TAYLOR SWIFT FULFILLS A CHILDHOOD DREAM AND PERFORMS WITH ROCK LEGENDS DEF LEPPARD FOR THE LATEST EPISODE OF "CMT CROSSROADS: DEF LEPPARD AND TAYLOR SWIFT" PREMIERING FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 7
NASHVILLE � October 14, 2008 � Great Britain's premier arena rock band and one of country music's hottest stars come together for a magical night of hit songs and electrifying performances in the next episode of CMT CROSSROADS. CMT CROSSROADS: DEF LEPPARD AND TAYLOR SWIFT premieres Friday, November 7 at 9:00 p.m., ET/PT on CMT.
Taped before a standing-room only audience in Nashville, Swift fulfilled her "childhood dream" when she walked onstage and performed with Def Leppard. Lead singer Joe Elliott and Swift swapped lyrics on such hit songs as "Photograph," "Hysteria," "Pour Some Sugar On Me," "Picture to Burn" and "Love Story."
"Performing with Def Leppard was awesome!" says Swift. "It was the coolest thing in the world to have my band on stage with them, because for the past two years, before we go on stage we listen to Def Leppard and just rock out and jump around. And then, we were playing on the same stage as they were. It was the most amazing feeling in the world, and we were all just trying to act cool the whole time."
"What an absolute pleasure it was to work with Taylor and her band who are a great set of musicians," says Leppard's Elliott. "Myself and Taylor blended really well together, I think, and everybody, both bands and the crowd, had a great time. I'm really glad we had the opportunity to do this."
Def Leppard and Taylor Swift join an elite group of performers who have taped CMT CROSSROADS, which pairs country music stars with popular artists from other genres�pop, rock, R&B�to play together, swap stories, and share their common love of music. Previous episodes of CROSSROADS have included Lindsey Buckingham and Little Big Town; Bon Jovi and Sugarland; John Fogerty and Keith Urban; Kelly Clarkson and Reba McEntire; Joss Stone and LeAnn Rimes; Robert Plant and Alison Krauss; Maroon 5 and Sara Evans; and most recently 38 Special and Trace Adkins.
With more than 65 million albums sold worldwide and two prestigious Diamond Awards to their credit, Def Leppard--Joe Elliott (vocals), Vivian Campbell (guitar), Phil Collen (guitar), Rick "Sav" Savage (bass) and Rick Allen (drums) continues to be one of the most important forces in rock music. Over the course of their career, the band has produced a series of classic groundbreaking albums that set the sound for generations of music fans and artists. The group's spectacular live shows, filled with powerful melodic rock anthems, have become synonymous with their name and are an institution in the touring industry as they continue to sell out arenas worldwide. The band recently released their 14th studio album Songs From The Sparkle Lounge (Bludgeon Riffola/Island/UMe), which debuted at #5 on the Billboard Top 200, earning Def Leppard their highest-charting debut since 1992.The album features the hit singles "Nine Lives," featuring country music superstar Tim McGraw, and "C'mon C'mon."
Widely hailed as the first bonafide country music star of the MySpace generation, 18-year-old Taylor Swift currently has singles climbing both the country and pop radio charts. At the age of 17, Swift became the youngest person to single-handedly write and sing a number-one country single entirely on her own ("Our Song" spent 6 consecutive weeks at #1 atop Billboard's Country Singles Chart), and she is the first female solo artist in country music history to write or co-write every song on a platinum-selling debut CD. At 14, she signed a publishing deal with Sony/ATV Music, and in 2006 released her self-titled debut CD on Big Machine Records. Taylor Swift has reached triple-platinum (3 million sales) status and has spent more than 20 weeks so far in the #1 position atop Billboard's Country CD Sales Chart. Swift is consistently ranked Country's #1 artist on MySpace, and was named Country Music's Hottest Female Artist of 2007 by AOL Music and Best New Artist of 2007 by the editors of iTunes. Swift was named this year's Top New Female Vocalist by the Academy of Country Music, and won 2008 CMT Music Awards for Video of the Year and Female Video of the Year. She was recently named Superstar of Tomorrow at the 10th Annual Young Hollywood Awards, making her the first musician to ever receive this prestigious award. She is the reigning CMA Horizon Award winner, as well as the Nashville Songwriters Association International's Songwriter / Artist of the Year. Swift is on tour this year with Rascal Flatts, and has also toured with George Strait, Kenny Chesney, Tim McGraw & Faith Hill and Brad Paisley.
CMT CROSSROADS is presented by Alltel Wireless, the first title sponsor of the critically-acclaimed series. Alltel is owner and operator of the nation's largest wireless network and has 12 million customers.
CMT CROSSROADS is produced by Tom Forrest. John Hamlin, Margaret Comeaux and Bill Flanagan serve as executive producers for CMT.
For more information on CMT CROSSROADS log on to CMT.com.
CMT, a unit of Viacom's MTV Networks (NYSE: VIA and VIA.B), is the leading television and digital authority on country music and entertainment, reaching more than 87 million homes in the U.S. CMT and its website, CMT.com, offer an unparalleled mix of music, news, live concerts and series and is the top resource for country music on demand. The network's digital platforms include the 24-hour music channel, CMT Pure Country, CMT Mobile and CMT VOD.
MTV Networks, a division of Viacom (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B), is one of the world's leading creators of entertainment content, with brands that engage and connect diverse audiences across television, online, mobile, games, virtual worlds and consumer products. The company's portfolio spans more than 150 television channels and 350 digital media properties worldwide, and includes MTV, VH1, CMT, Logo, Harmonix, Nickelodeon, Nick at Nite, Noggin, The N, AddictingGames, Neopets, COMEDY CENTRAL, Spike TV, TV Land, Atom, GameTrailers and Xfire.