POP superstar Taylor Swift on Monday won the Grammy for Album of the Year for her blockbuster “1989.”
Taking the stage, the 26-year-old country prodigy turned pop giant highlighted her success as the first woman to win the music industry’s most prestigious prize twice.
“I want to say to all the young women out there — there are going to be people along the way who will try to undercut your success or take credit for your accomplishments or your fame,” Swift said as she accepted the award.
“But if you just focus on the work and you don’t let those people sidetrack you, someday when you get where you are going, you will look around and you will know that it was you and the people who love you who put you there,” she said.
Accompanied by a major promotional campaign, “1989” was the top-selling album for the year.
Swift beat competitors that included Kendrick Lamar’s “To Pimp a Butterfly,” an experimental rap opus that touched on the state of US race relations, and R&B star The Weeknd’s “Beauty Behind the Madness”.
In 2010, Swift also made history when she won Album of the Year for “Fearless,” becoming the youngest artist to take the prize as the album was recorded when she was 20.
Rising to fame as a teenage country singer, Swift on “1989” moved fully in a commercial pop direction as she worked with the hit-making Swedish production team of Max Martin and Shellback.
Lyrically, Swift sang both about the complexities of romance and becoming an adult and at times cast herself as a feminist, winning her a particularly strong fan base about teenage girls.
But equally striking for the music industry, Swift through the album took on the growing industry of streaming as she refused to allow “1989” on sector leader Spotify, saying she believed it was wrong to effectively give the album out for free.
Swift later allowed “1989” to appear on Apple’s new music streaming platform after a feud in which the technology giant agreed to improve compensation to artists, although conspiracy theorists in the industry wondered if the headline-grabbing exchange was staged.
“1989” enjoyed the biggest debut in the United States in more than a decade when it came out in 2014, although her sales feat was topped a year later by British ballad singer Adele, who followed Swift in boycotting streaming, although less vocally.
Adele’s “25” came out in November, too late to qualify for this year’s Grammys.
Swift was also nominated for Record of the Year and Song of the Year for “Bad Blood,” a major hit off “1989,” but did not win in either category.