Taylor Swift's Homecoming Night
09/13/2009 AT 01:35 PM EDT
After opening the show with her hit "You Belong With Me" wearing a high school band uniform that she ripped off to reveal a fringed silver and black mini, the country superstar known for chronicling heartbreak in song stood before the sell-out crowd at Nashville's Sommet Center with a hand on her heart and bathed in a cacophony of squeals and shrieks.
"I've been waiting to say this from Nashville, Tenn., for a very, very long time: welcome to the Fearless Tour 2009!" said Swift of her first visit to Nashville as a headlining act. "Thank you for teaching me that I'm not the only girl who burns her ex-boyfriends pictures ... and that I'm not the only person who still believes in love stories."
The 19-year-old phenom, who recently topped 10 million in album sales and was named the top-selling artist in any genre last year, was clearly moved by her hometown fans, taking in a full five-minute ovation of screams before telling them, "I will never forget that for as long as I live. Thank you."
Faith Hill, wearing a black arm cast on her forearm, made a surprise appearance to duet with Taylor on a medley of Hill's hits including "This Kiss" and "The Way You Love Me." Hill's hubby Tim McGraw, namesake of Swift's first hit song, was also in the crowd.
Pal Kellie Pickler – up for best female video at Sunday night's MTV Video Music Awards – opened for Swift, tearing up in front of the Tennessee crowd after she sang her hit "I Wonder," written about her mother, who left when Pickler was a baby.