How many Taylor Swift songs can you name? 22? Or are you staring into a blank space? Well, a man named Bilal Ilyas Jhandi has just broken the Guinness world record for naming the most Taylor Swift songs in a minute. He got 34 in total. Also, he wasn’t just naming the songs randomly, he had to identify each song from a lyric.
I don’t know if you’ve ever sat down and watched a video of a man in a blindfold shouting out the names of Taylor Swift songs at a rate of more than one every two seconds. It’s a strangely unfulfilling experience. Even though what happens in the video is apparently a great human achievement. It is, to use the Guinness World Records tagline, “officially amazing”.
Does anyone else feel like we might have let our standards for what counts as “amazing” slip a little? According to the Guinness World Records website, its database now contains more than 62,000 active records, with almost as many people hoping to get their own officially certified. Jhandi himself already holds two other records - both similar to the Swift one.
His first record, in 2021, was ‘most animals identified from animal sounds in one minute’ (he managed 23), while last year he smashed the record for ‘most Justin Bieber songs identified from their lyrics in one minute’. And I really mean he smashed it. You may be surprised to learn that he was not the first person to attempt it, but he wasn’t. He named 29 Bieber tracks, 22 more than the previous record holder who identified a fairly pitiful seven.
So, we know he likes animals and we know he likes Justin Bieber, but it was the third time around that he really nailed his ‘naming things quickly’ hobby. Just by hearing a few words of their lyrics, he reeled off 34 Swift songs - surpassing the previous record of 27 (no, he wasn’t the first to do this one either).
You might still be wondering why this happened. I’m not sure that’s a question humanity will ever truly be able to answer. But for Jhandi, being able to prove himself as top Swiftie was key.
“This record is my favourite of all of them”, he said. “Being called a ‘Certified Swiftie’ or ‘Officially Amazing Swiftie’ is such an incredible feeling”.
Swiftest Swiftie, surely. But how does one prepare for such a task? Well, as with many things, if you want to be the best, you’ve got to start young.
“I have been listening to Taylor Swift since my childhood”, he explained. “I am a die-hard fan of her. I have listened to each and every song of hers. I can identify almost any song of hers from the lyrics”.
He wasn’t just doing this for himself though. He went on, “I want to tell Taylor Swift and fellow Swifties that breaking this record was a tribute to her impact on my life as well as on the lives of countless fans worldwide. I hope it brings a smile to fellow Swifties”.
Alright, you need to calm down. There’s no word on whether Jhandi hopes to break any other records for naming things quickly. Or perhaps he’ll have another go at this one - he admitted that although he found breaking the Swift record “an easy task”, hearing the lyrics read out by some guy, rather than sung by Swift, did slow him down slightly.
Perhaps he could try to break some of the numerous records that Swift herself holds. He could as yet have the fastest selling album in the US by a country artist. Or the most Grammy nominations for Song Of The Year. And if we flip this around, maybe Swift could have a go at breaking his animal sounds record.
We wouldn’t recommend that you try any of that personally, though. Instead, go and read some of the other more amusing music news stories that we happened upon this week…