Thousands of Taylor Swift fans descended on SoFi Stadium this week in their Eras tour best. Some donned fringe dresses and cowboy boots, clearly in their “Fearless” era. Others sported all-black outfits and fishnet stockings, entering their “Reputation” era. Plenty were decked out in pastels and rainbows with glitter in the shape of a heart around their eyes, embracing their “Lover” era.

Aparna Mathur wore a black T-shirt and pink tulle skirt — at first glance, a rare but possible dual homage to Swift’s stylistically opposed sixth and seventh studio albums. But the gold, cursive print on her custom tee spelled out a different chapter altogether: her “mom era.”

“That’s my favorite era,” said Mathur, who attended Monday’s concert with her 9-year-old daughter, Suraiya.

The 43-year-old attorney from Orange County was among countless mothers who made the pilgrimage to Inglewood with their daughters. Some were longtime Swifties eager to share their love of the “Midnights” artist with the next generation. Others, like Mathur, only recently boarded the Swift train thanks to their daughters’ infectious enthusiasm for her music.

For many, it was a little bit of both.

“The earlier eras like ‘Speak Now’ and ‘Fearless,’ I was really young, so … [my mom] played those albums for me,” said 14-year-old Sydney, who arrived at SoFi on Monday with her mother, Luchanna Hall. “I showed her ‘Folklore’ and her later albums.”

When asked who introduced whom to Swift’s catalog, Andrea Bendzick, 49, proudly proclaimed, “I introduced my daughter.” Bendzick first saw Swift live during the Fearless tour, then took her now-18-year-old daughter, Maddie, to see the “Enchanted” singer during her “Speak Now” era.

The gift of Swift is something that Maddie appreciates. She said that listening to the Grammy winner’s music helped build a generational bridge of common interest with her mom.

“Taylor is one of the only artists that I feel has accurately described what it means to grow up as a woman,” Maddie said.

“Having my mom introduce me to her at such a young age sort of helped me grow through music and just helped me connect to something that we could both relate to.”

Maddie’s 21-year-old cousin Olivia, who was there with her mom, Mildred Bay, echoed that sentiment.

“Almost every single one of Taylor’s songs is so relatable for every woman,” Olivia shared. “It’s just very cool, especially in this environment, to see how many people outside of our family are also connected to Taylor through her music.”

Bay, who came down from Washington state to attend her first Swift concert, said she was excited to share this moment with her daughter and would follow her daughter’s lead on how to conduct herself. “I’m just along for the ride,” she said.

Bendzick, the Orange County native whose favorite Swift era is “Red,” knew she would introduce her daughter to Swift at an early age because she understood the importance of having a positive role model for her child to obsess over.

“If your child, especially your daughter, is going to have a role model, she’s gonna take it very, very seriously,” Bendzick said.

“It’s something that I’ve noticed as a mom. You’re very aware all the time of who’s influencing your kids and the messages they’re sending. And I think she sends a very strong message, especially to young girls.”

Hall also hailed Swift as an “inspirational” figure and “great role model” for her children. When her daughters were suddenly out of school because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Swift and the three albums she released in rapid succession during that time were there for them.

“She just seems to be a positive reinforcement to women,” the 47-year-old finance professional observed, “and we think that’s so important, especially raising two daughters.”

Multiple mothers credited Swift’s songs with helping them engage in meaningful conversations with their daughters.

Mathur recalled the moment her daughter asked her about Swift’s pro-LGBTQ+ anthem “You Need to Calm Down.” The music video for the 2019 single — which celebrated prominent LGBTQ+ figures from Laverne Cox to RuPaul — marked a turning point for Swift, who had previously been more guarded about her personal values.

The song signaled a turning point for the Mathur family as well.

“It was [Suraiya’s] first time understanding gay pride and people who are different,” Mathur told The Times. “That song really helped us talk about it as a mother and daughter, and she understands everything, so I thought it was … a really good introduction.”

Suraiya — who wore face jewels and a “Be Happy” friendship bracelet to Monday’s show — said she had already learned about the LGBTQ+ community from her dad. But discussing the themes of “You Need to Calm Down” with her mom helped her “understand it better.”

“What did you say to me [at the time]?” Mathur asked her daughter. “You said anyone can love anyone?”

“Yeah!” Suraiya said confidently, before giggling and adding, “I don’t remember.”

Another Swift song with a message to impart, “The Man,” helped Linda Deitch educate her 9-year-old daughter, Eden, about issues related to gender discrimination. The 53-year-old attorney from Culver City and her daughter also discussed Swift’s decision to rerecord her back catalog in an effort “to gain control again over things that she felt had been taken away from her by somebody.”

“We talked about … how [Swift] wondered if she would have been treated differently in her profession and in her life if she had been a man, and why she might think that,” Deitch said.

In the weeks, days and hours leading up to Monday’s show, moms and daughters across California bonded by jamming to Swift’s Eras tour set list, shopping for concert attire and then dressing to the nines for the special occasion.

Rylan and Evelin, a pair of young fans aged 9 — “almost 10” — showed off their pink tutus, bejeweled faces and Swift-themed friendship bracelets as they looked forward to enjoying their joint birthday present and “first concert ever.”


Ever,” Evelin confirmed.

The Eras tour was also a first concert experience for Suraiya, who had compiled “a whole list” of supplies she needed for a perfect night. Mathur was happy to provide her daughter with “whatever she wanted.”

“I just wanted to make it special for her,” Mathur said as they approached the stadium entrance. “I hope it is.”


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