felt like a Kill Bill tribute and those aspects were some of the most enjoyable, but the song itself can't compete with that artistic style.
It certainly wasn't a flop though, and "Bad Blood" won several awards at the MTV Video Music Awards and Grammy's, however; the wins mostly centered around the video collaboration.
If only the chorus wasn't so boring, then maybe this song would've had a longer life span, but alas it'll be another forgotten track of the 2010s. Good try Taylor, but you need to match the art with the lyrics next time.
3. "I Don't Wanna Live Forever"—Fifty Shades Darker: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
This is the only co-written song that I'm putting on the list because it's so awful that I had to include it. "I Don't Wanna Live Forever" is the titular song from the Fifty Shades Darker soundtrack and is a collaboration between Taylor Swift and Zayn Malik of One Direction fame.
You know things can't be good when you're a part of the critically maligned Fifty Shades films, and you know it's really bad when your follow up film score pales in comparison to the Weeknd's "Earned It' and Ellie Goulding's "Love Me Like You Do". And for Taylor, it's even more horrendous that Zayn's vocals are the only thing that makes that song tolerable.
In my opinion, this is one of Taylor's worst collaborations because she contributes almost nothing to it. This song is supposed to be lustful and sexy, but it comes across as flat and stale just like those movies.
A soundtrack single is supposed to lift the feature, not make it worse and that's exactly what this track does. It was one of the worst songs for one of the worst concepts ever made, and not even Zayn's smooth vocals could've saved this travesty.
4. "I Knew You Were Trouble"—Red
Unfortunately, Taylor just can't escape getting memed to death. This song isn't as bad as the ones before it, but sadly that brutal chorus is one of the worst I've ever heard.
The track was meant to be a transitional piece between her country roots and her new pop genre, but it completely fell on its face. The only reason people know this song is because of the jokes/parodies surrounding it, which is not what you want to be remembered for.
It also gave comics plenty of ammo to make fun of Taylor's well-known boyfriend drama that's nearly become synonymous with her label.
Her experiments with the dubstep genre failed miserably, and I'm not sure what she was thinking here. The genre shift mid-song derailed what would have been a sleepy, but not horrible single. Luckily for Taylor she had much better tracks in her Red album, and maybe one day this meme will perish.
5. "Out of the Woods"—1989
Several music critics have praised this song for being different, strange, and mature but I have no idea what they were talking about.
I thought it started it okay, and I did appreciate how modern it sounded for her but then it just got annoying very quickly. After a few minutes, the constant repetition in the chorus will drive you insane, and the writing for the song isn't great either.
Also, the main message of the song about finding yourself when you lose people around you wasn't revolutionary.
I'll give the music video credit though for being visually interesting because there were moments of awe and beauty within it. Taylor has a solid vision in most of her songs, but her vision often disconnects from the product.
If you enjoy this song, then I can understand why. There are enough cool moments in the verses that are intriguing, but the rest of the track is a mess. 1989 is Taylor's most successful album, but it wasn't because of tracks like this.
6. "Picture to Burn"—Taylor Swift
Early Taylor Swift fans will frequently say she was a better country artist, but they're also blinded by their nostalgia because this tune was a dud.
"Picture to Burn" was released in 2006 for her EP Album Taylor Swift and it was as dull as a country melody could be despite its strong feminist message.
I did enjoy watching her take revenge on her ex-boyfriend in the video, but I also enjoyed it more when Carrie Underwood did it in "Before He Cheats", which was a far better track.
It's intriguing to wonder what road Taylor's career would've taken if she stuck with country or if Kanye never interrupted her speech. Would she have been the mega pop star we know today or just another bland country singer. And no I don't have a problem with country music, but I do have an issue with quality.
This was a fine early try for Taylor Swift and there were enough elements that helped her mature into the person we know today, but it's what came after that we remember most, not "Picture to Burn".
7. "Shake It Off"—1989
This lead single off Taylor's album 1989 is easily one of her most annoyingly, catchy melodies to date. The song strongly reminds me of Aqua's "Barbie Girl" though not quite as irritating.
Again I felt that the message was excellent, and I could see why a lot of people liked this song but that doesn't make it any less annoying. It also reminded me of Meghan Trainor's "All About That Bass" too much, which was another irritating but fun throwback single.
What I find truly amazing is how many people have listened to this song as it currently has well over two billion views on YouTube. I think that proves that Taylor knows how to market her content to the general public very well. Even if you absolutely hate this song, it has such incredible replay value that it becomes inescapable.
I strongly dislike this positive 'earworm', but I can't hate on Taylor for marketing this single so brilliantly to everyone. It almost makes "Shake It Off" worth recommending.
8. "Ready For It?"—Reputation
This song was a massive improvement over "Look What You Made Me Do", but the mixed tones do not go together at all. Like I described in her song "I Knew You Were Trouble", the experimentation with electro-pop and dubstep didn't suit her verses and abilities.
The chorus, on the other hand, sounds lovely with some of her best vocals to date. It's very melodic and super refreshing after such a harsh start.
Differing tones in songs have worked in the past if they're done right, and if Taylor used something less aggressive, then it could've worked. I appreciate how she has evolved over the years because it's this transition that made her compelling to watch.
Taylor would not be the success she is today if she stuck with her country roots and because of that, I can appreciate both her worst and best songs.
Questions & Answers
Question: Did Taylor Swift ever change her name?
Answer: She was born as Taylor Alison Swift, so I don't believe she did.
Question: Does Taylor have any siblings?
Answer: She has a brother, Austin Swift.
Question: How many guys has Taylor Swift dated?
Answer: I don't think there's a real number listed anywhere. If you meant how many famous people she's dated, then there's at least a dozen from Joe Jonas to Taylor Lautner, to John Mayer and Harry Styles.
Question: Do you like Rachel Platten?
Answer: Yes she's a very good artist.
Question: Basically, you dislike every single. Have you even listened to the rest of the albums? I agree that Reputation's first two singles didn't wow me, but I wholeheartedly disagree on "Picture to Burn," it's one of my favorites, and it has great lyrics. "I Knew You Were Trouble" is amazing too. I kind of agree on "Bad Blood" and "Out of the Woods," though, they're meh.
Answer: I don't dislike every single; I thought most of her 1989 singles were pretty good. I've listened to most of the albums, and I can only speak from a subjective point of view. It's important to remember that this list is based on one person's opinions and why they feel this way. I know plenty of people who would think I was insane with these choices. I'll have to give those songs you enjoyed another listened, perhaps they've gotten better since I first listened to them.
Question: What are some examples of Taylor swift’s hit songs?
Answer: If you mean hits as in commercial successes then half the songs on this list fit that description.
"Shake it Off" "Bad Blood" "Look What You Made Me Do" were huge hits for her.
Alexis De Bruyne on June 26, 2020:
All of the songs you mentioned were successful... I thought the list was gonna talk about songs that nobody listens to
Amy on June 09, 2020:
this person literally just listed all her best and hit songs
I love Taylor Swift 8 on August 28, 2018:
She’s my favourite singer in the whole world
Miranda sucks on August 11, 2018:
Taylor swift sucks and Miranda Kitner should kill herself for liking such shit music. She's the one that doesn't know what good music is!!!
Regina Phalange on January 27, 2018:
Oh wow! You just mentioned all of her most iconic songs! Great job!
Anna Reganes (AR) on December 10, 2017:
The person who made this page doesn't know what music is.
Krzysztof Willman (author) from Parlin, New Jersey on September 16, 2017:
Thank you Jodah, I appreciate your insight and have felt the same way for a long time.
Krzysztof Willman (author) from Parlin, New Jersey on September 16, 2017:
Her crossovers were some that I enjoyed too even though I've never been her biggest fan.
John Hansen from Australia (Gondwana Land) on September 15, 2017:
Very interesting article Chris. I admit to liking a few of her songs or video clips, but most I'd rather not bother with. Anyway, this was a great review of her worst. Well done.
FlourishAnyway from USA on September 14, 2017:
I don't like the direction her music is taking. I liked "Shake It Off" but I am not a personal fan of the other songs you list. I preferred when she was a country/crossover artist.