In today’s world, there’s very few things that bring large groups of people together. There’s a few obvious reasons for this. A worldwide pandemic that instilled fear and discomfort into all Covid victims and Americans becoming more divided than ever before from increasingly strong opposing political and social views. However the things that do bring people together, especially in large groups, are so much more special because of their rarity.
Taylor Swift, the universally loved and multi-Award winning talented singer/songwriter is one of those aforementioned things that can bring a large group of people together. And by large, I mean over 70,000 people. Together. At the same time.
Now I know there’s a large group of people who would not consider themselves “swifties”, but when Taylor Swift sold out an entire U.S. tour (with multiple sold out nights at the same venue) of stadiums with over 70,000 attendees, I’d say she may have the majority of music fans on her side. Her tour sale statistics have shown the non-conforming fans just how impactful her presence is. I mean she physically broke Ticketmaster, one of the biggest ticket sales distribution companies IN THE WORLD. By simply underestimating her power, the volume, and time at which her very selective pre-sale tickets sold, Ticketmaster was unable to hold a general public sale for the rest of the population due to a lack of inventory. Imagine having such an impactful presence, you cause Ticketmaster to glitch and then win the lawsuit they try to pin on you!
That means myself, along with 2.5 million other people, were lucky enough to purchase presale tickets, before the dynamic pricing really even took charge and made the price unreasonable. The only thing that is hard to wrap my head around, and I am sure we will just continue to blame inflation, is that her average ticket price for her last concert, The Reputation Stadium Tour in 2018, was $279. The average ticket price for the current Eras Stadium Tour 2023 was a little less than $700. The difference is absurd and bank-breaking, but for some reason I have zero regrets. I am not ashamed, but okay with being made fun of, that I spent $519 on a single ticket. I was able to purchase three at once, so I got all three for around $1500, each $519 with taxes and those big Ticketmaster fees. NEVER have I EVER spent that amount for a concert, but as you can probably tell by now, there isn’t much I wouldn’t spend for a Taylor concert. Especially when those aforementioned tickets were floor seats only 11 rows back!
On April 15, I attended the iconic one, and only Eras Tour with my friends Elana and Alexa. And 69,998 other people! When I say, the experience will be one of the most unforgettable experiences, I am not being dramatic. It was sort of like a fever dream. Something I waited for for months, that was everything I expected it to be and more, and then was over just as quickly as it began. You’d think I’d be ready to leave after scream-singing along to a 3 hour and 15-minute performance through Taylor’s albums, but I think I could have stayed there for a consecutive 24 hours before even feeling an inch of fatigueness.
The day started out with excitement and coffee, followed by a delicious brunch and a walk around the beautiful city of Tampa. Being a Florida native for 25 years, you’d think I visit every nook and cranny of the state but I have yet to even see some of the biggest cities here! As this was my first time in Tampa my lovely friend and host, Alexa, showed us around her favorite spots and introduced us to some of her incredibly nice friends. Needing at least 2 hours to prepare for the concert and douse ourselves in all things glitter, we headed to the Venue (Raymond James Stadium, host of the 2022 SuperBowl) and beelined to take a look at our view from our seats to the stage. Knowing we were going to be close enough to Taylor Swift to see her sweat was enough excitement for the three of us. It felt like we were sitting in those seats forever prior to the start of the concert, only for it to fly by once she took the stage.
She sang every song with so much passion and heart, the goosebumps never left my limbs! Her poetically written lyrics, sung in unison by 70,000 people with programmed light-up bracelets was an absolutely mesmerizing and unforgettable moment to be a part of. Taylor claimed that the concert I attended, Tampa night 3, was the loudest crowd thus far. We screamed for her for a consecutive 1 minute and 54 seconds as she sat and smiled back at us on her grand piano. I sang along to songs I’ve heard many times and to songs I had yet to hear live. I danced along with her and the crowd and listened as she eloquently explained some meanings behind her songs before singing them. I still find myself watching videos that I took from that night, almost 3 weeks later, so I will never forget the moment in real time.
Having the time of my life!