The 17-year-old proves that country music isn't just for grown folks

By Chris Willman
Updated July 20, 2007 at 04:00 AM EDT

You won’t often see the platinum-selling, platinum-blond Taylor Swift in high heels. The 17-year-old stunner admits to having ”this fear of falling in front of large groups of people.” Plus, ”I’m 5’11”, so in heels, I’m 6’2”.” Towering over the country competition any more than she already does would present a seriously unfair advantage. Not only has she sold a million copies of her self-titled debut CD, for which she wrote or co-wrote all the songs, but her first two hits, ”Tim McGraw” and ”Teardrops on My Guitar,” have each sold hundreds of thousands of downloads. Country radio usually skews older, but the Pennsylvania-born, Tennessee-bred lady is bringing in younger fans with a lively, acoustic-based disc that unabashedly captures the sweetness, petulance, and passion of being a teen. ”I’ll have plenty of time to act 25 when I am 25. I want to sing about things I’ve actually gone through.” And she isn’t counting down to the emancipated day when she can ditch the dresses and liberate her inner Pussycat Doll. ”When I turn 18, I may do something crazy — like go out and vote or something.”