Taylor Swift is firing back at her former label, Big Machine Records, over their alleged plan to release an album featuring live versions of her old songs.
The “You Need to Calm Down” singer, 30, opened up about the matter in a new Instagram Stories update on Thursday, April 23. While addressing the issue, she shared her gratitude towards her devoted fan base for alerting her to the situation at hand. Swift noted that she does not endorse the upcoming release.
“Hey guys — I want to thank my fans for making me aware that my former record label is putting out an ‘album’ of live performances of mine tonight,” the Grammy winner wrote. “This recording is from a 2008 radio show performance I did when I was 18. Big Machine has listed the date as a 2017 release but they’re actually releasing it tonight at midnight.”
Swift continued, “I’m always honest with you guys about this stuff, so I just wanted to tell you that this release is not approved by me. It looks to me like Scooter Braun and his financial backers, 23 Capital, Alex Soros and the Soros family and The Carlyle Group have seen the latest balance sheets and realized that paying $330 MILLION for my music wasn’t exactly a wise choice and they need money .”
In closing, Swift noted that this situation is likely “just another case of shameless greed in the time of coronavirus.” She regarded her ex-label’s move as “so tasteless, but very transparent.”
Before releasing her seventh studio album, Lover, under Universal Music Group in August 2019, Swift took to Tumblr on June 30 to speak out against Braun, 38, purchasing her former label and subsequently her masters.
“I walked away because I knew once I signed that contract, [Big Machine Records CEO] Scott Borchetta would sell the label, thereby selling me and my future,” she wrote at the time. “I had to make the excruciating choice to leave behind my past. Music I wrote on my bedroom floor and videos I dreamed up and paid for from the money I earned playing in bars, then clubs, then arenas, then stadiums.”
Swift called Braun’s purchase of Big Machine Record her “worst case scenario” and slammed the famed talent manager for his alleged “incessant, manipulative bullying” toward her over the years. Justin Bieber, Halsey and Demi Lovato were among those who spoke out and took sides thereafter.
In November 2019, Swift accused Big Machine Records of prohibiting her from performing her old material live at the 2019 American Music Awards. However, the music label denied such allegations.
Later that month, Braun addressed Swift’s fallout with Big Machine Records for the first time during the 2019 Entertainment Industry Conference. “I just think we live in a time of toxic division, and of people thinking that social media is the appropriate place to air out on each other and not have conversations,” he said at the time.
“I don’t like politicians doing it. I don’t like anybody doing it,” he continued. “If that means that I’ve got to be the bad guy longer, I’ll be the bad guy longer, but I’m not going to participate.”
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