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Taylor Swift Accuses Scooter Braun Of Bullying Her Through Kanye West And Justin Bieber After He Purchases Her Entire Musical Catalog

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New Details On The Taylor Swift/Scooter Braun Feud And How He Used Kanye And Bieber To Bully Her After Buying Her Musical Catalog

Manager Scooter Braun has acquired Big Machine Records, the label that Taylor Swift was with from the time she was 15 until last fall. Big Machine owns all of Taylor Swift's master recordings. Scooter Braun just dropped $300 million to buy Big Machine Records.

Taylor Swift isn't happy about that — not by a long shot. Swift took to her Tumblr on Sunday to write about how "grossed out" she was by the purchase and accused the music manager of bullying her through his two clients Kanye West and Justin Bieber. She wrote: “Some fun facts about today’s news: I learned about Scooter Braun’s purchase of my masters as it was announced to the world. All I could think about was the incessant, manipulative bullying I’ve received at his hands for years." 

OK then. People are leaping to Braun's defense in this case, which seems strange, so let's look at the facts of the Taylor Swift/Scooter Braun feud. Why is Taylor Swift feuding with Scooter Braun?

1. Her masters

OK, first of all, it is extremely rare for an artist to own their own masters. Taylor Swift's new deal with Universal Music Group does allow her to own all her masters from here on out. However, from the time she was 15 to last November (she was 29), Big Machine was her label.

Let's be clear here, Taylor Swift put Big Machine on the map. Up to 80% of the label's revenue is Taylor Swfit-related. That's why it is fair to say that Scooter Braun bought Taylor Swift's masters for $300 million rather than Scooter Braun bought Big Machine Records. Because Taylor Swift is Big Machine Records. 

2. She is "sad and grossed out"

Taylor Swift spent years trying to negotiate owning her own masters with Big Machine, which owns all of Taylor Swift's music up through 2017's Reputation. Her masters were the cornerstone of her 2018 contract negotiations. One of the big reasons she left Big Machine for Universal Music Group was because UMG allowed her to own her masters from that point forward.

She wrote on Tumblr: “For years I asked, pleaded for a chance to own my work. 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. 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.

She went on to say that when she left Big Machine Records, she made peace with the fact that he would eventually sell them. However, selling them to Scooter is her worst nightmare. 


A post shared by Taylor Swift (@taylorswift) on Apr 26, 2019 at 7:28am PDT

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3. Her worst nightmare

Taylor wrote about the "bullying" she feels she endured because of Scooter Braun, saying: 

“Like when Kim Kardashian orchestrated an illegally recorded snippet of a phone call to be leaked and then Scooter got his two clients together to bully me online about it.  Or when his client, Kanye West, organized a revenge porn music video which strips my body naked. Now Scooter has stripped me of my life’s work, that I wasn’t given an opportunity to buy. Essentially, my musical legacy is about to lie in the hands of someone who tried to dismantle it. 

This is my worst case scenario. This is what happens when you sign a deal at fifteen to someone for whom the term ‘loyalty’ is clearly just a contractual concept. And when that man says ‘Music has value’, he means its value is beholden to men who had no part in creating it...Never in my worst nightmares did I imagine the buyer would be Scooter. Any time Scott Borchetta has heard the words ‘Scooter Braun’ escape my lips, it was when I was either crying or trying not to. He knew what he was doing; they both did. Controlling a woman who didn’t want to be associated with them. In perpetuity. That means forever."

4. Support for Taylor

Rihanna, Katy Perry, Miley Cyrus, Nicki Minaj, Camila Cabello, Selena Gomez, Adele, Alessia Cara and Gwen Stefani have all voiced their support for Taylor Swift in this matter. 

Todrick Hall, a former client of Braun's who appears in Swift's new video came to the defense of Taylor. He wrote, “For those asking, I left Scooter Braun a long time ago…I am saddened by this news, but not shocked. He is an evil person who’s only concern is his wealth and feeding his disgusting ego. I believe he is homophobic & I know from his own mouth that he is not a Swift fan."

Halsey also posted support for Swift on her Twitter account Sunday. She wrote: “Taylor Swift is a huge reason why I always insisted to write my own music. I believed if she did it (in a way that made my teeth ache like cold water and my heart swell and my eyes leak) than I should too. Cause that’s how to make someone feel. To drag it from the pits of your heart. To offer it on a platter and say ‘take some but take kindly.’ She deserves to own the painstaking labor of her heart. And it turns my guts that no matter how much power or success a woman has in this life, you are still susceptible to someone coming along and making you feel powerless out of spite. It speaks volumes to how far we have to come in the music industry. The way writers are treated. How as an entertainer you are respected but as a writer you’re walked all over. Even when you are both in one single body. I am standing with her.”

RELATED: Who Is Roger Alvarado? New Details On The Man Who Has Been Arrested For Stalking Taylor Swift

5. Scooter bragged about buying Taylor's masters

After Sunday's announcement that Scooter Braun has bought Big Machine Records — and Swift's entire music catalog — a number of Braun's friends took to social media to congratulate him. In a since-deleted Instagram story, Braun's friend David Grutman wrote: "WHEN YOUR FRIEND BUYS TAYLOR SWIFT." Braun re-posted the IG story on his own account. He deleted it a bit later. 

6. Support for Scooter Braun

Let's be clear, Braun does not come off well here. The people supporting him are Justin Bieber and his wife Yael Cohen. She decided to take to social media to defend her husband and in the act of doing that, twisted the facts. She wrote: "I have never been one for a public airing of laundry, but when you attack my husband... here we go. My husband is anything but a bully, he's spent his life standing up for people and causes he believes in. Beyond that, it's easy to see that the point of putting this out was to get to bully him. You are supposed to be a role model, but continue to model bullying. You were given the opportunity to own your masters and you passed..."

ABOUT THAT: Big Machine Records has been for sale since last summer. Taylor Swift signed her new Universal Music Group contract in November 2018. Prior to that, she was negotiating with Big Machine. The label told her she could earn back her masters with each new album she released. So let's say Taylor stayed with Big Machine, a label she knew was for sale, and released an album in 2020. Then she'd get her first album back. That deal to earn back her masters would tie her to that label for decades.


A post shared by Yael Cohen Braun (@yael) on Jun 30, 2019 at 3:53pm PDT

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7. Just how big are Taylor Swift's masters?

Let's look at 2017's Reputation alone. Reputation sold 1.216 million copies in its first week of release in 2017 despite the fact that it was not made available to streaming services. The other 199 albums on that week's Billboard 200 sold a combined 863,000 copies. Only 21 albums have sold one million copies during the first week of release. Four of those albums are Swift's. Every single one of her albums has sold at least two million copies. The first five stops on Swift's massive Reputation tour brought in $54 million. The gross receipts for the box office for the entire tour are $345.7 million. That doesn't include merchandise. The total gross receipts for her Reputation tour are well over $400 million.

Amy Lamare is a Los Angeles based freelance writer covering entertainment, pop culture, beauty, fashion, fitness, technology, and the intersection of technology, business, and philanthropy. She is deeply devoted to her chocolate Labrador and an avid long distance runner. You can find her on Instagram and Facebook.