Austin’s Frank Erwin Center turned ‘Red’ on May 21, 2013 as the colossal neon lights rose above the crowd and Taylor Swift arrived on stage opening her set with ‘State Of Grace.’ She was accompanied with a seven-piece band, fourteen backup dancers and plenty of fireworks to energize her adoring audience. Seven months of planning and rehearsals went into readying for the ‘Red’ Tour and both set and costumes are outstanding. There were a total of 11 wardrobe changes and one can’t help but compare this concert to a full theater production. Swift, famous for her ‘heart on my sleeve’ narrative songs about autobiographical details relating to life and love, made it clear that she would continue to express her feelings through song and music.
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In order to connect with those in the higher tiers of the massive Frank Erwin Center, Swift performed four songs on the far end of the venue on a rising and rotating platform with only her red guitar and stool. It was during that acoustic set that Swift paused to acknowledge and ask the sold out crowd to pray for all of those affected by the Oklahoma tornado that caused devastation on Monday, May 20, 2013. Following her plea, she performed a soulful rendition of ‘Safe and Sound.’
Without the need to offer an encore, Taylor Swift performed for exactly two hours and her grand finale came when she became ringmaster of this circus-sized production of ‘We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together. ‘ Then, as magically as she appeared, Swift disappeared form the center stage bidding farewell to Austin and heading to San Antonio.
It’s no surprise that one of the hottest tours of 2013 is Taylor Swift‘s ‘Red’ Tour. On May 19, 2013 Billboard Music Awards, Taylor Swift and her 3.7 million-selling “Red” dominated by taking home eight trophies. Swift was honored as Top Artist, Top Female Artist and Top Billboard 200 artist in ceremonies held at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Swift received the night’s top honor, Artist of the Year, as well as Top Billboard 20 Artist, Top Female Artist, Top Country Artist and Top Digital Songs Artist. “Red” was Tops in the Billboard 200 and country albums categories; her ‘We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together’ was named Top Country Song.
Two acts preceded Taylor Swift in Austin, first was hot country duo Florida Georgia Line. Brantley Gilbert and Jake Owen ramped up the audience by singing ‘Cruise and their new single ‘Get Your Shine On’ where Swift fans sang along to every line. British singer/songwriter, Ed Sheeran was the evening’s main supporting act and lit up the Austin stage with his magnificent one-man show. After a six-song set, which included hits ‘Lego House,’ and ‘The A Team’, Ed Sheeran has doubtlessly won over a myriad of new Austinite admirers with his dynamic performance. , Ed Sheeran is no stranger to Austin as he performed to a sold out Stubb’s back on January 19, 2013.
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