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Taylor Swift is one busy teen. During the CMA Music Festival, the 18-year-old country star signed autographs for nine hours, and took the stage as a host with Kellie Pickler and Julianne Hough during Monday’s concert special, CMA Music Festival: Country’s Night To Rock. And just yesterday, she received a female vocalist of the year nomination for the CMA Awards, which take place in November. Go, Taylor!

“She’s a golden girl,” Rascal FlattsJay DeMarcus says. “I think she’s going to be around for a long, long time. She’s such an inspiration to young girls. They want to be Taylor Swift. My niece wants to be her.”

In this interview, Taylor talks about her friendship with Carrie Underwood and Kellie, meeting fans and her dream duet.

Did you get to hang out with your pals Carrie Underwood and Kellie Pickler during your time in Nashville?

We haven’t gotten to hang out at all! It’s just so crazy that we all have different stuff scheduled all the time. But I got to hang with Carrie a little bit backstage because I was hosting the ABC special and so I got to see her. Kellie and I have been seeing each other all week because we’re hosting together.

What does your friendship with them mean to you?

I love them so much. They’re unbelievable. They’re like my big sisters, really, because they look out for me and they’re really, really amazing. I want to be here twenty years from now, and I want them to be right here with me.

You signed autographs for nine hours. What’s the most memorable story you heard?
Oh my gosh. I think the most memorable story is when somebody says when they were going through a breakup, your song motivated them to lose 20 lbs, get back in the game and now they’ve met the love of their life. And they give you the credit for that. Or somebody who used to love to listen to music, and then they heard my song and picked up a guitar and started writing songs and now they have a way to channel their emotions. Things like that are really moving to me.  

How do you feel about your career taking off?
It’s unbelievable. I wake up every single morning and look around and I’m like ‘I can’t believe this is my life.’ I can’t believe I get to do this! Honestly, there’s a huge part of me that still can’t believe that this happened to me and that I get to do this.

Any collaborations on your next album?
I got my dream duet for this next record. I have Colbie Callait doing vocals on one of my songs, and I’m so excited about that. That was my dream duet until I had it come true.

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