Taylor Alison Swift (born December 13, 1989) is an American singer-songwriter. As one of the world’s leading contemporary recording artists, she is known for narrative songs about her personal life, which has received widespread media coverage.
Born and raised in Pennsylvania, Swift moved to Nashville, Tennessee, at the age of 14 to pursue a career in country music. She signed with the label Big Machine Records and became the youngest artist ever signed by the Sony/ATV Music publishing house. Her 2006 self-titled debut album peaked at number five on the Billboard 200 and spent the most weeks on the chart in the 2000s. The album’s 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. Swift’s second album, Fearless, was released in 2008. Buoyed by the success of pop crossover singles “Love Story” and “You Belong with Me”, Fearless became the best-selling album of 2009 in the US. The album won four Grammy Awards, with Swift becoming the youngest Album of the Year winner.
Swift was the sole writer of her 2010 album, Speak Now. It debuted at number one in the United States and the single “Mean” won two Grammy Awards. Her fourth album, Red (2012), yielded the successful singles “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” and “I Knew You Were Trouble”. For her fifth album, the pop-focused 1989 (2014), she received three Grammys, and became the first woman and fifth act overall to win Album of the Year twice. Its singles “Shake It Off”, “Blank Space”, and “Bad Blood” reached number one in the US, Australia, and Canada. Swift’s sixth album, Reputation (2017) and its lead single “Look What You Made Me Do” topped the UK and US charts; with the former, she became the first act to have four albums sell one million copies within one week in the US.
Swift is one of the best-selling music artists of all time, having sold more than 40 million albums—including 27.8 million in the US—and 130 million single downloads. As a songwriter, she has received awards from the Nashville Songwriters Association and the Songwriters Hall of Fame, and was included in Rolling Stone’s 100 Greatest Songwriters of All Time in 2015. She is also the recipient of 10 Grammys, one Emmy, 23 Billboard Music Awards, and 12 Country Music Association Awards, and she holds six Guinness World Records. She has appeared in Time’s 100 most influential people in the world (2010 and 2015) and Forbes’ lists of top-earning women in music (2011–2015), 100 most powerful women (2015), and Celebrity 100 (2016). Her inclusion in the third of these made her the youngest woman on the list, and she ranked first in Celebrity 100.
In August 2017, Swift sued and prevailed in a civil trial against David Mueller, a former morning show personality for Denver’s KYGO-FM. Four years earlier, Swift had informed Mueller’s bosses that he had sexually assaulted her by groping her at an event. After being fired, Mueller accused Swift of lying and sued her for making him lose his job. Shortly after, Swift counter-sued for sexual assault. The jury rejected Mueller’s claims and ruled in favor of Swift. Swift thereafter cleared her social media accounts and released “Look What You Made Me Do” as the lead single from her sixth album, Reputation. The song topped the charts in Australia, Ireland, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Its music video gained over 43.2 million views during its first day on YouTube, breaking the site’s record for the most-viewed music video within 24 hours. In October, Swift released the album’s second single, “…Ready for It?”, which charted at number three in Australia and at number four in the United States.
Two promotional singles were released from Reputation, “Gorgeous” and “Call It What You Want”; the former later became the album’s fifth single, however only being released as such in Europe. The album was released on November 10 and sold 1.216 million copies in the United States—becoming 2017’s top-selling album (pure sales only) in the country—and 2 million copies worldwide during its first week. With this achievement, she became the first act to have four albums sell one million copies within one week in the US. The album topped the charts in several countries, including the US, the UK, Australia and Canada. Later that month, Swift performed “…Ready for It?” and “Call It What You Want” on Saturday Night Live. “End Game”, featuring Ed Sheeran and Future, followed in November as the third single, and peaked at number 18 in the US. Other singles from the album include “New Year’s Day” and “Delicate”, the former of which was released exclusively to country radio.
In April 2018, Swift featured on Sugarland’s “Babe” from their album Bigger. In support of Reputation, Swift embarked on Taylor Swift’s Reputation Stadium Tour from May to November 2018. The tour broke multiple venue attendance and grossing records in the United States, earning $266.1 million and selling more than two million tickets. As a result, Swift broke her own record for the highest-grossing domestic tour by a woman[b] and surpassed The Rolling Stones’ $245 million-grossing A Bigger Bang Tour (2005–2007). Worldwide, the tour grossed $345.7 million, making it the second highest-grossing concert tour of the year. At the American Music Awards of 2018, Swift won Tour of the Year for the tour, Artist of the Year, Favorite Pop/Rock Female Artist, and Favorite Pop/Rock Album for Reputation. With a total of 23 awards, she became the most awarded female winner in AMA history, a record previously held by Whitney Houston. Reputation has been nominated for Grammy Award for Best Pop Vocal Album.
Reputation was Swift’s last album under her 12-year contract with Big Machine Records. On November 19, 2018, Swift signed a new multi-album deal with Big Machine’s distributor Universal Music Group; in the United States, her future releases will be promoted under the Republic Records imprint. Swift stated that the contract included provisions for her to maintain ownership of her master recordings. In addition, UMG agreed to, in the event that it sells portions of its stake in Spotify, distribute proceeds among its artists and make them non-recoupable.
In July 2018, Swift was cast as Bombalurina in the movie adaptation of the musical Cats.