Taylor Alison Swift (born December 13, 1989) is an American singer-songwriter and actress. Raised in Wyomissing, Pennsylvania, she moved to Nashville, Tennessee, at the age of 14 to pursue a career in country music. She signed with the independent label Big Machine Records and became the youngest songwriter ever hired by the Sony/ATV Music publishing house. The release of Swift's self-titled debut album in 2006 established her as a country music star. Her third single, "Our Song," made her the youngest person to single-handedly write and perform a number-one song on the Hot Country Songs chart. She received a Best New Artist nomination at the 2008 Grammy Awards. In 2015, Taylor Swift has become the youngest woman ever to be included on Forbes most powerful women list. She made number 65 on the Forbes annual list of the most powerful women in the world.
Swift's second album, Fearless, was released in 2008. Buoyed by the pop crossover success of the singles "Love Story" and "You Belong with Me," Fearless became the best-selling album of 2009 in the United States. The album won four Grammy Awards, making Swift the youngest ever Album of the Year winner. Swift's third and fourth albums, 2010's Speak Now and 2012's Red, both sold more than one million copies within the first week of their U.S release. Speak Now's "Mean" won two Grammy Awards, while Red's singles "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together" and "I Knew You Were Trouble" were worldwide hits. Swift's fifth album, the pop-focused 1989, was released in 2014. It sold more copies in its opening week than any album in the previous 12 years, and made Swift the first and only act to have three albums sell more than one million copies in the opening release week. The singles "Shake It Off", "Blank Space", and "Bad Blood" have all reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100.
Swift is known for narrative songs about her personal experiences. As a songwriter, she has been honored by the Nashville Songwriters Association and the Songwriters Hall of Fame. Swift's other achievements include seven Grammy Awards, 22 Billboard Music Awards, 11 Country Music Association Awards, eight Academy of Country Music Awards, and one Brit Award. She is one of the best-selling artists of all time, having sold more than 40 million albums—including 27.1 million in the U.S.—and 100 million single downloads. Swift has also had supporting roles in feature films including Valentine's Day (2010) and The Giver (2014).
Swift's fourth studio album, Red, was released on October 22, 2012 She wrote nine of the album's 16 songs alone, while the remaining seven were co-written with Rose, Max Martin, Dan Wilson, Ed Sheeran, and Gary Lightbody. Chapman served as the album's lead producer but Jeff Bhasker, Butch Walker, Jacknife Lee, Dann Huff and Shellback also produced individual tracks. Chapman said he encouraged Swift "to branch out and to test herself in other situations. Musically, while there is experimentation with heartland rock, dubstep and dance-pop, it is "sprinkled among more recognisably Swiftian fare.
Caramanica of The New York Times found Red "less detailed and more rushed than her usual fare" but placed it at number two on his end-of-year list, characterizing it as the album on which Swift "stops pretending she's anything but a pop megastar, one with grown-up concerns, like how two bodies speak to each other and how taste in records can be a stand-in for moral turpitude." Lisa Verrico of The Times praised her "sublime" lyrics, particularly those on the "brooding" "All Too Well". Jon Dolan of Rolling Stone enjoyed "watching Swift find her pony-footing on Great Songwriter Mountain. She often succeeds in joining the Joni/Carole King tradition of stark-relief emotional mapping ... Her self-discovery project is one of the best stories in pop."