CMA will present the Pinnacle Award to Nashville’s own global sensation Taylor Swift during “The 47th Annual CMA Awards” airing live WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 6 (8:00-11:00p.m., ET) on the ABC Television Network.
The Award recognizes an artist who has achieved both national and international prominence through concert performances and record sales at levels unique in Country Music. The artist has also attained the highest degree of recognition within the broad expanse of music worldwide. The artist’s talent and presence will have a long-term positive impact on the appreciation of Country Music for generations to come.
“I can’t think of a better opportunity than ‘Country Music’s Biggest Night™’ to present an award of this magnitude to an artist of this caliber,” said CMA President of the Board Ed Hardy. “I’ve known Taylor since she was 16. She came to my office with her Mom to play her music and I was amazed. Taylor’s outstanding career epitomizes the definition of the Pinnacle Award.”
Swift, who writes all of her own songs, has six CMA Awards nominations in 2013 including Entertainer of the Year, Female Vocalist of the Year, Album of the Year (for her six million-selling RED), and three nominations for “Highway Don’t Care” with Tim McGraw and Keith Urban for Single, Musical Event, and Music Video of the Year. Swift now has 21 CMA Awards nominations and seven wins including her first in 2007 for the Horizon Award (now New Artist of the Year) and two for Entertainer of the Year (2009, 2011), which ties her with Barbara Mandrell for wins in that category by a female artist.
She was previously announced as a performer on the CMA Awards in a star-studded collaboration with Alison Krauss, CMA Musical Event of the Year nominee Vince Gill, CMA Musician of the Year nominee Sam Bush, bassist Edgar Meyer, and percussionist Eric Darken.
The Pinnacle Award was created in 2005 when it was presented to Garth Brooks, the only other recipient.
At age 23, Swift is the only female artist in music history (and just the fourth artist ever) to twice have an album (2012’s RED and 2010’s Speak Now) hit the 1 million first-week sales figure.
With RED, Swift became the first artist since the Beatles (and the only female artist in history) to log six or more weeks at No. 1 with three consecutive studio albums. RED has topped the Billboard 200 Albums Chart for seven weeks, following Fearless (11 weeks), and Speak Now (six weeks).
With more than 1.2 million copies sold in the U.S. in its first week, RED scored the highest first-week sales debut of any album in more than a decade, had the eighth largest first-week debut in chart history, and marked the second biggest week ever for a female artist. Taylor’s lead single from RED, “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” set a new record for the biggest digital sales week ever for a song by a woman, and for the second-largest sales week overall.
With RED, Swift also set a new worldwide iTunes record for highest ever first-week album sales, and RED reached No. 1 on iTunes and national sales charts in 50 countries, including the U.K., Canada, Brazil, Japan, Mexico, Malaysia, Ireland, Argentina, New Zealand, and Australia.
In 2012, Swift’s Speak Now album was lauded on Rolling Stone’s prestigious The 50 Greatest Albums of All Time (by women) list, and Time magazine has named Taylor one of the 100 most influential people in the world. She is Billboard’s youngest-ever Woman of the Year, her more than 100 industry awards include seven Grammys (she is the youngest winner in history of the Grammy Award for Album of the Year).
Swift, who writes all of her own songs, has career record sales in excess of 26 million albums and 75 million song downloads worldwide, and her two most recent albums are two of only 18 albums in the entire history of music to sell more than 1 million copies in a single week. She has had singles top both the Country and pop radio charts around the globe, and has thus far scored 13 No. 1 singles across multiple radio formats. She is one of the Top 5-selling digital music artists worldwide, and is the top-selling digital artist in Country Music history.
She is Billboard’s reigning Artist of the Year and holds the Billboard record for the Most Top 10 Debuts in the History of the Hot 100 Chart, the Most Charting Songs from One Album in a Single Week, and the Longest Charting Album on the Top 200 Chart.
This year, the North American portion of Swift’s RED Tour played to more than 1.36 million fans, with 66 shows (including 13 stadium stops), in 47 cities, in 29 states, and 3 provinces spanning 6 months. And, starting in late November, Swift will take her RED Tour, which Rolling Stone dubbed “a massively excellent show,” Down Under, performing stadium shows in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, and Perth, as well as arena dates in Auckland. Swift will be the first solo female artist in 20 years to undertake a national stadium concert tour of Australia. The RED Tour heads to Europe in 2014.
Her SPEAK NOW World Tour played 111 shows to more than 1.5 million fans in sold-out stadiums and arenas in 19 countries spanning four continents in 2011 and 2012. Her 107-date FEARLESS 2009/2010 Tour sold out arenas and stadiums in 88 cities in five countries.
Swift recently filmed a role for the upcoming movie “The Giver,” and has written the end credit song, “Sweeter Than Fiction,” for the movie “One Chance,” a bio pic of “Britain’s Got Talent” winner Paul Potts. She also contributed two songs to the soundtrack of the movie “The Hunger Games,” winning a Grammy Award for Best Song Written for Visual Media, and earning a Golden Globe nomination for Best Original Song. She voiced the character of Audrey in the 2012 hit movie “Dr. Seuss’s The LORAX,” has hosted “Saturday Night Live,” appeared in the Garry Marshall film “Valentine’s Day” and guest-starred on the Emmy-winning TV drama “CSI.”
Photo: Katherine Bomboy-Thornton