Thank you, Taylor Swift

*my own image, cover of Taylor Swift’s album ‘Lover’

11.07.20. That was the date I was meant to see Taylor Swift live. Amazingly, it was going to be my second time! As I sit here listening to Taylor’s latest album ‘Lover’ to console myself, I feel a sense of warmth and peace. Her music brings me a calmness, and I also feel a sense of pride that the young, country girl in the early 2000s, has become the household name- Taylor Swift. My mum introduced me to Taylor after becoming obsessed with her song ‘Love Story’, a song which must be blasted in your car with a group of friends in order to say you have truly lived. Since then Taylor has produced four more albums, breaking many records and winning countless awards.

I think Taylor’s had a big impact on me due to her growth of her music overtime correlating to me growing up. When I was younger I would listen to ‘Fearless’ in the car with my mum, sit at my little pink stereo with ‘Red’ on repeat, or binge watch the ‘Mine’ music video on my iPod Touch. As I grew older, I still continued to love her music, but when I played the same songs or album the lyrics had a different, deeper meaning. Instead of just dancing around to the fun beats, or trying my best to sing as well as Taylor (I soon realised my singing isn’t quite up to the same standard…), as a teen I could relate to her songs and comprehend the messages each song put across. I think this is what has kept me so in awe of Taylor, her songs can be interpreted in so many different ways, I don’t think you can ‘grow out’ of Taylor Swift, as many critics and cynics argue.

Taylor is so much more than just a singer. She’s never been problematic in the industry, her only dramas have stemmed from other people and manipulation. She produces her music for herself and her fans, she created an entire community by being realistic and relatable and ,most importantly, authentic. In recent years, Taylor has also become much more involved in politics, which has had a huge impact on fans who previously neglected their political views or were ignorant to the worsening political state in the US. In 2018, Taylor posted a plea on Instagram for her American audience to register to vote after her appall at Republican Marsha Blackburn’s voting history. In the first 24 hours after her post, there were already 65,000 new registers to vote. As explained in her incredible 2020 ‘Miss Americana’ documentary, Taylor had previously stayed quiet about politics, as advised by her managers and some family. However, by now she had had enough, and ignored the warnings and took the leap. Taylor’s bravery to step out of the safety zone for female performers illustrates her strength as an individual and conveys her morality, even as a household name. Taylor has continued to use her platform and voice to advocate for equality and a better political state in the US, releasing songs such as ‘The Man’ and ‘You Need To Calm Down’ to merge this into her music.

Seeing Taylor live in 2018 was an unforgettable experience. The set was out of this world, the set list was beautiful, incorporating many of her different genres and songs, and Taylor’s engagement with the crowd was enough to make everyone their feel special and loved. I’m gutted Lover Fest could not go ahead this year, but hopefully her next tour will be even more special. Although Taylor does not even know I exists, I dream of one day being able to thank her. She’s brought me years of happiness, fun and meaning, and I hope that she knows just how special she is. Forever a Swiftie!

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