Taylor Swift delivered her first live performance of the year at the Grammy Awards on Sunday night when she took to the stage to sing a medley of songs from her Grammy-nominated album folklore. As she revealed a few days before the show, Swift decided to perform alongside her folklore collaborators The National’s Aaron Dessner and Jack Antonoff.
Lying on a field of faux grass as part of the whimsical fantasy stage designed for her Grammy performance, Swift sang a stripped-down version of “Cardigan,” dressed in a metallic dress (and not the chunky knit titular subject). Giving us a tour of her set, she moved on to a nearby cabin to perform “August” before ending with “Willow.”
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In a recent interview, she said, “This has been an adventure that the three of us have gone on since the very beginning of quarantine and lockdown, and we’ve only gotten to be together in the same room once, and so this is really awesome to get to be together with them again. We’re quarantining in the same house for the whole week, we’re tested every day. So it’s just really exciting honestly to play music with your collaborators. That’s something that I will never ever take for granted again.”
Swift had previously only performed one other song from folklore live, when she sang “Betty” at the 2020 Academy of Country Music Awards:
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She did perform the entire album with Dessner and Antonoff for a concert movie, currently streaming on Disney+, called the folklore: the long pond studio sessions. This was the first time the three musicians were together to play the album they’d written entirely in quarantine.
Folklore earned Swift five Grammy nominations, including her fourth nomination for Album of the Year.
When she first released the album, Swift wrote on Instagram, “Before this year I probably would’ve overthought when to release this music at the ‘perfect’ time, but the times we’re living in keep reminding me that nothing is guaranteed. My gut is telling me that if you make something you love, you should just put it out into the world. That’s the side of uncertainty I can get on board with.”
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