Love Story is a song performed by American singer-songwriter Taylor Swift. The song was written by Swift and produced by Nathan Chapman, alongside Swift. It was released on September 12, 2008 by Big Machine Records, as the lead single from Swift's second studio album Fearless (2008). The song was written about a love interest of Swift's who was not popular among Swift's family and friends. Because of the scenario, Swift related to the plot of William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet (1597) and used it as a source of inspiration to compose the song. However, she replaced Romeo and Juliet 's original tragic conclusion with a happy ending. It is a midtempo song with a dreamy soprano voice, while the melody continually builds. The lyrics are from the perspective of Juliet.
The song was a critical success with critics complimenting Swift's writing style and the song's plot. It was also a commercial success, selling over 8 million copies worldwide, therefore establishing itself among the best-selling singles of all time. In the United States, the song peaked at number four on the Billboard Hot 100 and sold over 5.8 million paid digital downloads, becoming Swift's best-selling single to date and the best-selling download by a female country solo artist. It is also one of the best-selling singles in the United States and was once the best-selling digital country single of all time there. The single was certified 8× Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). Internationally, "Love Story" became Swift's first number one single in Australia, followed by "Shake It Off" in 2014. The song has been certified triple platinum by the Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA). The song is one of the best-selling singles worldwide, with worldwide sales of more than 8 millions of units (according to the IFPI).
The song's accompanying music video was directed by Trey Fanjoy, who directed the majority of Swift's prior videos. The video is a period piece that drew influences from the Medieval, Renaissance, and British Regency (1813) eras. It follows Swift and model Justin Gaston as they meet in a university campus and imagine themselves in a prior era. "Love Story" was promoted through numerous live performances. The song was included on Swift's first, second, third, and fourth headlining tours, the Fearless Tour (2009–10), the Speak Now World Tour (2011–12), the Red Tour (2013–14), and the 1989 World Tour (2015) respectively. "Love Story" has been covered by several artists, including Joe McElderry and Forever the Sickest Kids.
Awards and nominations
At the 35th People's Choice Awards, "Love Story" was nominated for the People's Choice Award for "Favorite Country", but lost to Carrie Underwood's "Last Name" (2008). The song was nominated for "Fave Song" at the Nickelodeon Australian Kids' Choice Awards 2009, but lost to The Black Eyed Peas' "I Gotta Feeling" (2009) and received the same outcome at the 2009 Teen Choice Awards, when it lost the nomination for "Choice Music: Love Song" to David Archuleta's "Crush" (2008). In 2009, "Love Story" was declared the "Country Song of the Year" by Broadcast Music Incorporated (BMI)
On the week-ending September 27, 2008 "Love Story" debuted at number sixteen on the Billboard Hot 100, selling over 97,000 digital downloads. In the succeeding week, "Love Story" ascended to a new peak at number five, selling 159,000. After two weeks in the top ten, on the week ending October 18, 2008, the track descended to number thirteen and remained on the top twenty of the Billboard Hot 100 for eleven consecutive weeks, returning to the top ten, at number seven, on the week ending January 3, 2009. On the week ending January 17, 2009, the song reached its peak at number four on the chart, becoming Swift's best charting single at the time. In the succeeding weeks, "Love Story" continued to sell strongly, spending fourteen weeks in the top ten and forty-nine weeks in total. The single is one of thirteen songs from Fearless charted within the top forty of the Billboard Hot 100, breaking the record for the most top forty entries from a single album. The single was certified eight times platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America, and had sold over 5 million by May 2011. The song became Swift's best-selling single, and was once the best-selling country single of all time (now overtaken by Lady Antebellum's "Need You Now") as well as the ninth best-selling digital single of all time. As of July 2015, "Love Story" has sold 5,872,000 copies in the United States.
"Love Story" reached number two in Billboard Radio Songs with 106 million all-format audience impressions, being held from the top spot by Kanye West's "Heartless". On Billboard Hot Country Songs, "Love Story" debuted at number twenty-five on the week-ending September 27, 2008. The song jumped at the top ten on its fourth week at number nine and on its ninth week it reached the top spot, thus giving Swift her third number-one song on Billboard Hot Country Songs and her fastest song to reach number one on the chart. It stayed at number one for two weeks and charted for a total of thirteen weeks on Billboard Hot Country Songs. On Billboard Pop Songs, the song debuted at thirty-four on the week-ending November 22, 2008. It reached the top spot on its fifteenth week, the week-ending February 28, 2009, marking the highest peak by a country song on the chart since Shania Twain's "You're Still the One" peaked at number three in 1998. "Love Story" also reached number one spot in Billboard Adult Contemporary and number three in Billboard Adult Pop Songs, and was able to appear Billboard Latin Pop Songs at number thirty-five.
In Canada, "Love Story" entered at number eighty-eight on the week ending October 18, 2008. It entered and peaked at number four on the week ending November 29, 2008, became Swift's first top ten hit in the said territory. The single stayed at the top ten for ten weeks and charted for fifty-two weeks. It was placed at number eight on Canadian year-end chart and was certified double platinum by Music Canada for sales of 160,000 digital downloads.
Europe and Oceania
"Love Story" debuted at number twenty-two in United Kingdom, on the week ending February 28, 2009. In the succeeding week, the song rose to its peak at number two, becoming Swift's best-charting single, along with later hits "I Knew You Were Trouble" and "Shake It Off" and first top ten in the United Kingdom. It spent seven weeks in the top ten and thirty-two weeks in total on the chart. The single was certified platinum by the British Phonographic Industry (BPI) for shipments exceeding 600,000 copies. In October 22, 2012, Love Story charted again in United Kingdom at fifty-five. In Ireland, "Love Story" peaked at number three. In mainland, the track peaked at number ten on the Eurochart Hot 100 Singles Chart, number six in Hungary, number seven in Norway, and at number ten in Sweden. It performed well in other countries, such as Denmark, Germany, Netherlands, and France, where it became a top twenty hit.
In Australia, "Love Story" debuted at number thirty-eight on the week ending January 25, 2009. After two weeks of ascending on the chart, "Love Story" found a peak at number two, where it maintained for six consecutive weeks prior to reaching number one on the week ending March 29, 2009, becoming Swift's first and only number one in the region until "Shake It Off" in 2014. In the following week, the track descended again to number two, but rose to the top for a second and last week on the top fifty on the week ending April 12, 2009. The single was certified triple platinum by the Australian Recording Industry Association for the shipment of over 210,000 copies. "Love Story" was placed at number ten on the decade-end Austrian Singles Chart. On the week ending February 2, 2009, "Love Story" entered in New Zealand at number thirty-three. After nine weeks on the chart, the song peaked at number three on the week ending April 6, 2009. It was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of New Zealand for the shipment of over 15,000 copies. In total,"Love Story" has sold over 7.9 million copies worldwide, therefore establishing itself among of the best-selling singles of all time.