Most who know me know I am a fan of the Tiny Desk concert series. I have been a subscriber for years now. It has been a great way to see some of my favorite artist in a more intimate live setting. It is also a great way to discover new artist, as I almost never skip an episode.
This week NPR had some new girl on there some of ya’ll may nor may not have heard of: Taylor Swift, or T Swift. I think she goes back and forth hoping one catches on. Seems like a sound strategy. I’m rooting for the kid and hope she makes it someday.
In all seriousness, I get accused of hating anything that is popular. I get where people get this impression, even when I disagree. I look at more as being comfortable enough to form my own opinion and give voice to that opinion, perception of me be damned.
My counterpoints to the “hates everything popular” are my genuine fondness for Justin Timberlake and Apple. I’m at the point where I’m willing to add Taylor Swift to my defense.
I first started to appreciate her songwriting thanks to the work of another unlikely member of Swift Nation–Ryan Adams. Adams covered Swift’s entire 1989 album back in 2015. In doing so, listening required you to actually pay attention to the songwriting, stripping away the pageantry. Case in point: The set opener in this one, The Man, is not dissimilar to the message in Jason Isbell’s White Man’s World.
Swift seems to often gets accused of being propped up and fake nice. But in watching her turn Tiny Desk into an impromptu Story Tellers episode, that misconception is easily dispelled if you can remove the preconceptions you probably already have. She jokes in the beginning about “It’s just me. There’s no dancers, unfortunately,” That quickly becomes a positive. And that is why I fully believe Swift’s work will age well, once the “she is popular, she must suck” guys like I get accused of being no longer have the pageantry as a mockery target.
Now then, here is a breakup song:
Watch Taylor Swift’s Tiny Desk Concert.