Taylor Swift Says Scooter Braun & Scott Borchetta Are Blocking Her From Performing Her Old Songs
Earlier this year, Taylor Swift’s former label Big Machine — which was founded by Scott Borchetta — sold her back catalog to Scooter Braun’s company as part of a $300 million deal for the rights to her albums from her 2006 self-titled debut through to 2017’s Reputation. Swift has been vocal about how angry the deal has made her, stating that her “musical legacy is about to lie in the hands of someone who tried to dismantle it.” Swift has also said that she plans to re-record her old songs as soon as she is legally allowed to do so.
Tonight, Swift has published a long statement to her social media accounts that says that Borchetta and Braun are blocking her from performing her old songs at televised events. Swift was recently named Artist Of The Decade by the American Music Awards, and she was planning on accepting the honor with a medley of her hits at the AMAs ceremony, which is supposed to take place later this month. She also says that they have denied the use of her older music for a documentary about her life that’s supposed to come to Netflix next year.
“Scott Borchetta told my team that they’ll allow me to use my music only if I do these things: If I agree to not re-record copycat versions of my songs next year (which is something I’m both legally allowed to do and looking forward to) and also told my team that I need to stop talking about him and Scooter Braun,” Swift wrote in her statement.
“I feel very strongly that sharing what is happening to me could change the awareness level for other artists and potentially help them avoid a similar fate,” she continued. “The message being sent to me is very clear. Basically, be a good little girl and shut up. Or you’ll be punished.”
Read her full statement below.
Guys – It’s been announced recently that the American Music Awards will be honoring me with the Artist of the Decade Award at this year’s ceremony. I’ve been planning to perform a medley of my hits throughout the decade on the show. Scott Borchetta and Scooter Braun have now said that I’m not allowed to perform my old songs on television because they claim that would be re-recording my music before I’m allowed to next year. Additionally – and this isn’t the way I had planned on telling you this news – Netflix has created a documentary about my life for the past few years. Scott and Scooter have declined the use of my older music or performance footage for this project, even though there is no mention of either of them or Big Machine Records anywhere in the film.
Scott Borchetta told my team that they’ll allow me to use my music only if I do these things: If I agree to not re-record copycat versions of my songs next year (which is something I’m both legally allowed to do and looking forward to) and also told my team that I need to stop talking about him and Scooter Braun.
I feel very strongly that sharing what is happening to me could change the awareness level for other artists and potentially help them avoid a similar fate. The message being sent to me is very clear. Basically, be a good little girl and shut up. Or you’ll be punished.
This is WRONG. Neither of these men had a hand in the writing of those songs. They did nothing to create the relationship I have with my fans. So this is where I’m asking for your help.
Please let Scott Borchetta and Scooter Braun know how you feel about this. Scooter also manages several artists who I really believe care about other artists and their work. Please ask them for help with this – I’m hoping that maybe they can talk some sense into the men who are exercising tyrannical control over someone who just wants to play the music she wrote. I’m especially asking for help from The Carlyle Group, who put up money for the sale of my music to these two men.
I just want to be able to perform MY OWN music. That’s it. I’ve tried to work this out privately through my team but have not been able to resolve anything. Right now my performance at the AMA’s, the Netflix documentary and any other recorded events I am planning to play until November of 2020 are a question mark.
I love you guys and I thought you should know what’s been going on.
Swift released her latest album, Lover, earlier this year. It was her first album with her new label home Republic. She did perform an old song earlier this month, “All Too Well,” during her NPR Tiny Desk concert. Maybe it was too tiny for Braun and Borchetta to notice.