Taylor Swift, America's Sweetheart
Taylor Swift is the biggest star in pop music today. She's even bigger than Adele! At least in terms of records sold.
Let's go through some facts about our Taylor.
Taylor was embarrassed when Kanye West rushed the stage after Taylor was awarded best female video at the MTV Video Music Awards for "You Belong With Me." He grabbed the microphone and told the audience that he would let Taylor finish, "but Beyonce had the best video of all time." Taylor left the stage in shock, but triumphantly return later in the evening. She earned a lot of sympathy that night.
Taylor's full name is Taylor Alison Swift, and she was born on 13 December 1989.
Taylor is originally from Wyomissing, Pennsylvania, where she lived on a Christmas tree farm. However, the hospital was in Reading, so that is her official birthplace.
Swift showed early promise as a singer, so she loaded up the truck and moved to Nashville.
Nashville was wowed by the young Taylor, and she became the youngest singer ever to sign with the Sony/ATV Music publishing house.
Taylor's first album was named after herself. It came out in 2006. It was a big success, and the third single, "Our Song," hit number one on the Hot Country Songs chart.
The follow-up album was "Fearless" in 2008. It was the best-selling album of 2009 in the US.
"Fearless" also nabbed her four Grammy Awards, including Album of the Year. She was the youngest winner ever of that award.
In 2010, Taylor released "Speak Now." It won two Grammy awards.
The next album was "Red" in 2012. No Grammy Awards this time, but it was still a massive success.
Then came Taylor's biggest album yet, "1989" in 2014. It spawned three number one singles, "Shake It Off," "Blank Space" and "Bad Blood." It was the top-selling album of the year, according to Billboard, just edging out the "Frozen" soundtrack.
Taylor has sold over 40 million albums. Obviously, that figure is rising fast. Come back in a couple of years, and it almost surely will be 50 million and likely more.
Taylor's mom picked out "Taylor" purposefully to make it gender-neutral. That is kind of ironic now, considering that Taylor is one of the most visible celebrities in designer clothes that most decidedly are not gender neutral.
She won a local talent competition by singing LeAnn Rimes' "Big Deal. Taylor wrote her first song at age 12. It was called "Lucky You."
Although Taylor often appears onstage with tattoos, they are only temporary. She refuses to commit to any pictures or sayings for the rest of her life.
Taylor wrote her own monologue for Saturday Night Live. That was the first, and only, time that has ever happened.
Taylor tries to keep herself out of politics. However, she said that she supports President Barrack Obama.
Taylor is often on tour. When she isn't, though, she has a mansion in Rhode Island, a penthouse in Tribeca in New York City, a penthouse in Nashville, and a three-bedroom cottage in Beverly Hills.
Taylor has been linked with several men. These include singer Joe Jonas, actor Taylor Lautner, singer John Mayer, actor Jake Gyllenhaal, Conor Kennedy, and singer Harry Styles. All these affairs garnered her a lot of media attention, which she did not enjoy.
Most recently, Taylor has been with Calvin Harris, a Scottish DJ and record producer.
Taylor has a lot of money, and she gives a lot of it to charity. She donated $75,000 to a Nashville high school to renovate its auditorium, and also donated $4 million for a new education center at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville.
Taylor also has promoted other brands. She was a spokesmodel for l.e.i. jeans, and also was the face of Verizon Wireless' Mobile Music campaign, among many other endorsements.
Taylor has released several fragrances. One released in 2014 is called "Incredible Things."
Taylor has branched out into acting. She played a teenager on "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation," and was in the 2010 comecy "Valentine's Day." Reviews were mixed. She also voiced Audrey in "The Lorax."
Taylor does not have a particularly strong voice. However, she does not use Auto-Tune. She considers herself more of a songwriter.
Taylor continues to take vocal lessons to this day.
Taylor is famous for using her personal experiences to write songs. Some of her subjects don't like being targeted by her lyrics.
Her ex-boyfriend John Mayer, for instance, said that he felt "humiliated" being called out in her song about him.
Paul McCartney, Bruce Springsteen, Emmylou Harris, Kris Kristofferson and Carly Simon are Taylor's role models.
Taylor gained a lot of press for removing her entire catalogue from Spotify, an online music service. She also attacked Apple Music for not paying artists properly, and the service immediately changed its policies to accomodate her.
After that, Taylor agreed to put her popular album "1989" on the Apple Music site.
Taylor performed at two consecutive Victoria's Secret Fashion Shows, in December 2013 and 2014.
|Taylor Swift on an April 1, 2016 trip to Disney's California Adventure with Victoria's Secret model galpal Lily Aldrige, 30, and the model's daughter, 3-year-old Dixie Followill.|
She is friends with several top Victoria's Secret models. These include Lily Aldridge.
She also is good friends with Victoria's Secret Angel Karlie Kloss, who had her own room in Taylor's New York pad. While it is tempting to surmise that there is more to these relationships than simply friendship, it appears that Taylor just likes hanging out with the models and being in their milieu. Taylor is pretty, but, for what it is worth, other models have said that she does not have what it takes to model at that level. Well, we can't all be excellent at everything.
Taylor's first number one on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart was "We are Never Ever Getting Back Together."
Taylor's lucky number is 13.
Taylor's job as a child was picking the praying mantis' off of her family's Christmas trees before they were sold.
One time she forgot, and it was a disaster. The people's house became overrun with the bugs.
In the song "Stay Beautiful," Cory was her boyfriend.
The album that made Taylor like country music was "Blue" by LeAnn Rimes.
Taylor wrote some of the songs on "Fearless" by herself - seven of them.
Taylor loves to wear simple clothes, even though she is always seen around town dressed up. Her favorite outfit is a dress and cowboy boots.
When she's on her own, Taylor loves to play Xbox.
Taylor's favorite color is white. That may be why she is often seen in white dresses.
Taylor is 5'11", which is much taller than average.
Selena Gomez is her best celebrity friend.
Taylor claims that she was made fun of as a child.
Taylor has a brother named Austin.
Her favorite animal is a koala.
Taylor won Album of the Year for the second time at the Grammys in 2016, the first woman to do that.
She gave an inspirational acceptance speech which some took to be a veiled shot at Kanye West.
Kanye, for his part, released a song in which he kiddingly said that he was responsible for Taylor Swift's fame and that he thought that Taylor was hot for him, or words to that effect. Taylor was not amused.
Kanye later said that he "wishes the best for that person," meaning Taylor. That did not exactly rekindle the flames of friendship between the two.
Taylor appears to have moved on and now must add another wing to her Rhode Island mansion to hold all of her trophies.