Scooter Braun officially sold Taylor Swift‘s music masters, and now Swift is speaking out. In a letter to her fans, Swift explained the situation from her perspective and provided fans with documentation of her communication with Shamrock Holdings, the investment fund that purchased her masters. In the letter, Swift also told fans that Braun wanted Swift to sign a non-disclosure agreement that her legal team deemed to be “not normal.”
Scooter Braun bought Taylor Swift’s masters in 2019
Braun purchased Big Machine Label Group from Scott Borchetta in June 2019, and in doing so he purchased the masters to Swift’s first six albums. In a Tumblr post, Swift expressed her disappointment with Borchetta and Braun, as she wanted the opportunity to purchase her own music masters on her terms.
“For years I asked, pleaded for a chance to own my work,” Swift wrote on Tumblr. “Instead I was given an opportunity to sign back up to Big Machine Records and ‘earn’ one album back at a time, one for every new one I turned in. I walked away because I knew once I signed that contract, Scott Borchetta would sell the label, thereby selling me and my future.”
Scooter Braun recently sold the music masters
After months of public feuding with Swift, it was reported that Braun sold Swift’s music masters to an investment fund for over $300 million. It was later revealed that Shamrock Holdings was the investment fund in question.
Starting in November 2020, Swift was able to begin re-recording her first five albums. By doing so, Swift could dramatically decrease the value of her masters. This is because fans could choose to only support Swift’s new releases instead of the albums she recorded while signed with Big Machine Records.
Taylor Swift wrote a letter about the situation
On Nov. 16, Swift published a letter on Twitter. In the letter, she explained that Braun sold the music masters to her first six albums without her knowing. Before Braun sold the masters to Shamrock Holdings, Swift attempted to purchase the masters from Braun’s Ithaca Holdings LLC.
Swift explained that her team was unable to make a deal for numerous reasons, the first being the NDA Braun wanted Swift to sign.
In the letter, she told fans:
“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). I would have to sign a document that would silence me forever before I could even have a chance to bid on my own work. My 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. He would never even quote my team a price. These master recordings were not for sale to me.”
Swift went on to explain that she would not partner with Shamrock Holdings as Braun still profits off of her masters with the new sale, and she is instead going through with re-recording her first five albums.