Taylor Swift Delivers Mystical Medley at the 2021 Grammy Awards
Taylor Swift was a singing fairy in the woods during her three-song set at the 2021 Grammy Awards on Sunday night. The country and pop music superstar sang three songs from albums released in 2021.
"Cardigan" and "August" are two she brought to the stage from her Folklore album, while "Willow" is found on Evermore. The superstar was joined by Aaron Dessner of the National and Jack Antonoff for a performance that was as stunning visually as it was aurally.
A single camera focused on Swift for much of her first verse, slowly pulling back to show that she was lying down, then laying on a bed of moss. A purple and gold gown shimmered in radiant light. As cameras changed you saw she was on the roof of a small, woodsy cabin. Inside were Dessner and Antonoff, and upon joining them for the intimate trilogy, they'd find a way to step out to the forefront before the close.
At the 2021 Grammy Awards, Swift received six total nominations: in Best Song Written for Visual Media ("Beautiful Ghosts," from Cats), Album of the Year and Best Pop Vocal Album (Folklore), Song of the Year and Best Pop Solo Performance ("Cardigan") and Best Pop Duo / Group Performance ("Exile," featuring Bon Iver).
Swift has stayed busy during the COVID-19 pandemic, releasing two brand-new albums, Folklore and Evermore, in 2020 and re-recording music from her first six albums, originally released via Big Machine Label Group. On April 9, she'll share Fearless (Taylor's Version), the fully remade version of her 2008 sophomore album. As the best-selling album of 2009, it spent 11 weeks at the top of the all-genre Billboard 200, has been certified Diamond by the RIAA and is one of the best-selling albums of the 21st century.
Fearless was a hit at awards shows, too: In 2009, it was named CMA and ACM Album of the Year, as well as Favorite Country Album at the American Music Awards. At the 2010 Grammy Awards, Swift won Best Country Album and the all-genre Album of the Year honor for the record.
Swift is re-recording her BMLG catalog following her split from the label — after the completion of her original record deal, she signed with Universal Music Group in 2018 — and a very public battle over her master recordings. BMLG is now owned by celebrity talent manager Scooter Braun, whom Swift says has been a bully to her over the years. She also says that she was not notified of the label's sale ahead of time and was never given a fair chance to acquire her masters or purchase the label itself.