No Surprise: Taylor Swift Debuts No. 1


Taylor Swift photo courtesy of Big Machine Records.

Nov. 20, 2008 — In its first week of release, Taylor Swift’s Fearless album sold more than 592,000 copies, easily vaulting her to the top of the country album chart and the all-genre Billboard 200. It marks the biggest debut sales week by an album that charted country since the Eagles’ Long Road Out Of Eden moved 711,000 copies last November.

More than 129,000 of Taylor’s sales were digital, giving her the best online start for any country album in history. In addition, she joins Kenny Chesney, Alan Jackson and George Strait as the only country stars to top the Billboard 200 this year.

Elsewhere online, Taylor’s now streamed more than 120 million performances from her MySpace page as she reaches directly to her fans. Who are her most obsessive fans?

"I get a lot of criers," she told Rolling Stone. "But I love criers because I like emotional people. Sometimes people show me tattooed arms or midriffs with my signature, which is interesting. And I love huggers, but sometimes I get gropers. When it goes beyond 10 seconds, that's excessive."

It’s doubtful, however, that Taylor actually carries a stopwatch with her to meet her troops. Look for her to mount a headline tour this summer.

"I've already drawn up the stage plans," she said.