When you’ve just been through a breakup, sometimes nothing can help you get through it better than someone singing about the very same thing. Here are our Top 5 breakup albums from our favorite female singer-songwriters:
1. Fleetwood Mac, Rumours There’s a reason by Fleetwood Mac’s 1977 album Rumours is one of the most successful and best-known breakup albums out there. After Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks broke up, they dealt with the tension within the band by individually writing “Go Your Own Way” and “Dreams,” respectively. Fans loved it, and the album sold more than 19 million copies in the U.S. alone. Yet the band mates continued to struggle internally, and both Nicks and Buckingham eventually left to pursue solo careers. Don’t worry though, the band has since reunited and released the four-song EP Extended Play in April.
2. Kelly Clarkson, Breakaway
Kelly Clarkson burst onto the music scene after winning the inaugural year of American Idol back in 2002. Though she had a successful debut with Thankful the following year, her 2004 album Breakaway is where Kelly really began to shine, in no small part to some terrific songs about breaking up. In particular, the soulful “Behind These Hazel Eyes” and her breakup anthem “Since U Been Gone” are perfect songs to listen to after saying goodbye to a bad relationship.
3. Adele, 21
Arguably the most successful album in over a decade, Adele’s 21 came out of nowhere to sell more than 26 million copies when it was released in 2011. The powerful vocalist had a relatively successful debut with 19, but like Kelly, it was her sophomore album that elevated her to super-stardom. Known for her powerhouse voice and her soulful lyrics, Adele showed that she can do it all with “Rumour Has It,” a pounding track that oozes with attitude. And while “Someone Like You” is an incredible ballad, Adele’s heartbreaking live performances of the song bring it to new heights.
4. Taylor Swift, Red
Taylor Swift is famous not just making #1 records but for her high-profile relationships as well. So it’s fitting that she’s great at turning her heartbreak into hit songs, and those that make up her 2012 album Red are no exception. “I Knew You Were Trouble” is just what you need after ending a relationship that wasn’t all that serious, and when you just can’t seem to stay broken up with someone, it "doesn’t get much clearer than “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together.” Chart-topping Taylor doesn’t appear to be slowing down anytime soon, either. After all, it was only last year that she was “feelin’ 22.”
5. Alanis Morissette, Jagged Little Pill
Long before Taylor Swift, Alanis Morissette perfected the art of writing albums with songs hinting at the identities of bad boyfriends past. Her classic “You Oughta Know” has long been rumored to be about her relationship with Full House actor Dave Coulier, though it has never been confirmed. Alanis has written other breakup albums since, particularly her 2008’s Flavors of Entanglement, about her broken engagement to actor Ryan Reynolds, but Jagged Little Pill remains her ultimate masterpiece. You can try to fight it, but just know that Alanis will “remind you of the mess you left when you went away.”