So, the Taylor Swift show was on Monday night. I needed a day to both mentally process and physically recuperate before I wrote anything about it. I honestly don't know why Alicia and I decide to live our lives like we're 22 years old so often because guess what, we're not. 5+ hours of standing, dancing, sweating plus 2+ hours traveling plus a 0.7 mile run at midnight in BIRKENSTOCKS from Navy Yard to the Waterfront Metro station plus two lanes closed on 95S at 1:30am I'm over here yesterday like basically dead. I'm pretty sure thirty-somethings are supposed to get hotel rooms for these sorts of occasions.
Anyway! Taylor. Let's talk about Taylor - you know I love talking about Taylor. This was my 4th time seeing her (Speak Now, Red x2) and it was way different than the rest. Still theatrical and captivating but way more grown up and refined. No room to play favorites though - each tour is perfection in its own right. 1989 was loud and electric and dance-y with some seriously darker vibes than her past shows.
One reason I love seeing Taylor Swift live is that she really makes her shows an experience. I remember being so excited to see The Black Keys live a couple of years ago and left so underwhelmed. Don't get me wrong - they sounded fantastic. So fantastic, in fact, that it sounded just like their album. They played their songs with precision but left very little fun or spontaneity in their 2 hours on the stage. Dare I say I got...bored? With a T.Swift show though, you get re-worked songs, fun interludes, mash-ups of old and new tunes, lots of talking and winking and playfulness. She makes it special and makes sure all your favorite songs still sound like your favorite songs but....special.
Ok, and Lorde. I've been following the list of guest appearances on this tour more closely than Britney Spears follows Jessica Biel's Instagram page and couldn't wait to see who we got. I was totally down with seeing Gigi or Karlie walk down the Bad Blood runway but wasn't too into say, Nick Jonas singing Jealous. I'd actually had a flicker of a thought that it could be Lorde but thought it was a reach. Like a 23 hr plane ride reach. Y'all, I should have never doubted my girl. Taylor finished All You Had To Do Was Stay and said "I'm so excited right now...and you guys have no idea why I'm so excited...." and then the beginning notes of Royals started and Taylor said some things I can't remember because I may have blacked out from excitement and then there was Lorde. And then with Taylor in all white and Lorde in all black, the two sang Royals together on Taylor's stage. At one point Taylor said something about being so proud of one of her best friends and I could have died. #squadgoals. I'm getting goosebumps just thinking about it.
And now for the part of the post you've all been waiting for (that's a lie)!
My Top 5 performances from the show:
1. Wildest Dreams. It's my favorite song on the album and she included parts of Enchanted which was one of my favorite songs on Speak Now. I'm a sucker for her at a piano anyway. Love the intensity and hair flips.
2. How You Get the Girl. A dark horse as this song is one of my least favorites from 1989. The song is totally transformed into a high-energy sing-a-long live though and her beautiful pink floral light-up costume for this one was SO good. This one was the most fun.
3. Royals. DUH.
4. Love Story. Taylor has said she will always play this song live as long as she tours because it's what really transformed her career. She reworked it for the tour so it was just her and a keyboard and it was gorgeous. And let's be honest - is there a more fun song to belt out at the top of your lungs with 45,000 other people on a hot July night? (rhetorical question). So much EMOTION.
5. Shake it Off. The encore/finale of the show. Her finales are always over-the-top confetti and firework filled spectacles and 1989 did not disappoint. We got actual real fully formed FIREWORKS. It was a blast. (get it?). I don't love how the word "epic" has gotten co-opted by social media over the last year or so but yeah - Shake It Off was epic.
I always get a bit blue after a good live show - I think I cried for two days post-Rolling Stones. There's no better feeling like seeing one of your favorite performers live. I guess what I'm describing is the equivalent of like, ecstasy or something so that means I've gotta find my next hit.
p.s. Vance Joy is a JOY to see live. Oh and check out Taylor's version of Riptide here. Lovely.