Taylor Swift Fans in Argentina Have Camped Out in Tents for Five Months in Order to Be Front Row at the Eras Tour

That is even more difficult than it sounds. Our last five months in North America were filled with balmy weather, but the June-July-August period is winter in Buenos Aires, with lows in the 40s.

Not too long ago I heard someone proclaim confidently, “There will never be another Beatles,” but this lady seems to be The Chosen One. Swift is the first musician to achieve billionaire status “solely based on her songs and performances”, according to Forbes.

Lord knows why.

I suppose I’m not the right age or gender to grasp the reason for her immense popularity.

36 thoughts on “Taylor Swift Fans in Argentina Have Camped Out in Tents for Five Months in Order to Be Front Row at the Eras Tour

  1. I was a teenager during the 1980s and used to listen to Top-40 radio stations. But by the 1990s I had pretty much transitioned to listening to “classic rock” stations. Fast forward to today and I know very little about the music released in this century. I hardly ever listen to the radio anymore. When I listen to music today, it’s almost always either MP3s I ripped from my CDs after buying my first iPod or from a YouTube video. If I am home and feel like listening to music, I usually start playing a YouTube video with music from the 1970s or 1980s or a collection of classic rock songs. All I know about Taylor Swift is that she writes songs about ex-boyfriends and is extremely popular. When her Eras concert film reaches a streaming service, I’ll probably watch it and might even like it. But even if I do become a fan, I guarantee you will never find me camping out to get tickets to one of her concerts.

  2. All the old farts – and believe me I’m one of you – saying they don’t get “pop” music or say it’s unappealing because of its simplicity are completely forgetting the fact that the Beatles WERE the Taylor Swift of their generation when they broke on the scene and really hit popularity.

    “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” “Can’t Buy Me Love” “Love Me Do” “She Loves You (yeah,yeah, yeah)” – if you don’t call those cheesy pop songs your fooling yourself. Are they catchy, well, written, and enjoyable? Absolutely. Did the Beatles have more to say as they got older? Of course. Brian Wilson was much the same… started out with pop songs about girls and surfing and cars but evolved. You don’t get Taylor Swift because you have chosen not to get it just as the parents of the Beatles fans chose not to get it. You’re entitled to your opinion of course but millions of fans (as well as her contemporaries) think you’re wrong.
    Go look for the clip of Dave Grohl taking about singing with Taylor at a party at Paul McCartney’s house if you want some insight into her talents.

    1. I never used the term “simplicity”.

      On the contrary I see a legion of very talented people working very hard to create a highly manicured product.

      I wouldn’t say she’s talentless but I don’t see what makes her deserving beyond a willingness to partake in severely disciplined publicity.

  3. She’s a genius-lvl songwriter, she’s smart, kind, savvy. And on top of it all, she’s a pretty good singer and attractive to many ppl.

    But honestly, she’s a generational songwriting talent. Paul Simon, John Lennon. That strata.

    1. I don’t know about her songwriting, but I otherwise agree with what you wrote, and many other experts agree about her songwriting.

      But the fact that she’s only a “pretty good singer” is what makes her success so puzzling to people like me, who only have a casual familiarity with her, because her so-so vocal talent is the part we see.

      That said, I like the fact that she has so much influence, because she and I believe in pretty much the same things, and she has the ability to persuade others to her positions. Her cult can be an antidote to Trump’s cult, so she’s OK by me!

      1. Yup. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Taylor could declare herself Queen of the USA, and the Swifties would make it happen. Let’s all just be glad she’s a benevolent queen. 🤣

  4. I think Swift has tapped into the same vein as the Barbie movie. Women and girls identify with her music and the messages in them. What woman hasn’t said, or wanted to say, “We are never, never, never getting back together,” and mean it? Mothers take their daughters to see her concerts. It’s a massive untapped market.
    Add to that how she’s actually hyper-aware of how everything she does plays out in the press and internet, and manages it accordingly, and then the good things she does, like donating cash to charity in every city she visits or giving bonuses to her road crew, and you can’t help but like her.
    Then, yes, she’s incredibly beautiful. So, old perves like us enjoy looking at her and we’ll watch her social media even if we don’t like the music because, damn she looks incredibly hot in that unitard with only one leg, and has clearly worked hard on her shape (just look at the photos of her ass on this site over the years)!
    And when she on the interview shows, she comes off as humble and even slightly embarrassed to have that kind of attention, which just makes her seem that much hotter/attainable/normal/relatable.
    She really is a compete package entertainer.

    1. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t “like” her, and musicians from other genres praise her. She’s terrific. The question is, “How did she get apotheosized, while others of equal talent are still considered to be mere mortals.”

  5. I like Taylor Swift and enjoy quite a lot of her music. I also think she is much more talented musically than many of the other people who have commented here.

    In regards to a couple comments:
    1.”Using the same few chords”

    Rock music and country music: ‘three chords and the truth.’

    Pop music works in general by being simple. There is a great deal of complexity that can be made out of simplicity. 10 numbers and 44 sounds in English both lead to an infinite number of numbers and words.

    There are songs of Swift’s that show complexity like “Lover” through the use of space and emptyiness the mix, unlike so much modern music that is all compressed.

    2.”Daddy bought her way into the music industry.”

    THere are many musicians who receive a leg up whether it’s through being relatives of other musicians or music executives and none of them have become or sustained the stardom of Taylor Swift. To claim there is nothing more behind Taylor Swift than that is absurd.

    I’m not going to accuse anybody here of sexism because I don’t think that’s true, but when music critics looked down on Swift but praised Ryan Adam’s covers of her’s, when Ryan Adam’s music is at best no better than Taylor Swift’s showed a clear sexism amongst music critics. It’s likely that early critical response anyway has had an impact on some people’s views of her.

    That said, while I like her music and much prefer her to the rap/hip hop artists of today and many of the other pop artists, I also don’t think there is anything especially special about her or her music and also don’t understand why she’s in a different stratosphere than every other musical artist today.

    If it was Lord Huron in that stratosphere…

    1. “While I like her music … I also don’t think there is anything especially special about her or her music and also don’t understand why she’s in a different stratosphere than every other musical artist today.”

      That echoes my sentiments. I like her and understand why she is successful, but I don’t get why she is a phenomenon.

      Maybe that’s just a “damned kids, get off my lawn” attitude on my part. I suppose my parents probably said something similar about the Beatles, and their parents probably thought that skinny singer from Hoboken was just another crooner.

      Other musicians that I respect praise Swift’s uncanny ability as a songwriter, but I’m not able to appreciate that. I don’t have either the expertise or the familiarity with her catalog.

      1. I also don’t know anyone who thinks Ed O’Neil was the star of Married With Children. Except, he was.

  6. I am entirely the wrong generation to be a ‘Swifty’ and arguably the wrong gender (although presumably she does have some male fans), but I recognize her musical talent, as well as her business acumen and hard work. And I am not even generally a huge fan of pop music of any type, but do occasionally find myself enjoying hers. My wife, although also being of the wrong generation, IS a big fan, so the music gets regular play on our stereo system.

    1. I think she’s great, and certainly easy on the eyes, but I don’t get what makes her a phenomenon while other equally or more talented artists are “merely” successes. I can understand appreciating her, but not worshiping her.

      Then again, I guess there are some things man is not meant to understand, like the suffering of innocents, the nature of the divine, and the popularity of Timothée Chalamet.

      1. Hmm. Well, what else can I say other than, “Yes. Exactly.” You hit the nail on the head. There are a lot of things the several of us here were not meant to understand. Like, Brian Greene’s little opening skit explaining Einstein’s field equation over & over to a dog. Somehow the dog continues to miss the point.

      2. And do you understand why Trump is so popular? Cults defy logic. Most people aren’t critical thinkers in many areas. There is something in the human psyche that makes so many people vulnerable to cults of all kinds. Just look at human history.

        1. I think I understand why Trump is so popular.

          First, he is the first major party politician to fully appeal to poorly educated white Americans.

          For generations, blue collar white people have voted Democratic because the Democrats supported their unions and financial needs while Republicans were too timid to appeal to their racist and anti-Semitic grievances.

          But all of those votes for all of those years went to Democratic politicians that they despised, that they viewed as giving away the country to immigrants and non-whites. Those votes went to cultural snobs who wanted to tear down their monuments, and tell them how to think and speak. There was a lot of pent-up grievance, and civilized Republicans like Romney and McCain couldn’t really tap into that, except obliquely.

          Trump changed all that. He ridiculed the elite, using the same coarse language as the disaffected and uneducated. He said the quiet parts out loud. He stuck it to the libs. “Let’s ban all these Muslims until we figure out what is going on.” “Let’s build a wall and keep these dad-gum furriners out of here.” “The tiki-torch racists chanting ‘Jews will not replace us’ are very fine people.”

          Second, he came along at the right time – the age of social media. 35 years ago the Trump phenomenon would not have been possible. The major networks would have given him little air time. There would have been no Twitter to spread his gospel. There would have been no internet for his supporters to reinforce one another’s beliefs and to plan accordingly.

          Third, he entered the political fray as a major celebrity with no political history, therefore untainted by the stigma of previous compromises and failures in the political arena.

          Fourth, his game show gave many voters the sense that he possessed uncanny authority and acumen.

          All four parts had to come together for the cult to cohere. The leader had to be somebody famous with a reputation for leadership. The leader could not be tainted by previous political failures, thus allowing him to maintain an aura of omniscience. The leader had to speak powerfully to poor white grievance. There had to be a way for the leader’s message to spread quickly and widely. Take away any of the four and there is no cult.

          And then fifth (give the devil his due), he is a master con artist.

          1. So if it’s all those poor whites…how to explain this?…. A new poll by The New York Times and Siena College found that 22 percent of Black voters in six of the most important battleground states said they would support former President Donald J. Trump in next year’s election.

          2. Not relevant to the point.

            Those are not members of the cult. Those are people who might vote for Trump, or might not, given certain circumstances or policies. Such a group has been there all along.

            By definition, members of the cult are those who will vote for Trump, no matter what he does or says or is convicted of.

            The Trump cult appears to be about a third of total voters, maybe a little less, so that group alone is not enough to elect him, but they certainly make a massive difference. That group is what has transformed the American electorate. When LBJ was elected in 1964, blue color voters preferred him six-to-one over Goldwater. That group now prefers Trump two to one. That is a massive shift.

            ————

            As for the non-cultists …

            Assume Trump needs to be about even in the popular vote in order to win. His cultists give him about 30%. That means he needs 20 out of every 70 non-cultists, or 29% of non-cultists, to pull even. He has been running just short of that among non-white voters, for example. He pulled 26 or 27% of the non-white vote in 2020 and 27% of the LGBTQ vote. I am assuming that is a fair representation of his support among non-cultists. Raise that 27% just a little bit and he would have had enough to win the election.

            If he can hold on to 22% of the black vote, as you suggested, that would very likely put him over the top, because he won only some 12% of the black vote in 2020. That additional 10% of the black vote represents two million voters. Take two million 2020 voters from the Biden column and move them to the Trump column, and you probably have Trump victories in some of those battleground states that he barely lost.

            His cultists will not desert him, so the entire 2024 popular vote hinges on which way the non-cultists go. Right now, as indicated by the poll you cited, he’s probably running a bit better with non-cultists than he did in 2020. Corroborating that, the nationwide polls show him in a dead heat with Sleepy Joe overall, possibly even a little ahead, compared to his 4.5 point loss in 2020. (And he’s ahead in several battleground states in the most recent polls!)

          3. But why would people in a group who he disparages vote for him if they are not cultists? I’d never vote for someone who disparages whatever group I identified with…

          4. Malaise. There is a substantial anti-Biden vote out there. The majority of voters feel the country is on the wrong track. I guess about 20% of all voters feel that Trump is evil, but the lesser of two evils.

            The recent “battleground states” polls show that Trump loses by a substantial amount (48 to 40) against an unnamed Democrat, but is ahead of President Train-boy by four. Similarly, an unnamed Republican defeats Biden 52-36!

            Those numbers against “unnamed” candidates never hold when a name is added, but the point is that Trump does better against an unnamed Democrat than Biden does against an unnamed Republican. There’s just a strong anti-Biden sentiment.

            Among people who support neither candidate, the votes are exactly split when the follow-up question is: “If you have no other choice, which will you vote for?” In other words, in a head-to-head race, Trump picks up voters like my girlfriend, who despises Trump as a human being but is willing to vote for him as President because she sees Biden as a typical Democrat overspender who is bad for the country, not to mention a doddering old fool who will probably die and leave Kamala Harris in the White House. She will simply vote for whoever runs against Biden, even the despised Trump, but if Trump were to run against just about anyone else, even liberal types, she might vote (D).

      3. Unlike most of the other old farts on this thread, I work in the music industry and have actually been to a Taylor Swift concert. A friend in the biz gave us VIP seats to her “Reputation” tour. My reaction was that she’s certainly talented, she works hard on stage, she’s very pretty and she’s a genius at marketing and social media fan service. But I’ve never seen so much money lavished on production for such a mediocre collection of songs.

        As for the idea that she’s a genius songwriter on the level of Lennon & McCartney or Paul Simon, that’s just insane. She’s 33. By that age, Lennon & McCartney had written the entire Beatles catalog, plus released half a dozen solo LPs each, including “Imagine” and “Band on the Run.” Paul Simon had written the entire Simon & Garfunkel catalog, released two classic solo albums and was about to release “Still Crazy After All These Years.” Bob Dylan was all the way up to “Planet Waves” and about to release “Blood on the Tracks.” Joni Mitchell had released eight classic albums, including “Blue,” “Ladies of the Canyon” and “Court and Spark.” And Jim Morrison had co-written most of the Doors catalog and was already dead. Taylor has a lot of disposable pop hits, but nothing that can stand next to that body of work.

        1. Very enlightening analysis. So how do you explain her cult-like following? Pure marketing genius?

  7. I get really enjoying music, song or artist. Same goes with all artists or writers, actors, athlete’s. But have never could understand this fanatical side fandom! I’ve met quite a few famous people and for the most part after a minute I didn’t even want to have a conversation with them and I separated as soon as practical because for the most part we had no common interests or they were just pukes (as my dad would say) I can think of a few exceptions. when we had a common interest that wasn’t them or we had opposing views on something. I ran into Kate Capshaw at the pool at Treasure Island in Vegas. Mid 90’s and her tits still looked great in a swimsuit. I was hitting on her and she was receptive. (I was young and in good shape) I enjoyed her movies in the 80’s but it was because of her MILF bod and hormones.

    I get rooting for your favorite team but I don’t get trashing the place if they lose. Sure it’s disappointing but it’s doesn’t matter (unless you bet you life savings on it) I even get going to one of the cons and dressings up as a character. But this waiting in line for days let alone months is just sad. (if you a kid then overnight with your friends is understandable as I did for concert tickets my girlfriend wanted)

    1. Let’s see…..Kate Capshaw married Steven Spielberg in 1991, presumably before your story took place. So she was a married woman, not just married to anyone but to Steven Spielberg (who she famously stole from Amy Irving).

      And yet she was receptive to you coming on to her? Hmmm……seems suspect to me.

  8. Never heard a single one of her songs & probably never will. All I know is that someone who apparently can only write about past relationships or crushes, using the same few chords, would seem to be extremely limited & shallow. But those are the qualities it takes to become a billionaire, I guess.

    1. Ross Perot was the poster-child for There’s No Such Thing as the necessary or sufficient conditions to be a billionaire.

  9. I’m not a big fan of her music, but lemme play devil’s advocate for a sec. Her tunes are catchy, her backing is effective mood setting, & it works well with the tune. Beatles lyrics are often cryptic, but hers are transparent, if only to her die-hard fans, because they’re tied to her bio in some way. Which her fans follow diligently, not to mention, in many ways identify with.

    Your mention of the target demographics all by itself suffices to make a mockery of Forbes’ ludicrous claim that her draw is “solely based” on her songs & performances. Her fans see Taylor’s life story as a lode star. That’s why so many of her songs directly reference that subject. Also why Swift & Kelce makes so much of a splash. I don’t think rando movie buffs had nearly that kind of personal investment in the pairing of Pitt & Paltrow.

    1. What Forbes means by their comment is that her billions were achieved without some other source of income besides her own music. Three other musicians are on their billionaire list. Rihanna got there with the help of her clothing lines. Jimmy Buffett got there with resorts. Jay-Z got there with all sorts of outside businesses.

      1. Thanks. I got that. OTOH, Paul Newman & Harrison Ford think it’s shit being an actor, even a famous one. Life taught them a lesson: the not-the-talents can get the lion’s share of money with none of all the crap. As Craig T. Nelson said of the unfairness that he gets to drive racing cars with nothing like the talent of the rich but still far poorer Indy winners and the rest. He said nothing stops you. If you wanna do the same, go ahead. Get your own damn TV show. Well, I loathe that about Newman & Ford.

        I once mentioned to a friend a tidbit about some celebrity by a link to Phun. His first reaction was to express surprise, asking me, “Hey, is that Emma Watson in the banner?” I said, “Yup.” We then had a brief exchange & agreed, she’s overrated. He can’t understand why anyone thinks she’s all that. Of course, I don’t think that at all. I like her looks.

        There are times when I think Pike & Winstead don’t look all that, either. I’ve internalized that what I can only see sometimes is other people’s takeaway. It’s like that with Watson, too. She’s a freckly next door neighbor’s kid who occasionally cleans up real nice. Still, I’ve come off a few of her early post-Potter roles hypnotized that she’s really pretty. Both things are equally true.

        Forbes is one of the purveyors of biz news in which a staple is reporting what just happened in the market by attributing the cause to a “market sentiment.” This is total bullshit. But it’s good business, because the consumers of their product want insight: Things have to make sense. Things that don’t make sense are unacceptable risks.

        But things are what they are. If we don’t understand why they are, then they’re incomprehensible to us. That’s it, sometimes. Just fish, or cut bait. It’s a free country.

        1. But aren’t Newman and Ford right? Who makes more money, the stars (or the writers/directors/etc) or the money-men behind the production? I guess the starts and the others do if the film is a flop, but the financiers do the rest of the time. See Disney for proof (although I guess they have had a run of flops lately).

          As I understand it, the same thing is true of another field of entertainment, professional sport. The team owners are the rich people. And they get richer by getting the public to pay for for their stadiums. The Wisconsin Legislature just approved spending $545 million on repairs for the Brewer’s stadium, for instance.

          As for Craig T Nelson, whoever thought “fairness” was a concept that applies to who does and does not achieve great wealth in America? The only time that would make sense to me is in cases where someone is cheated out of their money, like Philo Farnsworth and television and RCA. Otherwise, it’s a crapshoot. Fairness is a concept that would be better applied to tax rates on income and property.

          I am sorry if I have misunderstood your whole point, MyKey, because I do that sometimes.

  10. I find pop music baffling generally.

    Sometimes something will bubble to the surface and I think that’s pretty cool.

    And then there’s cringey sociopaths who can’t sing who’s daddy bought her way into the music industry.

    1. I must pile on and add that maybe some of these poptarts actually
      *can* sing but we’ll never know with everything autotuned until it sounds like smooth buffed aluminum. Anything to make it sound less like humans were involved in making music.

      Christ, I lived through disco once already, that was more than enough.

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