‘The Eras Tour’ and the Combined Spectacle and Endurance of Taylor Swift’s Aptitude for Shaping Culture

The ever-evolving titan of the music industry, Taylor Swift, has made a return to the stage with her above-and-beyond performance with 44 songs spread across more than three hours in what is now globally known as the historic “The Eras Tour”. The 33-year-old icon has since positioned herself as the soldier ready to lead her troops of Swifties into the great musical journey through the 10 eras of her 17-year career. 

When she vanished from the public eye in 2016, the world’s anticipation for her comeback tour has finally come to an end as we witnessed our once-wildest dreams come to life. In attendance to Swift’s opening night were almost 69,000 people, which surpassed fellow pop star Madonna’s 62,986 total attendees for the 2008 and 2009 Sweet & Sticky Tour, making The Eras Tour the most successful and highest-grossing female artist tour of all time.

Photo courtesy John Shearer/Getty Images for Tas Rights Management.

The musician is recognized for being uprooted in her rural upbringing, which served as the strong foundation for her success during the first years of her career. As it progressed, Swift started to transition her sonic mastery from the country singer she was to a pop sensation. Her records after “Taylor Swift”, such as “Fearless”, “1989”, and “Red”, offered a new blend of country and pop that had people captivated with her music while still keeping her country origins intact. 

Swift is renowned for winning a number of top-echelon music awards— bagging 11 Grammy trophies and being one of the most awarded artists in history, dominating stadiums and arenas, creating a myriad of successful albums, and, most significantly, for having strong work ethics. Regardless of the singer’s assiduous effort to make a mark in this world, it wasn’t enough to make her impervious to those who sought to bring her down.

There is Endurance in Vulnerability

The artist had a long journey in battling her musical legacy, one of which is when a literal stage-crashing occurrence happened when Kanye West ambushed Swift’s acceptance speech claiming that she “doesn’t deserve” to win the title for the Video of the Year award at the 2009 MTV VMAs. In 2018, another contentious dispute arose between Swift’s former label, the Big Machine Label Group, owned by Scott Borchetta, and now acquired by music mega-manager, Scooter Braun, resulting in them having full ownership of the singer’s old master recordings and stands to benefit greatly from—not giving Swift a fair chance to reclaim her own songs, losing ownership of her 6 albums in a blink of an eye.

Swift is a steadfast advocate of artists’ rights to ownership of their own craft, evident in the withdrawal of her entire music library from Spotify in opposition to its low rates for musicians last 2014. The audacious move showed how fearless she is in standing up for herself and in protecting our future artists. 

Undoubtedly, Swift has not always had it easy. Throughout her métier and hiatus, the singer-songwriter has also struggled personally while handling both internal and external obligations on her own. Swift became persistent in escaping the heavy chains of deception and treachery that were strangling her success as she set out on a new era of her career while focusing on what matters most— her fans. 

Learning to Shake It Off

The triumph of The Eras Tour features not just her top-hit songs from the past, but also the re-mastered ones each labeled by Taylor’s Version”, reclaiming her entire artistic creation under a new label with Universal Music Group. Beginning with the new era, the singer re-recorded and will be re-recording her old albums with improved vocals, unreleased “From the Vault” songs, and new music videos all under her own control. 

Each of her albums is like wading into a different lyrical planet manifested all throughout the production of her ongoing tour, highlighting the albums of “Lover” (2019), “Folklore” (2020), “Evermore” (2020), and “Midnights” (2022). Its ground-breaking stage design, cutting-edge visual mapping, and premium production qualities that far exceeded most of today’s touring show standards demonstrate why she is an invaluable asset to the music industry.

The singer’s ability to translate her songs for a live audience, how she balances the various genres in her discography, and the enduring devotion of her supporters are all noteworthy. The tour in all its entirety proves the sheer magnitude and artistry of Swift’s culture-shaping aptitude in a world full of inevitable cynicism and by the looks of it, the world is, and will always be, in it, for the ride.