Taylor Alison Swift (born December 13, 1989) is a popular Grammy-nominated American country music singer-songwriter and Christian. She was named Billboard Magazine Artist of the Year for 2009 and received the title Artist of the Year at the Country Music Awards. She has been praised by many Conservative parent advocacy groups for being a positive role model for young people.
Swift was born in the town of Wyomissing, Pennsylvania. Her father is Scott Swift, a stock broker, and her mother is Andrea, a homemaker. She was raised in a Christian home and went to a Christian high school.
She released her first album, Taylor Swift in late 2006 which became #1 on the Billboard Top Country Albums and #5 on the Billboard Hot 200. She released her second album, Fearless in 2008 which debuted at #1 on the Billboard Hot 200. She was the first artist in history to have two different albums in the Top 10 on the year end album chart. It also was the first album by a female artist in country music history to log eight weeks at #1 on The Billboard 200.
Awards and Accomplishments
Swift is the youngest artist in history to win Album of the Year award. Swift was also awarded the Country Music Academy's Crystal Milestone Award, given for Outstanding Achievement in Country Music. The Academy praised her for career achievements including selling more albums in 2008 than any other artist in any genre of music, the first time a country artist had done that, the breakthrough success of her debut album (which spawned five Top 10 hits, more than any in history for a female artist's debut CD), and the worldwide crossover success of her #1 single "Love Story". The Academy also cited Swift's contribution to helping country music attract a younger audience and her family-friendly lyrics and performances.
Controversy with Kanye West
At the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards she was awarded 2009's Best Female Video of the Year where she became the first country musician to win a VMA but before she could give her acceptance speech she was interrupted by Kanye West who took the microphone from her hand and proceeded to say that Beyonce deserved the award instead of Swift. Swift was stunned and upset but remained composed and was lauded by many for being so collected. Kanye West was criticized by many top celebrities, including President Barack Hussein Obama
Philanthropy and Charity
In 2009 Taylor Swift became the female artist with the most top-40 songs of the decade with her song Fifteen, surpassing Beyonce Knowles. Fifteen is a song promoting abstinence and used in Best Buy's campaign for @15, a charity which helps teenagers get involved in their communities. Taylor Swift has donated over $750,000 to the Red Cross and $250,000 to various schools around the country, some of which were Christian-based education schools. She has also donated $10,000 to St Jude's Children's Research Hospital