Published by Cel Manero from Global One Media, Inc.
Before becoming an international sensation and a major economic force, Taylor Swift started her career as a supporting performer, donning an Ace Frehley costume.
The renowned pop sensation, Taylor Swift, is currently dominating the music industry with her Eras tour, expected to exceed $1 billion in revenue – surpassing the annual GDP of Samoa. However, there was a time in 2009 when Swift was merely a supporting act.
During the Escape Together World Tour headlined by country star Keith Urban, Swift joined as a support act for nine shows. The tour, spanning 69 dates and reaching only three of the world’s 195 countries, had its share of playful antics as is customary among touring bands.
On August 8, 2009, in Kansas City, MO, at the 18,000-capacity Sprint Center, Swift concluded her 10-song set, marking the end of her stint on the tour. Urban followed with a performance that included covers of Bo Diddley’s “Who Do You Love?” and Journey’s “Open Arms” alongside his own hits. The climax occurred during Urban’s rendition of “Kiss A Girl” – a US top three hit earlier that year – when Swift and her band surprised everyone by crashing the stage dressed as Kiss, adding a memorable twist to the tour’s finale.
This is no casual incursion. The pop tricksters are decked out in full regalia, featuring face paint, platform boots, extravagant wigs, and form-fitting pants. Swift has embraced the persona of Ace Frehley, meticulously replicating the custom hair, Spaceman make-up, and what appears to be an officially licensed Love Gun costume, obtainable from the Kiss Replicas website.
The musicians remain on stage throughout the remainder of the song, joyfully mimicking and emulating Kiss’s iconic stage presence. Swift, in the midst of the performance, takes off her wig towards the end, tossing her hair – perhaps a playful gesture to assure the audience that, indeed, it is her beneath the elaborate disguise.
This wasn’t Swift’s initial venture into the realm of hard rock; the preceding year, she made an appearance with Def Leppard on CMT’s widely acclaimed TV show Crossroads. The show, known for pairing country music stars with artists from different genres, featured Swift and her band collaborating with Joe Elliott and his team on 11 songs. The setlist included Def Leppard classics such as “Photograph,” “Hysteria,” “When Love And Hate Collide,” “Pour Some Sugar On Me,” “Love,” and “Two Steps Behind.”
Reflecting on the experience, Joe Elliott shared with Classic Rock, “People were looking at us like we had three heads when we announced we were going to do this TV show with Taylor Swift. The point is to get two extremely opposite artists performing on it… We just saw it as an opportunity to do something different. And it was phenomenal fun.”