Taylor Swift Returns To Nashville, Reveals ‘Speak Now’ Date
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Taylor Swift is playing catch-up with her fans this year in a massive and impressive stadium show that embraces her artistic reinventions.
Nearly two months after the 52-show Eras Tour, Swift returned Friday to the origins of her music career in Nashville, Tennessee, a city she grew out of as a country star destined for pop stardom.
In front of 70,000 fans, Swift dropped the news that she would release a re-recording of her 2010 Nashville-era album, “Speak Now,” on July 7.
Swift has started releasing new versions of her early albums in 2021, following a dispute over ownership of the masters, which were sold to – and subsequently by – music executive Scooter Braun. Swift’s third album, “Speak Now,” will also be the third “Taylor’s Version” recording — she released the 2008 re-recordings of “Fearless” and “Red” from 2012 in 2021.
“Speak Now” was an album she wrote from scratch and she sang one of the singles, “Sparks Fly” after her announcement, followed by “Teardrops on My Guitar”, from her 2006 self-titled debut album.
The tour started chaotically with a breakdown in Ticketmaster’s ability to meet fan demand, eager to see Swift after a long hiatus from touring due to the coronavirus pandemic. Those lucky enough to attend the first of three shows in Nashville made sure to perform in their cosplay outfits inspired by Taylor’s songs, ranging from marching band nerds to vests and cottagecore.
“I moved to Nashville almost 20 years ago,” she told the crowd. “And this dream that I had since I was so little I can’t even remember ever having it, this dream came true because of this city and the people in it.”
She started the nearly 3.5 hour show with a line from “Miss Americana & The Heartbreak Prince”. as a gentle spring rain sprinkled on the crowd, “It’s been a long time, but you and me, that’s all my world.”
The theme of the Eras tour fits very well with an artist whose music is often so self-referential, winking and laughing at the previous Taylors and their moments. The show is divided into acts, which do not progress through its discography chronologically, but present themselves as a house with many rooms. The color schemes, choreographed dancers and outfits support the overall feel of musical theatre, with a stage with ramped platforms and hidden trapdoors through which she can disappear.
With over 40 songs in the setlist of her 10 albums, Swift hits many of the highlights of her singles, ranging from “You Belong With Me,” “Shake It Off,” “Bad Blood,” “Anti-Hero,” and ” We will never get back together.” But she also made time for special songs, like her 10-minute fan favorite “All Too Well,” and brought back opening act Phoebe Bridgers. to perform their duet ‘Nothing New’, a vault track released on ‘Red (Taylor’s Version)’.
It was a five-year wait to see all the glittering chapters of Swift’s career on stage together, but the pop star’s marathon performance took fans to the last notes.
AP journalist Kimberlee Kruesi contributed to this report.