NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Songwriting is the topic of the moment for Taylor Swift.
The 23-year-old pop star was honored for a record sixth time as songwriter-artist of the year by the Nashville Songwriters Association International, surpassing guys like Vince Gill and Alan Jackson. She earned the award with 14 hits in the top 30 over the last year, a tribute to the popularity of her multiplatinum fourth album, “Red.”
As Swift accepts the award, she’s six months deep in the songwriting process for her next album.
“I think the goal for the next album is to continue to change, and never change in the same way twice,” the seven-time Grammy winner said. “How do I write these figurative diary entries in ways that I’ve never written them before and to a sonic backdrop that I’ve never explored before? It’s my fifth album, which is crazy to think about, but I think what I’m noticing about it so far is it’s definitely taking a different turn than anything I’ve done before.”
Swift sat down with The Associated Press after the Saturday ribbon-cutting on the new $4 million Taylor Swift Education Center at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in her adopted hometown to talk about what’s to come with the new album, her six Country Music Association Award nominations, her friend and fellow Nashville resident Ed Sheeran and Madonna.
AP: Next month you leave on a stadium tour of Australia, making you the first female solo performer to tour that country since Madonna 20 years ago. Madonna was the top pop star in the world at the time. Do you see yourself as that kind of pop star?
Swift: I would never see myself that way. I see myself as kind of this girl who writes songs in her bedroom. You can kind of dress it up all you want and you can put together an amazing theatrical production, you can become a better performer as time goes by, and you can try to excite people, but I’m always going to be a girl who writes songs in her bedroom in my own personal perception of myself. And I think it’s important that I don’t necessarily think too hard about what everybody else’s perception of me is or else I’d just get completely lost in it. It’s just easier to think of myself that way.