Taylor Swift replies that Scooter Braun is promoting her masters and confirms that she is re-recording her first albums
Scooter Braun and its media holding company Ithaca Holdings LLC sold the master rights to Taylor Swift’s first six albums, Variety Reports and Swift confirmed. Ithaca announced the acquisition of the Big Machine Label Group back in June 2019 and gave the company the rights to Swift’s albums for the label (Taylor Swift 2006 to 2017). According to Swift, the Masters were sold to a private equity firm called Shamrock Holdings, and according to Variety, the deal was worth more than $ 300 million.
After news of the sale broke, Swift tweeted the following explanation of why she hadn’t sold her Masters. She also confirmed that her plans to re-record her music have already begun and that she “has many surprises in store”.
Swift says her team tried to negotiate with Braun about bidding for her own work, but she was told she had to sign an NDA prohibiting her from speaking anything less than positive about Braun. “My legal team said this is absolutely NOT normal and they have never seen an NDA like this unless it tried to silence a prosecutor by paying them off,” she wrote. “He would never give my team a price. These master recordings were not for sale to me. “
She noticed that she had been contacted by Shamrock Holdings and was informed that her music was being sold to her without her knowledge. “The letter told me that they wanted to contact me before the sale to inform me, but that Scooter Braun had requested that they not contact me or my team, otherwise the deal would not go through,” she wrote.
The letter claims that Braun will continue to benefit from their catalog “for many years to come”. While hoping to work with Shamrock, she said that “attending Scooter isn’t a beginner for me”.
She also shared her letter to Shamrock (dated October 28) in which she said, “I am very sorry [Braun] put you in that position. I wish this could have resulted in a better result and please let me know if your company will ever be completely independent of Scooter Braun and its employees. ”
“Taylor Swift is a transcendent artist with a timeless catalog,” Shamrock said in a statement. “We made this investment because we believe in the immense value and opportunities that come with their work. We fully respect and support their decision and while we were hoping to formally work together we also knew this was a possible outcome that we were considering. We appreciate Taylor’s open communication and professionalism over the past few weeks. We hope that we can work with her in new ways and continue to invest in her work with artists. “
Swift initially responded to the Braun and Ithaca acquisitions with an open letter on Tumblr last year. “All I could think of was the incessant, manipulative bullying I had received from him for years,” she wrote. “This is my worst case.”
In a summer 2019 interview, Taylor Swift said she plans to re-record her music in response to Ithaca’s acquisition of her catalog. “My contract says that I will be able to record albums one to five again from November 2020,” she said. “It’s next year. It’s just around the corner. I will be busy. I’m very excited. “
Taylor Swift signed with Universal Music Group and Republic Records in 2018. She has released two albums for Republic: Lover and Folklore.
Pitchfork reached out to representatives from Taylor Swift, the Big Machine Label Group and Scooter Braun.
Check out Pitchfork’s “Taylor Swift’s Musician Ownership Controversy With Scooter Braun: What It Means and Why It Matters”.
This article was originally published on November 16 at 4:17 p.m. Central. It was last updated on November 16 at 6:49 p.m. Central.