Demi Lovato, Halsey and More Stars Take Sides After Taylor Swift Slams Scooter Braun for Bullying
Scooter Braun's clients Demi Lovato and Justin Bieber have defended their manager, while Taylor Swift pals like Cara Delevingne and Halsey have defended the singer
Swift, 29, slammed Braun, who manages stars like Ariana Grande and Justin Bieber, upon learning that his Ithaca Holdings had acquired her former record label, Big Machine Label Group, from founder Scott Borchetta – meaning Braun now owns all of her masters.
“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,” she said, accusing Braun of using Justin Bieber and Kanye West to bully her on social media after a feud over West’s song lyrics on the track “Famous.”
The “You Need to Calm Down” singer said her disdain for Braun made his purchasing her catalog her “worst nightmare,” and concluded her letter by writing she was “sad and grossed out” by the situation.
Naturally, the music world quickly chimed in with defenses of both Swift and Braun, with Justin Bieber, who was at the heart of the bullying drama, taking his manager’s side.
Bieber wrote a lengthy Instagram message apologizing for a 2016 Instagram post Swift provided as evidence of said bullying, but denied that Braun was responsible.
“Scooter has had your back since the days you graciously let me open up for you.!” wrote Bieber, who admitted he hasn’t spoken to Swift in years. “What were you trying to accomplish by posting that blog? Seems to me like it was to get sympathy u also knew that in posting that your fans would go and bully scooter. Anyway, One thing I know is both scooter and I love you.”
He concluded, “Neither scooter or I have anything negative to say about you we truly want the best for you. I usually don’t rebuttal things like this but when you try and deface someone I loves character that’s crossing a line.”
Bieber’s wife Hailey Baldwin responded, “gentleman.,” in the comments section, though her show of support caught the eye of Swift’s pal Cara Delevingne, who joined the conversation in defense of Swift.
“Gentleman? @haileybieber @justinbieber you must be bored. I wish you spent less time sticking up for men and more time trying to understand women and respecting their valid reactions,” Delevingne responded on Instagram. “As a married man, you should be lifting women up instead of tearing them down because you are threatened. I am not sure you actually understand what an apology is. This issue that @taylorswift is talking out is about far more than a picture and you know that. As you said, you haven’t spoken to her in years which means you definitely don’t understand the situation. I do. Take a step back and try and learn from this. We should all be on the same team. End of story.”
Bieber’s mother, Pattie Mallette, shared a message to Twitter on Sunday which many fans feel references the feud.
“Why all the division,” she wrote on what was also the last day of Pride Month, capping off the line with the hashtag “#LoveWins” and a heart emoji.
“I have dealt with bad people in the industry and Scooter is not one of them. He’s a good man. Personally, I’m grateful he came into my life when he did. Please stop ‘dragging’ people or bullying them. There’s enough hate in this world as it is,” she wrote.
Perhaps sensing she’d be facing backlash, the “Tell Me You Love Me” singer added, “Y’all can come after me all you want but I’m always gonna stay loyal to my team. I value loyalty more than most people in this world and if my name is gonna be brought into conversations I’m gonna stand up for myself and the ones on my team.”
Yael Cohen, 32, Braun’s wife, also defended her husband and responded to Swift’s claims in a lengthy Instagram post shared on Sunday.
“I have never been one for a public airing of laundry, but when you attack my husband… here we go,” she started.
“Girl, who are you to talk about bullying? The world has watched you collect and drops friend like wilted flowers. My husband is anything but a bully, he’s spent his life standing up for people and causes he believes in,” Yael wrote. “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.”
Cohen also said that her husband has always been a champion for Swift in the past.
“What you haven’t seen is what happens behind closed doors, when he has supported and stood up for you. When he has challenged his clients to be kind or be quiet,” she said in her post. “When he has reached an olive branch out to you on numerous occasions. ”
She continued, “Scott (Scooter) was excited to work and build with you. How embarrassing this temper tantrum is because you didn’t get your own way. He believes in and supports you, I sincerely hope you can learn to love and believe in yourself the way my husband does.”
Though they did not chime in, Kendall Jenner and Kacey Musgraves liked Yael’s post.
RELATED VIDEO: Justin Bieber Defends Scooter Braun After Taylor Swift Accuses Manager of ‘Bullying’ Her
Scott Borchetta, CEO of Big Machine Records, defended Braun in a letter posted to his label’s web site on Sunday.
“As to her comments about ‘being in tears or close to it’ anytime my new partner Scooter Braun’s name was brought up, I certainly never experienced that,” he wrote.
“Was I aware of some prior issues between Taylor and Justin Bieber? Yes. But there were also times where Taylor knew that I was close to Scooter and that Scooter was a very good source of information for upcoming album releases, tours, etc, and I’d reach out to him for information on our behalf,” Borchetta continued. “Scooter has always been and will continue to be a supporter and honest custodian for Taylor and her music.”
The singer Sia also came to Braun’s defense on Monday night with a tweet directed at the mogul.
“You’re a good kind man @scooterbraun,” she wrote. “I hope this passes quickly. I love you keep going.”
The sentiment resulted in some blowback from Swift’s fans, including those who accused Sia of performing concerts in blackface. She then responded with a follow-up tweet explaining the paint.
“I was painting myself into the backdrop, it was a pre cursor to the wig…” Sia wrote alongside a video illustrating her point.
Swift, meanwhile, found more support in Halsey, a fellow singer-songwriter who sympathized with Swift’s desire to own music she’d written herself.
“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) then I should too,” she wrote on Twitter. “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.”
Swift’s “ME!” collaborator — Panic! at the Disco frontman Brendon Urie — also came to her defense amid the drama with Braun. During a Twitch livestream on Monday, Urie said: “Yeah, it’s disgusting, right? What a f—n’ asshole.”
Iggy Azalea also weighed in, explaining she was thrilled to own the master of her upcoming album, because “they really do [people] crazy dirty on ownership of their intellectual property in the biz.”
Joseph Kahn, a music video director who shot Swift’s videos for “Look What You Made Me Do” and “Bad Blood,” among others, wrote on Twitter he felt “terrible” for his frequent collaborator, and slammed Justin Bieber as a “horrible person.”
“This is the record business at its most ruthless and shady. She is genuinely one of the nicest people ever and does not deserve this,” he wrote. “She should own her work. These people are soulless… There is a douchebag component to the entertainment business. Men whose sole reason to exist is greed, revenge, score points.”
He added that the only way for Braun to rectify the situation would be to sell Swift’s songs back to her.
Swift’s friend Todrick Hall, a former client of Braun’s, had harsh words for his ex-manager, describing him as an “evil person” consumed by wealth and his ego.
“I believe he is homophobic & I know from his own mouth that he is not a Swift fan. I truly hope justice is served and that my friend’s music will fall into the hands of a better human,” he wrote.
Hall also called out Hailey Baldwin and Braun’s wife Yael Cohen Braun directly for supporting their husbands, writing that, “Men sending women in (their wives) to carry out their patriarchal bulls- is the worst form of feminist and human betrayal of all time – looking at you Yael and Hailey.”
While Selena Gomez has yet to chime in, her mother Mandy Teefey did, writing on Instagram she wanted to give Swift a “big hug.”
“Thank you for speaking out about this and teaching future young artist about protecting themselves,” she wrote. “I don’t understand the pleasure of power plays to simply hurt people! To deny you the option to your own blood, sweat and tears, especially as a young woman who shared growing up in front of the world, is heartbreaking!!”
Victoria’s Secret model Martha Hunt, who was once part of Swift’s “squad,” supported her friend by reminding fans that at the end of the day, the issue was about Swift’s ownership of her work.
“Taylor doesn’t deserve for someone who has constantly BULLIED her to OWN THE RIGHTS to her blood, sweat, + tears,” she wrote. “This is about protecting artists. Taylor courageously exposed a grown man who has time + time again proven his obsession with holding her down, like his reputation precedes him. He doesn’t deserve a morsel of control over the archives of her past.”
Even Hannah Brown, ABC’s current Bachelorette, weighed in, sharing a photo of Swift performing to Twitter.
“Oh heck no…don’t mess with our Queen Taylor. #fangirlactivated #IStandWithTaylor #WeStandWithTaylorSwift @taylorswift13,” she wrote.
Kelsea Ballerini responded to a fan’s tweet by saying that she reached out to Swift privately, and fans captured a comment from Ed Sheeran saying that he had done the same.
Fans also noted that Maren Morris liked several pro-Swift tweets — including the note shared by Halsey.
Singer JoJo, who endured her own label difficulties in the past, also shared a message of support.
“WeStandWithTaylor,” she wrote before adding, “Duh.”