"Ronan" (CD Single)

Music review by
Stephanie Bruzzese, Common Sense Media
"Ronan" (CD Single) Music Poster Image
Clean yet heavy track about a 3-year-old cancer victim.

Parents say

age 5+
Based on 2 reviews

Kids say

age 8+
Based on 3 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this music.

Positive Messages

An honest account of how a loving mother rises above her despair to make every last minute special for her 3-year-old son with cancer.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The mother depicted here doesn't sugarcoat her emotions, but in openly discussing her feelings, she is better able to work through them. Swift wrote and performed the track at the 2012 Stand Up to Cancer telethon, and is donating all proceeds from sales of the track to fight cancer.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that while "Ronan" doesn't include profanity or references to sex, substances, or violence, it covers heavy emotional ground: the death of a 3-year-old from cancer. Parents of younger kids should be sure to listen to the song themselves before deciding whether it's appropriate for their children.  

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byNathan D. July 13, 2014

Taylor Swift showed us that it is alright to cry

Taylor Swift does a really good job in this heart felt tune called "Ronan" and is about a boy who lost his battle during cancer and it is the saddest... Continue reading
Adult Written byFearlessmaster October 9, 2012

A Personal Favorite

One of, if not my FAVORITE Taylor Swift song. Ton of emotion was poured into this ballad, and despite what CSM states, her vocals are awesome! As a 19 year old... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written bygleekswift May 23, 2015

Very Good Message

I think it's a very sweet song but it may be sad for younger children because it is about a little boy who passes on.
Kid, 11 years old February 14, 2015

One powerful cancer anthem

Omg this song is so pretty it made me cry but it's still powerful.

What's the story?

"RONAN" is a gut-wrenching single by Taylor Swift about a 3-year-old boy who dies of neuroblastoma -- a devastating cancer that typically strikes children. Told from the perspective of Ronan's mother, the track was written by Swift and performed at the 2012 Stand Up to Cancer telethon. Swift is donating all proceeds from sales of the track to fight cancer.

Is it any good?

It's hard to criticize a song that was written to publicize and raise funds for such an important cause. While Swift's vocals are generally not at their best in ballads like this, the track is still a lovely tribute to the many parents who have lost children to this devastating disease. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about when people you love pass away, especially unexpectedly. What can you do to cope?

  • Why do you think Swift, who is known for her songs about love and relationships, chose to shift gears and sing about such a heavy theme?

  • Do you think Taylor Swift did a good job of representing what Ronan's mother went through in losing her son? Why or why not?

Music details

  • Artist: Taylor Swift
  • Release date: September 11, 2012
  • Type: Single
  • Label: Big Machine Records
  • Genre: Pop
  • Parental advisory: No
  • Edited version available: No
  • Last updated: November 11, 2020

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