Taylor Alison Swift is an American singer-songwriter. Her narrative songwriting, which is often inspired by her personal experiences, has received widespread media coverage and critical praise. Aspiring to become a country singer, Swift moved to Nashville in 2004 and signed with Sony/ATV Music Publishing as a songwriter; she further signed a recording deal with Big Machine in 2005.
Her eponymous debut studio album (2006) included the Hot Country Songs chart-topping singles “Our Song” and “Should’ve Said No” and the pop radio crossover “Teardrops on My Guitar”. Swift rose to mainstream fame with her country pop second studio album, Fearless (2008), which was certified Diamond by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) and featured the U.S Billboard Hot 100 top-five singles “Love Story” and “You Belong with Me”. Her third studio album, Speak Now (2010), blended country pop with rock elements and contained the top-ten singles “Mine” and “Back to December”.
Swift’s fourth studio album, Red (2012), experimented beyond country, incorporating pop, rock, and electronic genres. She fully transitioned to pop with her synth-pop fifth studio album, 1989 (2014), whereas its successor, Reputation (2017), expanded on the electropop sound with urban influences. Her next studio album, Lover, was released in 2019 during a dispute over the ownership of her masters after her Big Machine contract expired. Swift explored indie folk and alternative rock on her 2020 studio efforts, Folklore and Evermore. These six albums spawned the international top-ten singles “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together”, “I Knew You Were Trouble”, “Shake It Off”, “Blank Space”, “Bad Blood”, “Look What You Made Me Do”, “Me!”, “You Need to Calm Down”, “Cardigan”, and “Willow”. Swift has also released five documentaries throughout her career, including the critically acclaimed Miss Americana and Folklore: The Long Pond Studio Sessions in 2020.
Kimberly Noel Kardashian West
is an American media personality, socialite, model, and businesswoman. Kardashian first gained media attention as a friend and stylist of Paris Hilton, but received wider notice after a 2002 sex tape, Kim Kardashian, Superstar, with her then-boyfriend Ray J was released in 2007. Later that year, she and her family began to appear in the E! reality television series Keeping Up with the Kardashians (2007–2021). Its success soon led to the formation of the spin-off series Kourtney and Kim Take New York (2011–2012) and Kourtney and Kim Take Miami (2009–2013).
Kardashian has developed an online and social media presence, including hundreds of millions of followers on Twitter and Instagram. She has released a variety of products tied to her name, including the 2014 mobile game Kim Kardashian: Hollywood, a variety of clothing and products, the 2015 photo book Selfish and her eponymous personal app. Her relationship with rapper Kanye West has also received significant media coverage; they married in 2014 and have four children together.
As an actress, Kardashian has appeared in films including Disaster Movie (2008), Deep in the Valley (2009), and Temptation: Confessions of a Marriage Counselor (2013).
In recent years, Kardashian has focused on her own businesses by founding KKW Beauty and KKW Fragrance in 2017. In 2019, she launched shapewear company Skims, which was previously called “Kimono” but changed its name following widespread backlash.
Kardashian has also become more politically active by lobbying president Donald Trump for prison reform and lobbying for Alice Marie Johnson to be granted clemency. She has advocated for the recognition of the Armenian genocide on numerous occasions. Kardashian is also planning to become a lawyer by doing a four-year law apprenticeship that is supervised by the legal nonprofit #cut50 which was co-founded by Van Jones.
Taylor Alison Swift is a multi-Grammy award-winning American singer/songwriter who, in 2010 at the age of 20, became the youngest artist in history to win the Grammy Award for Album of the Year. In 2011 Swift was named Billboard’s Woman of the Year. She also has been named the American Music Awards Artist of the Year, as well as the Entertainer of the Year for both the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music, among many other accolades. As of this writing, she is also the top-selling digital artist in music history.
Taylor Alison Swift was born on December 13, 1989, in Reading, Pennsylvania, to Andrea (Finlay), a one-time marketing executive, and Scott Kingsley Swift, a financial adviser. Her ancestry includes German and English, as well as some Scottish, Irish, Welsh and 1/16th Italian. She was named after James Taylor, and her mother believed that if she had a gender neutral name it would help her forge a business career. Taylor spent most of her childhood on an 11-acre Christmas tree farm in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. When she was nine years old the family moved to Wyomissing, PA, where she attended West Reading Elementary Center and Wyomissing Area Junior/Senior High School. Taylor spent her summers at her parents’ vacation home at the Jersey shore. Her first hobby was English horse riding. Her mother put her in a saddle when she was nine months old and Swift later competed in horse shows. At the age of nine she turned her attention to musical theatre and performed in Berks Youth Theatre Academy productions of “Grease”, “Annie”, “Bye Bye Birdie” and “The Sound of Music”. She traveled regularly to New York City for vocal and acting lessons. However, after a few years of auditioning in New York and not getting anything, she became interested in country music. At age 11, after many attempts, Taylor won a local talent competition by singing a rendition of LeAnn Rimes’ “Big Deal”, and was given the opportunity to appear as the opening act for Charlie Daniels at a Strausstown amphitheater. This interest in country music isolated Swift from her middle school peers.
At age 12 she was shown by a computer repairman how to play three chords on a guitar, inspiring her to write her first song, “Lucky You”. She had previously won a national poetry contest with a poem entitled “Monster in My Closet”, but now began to focus on songwriting. She moved to Nashville at age 14, having secured an artist development deal with RCA Records. She left RCA Records when she was 15–the label wanted her to record the work of other songwriters and wait until she was 18 to release an album, but she felt ready to launch her career with her own material. At an industry showcase at Nashville’s The Bluebird Café in 2005, Swift caught the attention of Scott Borchetta, a Dreamworks Records executive who was preparing to form his own independent record label, Big Machine Records. Taylor was one of the new label’s first signings.
Taylor released her debut album, “Taylor Swift”, in October of 2006 and received generally positive reviews from music critics. The New York Times described it as “a small masterpiece of pop-minded country, both wide-eyed and cynical, held together by Ms. Swift’s firm, pleading voice”. Her single “Our Song” made her the youngest solo writer and singer of a #1 country song. The album sold 39,000 copies during its first week. In 2008 she released her second studio album, “Fearless”. The lead single from the album, “Love Story”, was released in September 2008 and became the second best-selling country single of all time, peaking at #4 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Four more singles were released throughout 2008 and 2009: “White Horse”, “You Belong with Me”, “Fifteen” and “Fearless”. “You Belong with Me” was the album’s highest-charting single, peaking at #2 on the Billboard Hot 100. The album debuted at #1 on the Billboard 200 Album Chart. It was the top-selling album of 2009 and brought Swift much crossover success.
In September 2009 she became the first country music artist to win an MTV Video Music Award when “You Belong with Me” was named Best Female Video. Her acceptance speech was interrupted by rapper Kanye West, who had been involved in a number of other award show incidents. West declared Beyoncé’s video for “Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)”, nominated in the same category, to be “one of the best videos of all time”. When Beyoncé later won the award for Video of the Year, she invited Taylor onstage to finish her speech. In November 2009 Taylor Swift became the youngest ever artist, and one of only six women, to be named Entertainer of the Year by the Country Music Association.
She released her third studio album in October 2010, “Speak Now”, and wrote all the songs herself. She originally intended to call the album “Enchanted” but Scott Borchetta, her record label’s CEO, felt the title did not reflect the album’s more adult themes. Swift toured throughout 2011 and early 2012 in support of “Speak Now”. As part of the 13-month, 111-date world tour, Swift played seven shows in Asia, 12 in Europe, 80 in North America and 12 in Australasia (three dates on the US tour were rescheduled after she fell ill with bronchitis). The stage show was inspired by Broadway musical theatre, with choreographed routines, elaborate set-pieces, pyrotechnics and numerous costume changes. Swift invited many musicians to join her for one-off duets during the North American tour. Appearances were made by James Taylor, Jason Mraz, Shawn Colvin, Johnny Rzeznik, Andy Grammer, Tal Bachman, Justin Bieber, Selena Gomez, Nicki Minaj, Nelly, B.o.B., Usher, Flo Rida, T.I., Jon Foreman, Jim Adkins, Hayley Williams, Hot Chelle Rae, Ronnie Dunn, Darius Rucker, Tim McGraw and Kenny Chesney. In May 2012 Taylor featured in B.o.B’s song “Both of Us”.
TV star, entrepreneur, fashion designer, and author (New York Times best-seller – “Kardashian Konfidential”), Kim Kardashian was born in Los Angeles, California, to Kris Jenner (née Kristen Mary Houghton) and attorney Robert Kardashian. Her father was of Armenian descent and her mother is of mostly English ancestry. Kim first burst onto the scene in 2007, after the premiere of her hit E! Entertainment reality series, Keeping Up with the Kardashians (2006). The show follows the exploits of the Kardashian/Jenner family, which includes her stepfather Caitlyn Jenner, her mother, Kim, her siblings Kourtney Kardashian, Khloé Kardashian, Rob Kardashian, and younger half-sisters Kendall Jenner and Kylie Jenner. The show was the highest-rated program on the E! Network. She also stars alongside her sister Kourtney in Kourtney & Kim Take New York (2011), which premiered its second season in November of this year. Most recently, Kardashian shared her wedding with the world in a two-part special, Keeping Up with the Kardashians: Kim’s Fairytale Wedding: A Kardashian Event – Part 1 (2011) and Keeping Up with the Kardashians: Kim’s Fairytale Wedding: A Kardashian Event – Part 2 (2011). The special ranks as E!’s most-watched event, ever, bringing in 10.5 million viewers. In addition to starring in her own reality shows for E!, she has appeared as an actress in a number of other projects, including the feature, Disaster Movie (2008) (Lionsgate), CW’s hit show, 90210 (2008) and TV’s How I Met Your Mother (2005) and Brothers (2009), among others. In 2010, she produced The Spin Crowd (2010), her first TV show for E!, which premiered to 2.46 million households. Additionally, in September 2008, Kardashian competed on the ABC hit series, Dancing with the Stars (2005), where she was paired with defending Champion Mark Ballas.
In recent years, Kardashian has become a highly-sought-after name and face for a number of high profile brands. She is the face of “Sketchers Shape-ups”, the sneaker designed to get you fit while you walk, work, shop, and more. She was featured in a Sketchers commercial during Super Bowl XLV. Also, she (along with her sisters), has her own line of “Nicole by OPI” nail polish, “Kardashian Kolors”, which will be available on holiday 2011. She has created a line of contemporary jewelry line, “Belle Noel”, with famed jewelry designer Pascal Mouawad. Kardashian also serves as the official spokesperson for “Midori Melon Liqueur” and its new “Stand-Out” marketing campaign.
Employing her entrepreneurial business skills, Kim began her fashion career as a stylist and became an immediate sought-after wardrobe stylist for infomercials, television shows, music videos and photo shoots. But it was her organizational, orderly arrangement and construction of high-fashion closets that led her into a unique line of work, overhauling and designing closets for celebrities.
In 2006, together with her sisters Kourtney and Khloe, Kardashian opened the designer clothing store, “Dash”, in Calabasas, California; a must-shop-at store for those with discriminating, yet fashionable taste. Because of high consumer demands, other stores in Miami and New York opened in 2009 and 2010, respectively. In 2010, Kim co-designed a fashion line with her sisters, Kourtney and Khloe, in conjunction with the Bebe fashion brand. This collaboration led to a partnership between the three sisters and Bruno Schiavi on a complete brand launch, “Kardashian Kollection”, encompassing apparel, shoes, lingerie, home, jewelry and accessories. “Kardashian Kollection” is sold at over 500 Sears, nationwide. Sears has created a store within a store concept, specifically for “Kardashian Kollection”. It is also sold in Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia and Germany.
In 2009, Kim launched her own perfume, “Kim Kardashian”, which is available worldwide. Her second perfume, “Kim Kardashian Gold”, was launched in 2010. A limited edition scent, “Kim Kardashian Gold”, launched in August 2011. Her online shoe company, “ShoeDazzle.com”, was launched in March 2009 and provides affordable, fashionable shoes to its members.
Kim has graced the covers of numerous publications around the world, including Cosmopolitan, Glamour, Allure, Harper’s Bazaar, Prestige (Hong Kong), and Self, among others. Additionally, she has appeared, as a guest, on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (1992), Late Show with David Letterman (1993), Larry King Live (1985), among others.
Kardashian’s official website gets 6 million page views a month, making it the fastest growing celebrity blog on the web. She also has over 10 million followers on Twitter.