Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift

BandCountry

Biography

"Got the radio on, my old blue jeans, and I'm wearing my heart on my sleeve," Taylor Swift sings on "A Place in This World," a self-penned coming-of-age anthem from her self-titled debut album, released October 24, 2006 on Big Machine Records. It's an apt description of the enthusiastic, down-to-earth young woman, whose original compositions about teenage life brim with poignant honesty and an infectious spirit.

Just 17 years old, Taylor is at an age where most teenagers are only beginning to find their identity and lay tentative plans for the future. But there's never been much doubt in Taylor's mind about her calling. Growing up on a farm in Wyomissing, Pa., music was ever-present in her home. Inspired by her maternal grandmother, a professional opera singer, Taylor took up singing early in life. At 10, she began performing around town at karaoke contests, festivals and county fairs, and even recording rough demos at a studio. At age 11, she performed the national anthem at a Philadelphia 76ers NBA game in front
of thousands of fans.

But it wasn't until she picked up a guitar at age 12 and learned to write her own songs that Taylor discovered how readily she could channel the turbulent emotions of growing up into her music. That year, she wrote "The Outside," a heartbreaking lament about loneliness. Before long, she was spending every available moment playing and writing. "I was playing four hours a day until my fingers were bleeding and my mom called me to dinner," she says.

No strangers to the music business, Taylor's family recognized both her talent and determination. They began taking regular trips to Nashville to shop her music around, and she began writing with local songwriters. After a few years, during which the family made the decision to move to nearby Hendersonville, Tenn., a showcase at the Bluebird Cafe caught the attention of music-industry veteran Scott Borchetta, who was planning to launch a new label. After meeting with Taylor, he knew she was one of the first artists he wanted to sign.

Since then, Taylor has pulled double duty as a straight-A high school student and full-fledged recording artist, a balancing act the teenager handles with grace. "I have tunnel vision as far as this goes," she says. "I can always keep my eyes on the goal." Still, she admits sheepishly, there are moments when songwriting inspiration strikes in the middle of a lecture, making concentration difficult. "If we had random notebook checks, my teachers might find biology notes, biology notes, then suddenly a bunch of lyrics," she laughs.

The songs Taylor scrawls in those spiral notebooks are bright, engaging melodies filled with all the ebullience and drama of adolescent life. In "Our Song," the narrator bemoans the fact that she and her boyfriend don't share a sentimental tune, only to have him affectionately describe all the little moments that make their relationship special. "Our song is the way you laugh," he tells her.

Like all songwriters, Taylor is inspired by the life going on around her, and like any 17-year-old, she admits to a "fascination" with love. Thus, her classmates - her biggest fans, she says - often find themselves the subject of her songs. "They're all going to buy the album and have a little bit of a heart attack," she says with a grin.

In fact, country music channel Great American Country tapped Taylor to star in the inaugural season of GAC Short Cuts, a short-form documentary series that kicked off in the spring of 2006. The shows consist of three one-minute vignettes per hour that feature Taylor pursuing her recording career while attending high school, and the clips feature interviews with many of her close friends.

A country superstar - and one of Taylor's greatest influences - was also surprised to find himself the subject of her debut single. A tender ballad, "Tim McGraw" describes the way music can evoke the sweetest of memories: "When you think Tim McGraw/I hope you think my favorite song/The one we danced to all night long."

Elsewhere on the album, Taylor tackles more serious issues. "Tied Together With a Smile," captures the fragile self-esteem of teenagers, inspired by girls that Taylor has known through the years, including a beauty-pageant queen who suffered from an eating disorder: "Seems the only one who doesn't see your beauty/Is the face in the mirror looking back at you." In the second verse, she laments that lack of confidence sometimes leads girls her age to make hasty and reckless decisions about their relationships: "I guess it's true that love was all you wanted/'Cause you're givin' it away like it's extra change."

Such flashes of maturity give weight to songs that otherwise sparkle with the carefree joie de vivre of youth. Taylor admits her primary agenda with her music is to evoke a strong emotional response. "I want to make people feel things," she says simply.

As she prepares an album with that in mind, Taylor is careful not to

Lyrics

Tim McGraw

Written By: Taylor Swift and Liz Rose

he said the way my blue eyes shined
put those georgia stars to shame that night
i said, that's a lie
just a boy in a Chevy truck that had a tendency
of getting stuck on back roads at night
and i was right there beside him all summer long
and then the time we woke up to find that summer gone, but

chorus
when you think tim mcgraw, i hope you think my favorite song
the one we danced to all night long
the moon like a spotlight on the lake
when you think happiness, i hope you think that little black dress
think of my head on your chest and my old faded blue jeans
when you think tim mcgraw...i hope you think of me

september saw a month of tears and thanking god
that you weren't here, to see me like that
but in a box beneath my bed is a letter that you never read
from three summers back
it's hard not to find it all a little bittersweet
and looking back on all of that
it's nice to believe

repeat chorus

and i'm back for the first time since then
i'm standing on your street,
and there's a letter left on your doorstep
and the first thing that you'll read....

chorus
when you think tim mcgraw, i hope you think my favorite song
someday you'll turn your radio on
i hope it takes you back to that place
when you think happiness, i hope you think that little black dress
think my head on your chest and my old faded blue jeans
when you think tim mcgraw...i hope you think of me
think of me

©2006 Sony/ATV Songs LLC, Sony/ATV Sounds LLC, Taylor Swift Music (BMI), Hillsboro Valley Songs (SESAC)/Administered by Sony/ATV Music Publishing. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Picture To Burn

Written By: Taylor Swift and Liz Rose

state the obvious, i didn't get my perfect fantasy
i realize you love yourself more than you could ever love me
so go and tell your friends that I'm obsessive and crazy
that's fine; i'll tell mine you're gay
and by the way...

CHORUS
i hate that stupid old pickup truck
you never let me drive
you're a redneck heartbreak
who's really bad at lying
so watch me strike a match
on all my wasted time
as far as I'm concerned you're
just another picture to burn

there's no time tears,
i'm just sitting here planning my revenge
there's nothing stopping me
from going out with all of your best friends
and if you come around saying you're sorry to me
my daddy's gonna show you how sorry you'll be

REPEAT CHORUS

if you're missing me,
you'd better keep it to yourself
cause coming back around here
would be bad for your health...

REPEAT CHORUS

burn, burn, burn, baby, burn
you're just another to picture to burn
baby, burn

©2006 Sony/ATV Songs LLC, Sony/ATV Sounds LLC, Taylor Swift Music (BMI), Hillsboro Valley Songs (SESAC)/Administered by Sony/ATV Music Publishing. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Teardrops On My Guitar

Written By: Taylor Swift and Liz Rose

drew looks at me, i fake a smile so he won't see
that i want and i'm needing everything that we should be
i'll bet she's beautiful, that girl he talks about
and she's got everything that i have to live without
drew talks to me, i laugh cuz it's just so funny
that i can't even see anyone when he's with me
he says he's so in love, he's finally got it right
i wonder if he knows he's all i think about at night

CHORUS
he's the reason for the teardrops on my guitar
the only thing that keeps me wishing on a wishing star
he's the song in my car i keep singing, don't know why i do

drew walks by me, can he tell that i can't breathe?
and there he goes, so perfectly
the kind of flawless i wish i could be
she'd better hold him tight, give him all her love
look in those beautiful eyes and know she's lucky cause

REPEAT CHORUS

so i drive home alone, as i turn out the light
i'll put his picture down and maybe get some sleep tonight
he's the reason for the teardrops on my guitar
the only one who's got enough of me to break my heart
he's the song in the car i keep singing don't know why i do
he's the time taken up, but there's never enough
and he's all that i need to fall into...

drew looks at me, i fake a smile so he won't see

©2006 Sony/ATV Songs LLC, Sony/ATV Sounds LLC, Taylor Swift Music (BMI), Hillsboro Valley Songs (SESAC)/Administered by Sony/ATV Music Publishing. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

A Place In This World

Written By: Taylor Swift, Robert Ellis Orrall and Angelo

i don't know what i want, so don't ask me
cause i'm still trying to figure it out
don't know what's down this road, i'm just walking
trying to see through the rain coming down
even though i'm not the only one
who feels the way i do

CHORUS
i'm alone, on my own, and that's all i know
i'll be strong, i'll be wrong, oh but life goes on
i'm just a girl, trying to find a place in this world

got the radio on, my old blue jeans
and i'm wearing my heart on my sleeve
feeling lucky today, got the sunshine
could you tell me what more do i need
and tomorrow's just a mystery, oh yeah but that's okay

REPEAT CHORUS

maybe i'm just a girl on a mission
but i'm ready to fly

REPEAT CHOURS

©2006 Sony/ATV Songs LLC, Taylor Swift Music (BMI)/Administered by Sony/ATV Music Publishing, Orrall Fixation Music (ASCAP)/Administered by Bluewater Music Service Corp., Universal-Polygram International Publishing, Inc., Green Wagon Music (ASCAP)/Administered by Universal-Polygram International Publishing, Inc. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Cold As You

Written By: Taylor Swift and Liz Rose

you have a way of coming easily to me
and when you take, you take the very best of me
so i start a flight cause i need to feel something
and you do what you want cause i'm not what you wanted

CHORUS
oh what a shame, a rainy ending given to a perfect day
just walk away, ain't no use defending words that you will never say
and now that i'm sitting here thinking it through
i've never been anywhere cold as you

you put up walls and paint them all a shade of gray
and i stood there loving you and wished them all away
and you come away with a great little story
of a mess of a dreamer with the nerve to adore you

REPEAT CHORUS

you never did give a damn thing but i cried, cried for you
and i know you wouldn't have told nobody if i died, died for you

oh what a shame, what a rainy ending given to a perfect day
every smile you fake is so condescending
counting all the scars you made
and now that i'm sitting here thinking it through
i've never been anwyhere cold as you

©2006 Sony/ATV Songs LLC, Sony/ATV Sounds LLC, Taylor Swift Music (BMI), Hillsboro Valley Songs (SESAC)/Administered by Sony/ATV Music Publishing. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

The Outside

Written By: Taylor Swift

i didn't know what i would find
when i went looking for a reason, i know
i didn't read between the lines
and, baby, i've got nowhere to go
i tried to take the road less traveled by
but nothing seems to work the first few times
am i right?

CHORUS
so how can i ever try to better?
nobody ever lets me in
i can still see you, this ain't the best view
on the outside looking in
i've been a lot of lonely places
i've never been on the outside

you saw me there, but never knew
i would give it all up to be
a part of this, a part of you
and now it's all too late so you see
you could've helped if you had wanted to
but no one notices until it's too late to do anything

REPEAT CHORUS

so how can i ever try to better?
nobody ever lets me in
i can still see you, this ain't the best view
on the outside looking in
i've been a lot of lonely places
i've never been on the outside

©2006 Sony/ATV Songs LLC, Taylor Swift Music (BMI)/Administered by Sony/ATV Music Publishing. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Tied Together With A Smile

Written By: Taylor Swift and Liz Rose

seems the only one who doesn't see your beauty
is the face in the mirror looking back at you
you walk around here thinking you're not pretty
but that's not true, cause i know you

CHORUS
hold on, baby, you're losing it
the water's high, you're jumping into it
and letting go...and no one knows
you cry, but don't tell anyone
that you might not be the golden one
and you're tied together with a smile
but you're coming undone

i guess it's true that love was all you wanted
cause you're giving it away like its extra change
hoping it will end up in his pocket
but he leaves you out like a penny in the rain
oh, cause it's not his price to pay
not his price to pay

REPEAT CHORUS

you're tied together with a smile
but you're coming undone...oh
goodbye, baby
goodbye, baby
with a smile, baby, baby

©2006 Sony/ATV Songs LLC, Sony/ATV Sounds LLC, Taylor Swift Music (BMI), Hillsboro Valley Songs (SESAC)/Administered by Sony/ATV Music Publishing. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Stay Beautiful

Written By: Taylor Swift and Liz Rose

cory's eyes are like a jungle
he smiles, it's like the radio
he whispers songs into my windows
in words nobody knows
there's pretty girls on every corner
that watch him as he's walking home
saying, does he know
will you ever know

CHORUS
you're beautiful
every little piece, love, don't you know
you're really gonna be someone, ask anyone
when you find everything you looked for
i hope your life leads you back to my door
oh but if it don't, stay beautiful

cory finds another way to be
the highlight of my day
i'm taking pictures in my mind
so i can save them for a rainy day
it's hard to make conversation
when he's taking my breath away
i should say, hey by the way

REPEAT CHORUS

if you and i are a story
that never gets told
if what you are is a daydream
i'll never get to hold, at least you'll know

©2006 Sony/ATV Songs LLC, Sony/ATV Sounds LLC, Taylor Swift Music (BMI), Hillsboro Valley Songs (SESAC)/Administered by Sony/ATV Music Publishing. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Should've Said No

Written By: Taylor Swift

it's strange to think the songs we used to sing
the smiles, the flowers, everything...it's gone
yesterday i found out about you
even now just looking at you...feels wrong
you say that you'd take it all back, given one chance
it was a moment of weakness and you said yes...

CHORUS
you should've said no, you should've gone home
you should've thought twice before you let it all go
you should've known that word, bout what you did with her
would get back to me...
and i should've been there, in the back of your mind
i shouldn't be asking myself why
you shouldn't be begging for forgiveness at my feet...
you should've said no, baby and you might still have me

you can see that i've been crying
and baby you know all the right things...to say
but do you honestly expect me to believe
we could ever be the same...
you say that the past is the past, you need one chance
it was a moment of weakness and you said yes...

REPEAT CHORUS

i can't resist...before you go, tell me this
was it worth it...
was she worth this...

no...no no no...

REPEAT CHORUS

©2006 Sony/ATV Songs LLC, Taylor Swift Music (BMI)/Administered by Sony/ATV Music Publishing. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Mary's Song (Oh My My My)

Written By: Taylor Swift, Liz Rose and Brian Maher

she said, i was seven and you were nine
i looked at you like the stars that shined
in the sky, pretty lights
and our daddies used to joke about the two of us
growing up and falling in love and our mamas smiled
and rolled their eyes and said oh my my my

take me back to the house with the backyard tree
said you'd beat me up, and you were bigger than me
you never did, you never did
take me back when our world was one block wide
i dared you to kiss me and ran when you tried
just two kids, you and i...
oh my my my

i was sixteen when suddenly
i wasn't that little girl you used to see
but your eyes still shined like pretty lights
and our daddies used to joke about the two of us
they never believed we'd really fall in love
and our mamas smiled and rolled their eyes
and said oh my my my...

take me back to the creek beds we turned up
two a.m. riding in your truck and all i need is you next t ome
take me back to the time we had our very first fight
the slamming of doors instead of kissing goodnight
you stayed outside till the morning light
oh my my my

a few years had gone and come around
we were sitting at our favorite spot in town
and you looked at me, got down on one knee

take me back to the time when we walked down the aisle
our whole town came and our mamas cried
you said i do and i did too
take me home where we met so many years before
we'll rock our babies on that very front porch
after all this time, you and i

i'll be eighty-seven; you'll be eighty-nine
i'll still look at you like the stars that shine
in the sky, oh my my my

©2006 Sony/ATV Songs LLC, Sony/ATV Sounds LLC, Taylor Swift Music (BMI), Hillsboro Valley Songs (SESAC)/Administered by Sony/ATV Music Publishing, Moraine Music (ASCAP). All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Our Song

Written By: Taylor Swift

i was riding shotgun with my hair undone
in the front seat of his car
he's got a one-hand feel on the steering wheel
the other on my heart
i look around, turn the radio down
he says baby is something wrong?
i say nothing i was just thinking how we don't have a song
and he said...

CHORUS
our song is the slamming screen door
sneakin' out late, tapping on your window
when we're on the phone and you talk real slow
cause it's late and your mama don't know
our song is the way you laugh
the first date "man, i didn't kiss her, and i should have"
and when i got home...before i said amen
asking god if he could play it again

i was walking up the front porch steps after everything that day
had gone all wrong and been trampled on
and lost and thrown away
got to the hallway, well on my way to my lovin' bed
i almost didn't notice all the roses
and the note that said...

REPEAT CHORUS

i've heard every album, listened to the radio
waited for something to come along
that was as good as our song...

cause our song is the slamming screen door
sneakin' out late, tapping on your window
when we're on the phone and he talks real slow
cause it's late and his mama don't know
our song is the way he laughs
the first date "man, i didn't kiss him, and i should have"
and when i got home, before i said amen
asking god if he could play it again

i was riding shotgun with my hair undone
in the front seat of his car
i grabbed a pen and an old napkin
and i...wrote down our song

©2006 Sony/ATV Songs LLC, Sony/ATV Sounds LLC, Taylor Swift Music (BMI)/Administered by Sony/ATV Music Publishing. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

I'm Only Me When I'm With You

Written By: Taylor Swift, Robert Ellis Orrall and Angelo

friday night beneath the stars
in a field behind your yard
you and i are painting pictures in the sky
sometimes we just don't say a thing
just listen to the crickets sing
everything i need is right here by my side

and i know everything about you
i don't wanna live without you

CHORUS
i'm only up when you're not down
don't wanna fly if you're still on the ground
it's like no matter what i do
well, you drive me crazy half the time
the other half i'm only trying
to let you know what i feel is true
and i'm only me when i'm with you

just a small-town boy and girl
living in the crazy world
trying to figure out what is and isn't true
and i don't try to hide behind my tears
my secrets or my deepest fears
through it all nobody gets me like you do

and you know everything about me
you say that you can't live without me

REPEAT CHORUS

when i'm with anybody else
it's so hard to be myself
and only you can say

that i'm only up when you're not down
don't wanna fly if you're still on the ground
it's like no matter what i do
well, you drive me crazy half the time
the other half i'm only trying
to let you know what i feel is true
and i'm only me, who i wanna be
well, i'm only me when i'm with you, with you

©2007 Sony/ATV Songs LLC, Taylor Swift Music (BMI)/Administered by Sony/ATV Music Publishing, Ten Ten Tunes, Orrall Fixation Music (ASCAP), Universal-Polygram International Publishing, Inc., Green Wagon Music (ASCAP)/All rights for Green Wagon Music controlled and administered by Universal-Polygram International Publishing, Inc. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Invisible

Written By: Taylor Swift and Robert Ellis Orrall

she can't see the way your eyes
will light up when you smile
she'll never notice how you stop and stare
whenever she walks by
and you can't see me wanting you the way you want her
but you are everything to me

CHORUS
and i just want to show you
she don't even know you
she's never gonna love you like i want to
and you just see right through me
but if you only knew me
we could be a beautiful miracle, unbelievable
instead of just invisible

there's a fire inside of you
that can't help but shine through
she's never gonna see the light
no matter what you do
and all i think about is how to make you think of me
and everything that we could be

REPEAT CHORUS

like shadows in the faded light
we're invisible
i just wanna open your eyes
and make you realize

and i just want to show you
she don't even know you
baby, let me love you, let me want you
you just see right through me
but if you only knew me
we could be a beautiful miracle, unbelievable
instead of just invisible

she can't see the way your eyes
will light up when you smile

©2007 Sony/ATV Songs LLC, Taylor Swift Music (BMI)/Administered by Sony/ATV Music Publishing, Ten Ten Tunes, Orrall Fixation Music (ASCAP). All rights reserved. Used by permission.

A Perfectly Good Heart

Written By: Taylor Swift, Brett James and Troy Verges

CHORUS
why would you wanna break a perfectly good heart
why would you wanna take our love and tear it all apart now
why would you wanna make the very first scar
why would you wanna break a perfectly good heart

maybe i should've seen the signs, should've read the writing on the wall
and realized by the distance in your eyes that i would be the one to fall
no matter what you say i still can't believe
that you would walk away
it don't make sense to me but

REPEAT CHORUS

it's not unbroken anymore
how do i get it back to the way it was before

CHORUS
why would you wanna break a perfectly good heart
why would you wanna take our love and tear it all apart now
why would you wanna make the very first scar
why would you wanna break a

REPEAT CHORUS

©2007 Sony/ATV Tree Publishing, Taylor Swift Music (BMI), Sony/ATV Cross Keys Publishing (ASCAP), Dimensional Music Of 1091 (ASCAP), Cornman Music (ASCAP), Songs of Universal, Inc., Songs From The Engine Room (BMI)/All rights for Songs From The Engine Room controlled and administered by Songs of Universal, Inc. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Discography

Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift (Deluxe Limited Edition)
The Taylor Swift Holiday Collection