Taylor Swift is an American singer-songwriter specializing in country-pop music. She was born on December 13, 1989 in Wyomissing, Pennsylvania to parents Andrea Finlay and Scott Swift.
Swift has been enjoying fantastic success since her debut single “Tim McGraw” since 2006 followed by the multi-platinum self titled Debut Albumin the same year. The album was followed by Fearless in 2008 which earned her Album of the Year and three other Grammy Awards. Her current album, Speak Now was released on October 25, 2010 and sold over one million copies during its first week!
With musical influences including Shania Twain, LeAnn Rimes, Tina Turner and Dolly Parton, Swift had strong early inclinations towards country music and often travelled to Nashville, Tennessee in hopes of landing a country music record deal. Her talents in poetry and music were demonstrated early on through poetry contest awards, learning guitar at 10 and then moving to a twelve string guitar at 12 - the same year she dedicated a summer to write a 350 page novel.
I first learned of Taylor Swift watching the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards with my wife and witnessed the now infamous Kanye West interruption of Swift’s speech. While we felt bad for Swift and were impressed by her ability to put on a live performance moments later, the event was incredibly entertaining, as well as the negative backlash directed at Kanye West immediately following the insanity.
Suddenly Swift’s name was everywhere, including from the sounds emanating from our family computer every time our eldest girl was watching her videos on youtube. She and my wife talked non-stop about the event and how great Taylor Swift was and how awesome her music was. I didn’t even know she liked country music.
Well her newer album ended up on this year’s Christmas list, and as always I have to do a little research just to make sure her lyrics aren’t offensive, and if there is any controversy behind them, I at least want to know before making a decision to allow our her to listen to it, and to provide an explanation if something was borderline acceptable.
But I could not find anything wrong with her Speak Now album or her two previous albums. In fact she seemed perfectly fine to me, with the strongest negative remarks directed at her “Forever & Always” song about her break up with Joe Jonas. Well, I read those lyrics and there wasn’t anything offensive about two children breaking up!
And besides her music being pretty clean, she’s a generous philanthropist donating $100,000 to the Red Cross in 2008 for the Iowa floods victim’s relief and another $500,000 in the 2010 Tennessee floods. She even donated $250,000 on her birthday to schools she attended or worked with. This is all in addition to numerous charitable campaigns and involvements.
So we allow our girl to listen to Taylor Swift without hesitation. The only problem I can think of is that I’m not all that thrilled about listening to Swift’s music or any other country-pop artist when the inevitable request comes during the car ride!