Performing 17 songs, Taylor Swift wowed fans at night three of her five sold-out shows at Staples Center. (AEG Worldwide)
She’s just 25 years young and really is on top of the world, musically.
Pop music superstar Taylor Swift more than entertained during her third of five sold-out concerts Monday night at Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles. Her two-hour performance of the 1989 World Tour left the audience speechless, especially when she brought out Dixie Chicks lead singer Natalie Maines, global TV host Ellen DeGeneres and much-beloved singer-songwriter Alanis Morissette as surprise guests.
Following solid opening sets from Vance Joy and Los Angeles’ own Haim, Swift busted out on stage at around 9:15 p.m. with her eight-member band and 12 male dancers to the sounds of “Welcome to New York.” Near its very electric ending, Swift spoke to the crowd.
“Hello and welcome to the 1989 World Tour,” she said as the near 16,000 fans in attendance roared and cheered nonstop.
The already quite successful tour had Swift changing outfits 10 times during her 17-song set, which allowed her to show off her playful and sultry side through fashion.
The seven-time Grammy award winner continued with an enthralling delivery of the synthpop “New Romantics” from the deluxe edition of 1989 before a memorable rendering of her massive worldwide hit “Blank Space.” It was at this time that Swift made her way to the other end of the arena via a lengthy runway-type platform in between the floor area that, as the show went on, occasionally rose up high and maneuvered from side-to-side and in even circular formation.
Why? Well, Swift is all about her fans. She wants to keep them close. She wants to pay attention to what they’re doing and how they react, among other things. She’s a fan’s artist first and foremost.
A rocky yet mellow version of “I Knew You Were Trouble” followed, which included a sensual dance routine from her dancers. After a few other tunes fascinated the ever-happy public, Swift and Maines collaborated on a pleasant country-pop duet of “Goodbye Earl.”
“If not for this woman and her band, I would not have known that you can be quirky, fun, yourself, outspoken, brave and real. When I was 9 years old and got her first CD, I wouldn’t have dreamed the things that I dreamed, and I wouldn’t be standing on this stage today,” Swift said before introducing Maines.
We all know Swift is super gifted; on top of her distinctive vocals and unmatched songwriting skills, she also plays the piano and guitar. In “Fifteen,” the audience witnessed Swift deliver beautiful play on the acoustic guitar. The Fearless track reminded her of when it was time to go back to school in the fall, among other things.
“Love Story,” one of the crowd’s favorites of the night, was heartfelt throughout. Swift mentioned that she wrote it as a portrait of a couple who couldn’t be together because their respective parents hated each other.
The show got better as it progressed, and the surprises got bigger. After nearly one minute of “Style,” Swift did the unthinkable as she welcomed DeGeneres to the stage. Not only did both dance, but they also managed to provide goofy moments. While Swift sported a sexy short dress, DeGeneres did the opposite in wearing a neck-to-toe fitted costume with a tutu-like skirt reminiscent of Jim Carrey’s comical scene in the mental hospital of 1994’s Ace Ventura: Pet Detective. The word entertaining doesn’t come close to describing these four or so minutes; the crowd absolutely loved it.
“Bad Blood” followed, and although L.A. rapper Kendrick Lamar was nowhere in sight, it still produced sparks among the audience. Red’s “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” from 2012 carried more of a rock feel, given that Swift played an electric guitar, but it remained catchy as ever.
Swift soon brought Morissette out for the alternative rock piece “You Oughta Know” before performing “Enchanted.” It appeared as if the ageless artist would do “Enchanted” solo on the piano, but the band eventually accompanied her emotional entry.
After “Out of the Woods” charged up the venue’s noise level, Swift and her dancers made their way to the colossal stage one final time for “Shake It Off.”
Just like on her latest release, 1989, during the 1989 World Tour the audience saw a more secure and relaxed Swift. Most of all, concert-goers witnessed a pop megastar in the making after having put aside her country music influences on the album and the tour.
And Swift’s fans still accept her. They like what she does inside and outside of the recording studio and on and off the stage; they always love her music.
“She puts on a really good show,” a girl said post-show while exiting the venue. “I love her new stuff.”