Why Taylor Swift Picked “Miss Americana & The Heartbreak Prince” As Her Eras Opener

It’s been a long time coming.

Why Taylor Swift Picked "Miss Americana & The Heartbreak Prince" As Her Eras Tour Setlist Opening So...
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From the moment Taylor Swift announced her Eras Tour, Swifties started theorizing about what songs she’d play and what track she’d select as the opener. After all, this is her first tour in five years. It’s a big deal. While there were countless predictions, one gained significant traction because Swift had endorsed it. TikTok user @_julianabba posted a video imagining that Swift would start the show with a mashup of “Lavender Haze” and “I Think He Knows.” Swift commented on the video, “not no,” seemingly suggesting the user was onto something.

So, many concertgoers (and those who followed along at home) were surprised when Swift instead opened with “Miss Americana & the Heartbreak Prince” at her first shows in Glendale, Ariz, and again in Las Vegas the following weekend. While by no means a bad choice — the Lover song has been praised by critics for its imagery and political metaphors — it wasn’t as obvious as, say, a single off Swift’s latest album Midnights or one of the 12-time Grammy winner’s mainstream hits.

Several fans voiced their surprise at the unexpected pick. One fan called it “genius,” while another saw it as proof the Eras Tour was for serious fans who would know and love the deeper cuts.

Indeed, there are many reasons why “Miss Americana & the Heartbreak Prince” probably earned that pivotal first slot. Obviously, the pre-chorus lyric, “It’s been a long time coming,” which Swift sang before even taking the stage, is a fitting nod to the gap between tours caused by lockdowns. And remember: It was Lover Fest, specifically, that the pandemic put a stop to. So it makes sense that she’d be eager to show Lover some love.

Swift also has a personal connection with the song. She named her Netflix documentary Miss Americana, and used both the song and special to signal a new era of expression — and, well, this is the Eras Tour. What better place to celebrate a song that represents a pivotal shift for the musician?

“There are lots of little hidden messages within that song that are all pointing toward the way that she thinks and feels about politics and the United States,” co-writer Joel Little told Variety of the song in 2020. “I love that it uses a lot of classic Taylor Swift imagery, in terms of the songwriting topics of high school and cheerleaders, as a clever nod to what she’s done in the past, but tied in with a heavy political message.”

More recently, the official Taylor Nation Twitter account included “Miss Americana & the Heartbreak Prince” on a list of tracks as part of the “seven songs to get to know me” trend.

The list includes other classics like “Fearless” and “All Too Well,” further confirming that Swift holds it in very high regard.