The 2009 American Music Award nominees were announced this month, and I admit I wasn’t surprised at all to see Taylor Swift take the lead with a whopping six nods! Swift’s nominations include Artist of the Year; Favorite Country Album (for Fearless); Favorite Female Pop or Rock Artist; and Favorite Female Country Artist – no small feat for a teen country artist.
Before you go knockin’ her off as another flashy trend that will quickly fade, I encourage you to consider what makes her stand out from the crowd. First, she writes her own songs. Second, she plays guitar (some piano) while singing the notes like a songbird — as if she finds true pleasure in every single beat. Third, she isn’t some bitter, parent hating, provocative dressing, attention seeking unhappy child of a dysfunctional family — at least she doesn’t sell herself as one. She actually comes across as a grateful, talented young woman who has worked hard to achieve her dreams. Fourth, she puts on an incredible, power-packed concert from start to finish.
I wasn’t always such an avid Swift fan, but I became convinced of her extraordinary talent when our family traveled to Little Rock recently to treat our 11-year old daughter to her very first concert. Emily adores Taylor Swift, and we all prefer her music to that of many other teen bands; but I had no idea how much we would all enjoy the concert. Now, I’m the first to say that Swift certainly deserves the 6 AMA nominations, and we’ll all be rooting for her to take home the goods on November 22.
But the best thing about seeing Swift perform live with my daughter was the message that Emily took home. Swift said everything a girl that age needs to hear — all without preaching.
Boys? “They shouldn’t do mean things.”
Popularity? “When you’re an adult, if you have anything unique about you, you’re lucky!”
Loneliness? “I guess it doesn’t matter that I didn’t have any friends in Jr. High, when I get to play to a sold out crowd in Little Rock tonight!”
The list goes on and on. The show was honestly (and surprisingly) the best concert I’ve ever seen…and I’ve seen a lot. I’m just an old, frumpy mom, and even I came out of the arena feeling a surge of Girl Power! When I asked Emily what she learned from the concert, she summed it up best: “I can be anything I want to be, and I shouldn’t let boys be mean to me.”
Thanks Taylor! We can’t wait to see your next tour!