Taylor Swift turned pop last year. She turned her sometimes-sad, always emotional country-ish songs into power pop hits. She went on a massive world tour with sparkly unitards, a celebrity-infused runway, and “sick beats.” She seemingly left all sentimentality behind in her quest for that perfect pop hook. But that doesn’t mean she lost her singing chops.
Longtime fans of Swift will notice that the 1989 era was apparently devoid of one thing: acoustic performances of her hit songs. Even though she performs some acoustic songs during her concerts, those performances are less accessible to those unlucky people without tickets. Her pop makeover has perhaps robbed her of some opportunities to sing sans bombastic accompaniment, something that fans miss. And it’s also given rise to this mistaken opinion that she can’t sing.
Girl can sing. Girl can pull it out. The video above proves that.
In the video above, Taylor Swift is shown giving a stunning acoustic performance of one of her most-produced tracks from 1989: “Out of the Woods.” She gave the performance on September 30, at the conclusion of her GRAMMY Museum exhibit, The Taylor Swift Experience. What was recorded as a synth-pop hit becomes a beautiful ballad lamenting a love that’s struggling to survive.
Taylor’s gorgeous vocal ability is on full display in the video above, and should silence those who say her voice is manufactured or subpar. Sure, she’s probably not on a level with, say, Adele, but Taylor’s got some major talent. In the business for 10 years, Taylor has been able to carry her own, but it appears some still need convincing.
In true Taylor fashion, she prefaced the performance with some background info, managing to echo her tradition of providing some relationship advice to the members of her audience. She spoke about how this particular relationship was riddled with anxiety, but that that didn’t mean it wasn’t “special.”
“I’m going to play you a song I wrote about a relationship I was in that, the number-one feeling I felt in the whole relationship was anxiety, because it felt very fragile, very tentative…I think a lot of relationships can be very solid…but that’s not always what you get. And it doesn’t mean that it’s not special and extraordinary just to have a relationships that’s fragile, and somehow meaningful in that fragility.”
Taylor has a unique way of commenting on different circumstances of love and relationships that makes her audience pause and reflect, and I think her commentary here was no different. She’s a wise and old soul, and she also happens to look awesome in a leather unitard.