In celebration of 12 years since the release of Taylor Swift’s second studio album ‘Fearless,’ we take a look at its title track and the final single off the album. “Fearless” is the first track on the album and the fifth and final single to be released on January 10, 2010, a year after the album’s release. The song is an instant classic by Taylor Swift.
Taylor Swift released her second studio album ‘Fearless’ on November 11, 2008, following her massively successful self-titled debut studio album in 2006. The album spawned four massive singles, “Love Story,” “White Horse,” “You Belong with Me,” and “Fifteen,” before “Fearless.”
“Fearless” reached #9 on Billboard Hot 100 chart and sold over 10 million copies by 2017. The song also won two awards at the 2010 BMI Awards.
Taylor Swift commented her thoughts on the song on her then record label website;
This is a song about the fearlessness of falling in love. No matter how many break up songs you write, no matter how many times you get hurt, you will always fall in love again. When I wrote “Fearless,” I wasn’t dating anyone. I wasn’t even in the beginning stages of dating anybody. I really was all by myself out on tour and I got this idea for a song about the best first date. I think sometimes when you’re writing love songs, you don’t write them about what you’re going through at the moment, you write about what you wish you had. So, this song is about the best first date I haven’t had yet.
Listen to “Fearless (Taylor’s Version)” by Taylor Swift
“Fearless” Lyrics Meaning and Song Review
In the first verse of the song, Taylor Swift narrates a lovestruck scene where she and her date are walking down a rained down the street at night. He is walking her to the car, and Taylor appreciates these little things. In fact, she appreciates every minute he is next to her. She understands that he likes being with her too. She makes him feel like a kid again, that he wants to dance with her in the middle of the parking lot. But he contains himself. And Taylor reads him like a book.
The ‘glow off the pavement’ is symbolic of the glow in her heart thanks to this relationship. It has rained down and the streets are watery and slippery. But it is only your perception of the world that shapes reality. When you are happy, the world around you seems happy.
In the second part of the first verse, Taylor Swift narrates a scene where the boyfriend is driving her around. She can barely contain herself when he runs his hands through his hair. The use of the word ‘absentmindedly’ here makes one think about the ‘risk’ factory any relationship involves. It can always be a hit or a miss!
Watch Taylor Swift Perform “Fearless” Live
In the chorus of the song, we hear that Taylor Swift is head-diving into this relationship–her eyes closed. This relates to her explanation of the song above; despite being hurt in love, again and again, we still look for love and fall in love. Every time is a new risk and a potential for heartbreak. But every time, it also feels anew, and different from all the last. So we dive in head first!
Taylor Swift also adds that she is willing to dance with him during a storm and in her best dress. This symbolizes how she is willing to take a risk with this relationship, as she has done with every relationship before. This scene also ties up with the ‘dancing in the parking lot after a rain’ scene from the first verse.
The second verse is a continuation of the drive she is loving with him. She wants him to continue until the roads run out in this small town.
‘One horse town’ is an idiom referring to a very small and dull town or village where nothing happens. Taylor could also be referring to the guy as the ‘one white horse’ in this entire village.
In these lyrics, a shaking Taylor Swift sings about their first kiss–a loving, tender moment that she will remember for a long time. The entire song is about being fearless to open up again, and Taylor finds herself shaking when he pulls her closer to him. However, in his warmth, she finds more confidence and bravery to take the next step.
“Fearless” is a song about that sweet vulnerability of falling in love. Despite Taylor not being in a relationship at the point of writing this song, she possibly drew the emotions for this track from her personal experiences.
Let us hear what you think about the song in the comments below. Check out the complete lyrics and further meaning breakdown on Genius.