Scooter Braun Refused to Give Me a Quote to Buy Masters
The plot thickens! Taylor Swift gave fans an update on her battle with Big Machine Records after news broke that Scooter Braun had reportedly sold her master rights to her songs for more than $300 million.
“I wanted to check in and update you guys. As you know, for the past year I’ve been actively trying to regain ownership of my master recordings,” Swift, 30, shared in a Twitter statement on Monday, November 16. “With that goal in mind, my team attempted to enter into negotiations with Scooter Braun.”
The “Cardigan” singer, 30, shared her side of the story on social media hours after Variety reported that the rights to Swift’s first six albums were sold more than a year after Braun’s company acquired the label and its assets.
“Scooter’s team wanted me to sign an ironclad NDA stating I would never say another word about Scooter Braun unless it was positive, before we could even look at the financial records of BMLG (which is always the first step in a purchase of this nature),” the Grammy winner explained. “So, I would have to sign a document that would silence me before I could even have a chance to bid on my own work.”
Taylor Swift and Scooter Braun Gregory Pace/Shutterstock; Rob Latour/Shutterstock
The “Lover” songstress noted that her legal team said that “this is absolutely NOT normal, and they’ve never seen an NDA like this presented unless it was to silence an assault accuser by paying them off.”
The strict NDA proposal made it nearly impossible for Swift to purchase her masters back from Big Machine Records.
“He would never even quote my team a price. These master recordings were not for sale to me,” she claimed.
After nearly two years of drama with Braun and Big Machine Record executive Scott Borchetta, after the music manager bought the label, Swift revealed that she had a brief sense of hope regarding her music when Shamrock Holdings notified her that they had purchased her master rights.
The Miss Americana star said that her team received a letter from the private equity company a “few weeks ago” after they bought “100 percent of my music, videos, and album art from Scooter Braun.”
Swift noted that this was the “second time my music has been sold without my knowledge,” but claimed that the company allegedly wanted to reach out sooner but was not allowed to due to the conditions of the sale.
“Scooter Braun had required that they make no contact with me or my team, or the deal would be off,” she explained. “As soon as we started communication with Shamrock, I learned that under their terms Scooter Braun will continue to profit off my old musical catalog for many years. I was hopeful and open to the possibility of a partnership with Shamrock, but Scooter’s participation is a non-starter for me.”
Despite multiple setbacks, Swift revealed that she “recently” began re-recording her older music.
“It has already proven to be both exciting and creatively fulfilling,” she wrote. “I have plenty of surprises in store. I want to thank you guys for supporting me through this ongoing saga, and I can’t wait for you to hear what I’ve been dreaming up. I love you guys and I’m just gonna keep cruising, as they say.”
The “Betty” singer also posted a letter of her response to Shamrock Holdings last month for “transparency and clarification.”
The letter from Swift read: “I simply cannot in good conscience bring myself to be involved in benefiting Scooter Braun’s interests directly or indirectly. As a result, I cannot currently entertain being partners with you.”
She concluded: “I will be going forward with my original re-recording schedule and will be embarking on that effort soon. I know this will diminish the value of my old masters, but I hope you will understand that this is my only way of regaining the sense of pride I once had when hearing songs from my first six albums and also allowing my fans to listen to those albums without feelings of guilt for benefiting Scooter.”
Swift trended on Twitter after posting her note and received support from fellow artists, including Sara Bareilles.
The “Red” singer has been at war with the label and Braun, 39, specifically, since June 2019. Swift revealed at the time that she only learned that her masters had been sold when it was “announced to the world.”
She then called Braun out for years of “incessant manipulative bullying.” Five months later, Braun broke his silence on the feud, saying that “we just need to go behind closed doors and see if we can have a conversation.”
Us Weekly has reached out to Braun for comment.
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