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Disturbed’s David Draiman: “Don’t talk shit about Taylor Swift – she is for real”

Disturbed’s singer David Draiman has defended Taylor Swift in a recent concert in Illinois, stating that she was “for real”.

The incident took place at a Disturbed concert in Peoria, Illinois on January 19. The singer had brought two fathers and their respective daughters onstage, prompting Draiman to address the girls. “So, I take it [the fact] that you came to the Disturbed concert, as opposed to the Taylor Swift concert, means that your parents are raising you on rock and roll,” he asked them. “Hey, don’t forget: Taylor Swift still kicks ass.”

Draiman’s comments provoked the crowd’s disapproval as they booed the singer in response. Draiman quickly fired back, stating: “Don’t you boo her. You know what? I will stand up and applaud any pop artist that gets up on stage and sings live and plays a guitar live in front of a whole group of fucking thousands of girls and guys, young fans. Don’t talk shit about Taylor Swift. She is for real. And she’s making sure that an entire generation of new music fans understand what it means to actually play music live.”

The incident at Disturbed’s January 19 concert marks the second time Draiman has publicly defended Swift. Back in August, Draiman spoke favourably about Swift in a radio interview with Philadelphia radio station WMRR, going as far as saying he would like to collaborate with the ‘Cruel Summer’ singer.

“I think she is insanely talented. I’d love to collaborate with Taylor if she ever wanted to, on any given day,” he told the station. “I love the fact that she gets on stage in front of tens of thousands of screaming young female fans and plays a real instrument and sings live, and is the real deal.

Draiman notably has a history of defending pop stars. In the same interview with WMRR, he praised other pop stars who “do it the way that [Swift] does it”, stating: “Pink is one of them; Lady Gaga is one of them. A lot of these people are just so gifted and so great at what they do, and she’s certainly way, way, way up there.”

Earlier in 2023, he also conveyed his approval of Sam Smith in an interview with a Baltimore radio station following his Grammy performance with Kim Petras that year. “It’s taking the pop stars to be rock stars these days,” he said. “It’s, like, nobody can complain that rock is too edgy or pushes the envelope too far for mass broadcasts anymore.”

In 2022, he did something similar following Lil Nas X’s Grammy Awards performance that year. In response to a negative tweet from conservative TV host Greg Kelly, he replied: “News flash @gregkellyusa, artists have been doing things like this for decades. Not sure why it bothers you when @LilNasX does it. Don’t like it? Don’t watch.”

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