Taylor Swift:Swiftly Achieving Country Music Success
In just two years, Country Music sweetheart Taylor Swift morphed from an unknown teenager to one of the biggest forces in Country Music today. The youngster with just one album release under her belt has already enjoyed more success than most could ever dream. If her debut was any indication, Swift will be delighting music fans for years to come.
Swift Path to Tennessee
Taylor Alison Swift was born in Wyomissing, Pa., on December 13, 1989. It became apparent at an early age that Taylor was musically gifted. At the age of 10, Swift took the stage at every karaoke contest, festival, and county fair that passed through her hometown of Wyomissing, Pennsylvania. She soon started writing songs and playing guitar by the age of 12.
The Swift family started making frequent trips to Nashville to showcase Taylor’s talents, and eventually uprooted and moved to middle Tennessee to allow her to pursue her musical dreams. The decision paid off. Taylor quickly signed a songwriting deal with one of the most prestigious publishers in music city, penning her first record deal before she could drive.
Taylor Swift's Big Break
It was during a showcase at the Bluebird Café that Taylor caught her big break. Scott Borchetta, a veteran of the music industry, saw Taylor’s performance and decided to sign her to his new label, Big Machine Records. Her self-titled debut album was released by the label in 2006. Swift wrote or co-wrote every song on her debut album.
Country Music Hit after Hit after Hit
Taylor Swift’s debut effort has already produced four top 40 hits on the Billboard Hot 100 charts. “Tim McGraw”, “Teardrops on my Guitar”, “Our Song”, and “Picture to Burn” did so while reaching the top ten on the Billboard Country charts, with “Our Song” becoming her first No. 1 hit.
Swift's chart-topping singles has helped her debut album become one of the most successful introductions to the music world in recent memory. Taylor Swift reached No. 1 on the Billboard Country Albums chart and No. 5 on the US 200, and it has gone 3x Platinum. The album’s success also helped Taylor become the first female solo artist to write or co-write every song on a million-selling debut album.
Taylor Swift's Sophomore Album
Following an impressive trend established on her debut CD, Taylor Swift has once again written or co-written all thirteen songs on Fearless, her second album. Having penned eight of the tracks by herself, it's obvious that songwriting is a craft Swift has been honing for years. Taylor spends every spare moment writing, playing, or thinking about music.
Even while styudying hard to be a straight-A student in high school, Swift was doodling lyrics in the margins of her notebooks. "It's crazy, the first time making an album, not knowing if people are going to care what I write in a song," Swift admits. "And then the second time around...knowing that there are people who are going to know the lyrics that mean so much to me. It makes it all worthwhile."
From several of the tracks on Fearless, Taylor Swift paints a more mature picture of relationships, displaying that they only get more complicated with age. Songs like "You're Not Sorry", "Tell Me Why," "Forever & Always," and "White Horse," the latter of which debuted in the 2008 season opener of the primetime drama Grey's Anatomy, indicate that Taylor has learned that "happily ever after" endings are not always a given. "I think I'm very fascinated by the differences between reality and fairy tales," Swift says. "When we're little, we read these books and we see cartoons and the bad guy is always wearing black. You always know who he is. But in real life, the bad guy can be incredibly charming and have a great smile and perfect hair. He says things that make you laugh and he's sweet and he's funny, but you don't realize that he's going to cause you a lot of pain."
The album also features a tune written by Taylor Swift and Nashville Star judge John Rich, of Big & Rich. "It was always one of my goals to write with John," says Swift. "I had heard so many things about him. I just wanted to see what it was like to get into a room with him because I know I'm a very opinionated writer and I knew he was a very opinionated writer. So I knew this was either going to be the best thing in the world or was just going to be a complete train wreck."
But it's not all doom and gloom on this second cd for Country Music's still young Taylor Swift. The album's first single, "Love Story," offers up a countrified version of Shakespeare's play that is anything but a tragedy, while the last track, should leave listeners inspired. Opening Act for Fellow Country Music Stars Just two years into her career, Taylor swift has already been in high demand for concert tours with some of Country Music’s most well-known acts. After the release of her debut single, “Tim McGraw”, she became an opening act for McGraw and Faith Hill’s Soul2Soul Tour. She has also opened for George Strait, Kenny Chesney, and Brad Paisley, who she credits as influences. During 2008, Taylor Swift is touring with Rascal Flatts.
Taylor Swift Wins Major Country Music Awards
- 2007 CMT Awards – Breakthrough Video of the Year – “Tim McGraw”
- 2007 CMA – Horizon Award
- 2008 CMT Awards – Female Video of the Year – “Our Song”
- 2008 Academy of Country Music – Top New Female Vocalist
Taylor Swift Fun Facts
- Taylor became the youngest songwriter ever signed to a publishing deal with Sony/ATV at the age of 14.
- She appeared on MTV’s “Once Upon a Prom” where she was a celebrity prom date for a student at Hillcrest High School in Tuscaloosa, Ala.
- Swift appears in Hannah Montana: The Movie.
- After performing her debut single “Tim McGraw” at the 2007 ACM Awards, Taylor introduced herself to the man who inspired the song for the first time.