Taylor Alison Swift born December 13, 1989 is an American country pop singer-songwriter, musician and actress.
In 2006, she released her debut single "Tim McGraw", then her self-titled debut album, which was subsequently certified multi-platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America and was nominated for the Best New Artist award at 50th Grammy Awards. In November 2008, Swift released her second album, Fearless, and the recording earned Swift four Grammy Awards, including the Album of the Year, at the 52nd Grammy Awards. Fearless and Taylor Swift finished 2008 at number-three and number-six respectively, with sales of 2.1 and 1.5 million. Fearless topped the Billboard 200 for 11 non-consecutive weeks;no album has spent more time at No. 1 since 2000. Swift was named Artist of the Year by Billboard Magazine in 2009. Swift released her third album Speak Now on October 25, 2010 which sold 1,047,000 copies in its first week.
In 2008, her albums sold a combined four million copies, making her the best-selling musician of the year in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan. Forbes ranked Swift 2009's 69th-most powerful celebrity with earnings of $18 million and 2010's 12th-most powerful celebrity with earnings of $45 million. Swift was ranked the 38th Best Artist of the 2000–10 decade by Billboard. In January 2010 Nielsen SoundScan listed Swift as the most commercially successful country (or country/pop crossover) artist in music history with over 33 million digital tracks sold. As of February 2011[update], she has sold over 19 million albums and 33 million singles worldwide.
* 1 Early life
* 2 Music career
o 2.1 2000–05: Musical beginnings
o 2.2 2006–10: Taylor Swift, Fearless, and 2009 MTV VMA incident
o 2.3 2010–present: Speak Now
* 3 Songwriting style
* 4 Other work
o 4.1 Acting
o 4.2 Cover model and recognition
o 4.3 Merchandise
o 4.4 Philanthropy
* 5 Personal life
* 6 Filmography
* 7 Discography
* 8 Awards and nominations
* 9 References
* 10 External links
Swift was born on December 13, 1989 to Andrea Gardner (née Finlay), a homemaker, and Scott Kingsley Swift, a stockbroker. She was born and raised in Wyomissing, Pennsylvania. Her maternal grandmother, Majorie Finlay, was an opera singer. Swift has a younger brother, Austin.
When she was in fourth grade, she won a national poetry contest with a three-page poem entitled "Monster In My Closet". When Swift was 10, a computer repairman showed her how to play three chords on a guitar, sparking her interest in learning the instrument. Afterwards, she wrote her first song, "Lucky You". She began writing songs regularly and used it as an outlet to help her with her pain from not fitting in at school. She was a victim of bullying, and often wrote songs to express her emotions. Swift also started performing at karaoke contests, festivals, and fairs around her hometown. When she was 12, she devoted an entire summer to writing a 350-page novel, which remains unpublished. first major show was a well-received performance at the Bloomsburg Fair. Swift attended Hendersonville High School but was subsequently homeschooled for her junior and senior years. In 2008, she earned her high-school diploma.
Swift's greatest musical influence is Shania Twain. Her other influences include LeAnn Rimes, Tina Turner, Dolly Parton, and her grandmother. Although her grandmother was a professional opera singer Swift's tastes always leaned more toward country music. In her younger years, she developed a love for Patsy Cline and Dolly Parton. She also credits the Dixie Chicks for demonstrating the impact you can make by "stretching boundaries".
2000–05: Musical beginnings
At age 11, Swift made her first trip to Nashville, hoping to obtain a record deal by distributing a demo tape of her singing with karaoke songs. She gave a copy to every label in town, but was rejected. After Swift returned to Pennsylvania, she was asked to sing at the U.S. Open tennis tournament, where her rendition of the national anthem received much attention. Swift started writing songs and playing 12-string guitar when she was 12. Swift began to regularly visit Nashville and wrote songs with local songwriters. By the time she was 14, her family decided to move to an outlying Nashville suburb.
When Swift was 15, she rejected RCA Records because the company wanted to keep her on an artist development deal.After performing at Nashville's songwriters' venue, The Bluebird Café, she caught the attention of Scott Borchetta, who signed her to his newly formed record label, Big Machine Records. At age 14, she became the youngest staff songwriter ever hired by the Sony/ATV Tree publishing house.
Swift performing at a café with a koa wood guitar in June 2006. Swift continues to perform with custom-made Taylor guitars.
2006–10: Taylor Swift, Fearless, and 2009 MTV VMA incident
Swift released her debut single, "Tim McGraw", in mid-2006, reaching #6 on Billboard magazine's Hot Country Songs chart. Her self-titled debut album was later released on October 24, 2006. high on the Billboard 200, the album sold 39,000 copies during its first week. It peaked at #1 on the Billboard Top Country Albums and #5 on the Billboard 200. Her debut album spent eight consecutive weeks at the top of the Top Country Albums chart and remained at the top for 24 out of 91 weeksThe only other country artists this decade to achieve the number-one sales position for 20 weeks or more are The Dixie Chicks and Carrie Underwood.[The music video for "Tim McGraw" won Swift an award for Breakthrough Video of the Year at the 2007 CMT Music Awards.Her pursuit of country music stardom was the subject of "GAC Short Cuts", a part-documentary, part-music-video series airing since the summer of 2006. On May 15, 2007, Swift performed "Tim McGraw" at the Academy of Country Music Awards. Swift has been an opening act for Tim McGraw and Faith Hill on their Soul2Soul 2007 tour. She has opened in the past for George Strait, Brad Paisley and Rascal Flatts as well.The second single from the Taylor Swift album, "Teardrops on My Guitar", was released February 24, 2007. In mid-2007, the song peaked at #2 on Billboard's Hot Country Songs chart and #33 on the Billboard Hot 100. The song was re-released with a pop remix that brought "Teardrops on My Guitar" to #13 on the Hot 100 and #11 on the Pop 100. In October 2007, Swift was awarded Songwriter/Artist of the Year by the Nashville Songwriters Assn. Intl., making her the youngest artist ever to win the award. third song off her debut album, "Our Song" spent six weeks at #1 on the Country charts, peaked at #16 on the Billboard Hot 100, and rose to #24 on the Billboard Pop 100. Swift recorded a holiday album, Sounds of the Season: The Taylor Swift Holiday Collection, which was released exclusively at Target in late 2007. Swift was nominated for a 2008 Grammy Award in the category of Best New Artist, but lost to Amy Winehouse. Swift's successful single, "Picture to Burn", was the fourth single from her debut album. The song debuted and soon peaked at #3 on the Billboard Country chart in spring 2008.