Last Friday night, not even the bitter cold stopped any Taylor Swift fan from packing into the Emilie K. Asplundh Concert Hall and she, without a doubt, made it all worth it. The concert, which was previously scheduled for Nov. 3 and then, Feb. 2, finally happened Friday night at 8 p.m. Starting off the night with opener and up-and-coming artist, Sydd, who sang acoustic renditions of John Mayer’s, “Why Georgia,” and Weezer’s, “Beverly Hills,” along with his own original songs, riled up the crowd as he kept repeating that Taylor Swift would soon be coming onstage.
At just 17-years-old, Taylor Swift, whose first self-titled debut album just went gold in January and who has just been nominated for two CMT awards for, “Top Female Artist” and “Top Breakout Artist,” proved Friday at West Chester University that the fame and success has not gone to her head.
In an interview before the show, she said that she, like any other aspiring artist, was uncertain if this success would ever happen.
“When I was putting out a single, you never know how it’s going to go. You don’t know because it all depends on how that first single does and that’s your first shot. That’s your one shot, and if that thing tanks, your chances of making it decrease greatly. My parents raised me to always have really high hopes but low expectations and never expect that something is going to be given to me, so I always worked harder for it,” Swift said.
It had clear that her hard work indeed paid off as the crowd roared when she appeared on stage, surprisingly singing Eminem’s, “Lose Yourself,” which talks about that, “one shot,” at making it in life. The crowd was pleased as they quickly abandoned their seats and moved to the front to gather around the stage to be closer to Swift.
The concert moved along as she sang songs from her first album including her latest single, “Teardrops on my Guitar,” which is about a boy who always talked about how perfect his girlfriend was, all the while missing that Taylor was in love with him as well.
She said before the show that she wrote every song on her album and that she gets her inspirations from her own personal experiences of love and relationships. Her top five hit single, “Tim McGraw,” was written long before she knew it would be her first single.
“‘Tim McGraw’ is about this guy that I was dating who was about to go off to college, and I knew we were going to break up, so I started thinking about all the things that I knew would remind him of me. One of the first things that came to my mind was, well, my favorite song is a Tim McGraw song,” she said.
The most significant part of the show and Swift’s visit to WCU was her determination to please her fans. She announced during the show that she would stay after the concert until every one of her fans has met her, promising to sign anything they wanted and promising to take a picture with them.
She said, “If I want to sell 500,000 albums, I want to meet that many people. We’re there sometimes for like five hours after shows but I don’t care because as long as I get to meet those people, I know that they’ll be faithful to me and my music.”
The crowd’s reaction to her devotion to them was immediate, especially after she stated that this show was somewhat of a “hometown concert,” since she is originally from Wyomissing, Pennsylvania. She also stated that like many WCU students, she spent many summers at the Jersey shore. She and her family moved to Nashville, Tenn., after recognizing her amazing talent.
Swift continued to please the WCU crowd as she brought three little girls on stage for her song, “Stay Beautiful.” The concert hall was ecstatic with her performance and one could even hear the male fans in the crowd declaring their love for her.
You can vote for Taylor Swift for her two nominations for the CMT Music Awards by going to www.CMT.com. She will also be performing Feb. 13, 2007 on the “Tonight Show with Jay Leno.”
The interview that took place before Friday’s show will soon be a part of West Chester University’s PodCast Central that you can listen to by going to the WCU Web site, www.wcupa.edu. The interview will also soon be posted on her Official MySpace page.
Taylor Swift left her mark here at West Chester University and she left advice for the student body saying, “Stay positive. Everybody has bad days. Whether you’re a singer, or you’re going for a career in medicine, you’re going to have horrible, horrible days, but just know that it always gets better. It always does.