To review part one of this adventure with Taylor Swift, click here.
Click here to see all the Instagram highlight videos from Denver Night One.
Mile High Stadium was pink and sparkly from head to toe. Never had I ever seen so many women in one place, nor so many generations piled into one venue. Grandmas, Daughters, Sisters, Friends, and Kiddos… the place was packed with Swifties and “the whole place… was dressed to the nines.”
Although the opening acts were performing as we walked into the stadium, the lines were ever-so-plentiful. From the merch line that wrapped around the building to the lines for the ladies room, this crowd had assembled and was willing to wait (again) for what they wanted – – the first wait being the 8 hours online to get these tickets to start with.
We found our seats and immediately I felt a sense of relief. We had arrived. WE MADE IT. Glistening from our trek, we sat for a moment and then decided to go get some water. I also wanted to see if there was any bracelet trading underway.
Make the Friendship Bracelets, Take a Moment to Taste It
The past few months have been tricky for me, both personally and professionally. And, while the Monday-Friday was jam packed, I have been using my weekends to refuel. One of my favorite ways to refuel is to be crafty, and the friendship bracelet making idea landed at the exact right time. I had about 10 bracelets that I’d hoped to trade with other Swifties at the concert. Strangely I didn’t see one single adult trading. Shoot. So, I decided to gift them to a bunch of Little Swifties at the show.
I had two standout trades that really made me smile. I offered a bracelet to a little one in the long bathroom line, and she opened her tiny purple purse to present me with a “Mad Woman” bracelet. So stinking cute!
In an attempt to offload my extras, I went up to two moms with about five little ones in tow. They excitedly grabbed every last bracelet I had, and even peeked at what was on my wrist for others they wanted. My new Mad Woman bracelet found a new home in this moment, but the joy in these little girls’ eyes made it worth it.
R U Ready for It…
The main event started promptly at 8pm, and Taylor took to the stage. The roar of the crowd was like nothing I’ve ever seen. The stomping of the feet in the stadium. The excitement of the couple in front of us. The feral screams of the girls behind us. Everyone was ready for it.
Taylor opens the show with the Lover era. Songs that we’ve all listened to, but have had very little opportunity to see live thanks to Covid. She belted out her hits with the famous “Lover House” as a backdrop. While Lover was the first of the 10, each era truly encompasses its own vibe. 1989 was a poppy moment, Fearless had its country flair. The witchiness of Evermore, the romantic innocence of Speak Now, the boldness of Reputation, and the whimsy that is Folklore. The show closed out with Midnights, which to me has a maturity to it that shows how she’s grown as an artist. It was an absolute treat to be on this journey that night and to experience them all again.
They’d say I Hustled. Put in the Work
What struck me most, and you can see it here. Look below the screen. She’s right there. Tiny. Just her. Her tiny frame, bright red lips, and all her songs. She is a powerhouse. Can you even imagine being on stage like that? Can you imagine 73,000 people cheering for you and singing every song you’ve written loudly, word-for-word?
What an achievement she has made, and what a role model she is for women of all ages. Because her lyrics are so personal and so poetic, there is a part of me that feels like I know her, like we might have similarities. Perhaps she’s just a friend I haven’t seen in a long time, and one I’d talked on the phone with when she had her heart broken over and over again.
This is going to sound weird: But I felt proud of Taylor that night. Like she’s one of us. As a fellow fiercely independently and wildly successful (in my own way) woman, I tipped my hat to her on the stage and literally rooted her on for the 3.5 hours she was on stage.
Truth: I know fully that she is well beyond “one of us”, but she has a unique ability of creating an intimate setting (even in a crowd of this size) making you feel like you’re friends.
Salt Streams Out My Eyes and Into My Ears
Taylor’s songs are full of emotion. Most are written about being in love and love lost. Her poetic lyrics tug at your heart strings, and for many of us, she played our favorites that night. While I loved every bit of this concert, there were a few moments bigger than the whole sky.
- All Too Well (10 Minute Version – Taylor’s Version): Standing alone on stage with a guitar, Taylor belted out this heartbreak anthem. With the release of her re-record of Red – Taylor’s Version, she released an extended version of her classic song. Knowing that we all had 10 minutes available, she played every verse of this long song… and the crowd ate up every minute of it, singing along!
- Long Live – Taylor’s Version: Confession: I don’t know this song well. I started listening to Taylor with Reputation, so I missed some of her early work. Long Live I’ve heard described as a “love letter to her fans,” and that is 100% what it felt like hearing her sing it. As she intro’ed this song, you could see Taylor swell with emotion talking about how the fans embraced her latest release. As she played this song, it was epically clear: Long Live was meant to be played in stadiums, and was one of the standout moments of the night.
- Vigilante Shit: I liked this song when it came out on the Midnights album. I fell in love with this song when I saw clips of her performance on the Eras tour. A very Roxie Hart inspired moment, this choreography gives major Chicago vibes.
- Other Noteworthy performances: Don’t Blame Me (Reputation), Blank Space (1989), Willow (Evermore), and August-Betty (Folklore) – – Loved each and every one of them
Saving this one for last: Taylor has one song that just wrecks me every time I hear it – Marjorie. The song Marjorie is literally written for her grandmother and they have somehow used her grandmother’s voice in the track. I’ve heard that Taylor sings this song on the Eras tour as her grandmother always wanted to be a professional singer, but became a mother instead. Taylor bringing her voice to life during the tour pays homage to that dream.
As if that weren’t emotional enough, the lyrics of the song are incredibly beautiful. Mentioning she know she didn’t have a ton of time with her, Taylor writes “I would have asked you questions. I would have asked you how to be. Asked you to write it down for me. Should have kept every grocery receipt ’cause every scrap of you would be taken from me.” We all have people in our lives that we would have loved to have had one more moment with. Serenaded by that huge crowd, it was way more emotional than I could have anticipated. And, I know that I wasn’t the only one crying in that arena.
When lyrics have the ability to touch your heart and make you feel, that is true artistic magic. Taylor Swift is magical in this way.
Slipped Away Like a Moment in Time
As the concert shifted into the last era, Taylor began singing all of our favorites from Midnights. Midnights is such a mysterious, yet relatable album. As Lavender Haze began, my heart was sad that this 3.5 hour journey was coming to end (even if my feet were cheering for the relief that would follow.)
When they announced the Eras tour, there was a lot of rumors that maybe this would be Taylor’s last tour. That she was playing all of her hits as a farewell to her fans. While I can only imagine the exhaustion of playing shows like this around the world, I also hope that instead of this being the end, this is in fact, just the beginning.
Breathe in, Breathe through, Breathe deep, Breathe out
Something else happened with this tour: It gave me something to look forward to. SOMETHING BIG. The past two years have been a lot of work. Settling into my new home, my new job, and more, I’ve definitely been in an all-work and no-play sort of mode for an excessive amount of time.
Going to the Eras tour felt like “the end of a decade, and the start of an age.” While Erin, Pyper, and I got to visit at the concert, I also know that I had so many other friends who were at Denver night 1. While I didn’t see them, I know that they too had a blast, and that we were all there part of this awesomeness together. After years that felt so separated, this felt uniquely close and I’m super grateful for that.
Fireworks marked the end of the show, and I know for a fact that those weren’t the only sparks flying. I felt them inside – – like my world had be reignited in some beautiful way.
Thank you, Taylor, for showing us how BIG DREAMS can come true and for creating such a kind and joyous community for us all to be part of. I had a marvelous time (ruining everything!)
Until next time…
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