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Taylor Swift's tales of lost love

Country singer Taylor Swift has been talking about the songwriting process that has made her a superstar in the USA. Her albums have sold enough copies to see her acclaimed as the saviour of the country music industry.

Her songs about troubled or difficult relationships have struck a chord with a mass audience that ranges across the generations. "When we're falling in love or out of it, that's when we most need a song that says how we feel," she told The Guardian. "Yeah, I write a lot of songs about boys. And I'm very happy to do that."

Although she is still in her early 20s, Swift’s songs are not the shallow stuff of disposable pop. Her albums sell in such quantities because she writes with a depth that isn’t common in pop music. A Taylor Swift song isn’t likely to have a happy ending. "I haven't had a relationship that's lasted for ever," she said. "I only know about them starting and ending. Those are my fears."

New album Red continues the pattern, although it moves away from traditional country pop into a more streamlined and glossy modern sound, punctuated by electronic beats and hip-hop or dubstep touches.

Not that she is ashamed of the mainstream. The most striking song on the album is the punchy 'We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together' in which she dismisses an ex who was more interested in indie music than her songs. "He'd listen to this music that nobody had heard of, but as soon as anyone else liked these bands, he'd drop them. I felt that was a strange way to be a music fan."

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