On the first day of 2018, the New York Post trumpeted a headline: "Taylor Swift's" Reputation "tour is shaping up to be a disaster." The piece cited an anonymous music industry expert who called the sales "a big disappointment" and explained how the fans were upset by the high ticket prices.
Swift, of course, never responded to the detractors. She did not need When the tour started in May, she posted Instagram photos after almost all the concerts, showing stadiums filled to the brim. In August, Billboard announced that after 27 dates, it was already the highest grossing tour of the United States by a female artist, raising almost $ 200 million. The previous highest collection amount was … Swift, whose 1989 World Tour broke the record in 2015.
As usual, Swift, the master of hidden messages and small gestures full of meaning, said a lot without saying much. That has been true for most of the "Reputation" era, which is beginning to diminish. The North American part of the tour ended last weekend, with two sold-out nights at AT & T Stadium near Dallas. The tour continues in Australia next week and ends in Japan in November. At the American Music Awards on Tuesday, Swift accepted the trophy of his favorite pop / rock album for "Reputation."
"I always see the albums as chapters in my life, and for the fans, I'm very happy that you like this," he said. "But I have to be really honest with you about something: I'm even more excited about the next chapter."
That was not a surprising feeling, since there was a reason why he mentioned his album as "Reputation". As he briefly commented on the first night of his Arizona tour, Swift received a significant negative reaction in the last two years and decided to leave De Los Foccos for the longest stretch of his career.
"A couple of years ago, someone called me a snake on social media and he noticed," said Swift. "So many people were calling me many things on social networks. And I went through very low times for a while because of that. I went through some occasions when I did not know if I would be able to keep doing this. "
True to that, he did not mention names: everyone knew he was talking about the unfortunate fight of 2016 with Kanye West and Kim Kardashian about West's "Famous" song, after which the Internet marked Swift as "snake". Swift said to the crowd, decided to embrace the nickname. Snakes became an important theme with the "Reputation", appearing in music videos and merchandise; a giant snake (apparently called Karyn) glared from the stage at every stadium show.
"I wanted to send a message to you that if someone uses insults to harass them in social networks, and even if many people join that, that does not have to defeat them." It can strengthen you in its place, "said Swift." The lesson is that you should not care too much if you feel misunderstood by many people who do not know you, as long as you feel understood by the people who do I know you
That was the first and only time that Swift addressed the incident, as he stopped talking to the media in 2016. He did not give a single interview when "Reputation" fell last November. With the speech of the first night, the narrative was established: Swift, who started her career as the loser (the one who is "in the stands", if she so wishes) once again presented herself as fighting in an uphill battle.
So he toured North America, selling stadiums left and right, demonstrating that he can ignore critics and overcome all obstacles.
He showed that he can still get any famous musical guest he wants: Bryan Adams appeared at the Toronto event in August to sing "El verano del 69". Selena Gomez joined her for "Hands to Myself" in Pasadena, California. Robbie Williams sang "Angels" in London. Tim McGraw and Faith Hill surprised the Nashville crowd for a collaboration on "Tim McGraw," Swift's first single.
At the same time, Swift used her massive platform to promote others: she invited newcomer Hayley Kiyoko to sing "Curious" in Foxborough, Massachusetts. Breakout country star, Maren Morris, performed in Arlington, Texas, to perform "The Middle." And Swift showed that he will never forget his roots in Nashville: the last night of the tour, Sugarland came to sing "Babe", a co-author of Swift that is uploading the radio lists of the country.
He continued his tradition of long concert speeches, which made headlines: in Chicago during Pride Month, he told the crowd: "It is very brave to be vulnerable to your feelings in any way, in any situation, but it is still braver to be honest. " about your feelings and who you love when you know you could face an adversity of society. "In Minneapolis, he gave a rare rendition of" Tied together with a smile "and urged fans to remember that appearances are not everything: "Just because someone looks happy does not mean it is."
The day after the US tour ended last Sunday, Swift dropped that 400-word political publication on Instagram, silencing criticism that she never addresses current events in this incredibly divisive era. It looked like a shocking move, but in retrospect, it's the perfect pivot when Swift starts preparing for his next chapter.
Swift knows that it will annoy some people for taking a political stance. Clearly, she does not care, since she already saw what happened when her reputation gets hit. She got over it Y she reestablished herself as a superstar, making the point clearer than ever: nothing can overthrow Taylor Swift, so do not even try.
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