Our Song

Single | Taylor Swift (2006)

“Our Song” closes the standard edition of Taylor’s debut album, Taylor Swift (2006). She solely composed the song for the talent show during her freshman year of high school, and as a gift for her boyfriend who she did not have a song with. She later put the song on the album as she recalled its popularity with her classmates.

Background and Release

Taylor wrote and co-wrote all of the album’s tracks, including three solely written by herself. Among the three songs, “Our Song” is a track Taylor wrote for a talent show of her freshman high school year. She conceived the song as an upbeat and relatable track to appeal to her classmates, writing it within twenty minutes. She said:

«I wrote this song in ninth grade. And I was dating this guy and we didn't have a song. I was sitting there like, 'Wait, hold up. My life revolves around music and we don't even have a song? This is ridiculous.' So I wrote us one. And I wrote it for the high school talent show, played it, and called it 'Our Song.'»

Taylor Swift
Upon receiving positive feedback from her classmates, Taylor thought that “Our Song” had potential to become a chart success, insisting that Big Machine Records executives include it on the final track list. She envisioned the production in hear head before approaching producer Nathan Chapman. Eventually, Taylor chose the song as the closing track on the album because the final chorus features the repeated lyric “Play it again”, which she thought would subliminally suggest the listener replay the album.

Big Machine Records executives chose “Our Song” as the third single from the album, which Taylor was surprised yet glad about. “Our Song” was sent to US country radio on September 10, 2007, and as a crossover single to US pop radio on March 10, 2008, in partnership with Republic Records. The song was later also included on the track list of the international version of Fearless, Taylor’s second studio album, released in March 2009. In October 2019, following the masters controversy, Big Machine Records re-released “Our Song”, along with other singles from Taylor’s debut album, on limited-edition vinyl.

Lyrical Theme

“Our Song” describes a young couple who uses the events in their lives in place of a regular song. In an interview, Taylor said that she wrote the song about the same guy she mentions in “Tim McGraw.” And like she mentions in the lyrics, she actually did write the words to the song on a napkin. At her VH1 Storytellers concert in 2012, she shared more details about how the song came together:

«This is a song that I wrote for my high school talent show. I was a freshman, I had just moved there and I really wanted to play for my friends for the first time. I'd never really told them that I did this, or that I love this, or that I write songs. And I'd been dating this guy who was so nice, so I wanted to write this song about...us! And play it for him, his friends, and for me, and for all my friends. And it was the high school talent show. So I wrote this song and included all these details about our relationship, like when we were on the phone really late at night and my mom would patrol outside my room. She'd for real be pacing outside in figure eights. And I'd be under the covers like, 'I like you so much, too. I don't wanna get off the phone, I like you so much!' And so my mom would be like, 'Taylor, get off the phone, you have to sleep! It's four in the morning, this is ridiculous. You'll see Drew tomorrow.' And so I wrote a song about all the details of our relationship, like we were riding in the car, riding shotgun and all those things. And so then I go and I play it at the talent show and my friends loved it, and his friends loved it, and people clapped a lot for it. So I went to my record label and I said, 'I really think we should put this song on the record because my friends at high school love it.' And they were like, 'You can't just make all of your decisions about a very serious thing like an album based on if your high school friends love it or not.' And it ended up being our first No. 1 at country radio, so I guess you can.»

Taylor Swift

Music Video

A music video accompanying “Our Song” was directed by Trey Fanjoy and features Taylor performing in various settings, including a front porch and a sea of roses. The video won the awards for “Video of the Year” and “Female Video of the Year” at the 2008 CMT Music Awards.

Live Performances

Taylor has performed “Our Song” over 400 times, at an abundance of venues, some while supporting as opening act for various country artists’ concert tours from 2006 to 2008. She later performed the song on all venues of her first headlining concert tour, the “Fearless Tour,” which extended from April 2009 to June 2010. During the performance, she donned a sparkly dress and black, leather boots, and skipped across the stage, playing her iconic acoustic guitar adorned with rhinestones. “Our Song” was again regularly performed on the North American leg of the “Speak Now World Tour” (2011-2012). It was the only song from her debut album on the set list. During “The RED Tour” (2013-2014), Taylor performed it in place of “I Almost Do” on selected dates, such as the shows in Raleigh and Arlington. During her “reputation Stadium Tour” in 2018, Taylor performed an acoustic version of the song during her shows at Soldier Field in Chicago and in Philadelphia, after a technical malfunction occurred on stage.

Critical Reception

“Our Song” received acclaim from contemporary music critics. Sean Dooley of About.com identified Taylor’s “uncanny ability, especially at such a young age, to write a compelling narrative” as the song’s highlight, referencing the opening lines. Rob Sheffield of Blender magazine described the track as a gem that hit hard. Rick Bell of Country Standard Time said Taylor Swift‘s best efforts were Taylor’s self-penned songs, including “Our Song”, which “she sings with stirring conviction. In 2008, “Our Song” was listed as a “Winning Song” by Broadcast Music Incorporated (BMI). Rolling Stone ranked “Our Song” as the eighth-best female country song from the 2000s and 2010s.

Commercial Performance

“Our Song” was a success on country radio. It reached No. 1 on the Hot Country Songs chart dated December 15, 2007, giving Taylor her first No. 1 on the chart. The song’s jump from number sixNo. 6 to No. 1 on the chart marked the biggest jump to the top since Tim McGraw’s “Just to See You Smile” (1998). With this achievement, Taylor became the youngest person — eighteen years old at the time — to single-handedly write and perform a Hot Country Songs No. 1. It spent six consecutive weeks at the top and twenty-four weeks in total. The success of “Our Song” on country radio turned Taylor into a rising star in the genre, which had predominantly seen the domination of middle-aged male musicians.

On the all-genre Billboard Hot 100, the single peaked at No. 16, becoming the third consecutive Hot 100 top-forty single from Taylor’s debut album. On the Mainstream Top 40 chart, which tracks pop radio in the United States, it peaked at No. 18 and was Taylor’s second crossover appearance, following “Teardrops On My Guitar” in 2006. In neighboring Canada, “Our Song” peaked at No. 30 on the Canadian Hot 100, the best-charting song from Taylor’s debut album, and was certified Platinum by Music Canada (MC) for 80,000 digital copies sold.

Lyrics

[Verse 1]
I was riding shotgun with my hair undone
In the front seat of his car
He’s got a one-hand feel on the steering wheel
The other on my heart
I look around, turn the radio down
He says, “Baby is something wrong?”
I say, “Nothing, I was just thinking
How we don’t have a song”
And he says

[Chorus]
Our song is the slamming screen door
Sneakin’ out late, tapping on your window
When we’re on the phone and you talk real slow
‘Cause it’s late and your mama don’t know
Our song is the way you laugh
The first date: “Man, I didn’t kiss her, and I should have”
And when I got home ‘fore I said amen
Asking God if he could play it again

[Verse 2]
I was walking up the front porch steps
After everything that day
Had gone all wrong and been trampled on
And lost and thrown away
Got to the hallway, well on my way
To my lovin’ bed
I almost didn’t notice all the roses
And the note that said

[Chorus]
Our song is the slamming screen door
Sneakin’ out late, tapping on your window
When we’re on the phone and you talk real slow
‘Cause it’s late and your mama don’t know
Our song is the way you laugh
The first date: “Man, I didn’t kiss her, and I should have”
And when I got home ‘fore I said amen
Asking God if he could play it again

[Bridge]
I’ve heard every album, listened to the radio
Waited for something to come along
That was as good as our song

[Breakdown]
‘Cause our song is the slamming screen door
Sneakin’ out late, tapping on his window
When we’re on the phone and he talks real slow
‘Cause it’s late and his mama don’t know

[Final Chorus]
Our song is the way he laughs
The first date: “Man, I didn’t kiss him, and I should have”
And when I got home ‘fore I said amen
Asking God if he could play it again
Play it again

[Outro]
I was riding shotgun with my hair undone
In the front seat of his car
I grabbed a pen and an old napkin
And I wrote down our song

General Information
ArtistTaylor Swift
AlbumTaylor Swift
ReleasedOctober 24, 2006
RecordedFebrurary 6, 2006
StudioQuad Studios-A (Nashville)
Sound Cottage (Nashville)
GenreCountry
Length3:22
LabelBig Machine Records
SongwriterTaylor Swift
ProducerNathan Chapman
TAYLOR SWIFT CHRONOLOGY
Mary’s Song (Oh My My My)Our SongI’m Only Me When I’m With You
Single Certification
Hidden Message
Live in love
Single Artwork
Music Video
Live Performance
Official Audio