While fans and detractors are still in a heated debate over Taylor Swift's Grammy performance on Sunday night, Scott Borchetta, CEO of Swift's label Big Machine Records, is defending the Album of the Year winner's shaky vocals.
"She is the voice of this generation," Borchetta told The Associated Press of his artist, who won four Grammys on Sunday night. "She speaks directly to [her fans], and they speak directly back to her. This is not 'American Idol.' This is not a competition of getting up and seeing who can sing the highest note. This is about a true artist and writer and communicator. It's not about that technically perfect performance.
"It's that classic thing that critics do of building something up and then wanting to tear it down," he continued, noting that the criticism over the singer's duet with Stevie Nicks has become "just over the top."
Borchetta blames Swift's pitch problems on a technical issue that hadn't occurred during rehearsals. "We had a volume problem in the ear. So, she was concerned that she wasn't able to hear everything in the mix," he explained. "That's just part of live TV. ... So you're going to have difficulties on occasion. Unfortunately, on one of the biggest stages, we did have a technical issue. She couldn't hear herself like she had in rehearsal."
Borchetta added that even if critics aren't willing to forgive Swift for her public misstep, her fans are more than willing to overlook it. He pointed to her sold-out Fearless tour, which resumes next month, as proof.
"Am I going to ask [critics] to turn their heads? No, I don't need them to," he said. "If you haven't seen her live performance, you're welcome to come out as my guest to a Taylor Swift show and experience the whole thing, because it's amazing. You can see her in her element. There's a reason tickets are selling like they are."
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