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Shifting From Country to Pop
Taylor had certainly done well trusting her instincts. She was the reigning Billboard “Woman of the Year”, an honor that recognized her sales (more than 50 million digital tracks and 22 million albums at the end of 2011, according to SoundScan) and multitude of awards (Academy of Country Music and Country Music Assn. “Entertainer of the Year”; Billboard Music Awards for “Top Country Album”, “Top Billboard 200 Artist” and “Top Country Artist”).
Painting the World RED
RED was finally released on October 22, 2012, incorporating new genres, such as heartland rock, dubstep and dance-pop. The album was a critical and commercial success, and debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 with first-week sales of 1.21 million copies. This marked the highest opening sales in a decade, and made Taylor the first female to have two million-selling album openings, a record recognized by Guinness World Records.
RED hit No. 1 in more than 50 countries; meanwhile, Taylor won another Grammy (for “Safe & Sound“), and rocked karaoke with the Duke of Cambridge, after she had wrapped the North American leg of her “RED Tour” near the end of 2013. In the same year, Vulture wrote: “In an age of catastrophic music-industry contraction, Swift stands apart; sometimes she has seemed like a one-woman bulwark against the collapse of the traditional record business.” At the end of 2013, Taylor admitted that she “is loving this year. I am slightly terrified for this year to end.”
In 2020, Taylor said that in hindsight RED was her only real breakup album. She told Rolling Stone:
RED Tour and Accolades
|Beginning of Era||August 2012|
|End of Era|
Red, black and white
Bangs and straight hair