How Taylor Swift has altered your brain for the better.

I am a melomaniac. I LOVE talking about music, sharing lyrics, discovering artists like a new crush, bingeing on tracks from new bands and wallowing under the familiar knowingness of a well-loved bridge.

‘Thank You for the Music’ by ABBA is one of my favourite songs ever. Genuinely, I am so grateful for it. I “danced myself right out the womb” as Marc Bolan would say and I’ll “dance myself into the tomb”. I was raised on Dylan, Bowie and Tom Waits who sat alongside ABBA, Bananarama and Eurovision.

Peers. No pretension. If you like it, you listen. There is no ‘bad’ music, if it makes you feel something.

Breathing music and lyrics into your blood and bones alters your state of consciousness, it changes your neurochemistry and it is something I recommend to anyone who will listen. I have no training, cannot play an instrument and those of you unfortunate enough to have heard me sing will know, it’s not about THAT.

The frisson that hits you right in the heart/temple/pelvis, THAT’s it. A chemical reaction that creates emotional flow when everything aligns and you feel like a three-minute song is as powerful as a 300-page novel.

We’ve pulled together our all-time favourite Taylor songs plus Mamamia’s juiciest podcast episodes about the tortured poet we all know and love. Listen to it below: 

Music activates your limbic system, the place where all emotions are born. Feelings of connection, validation, and empowerment result or as Sir Elton wrote, “when every single word makes sense, well it’s easier to have those songs around”.

Music helps us better understand our own experiences, express them and work through them. It influences our view of the world, of ourselves and others, developing skills of empathy, resilience and compassion. It helps us understand concepts that we may not have mastery or experience of yet.