Taylor Swift's 1989 Concert Recap in Tampa, FL

Post-concert depression is a real thing. Nothing compares to being surrounded by 55,000 people who share the same passion for music- the energy is palpable, so when it's over, the sadness hits you like a truck. I really think Taylor Swift has the best, most energetic fans of any artist in this generation. For the Swifties who couldn’t make it to the last stop of her North American tour this Halloween, here’s a detailed recap of the MOST PERFECTEST BESTEST NIGHT EVER. 

Pulling up to Raymond James, I saw a mob of obsessed Taylor Swift fans dressed up from everything to her cats (Dr. Meredith Grey and Detective Olivia Benson), to real-life “Out Of The Woods" leaves and trees. There was a costume idea of every aspect of Taylor Swift’s life, and for every song on her 1989 album. It was hard to find people who didn’t show up in costume, but it was Halloween so it should have been required anyways! Glow up costumes. Glow up signs. And GLOW UP BRACELETS. Everywhere! After the security check, every fan was handed a bracelet that looked like this:

That’s when the real anxiousness set in because there’s so many possibilities of what this was going to be used for.

Shawn Mendes kicked the night off, and he was absolutely adorable! Just him, his pre-puberty voice and guitar stood on stage and sang multiple songs. The songs included covers of Thinking Out Loud by Ed Sheeran, and he even rapped the beginning of Lose Yourself by Eminem and KILLED it. He of course sang the song he’s most known for, Stitches, and his performance proved he’s got a really promising future as a singer. (Well he’s opening up for Taylor Swift so obviously.)

Vance Joy was the next opening act, and came out decked in a pirate costume—he thought it was a coincidence that the Pirates play at Raymond James Stadium. He came all the way from Australia for the tour, and his accent was beautiful. His band members were dressed as a banana, a penguin, and a bear (those were questionable costumes though, but that was my interpretation). I zoned out a lot of Vance Joy’s performance because I wanted Taylor to come on, so naturally I don’t have much to say. He was great, next.

Taylor Swift started the show with Welcome to New York! When the song started all 55,000 bracelets lit up in blue and it was incandescent to see, they were automated to blink certain colors at specific times throughout songs. The bracelets even blinked by section too, it was such a fun idea. Taylor said she wanted to feel like she was performing for all of us as individuals, so she could see every single person in the audience instead of just a huge crowd (cliché, but I still fangirled). For Welcome to New York, she had the most eccentric background graphics of New York City, she kept the theme going for her next song which was New Romantics, one of her bonus songs on the 1989 album. I felt like I was living her life and walking the streets of New York through the opening, the screens on each side of the stage were in all black and white, and this felt like a typical Taylor concert.

But the show took a turn when revamped TayTay came out, I knew this is what would make the 1989 tour totally unique. Blank Space is when Taylor brought out her new, edgy, bada** side—throughout part of the song, a chant of her saying “Tampa” was streaming, as she strut the stage with a club and shirtless backup dancers. She re-created the vibe of the Blank Space music video, the crazy ex-girlfriend. It sounded like she was brainwashing the audience and it was really awesome (also slightly creepy in a wonderful way). Our bracelets lit up red and she was super seductive (OK- as seductive as Taylor Swift can get), so still awkward, but it worked and screamed girl power. I loved it.

She hinted there would be multiple surprises throughout the night, and said she was happy to be ending her tour in Tampa, Florida and it would be a night she would never forget. Although, I’m sure she said that to every stop she’s been to, BUT LET ME JUST FEEL SPECIAL.

She kept the sexy-crazy feel going as she performed the first throwback of the night, I Knew You Were Trouble. Bracelets still blinked red. I Wish You Would followed, and then between her costume changes there were brief intermissions. Videos of her squad being interviewed made me even more jealous I’m not Taylor’s BFF. Taylor’s best friends, including but not limited to, Selena Gomez, longtime friend Abigail Anderson, Karlie Kloss, Jaime King, Lily Aldridge, Cara Delevingne, and the Haim sisters, were asked a series of questions about their friendship and experiences with Taylor, their videos were played a couple of times when Taylor was changing for the next song. S’cute, s’cute. (Also Meredith and Olivia made apperances in some of the videos.)

Cute Taylor came back and performed How You Get The Girl, which was one of my favorite performances of the night! It started off with her talented dancers running around the stage with light up umbrellas, all you saw were the outline of them in blue, and there was a backdrop of rain. Taylor came out in a light up pink dress, and all you saw was the pink dress at certain points of the song. Genius.

I Know Places was next, the stage was full of doors and had silhouetted dancers in them, the performance had really awesome choreography. The storyline was a couple who just wants to find privacy (also there were Foxes on the screen which made me laugh). She then announced Tampa’s first surprise which was Alessia Cara who sang her hit, Here! She slayed.

Another throwback Taylor sang was Fifteen. She made this the most intimate performance, and was on a balcony over the floor seats with just her guitar. She chose to sing Fifteen because now she’s 25, and she told the audience she looks back on that time 10 years ago and learned the most from it. Acoustic Taylor always will have my heart! Here's a glimpse of what the audience looked like during that song:

While above our heads, she gave an inspirational speech (because it’s tradition). The speech was about how social media brings her closer to her fans—but the problem she has with it is she always sees hateful comments and social media being used for the wrong reasons. She told her fans not to let people who don’t know you, or don’t have anything nice to say about you, define you. And once you get rid of their negativity, you become much happier- and you’re finally clean. And obviously, she proceeded to sing Clean. *Also that wasn’t verbatim, her speech was much better*  But still, preach Taylor.

The greatest throwback was next, the song she wrote in high school sitting on her bedroom floor. Love Story is what really put Taylor on the charts and made her a recognizable singer, and she sang it as a pop remix.

After everyone was all in their feels, TAYLOR CAME OUT IN AN OLAF COSTUME AND THIS IS WHEN WE ALL FREAKED OUT. She sang Style as Olaf, and her background dancers were reindeers. It was seriously the greatest thing ever, until she made it even better and wished us a happy Halloween and said she wish Elsa was here (Idina Menzel). THEN BAM. Elsa was in the building and 55,000 of us sang Let It Go on the top of our lungs with Idina and Taylor. They ripped off their costumes like in the movie, and it was everything. EVERYTHING.

Now that I was spoiled with that Halloween treat, I anticipated Kendrick Lamar making an appearance during Bad Blood but unfortunately, it didn’t happen. It still rocked though, and so did We Are Never Getting Back Together! It brought back memories of high school break ups, good times. Thanks Tay. Speaking of love, the Enchanted/Wildest Dreams mash up Taylor performed on the piano was stunning! She managed to mix my two all time favorite TS songs together, and she did so covered in an all sparkly outfit. It was so beautiful!

All the fans wearing leaves on their faces went all out for Out Of The Woods, and the night ended with Shake It Off! Lots of fireworks and confetti, and everyones bracelets were going off in all different colors, it was an amazing night! I hope you had as much fun as I did if you went!

Now the wait begins for another album and tour, but until then, I’ll just keep re-living this one!


Photo credit:

Cover image: www.andjfhe.com

Vance Joy: www.inquisitr.com

Taylor Swift Blank Spacepalegingerbabies.tumblr.com

Taylor Swift gif: taylorswiftedit.tumblr.com

Alessia Cara and Taylor Swift: www.ew.com

Taylor Swift and Idina Menzel: www.usmagazine.com / www.thewrap.com

Taylor Swift on piano: taylorswift-news.com