Taylor Swift Revs Up the Motor City
As someone who has found a way to make a living writing about country music, I have often wondered if I was slowly becoming immune to the sheer spectacle of a concert. Could the pure appearance of an artist taking the stage still take my breath away? Could a closing number still leave me speechless? Could I walk out of an arena still in tears? The answer, thankfully, is yes.
Because on a Saturday, in Ford Field, I watched it “Begin Again.”
Alongside 50,000 screaming fans who could care less how journalists want to classify her music, I witnessed Taylor Swift at her very best on Saturday night in Detroit. Marking the first stadium stop of her wildly successful 2013 Red Tour, Taylor quite literally commandeered the massive stage and the massive hearts of her audience. With a glance of an eye or the pout of her ruby-red lips, she was able to take her crowd from delirium on songs such as “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” to silence on “Haunted.” Add these emotions to the confetti cannons and the impressive pyrotechnics and Taylor’s carefree jaunts through her adoring crowd to play on a stage at the opposite end of the stadium, and you have the perfect blueprint as to how to truly put on a stadium show.
Granted, the glaring omission of songs such as “Tim McGraw” and “Teardrops on My Guitar” and even the No. 1 triple-platinum “Our Song” did hurt my country heart. Luckily, the vision of Taylor picking up a banjo for songs such as “Mean” made me feel a bit better.
Taylor’s choice of country music up-and-comer Brett Eldredge as her opener was spot-on. Taking the stage in a sharp blue button-down that seemed to perfectly match his sparkling blue eyes, Brett embarked on an impressive five-song set alongside a simple but appealing three-piece band. The standout for this fan was the amazing vocals on display during the sweet rendition of “One Mississippi."
Seemingly unable to hide his sheer excitement of standing in the “biggest place I have ever played in,” Brett rounded out the set with the infectious single “Don’t’ Ya,” getting the mostly female audience on their feet—and probably downloading the song when they got home.