Taylor Alison Swift was born on Wednesday, December 13th 1989 at Reading hospital in Reading, Pennsylvania to wealthy stock broker Scott and homemaker Andrea Swift who quit her job in finance to become a stay at home mom. From a young age it was evident she was a star. At two she could already sing and by age three could see a movie and know the words to a song from it that she heard only once. She'd even change the words to nursery rhymes at times which was probably the very beginning of her songwriting. As a child she loved to write and wrote about everything (even dead animals on the driveway) and to this day still keeps a journal that she writes in every day. Because she grew up on a Christmas tree farm (the family's second business), she had a lot of room to explore and use her imagination. She loved to hear stories too, especially Dr. Seuss and Shel Silverstien, wanting to hear a new story every night. She also loved poetry and the way you could make words jump off a page with the right rhyme scheme and number of syllables. Her poem "Monster in my closet" even won a national poetry contest in 5th grade. She fell in love with country music as soon as she heard Lee Ann Rimes's album Blue. She was inspired by how she could have a singing career at such a young age and by second grade instead of wanting to become a stock broker like her dad, she had decided she wanted to be a singer. At nine, after moving to nearby Wyomissing, she had started acting in a children's community theater group which helped her stage presence and gave her the chance to get on stage and sing which was something she'd loved for years since she was just a toddler performing for strangers on the beach in New Jersey where the family spent their summers. She found she liked the cast parties better though, because that's when she could sing country karaoke. Not long before moving there she had gotten her first guitar (a six-string) but couldn't motivate herself to play because she found it difficult and boring to learn note by note. She had wanted to learn to play a 12-string but she didn't have one and a teacher had once told her her fingers would be too small to play it so she gave it up for a while. After seeing a TV special on Faith Hill when she was 11, she started begging her parents to take her to Nashville. After about a year, they finally gave in and her mom and little brother Austin (who's two years younger than her) went down to Nashville with her over spring break in 2002 when she was 12. They rented a car and drove up and down music row as Taylor dropped off her newly made demo CD of her singing karaoke to every receptionist saying "Hi I'm Taylor and I want a record deal. Call me". Needless to say, that didn't work out but after a musician her family knew (Ronnie Cramer, the brother of her theater director Kirk) taught her how to play the 12-string guitar (he also helped her record her demo CD and make her website and his brother Kirk gave her voice lessons and got her head shots and auditions in New York as well as local singing gigs. Their mother also got her gigs and suggested she go into country music because she had a good voice for it), she became much more interested in learning guitar and started learning how to write songs (also with his help, the first being Lucky you) which was something she knew would make her stand out in Nashville next time she went. Songwriting also soon became an outlet for the pain she was experiencing from being bullied at school. Once she'd written enough songs, she wanted to share them with more than just her family so she started performing where ever she could (including boy scout meetings, garden clubs, sporting events and even bars) and now, armed with her new skills, she could perform in more places than she could before. So she tried her hand at Nashville again (this time with a manager, Dan Dymtrow, who she'd gotten the attention of after performing the national anthem at the U.S.Tennis Open), trying to meet as many songwriters as she could to write with. Now 13, she landed a development deal with RCA records. However, this was short-lived because after a year they still didn't want to give her a record deal, suggesting she sing other artists songs instead and wanted to develop her for at least a year longer, likely until she was 18 so she decided to walk away and go it alone instead. Despite the fact that it didn't work out, it did inspire her parents to move the family to nearby Hendersonville where she could pursue her career. She was especially excited about this because it meant that she could start over at a new school where she could make some friends which she was sorely missing in Pennsylvania where a lot of the kids thought she was weird for liking country music. There she finished 8th grade and started high school (at Hendersonville high where she went for two years before being home schooled at Aaron academy) and made friends (such as her best friend Abigail Anderson), and soon after started having boyfriends to write about as well. At Fifteen, she signed a publishing deal as a songwriter for Sony (the youngest they've ever had) and after performing at the Bluebird cafe a couple months before, she was discovered by long time music exec Scott Borchetta who was about to start his own label called Big Machine. He signed her as soon as the label was underway on August 31st 2005. They then began working on her first album Taylor Swift shortly after that and the rest is music history. Taylor took off! She later went on to make four more albums (Fearless, Speak now, Red and 1989) which became even more popular than the first (the three most recent going platinum in less than a week) and launched her into the pop world making her one of the world's most popular celebrities within less than 8 years. To date she's won about half of the awards she's been nominated for (and she's won about 200) including the CMA Horizon award, Entertainer of the year (twice), the Pinnacle award, two VMAs, every BMI songwriter's award she's ever been nominated for (she currently holds the record for the most songwriter of the year awards) and seven Grammys just to name a few. She's been an inspiration to many with her personal songwriting (inspired by all her real life romances, naturally) just like her inspirations have been to her (some of those inspirations include Lee Ann Rimes, The Dixie chicks, Shania Twain, Faith Hill and her late maternal grandmother Marjorie Finlay who was an opera singer) and she shows no signs of stopping anytime soon as she's had 4 sold-out headlining tours so far and has now released her fifth (and first official pop) album 1989 which she is currently on tour for!