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Taylor Swift's Label Defends Grammy Performance

Posted by Lisa Ann Schleipfer on 02/04/2010

Country Music superstar Taylor Swift walked away with four Grammys on Sunday night, including Album of the Year and Best Country Album. Yet her less-than-stellar performance, which included the legendary Stevie Nicks, has been panned and picked by critics, overshadowing her career-changing award wins.

On Monday, Feb. 1, Swift's label head, Big Machine Records CEO Scott Borchetta, told the AP, "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."

Borchetta added, "We had a volume problem in the ear. So, she was concerned that she wasn't able to hear everything in the mix."

Later, Borchetta told The Tennessean, "The biggest message is (the critics) are not getting it," Borchetta said. "Because the facts say she is the undisputed best communicator that we've got. When she says something, when she sings something, when she feels something, it affects more people than anybody else.

"Maybe she's not the best technical singer, but she's probably the best emotional singer because everybody else who gets up there and is technically perfect, people don't seem to want more of it. … I think (the critics) are missing the whole voice of a generation that is happening right in front of them. … She's an extraordinary songwriter and her vocal performances are getting better. Everybody is not perfect on any given day. If you pick any of those artists that performed [on the Grammy Awards] I'm sure you can go online and find something where you go, 'ew.' Maybe in that moment we didn't have the best night. But in the same breath, maybe we did. And nobody is arguing with the awards.

"The critics are missing the bigger picture. This is what always happens and is the unfortunate part of the American dream, that we build these people up to watch the critics tear them down. Well, you better have more than what you've got now if you think you're going to get in the ring and fight with us. So, get in the ring."