After a year as impressive as 2009, Taylor Swift followed suit in 2010. She toured the world, released a chart-topping album and even starred in her first feature film. Swift kicked off the year winning awards and ended it dominating the charts, and in between, she never looked back.
Swift proved that she was more than just a crossover coincidence thanks to catchy songs and girl-next-door charm that appeals to the masses. She managed to scoop up awards and be surprised by each win. The other shoe isn't going to drop anytime soon, and 2010 proved that.
2010 Highlights: In January, Taylor took home her first People's Choice Award and covered Better Than Ezra's "Breathless" at the "Hope for Haiti Now" telethon. She also broke Britney Spears' record for first-week download sales by a female artist thanks to her tune "Today Was a Fairytale."
But it was February that would truly leave her breathless. At the Grammys in February, Swift took home four trophies, including Album of the Year. She also hit the stage with Stevie Nicks at the awards show. Weeks later, she would rule the box office alongside former beau Taylor Lautner in "Valentine's Day."
Swift spent much of 2010 on tour, but along the way, she racked up nominations at a slew of awards shows, including the Academy of Country Music Awards and CMT Awards. In the spring, she revealed that she was working on her next album and that, unsurprisingly, it would focus on "boys and love."
In July, the singer announced that her next album would be out in October and that she wouldn't hold back on the aptly titled Speak Now. Weeks later, in August, the album's first single, "Mine," leaked online and then soared to the top of the charts. "I was reflecting back on a boy I liked at a certain time," she said about the song. The video was released at the end of August and showed a more adult side of the singer.
Then September rolled around and Swift took the stage at the VMAs. It was a defining moment for the singer, as she publicly let go of the Kanye West incident from a year prior and buried the hatchet with the rapper thanks to her heartfelt performance of "Innocent."
Swift later explained, "I had a lot of options going into the VMAs: You can not go, you can perform your current single, you can pretend that nothing happened or you can say what you need to say at the time you need to say it."
By early October, Swift was pre-releasing Speak Now tracks, prompting speculation about whether the songs were referring to famous exes like Taylor Lautner and Joe Jonas. "I've never kept quiet the fact that I write songs about people," she said. "It's like, this is album number three. You guys have had fair warning!"
For the album's release, Swift invited fans to her album-release party, and just one week later, she found out that Speak Now had sold 1,047,000 units in its first week, making it the biggest album release in five years.
Swift capped 2010 with performances at the CMA Awards and the American Music Awards, announcing a world tour, embarking on a whirlwind romance with Jake Gyllenhaal and turning 21. Not a bad year, to say the least.
We'll be rolling out our Top Five Men and Women of 2010 all week, until we unveil MTV News' Man and Woman of the Year on Friday. As always, we want to know what you think, so share your picks in the comments below!